What is it?
So Hanukkah (or Chanukah) if you’re not familiar, is an eight-day Jewish holiday. If you want to get historical, it celebrates the taking back of the Jewish Temple from Syrian-Greek oppressors in the early ADs, and the miraculous cleansing of the Temple that ensued – they only had enough oil to burn for one day, but it burned for eight. Got it? No? Don't fret, all you really need to grasp is that It’s now commonly known as the festival of lights, and it's all about the candles and oil.
A candle is lit on the menorah (those multi-limbed candelabras) every night for eight days, and you eat a lot of food cooked with oil – primarily, sufganiyot (doughnuts!) and latkes (potato pancakes!). Hit up Glick's Cakes and Bagels for your supply of deep fried snacks as well as Aviv Bakery in Elsternwick.
Where can I do stuff?
Israeli dance party
The Machol Israeli Dance Club are putting on a Hanukkah shindig. It's a night of traditional Israeli folk dancing (which takes a serious amount of coordination – it's like the hardest line dance you've ever seen), candle lighting, fruit, and most importantly, ponchkas – Poland's own version of fried dough and up there (in our opinion) for the title of Best Fried Hanukkah Snack.
Chanukah In the park
Animal petting and riding, food stalls, performances by Dov Farkas and The Niggun Collective Band, a martial arts display – obviously – and awesome fireworks. All of which revolves around the menorah lighting ceremony.
Chanukah barbecue and carnival
Sure, it's a family affair, but this is also a day for anyone who digs a deep fried doughnut and craft. You're looking at a whole mess of food stalls doling out traditional latkes, and less traditional slurpees, along with a bunch of activities: dreidel decorating, an interactive graffiti wall, face painting, carnival games and rides, and a performance by Luigi Zucchini. We're also told there's going to be a giant chocolate menorah.