Kid-Friendly Hanukkah Events Around Philly
Latkes, anyone? Here are menorah lightings around town, and much more!
Hanukkah begins December 2 this year, and there are events in Philly to help you and your family celebrate the Festival of Lights all holiday long. So, brush up on your dreidel-spinning skills, because here’s our list of the best Hanukkah events in town!
Car Menorah Parade on the Parkway (and Celebration at Independence Mall)
December 1, 7 pm (Parade of Lights around 5:30 pm)
Parade beginning at 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway; Celebration at Fifth and Arch streets
Yet another thing that makes living in Philly an adventure: a parade of cars topped with giant menorahs throughout the city! Jewish organizations from all corners of the Philadelphia metro area outfit their cars with menorahs and converge to fill the Parkway with light and music. Even if you aren’t part of the festive motorcade, you can watch it pass by, and join in the revelry. The parade goes all the way to Independence Mall, where kids can enjoy treats, face painting, balloon art, live music, dancing, and more.
December 2, 4:30 pm
239 Arch St.
Join the Betsy Ross House and Old City Jewish Arts Center for the community menorah lighting celebrating the first night of Hanukkah. Enjoy beverages and traditional foods like latkes and donuts in the courtyard.
December 3, 5 pm
Headhouse Square, Second and Lombard streets, Philadelphia
For the fourth year, the SSHD will partner with Congregation B’nai Abraham to offer an evening celebration of the Festival of Lights at the Headhouse Shambles. Enjoy song, prayer, and the ceremony of the traditional lighting of the menorah at the Lombard Street Fountain (or under the Headhouse Shambles in case of inclement weather).
December 3, 5:30 pm
Pine Street, between 23rd and 24th streets
Gather around the Fitler Square fountain for menorah lighting and blessings led by a rabbi.
December 3, 6—7 pm
Schuylkill River Trail at the Fairmount Fish Ladder on Martin Luther King Drive
Parks and Recreation, the Mayor’s Office of Public Engagement, and the Office of the City Representative are working with community partners to co-produce and host this special celebration. The iconic houses on Boathouse Row will glow white and blue in the shape of a menorah from December 2—9.
December 4, 5:15–6 pm
The giant menorah in Rittenhouse Square will be lit in the square, along with holiday treats and raffle prizes. Please consider bringing new or gently used children’s books to donate to Mighty Writers (especially picture books and graphic novels).
December 5, 4—7 pm
4231 Avenue of the Republic
Gather around the menorah to sing, dance, and create! The Please Touch Museum will stay open until 7 pm for two extra hours of play, and offer $2 per person admission after 4 pm. Play dreidel, cook with Vetri Mobile Teaching Kitchen, and more.
December 5, 5:30—8 pm
Beth Zion-Beth Israel, 300 S. 18th St, Philadelphia
Come for a night of fried food, live music, candle lighting and more. After dinner, enjoy a laser light show by WONDERGY that brings the story of Hanukkah to life! Please bring new or gently used books to donate to Stephen Girard Elementary School. Tickets available online.
December 5, 6:30 pm
2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway
The fourth candle of Hanukkah will be lit on the nine-foot menorah displayed at the Art Museum steps. There will also be music, sufganiyot, and latkes!
Chanukah Party at the Ethical Society
December 6, 4:30 pm (menorah lighting in Rittenhouse Square at 5:30 pm)
1906 Rittenhouse Square
B’nai Abraham Chabad hosts a party with music, face painting, balloons, crafts, latkes, and donuts. After the party, head over to Rittenhouse Square for the giant menorah lighting at 5:30 pm.
December 7, 5:30 — 7:30 pm
200 N. Sixth St.
Enjoy dreidel games, latkes, and free holiday crafts as part of the Franklin Square Holiday Festival. Of course, the Electrical Spectacle Holiday Light Show will be dazzling the crowd every half hour to add to the festivities, and the hot chocolate bar will be open at Ben’s Sweet Treats tent.
December 9, 10–11 am
1241 N.Front St.
Join the celebration, sing some favorite holiday songs, and eat special treats with Rabbi Eli Freedman. The sing-along is free, but regular rates apply to the play space. RSVP to Alicia Broudy.
Photographs by Laura Swartz.