Rabbi Brenner Glickman of Temple Emanu-El in Sarasota was happy to see Hanukkah at the Green have a special place to celebrate on Dec. 17 at University Town Center's Green.
“There’s a lot of Christmas around, and we’re excited to have a Hanukkah event right here in the middle of UTC,” he said. “It’s a big gathering of happy Jews.”
A gathering that he pointed out was open to everyone to learn about the culture or just to have a good time.
“A big part of celebrating Hanukkah is called publicizing the miracle, and includes talking about and sharing the news, and the joy, and the spirit of Hanukkah,” said Rabbi Elaine Glickman, who is Brenner Glickman's wife.
The event, in its second year, was co-sponsored by Benderson Development.
Temple Emanu-El member Rachel Benderson, who helped manage the event, said the event was designed to be inclusive and allow anyone to celebrate, and that she hoped that the turnout would continue to grow each year.
Lakewood Ranch’s Helene Zukas, a substitute teacher at Temple Emanu-El, said the large celebration was a chance to connect with others.
“It's so nice to see the Jewish community coming together to celebrate Hanukkah, and I've enjoyed meeting new people who I would have not had a chance to meet without this event,” she said.
“We enjoy coming to it every year,” said Lakewood Ranch’s Andrew Bunin. “It’s a fun way to bring in the holidays, great for kids, and great for families.”