Chanukah Events

A couple Saturdays ago I went to the bar mitzvah of a young man. Like all rites of passage it changed the lives of each member of the family and reminded each guest of the transitory nature of our lives. It reminded me of my own children’s b’nai mitzvot (plural for bar or bat mitzvah). Looking at the young man’s grandparents reminded me of my father-in-law crying at his grandchildren’s events, of missing my own father who is long gone.

I wish for each of you moments held in memory. Snapshots in your mind, faces filled with love. Whatever your tradition, find rituals to hold the intangible. Weddings, births, graduations, birthdays, deaths, we remember and consecrate these times for a reason – they change us. So we want to remember how we were, what we became, and that awesome instant of transition.

On Nov. 14 I’ll run the workshop, Cooking Jewish Whether You’re Jewish or Not: Chanukah, in Los Altos. We’ll cook, we’ll eat, but it isn’t only about the food. It’s about how food can be a ritual and create meaning in your family events. I hope you’ll join me.

Wake Up with The PJ Library (San Francisco)
Elana Jagoda: For the Whole Family (Palo Alto)
Cooking Jewish Whether You’re Jewish or Not: Chanukah (Los Altos)
Chanukah Bazaar (San Leandro)
A Holiday Expo with a Needy Twist (Alameda)
Etz Chayim Second Annual Holiday Boutique (Palo Alto)
Between Two Worlds: My Life and Captivity in Iran (Palo Alto)
Interfaith Kirtan (Berkeley)
Chanukah Bazaar (San Francisco)
A Night with Kosher Cooking Maven: Joan Nathan (Tiburon)
Israel: The Original Wine Country (Lafayette)

Wake Up with The PJ Library
Jewish Storytelling For Preschoolers with Diana Shmiana
It’s a double-header celebrating Jewish Book Month and the Global Day of Jewish Learning! Join The PJ Library as children’s storyteller Diana Shmiana presents her hit show “The Book of Wonders.” From the moment she finds a mysterious book, a world of wonders beckons with stories, songs, puppets and magic.

Date: Sunday, November 7
Time: 10:30-11:30 am
Place: BJE Jewish Community Library, 1835 Ellis Street, San Francisco
Cost: FREE – Kosher snacks will be provided. PJ Library members and non-members welcome. Free parking in a gated garage
Sponsor/contact: RSVP to or call 415.499.1223 x 8106. Sponsored
By The PJ Library of the San Francisco Bay Area and the BJE Jewish Community Library.

Elana Jagoda: For the Whole Family
Come to a rockin’ family concert filled with soulful and innovative Jewish music. Cantorial soloist Elana Jagoda and her Zum Gali Band bring a new dimension to the genre by blending energetic folk-rock with spirituality and a passion for world music.

Date: Sunday, Nov. 11
Time: 3pm
Place: Oshman JCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto
Cost: $12 for JCC members and students, $15 for non-members
Children 14 and under $5; Children 2 and under are free

Cooking Jewish Whether You’re Jewish or Not: Chanukah
Food alone does not make a family meal or holiday celebration complete. Holiday recipes and rituals build memories and strengthen families. Together we will make latkes and eat a delicious Israeli vegetarian meal and discuss the ways to use food to build relationships and memories.

Date: Sunday, November 14
Time: 2:00 – 3:30 pm
Place: Beth Am, 26790 Arastradero Rd., Los Altos
Cost: $25 for non-members; $15 for members of Beth Am
Info: call Dawn at 510-845-6420 x11

Chanukah Bazaar
In addition to the Judaica Shop, we have other wonderful vendors selling:
jewelry, scented candles, handmade market satchels, home organization services, home make vegan food and gift certificates, original paintings, aprons, gift baskets, note cards,
fused glass plates and jewelry, pottery and in the library, new Jewish books.

We have Sabbath candlesticks, Havdalah sets, Yahrzeit candles, Chanukah candles, Chanukah decorations, Chamsa wall hangings, travel candleholders, fabulous crystal mezuzot and decorations, Bar and Bat Mitzvah gifts, Children’s gifts, Seder plates, Talitot and Kipot, gift wrap paper, greeting cards for all occasions, and more.
We’ll also have a food court with yummy snacks and latkes lunch. Invite your friends and family.

Date: Sunday, November 14
Time: 10:00 am to 2:00 pm
Place: Beth Sholom, 642 Dolores Ave., San Leandro
Info: (510) 357-8505

A Holiday Expo with a Needy Twist
Temple Israel Hosts Holiday Expo that also benefits Alameda Food Bank
A unique twist to this gift-buying opportunity over other fairs is that the congregation is asking attendees to bring non-perishable food or a canned good to donate to the Alameda Food Bank. Attendees will receive a door prize ticket for their food drive donation.

Over thirty vendors will be participating. They are a combination of local artists, authors and home-based business. Items available to purchase include ceramics, Judaica, jewelry, Paris-themed items, toys, purses, handmade coffee sleeves, baked goods, cosmetics, greeting cards, handmade soaps and lotions, knitted items and art made from recycled items.

Date: Sunday, Nov. 14
Time: 10am to 3pm
Place: Temple Israel 3183 Mecartney Road, Alameda.
For more information, either visit, call the Temple Israel at (510) 522-9355 or write to

Etz Chayim Second Annual Holiday Boutique
Come see us to get your holiday gifts from local artists and crafts people. In addition, you can choose from a wide selection of books, candles and more. There will also be food and entertainment.

Date: Sunday November 14
Time: 10 am to 4 pm
Place: Etz Chayim, 4161 Alma Street, Palo Alto.
For more information 650-813-9094 and

Between Two Worlds: My Life and Captivity in Iran
With Author Roxanna Saberi
Ms. Saberi is an Iranian-American journalist working as a journalist when she was arrested and dtained in Evin Prison in January 2009. She was released 100 days later, after her case captured the world’s attention. She is now writing and speaking out for human rights and prisoners of conscience in Iran.
Seating is limited. To RSVP, call (516) 786-2500 x226 or visit:

Date: Monday, Nov. 15
Time: 7 to 8:30pm
Place: Oshman Family JCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto

Interfaith Kirtan
Kirtan (Sanskrit: to repeat, is a call and response chanting)
For everyone who enjoys sitting and singing along!
Please join Bay Area musicians and singers to chant Jewish, Sufi, Hindu and Christian prayers and words. We will harmonize our voices, spread our sounds of love to raise the vibration globally and lift our own spirits. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Interfaith Center of the Presidio.

Date: Sun Nov 21
Time: 6:00pm
Place: Chochmat HaLev, 2215 Prince St., Berkeley
Fee: $20-$12 sliding scale
Please pre-register by calling 510.704.9687. For this event you may also pay at the door.

Chanukah Bazaar
This year Chanukah comes so early (December 1st), so festive celebrations are early too. Join Congregation B’nai Emunah for their Chanukah bazaar. The celebration begins at 12:30pm. and includes:

• Homemade latkes and baked goods at the bake sale
• A large variety of arts & crafts vendors
• Photo booth
• Selected Judaica pieces from our gift shop
• Live music
• Raffle of terrific prizes
• Children’s activities and games
• Candle-lighting

Date: Dec. 5
Time: 12:30pm
Place: B’nai Emunah, 3595 Taraval St., San Francisco
For more information call the synagogue at 415-664-7373.

A Night with Kosher Cooking Maven: Joan Nathan
Joan Nathan is the author of ten cookbooks including her most current, Quiches, Kugels and Couscous: My Search for Jewish Cooking in France. She is a regular contributor to the New York Times and Tablet Magazine. Samples from her new cookbook will be prepared by Chef Robert Meyers of Mangia Nosh.

Date: Dec. 11; please RSVP by Dec. 8
Time: 8pm
Place: Kol Shafar, 215 Blackfield Dr., Tiburon
Cost: $10
or call 415-388-1818

Israel: The Original Wine Country
Join us for an evening of Israeli wine tasting sponsored by the Contra Costa Jewish Day School and Temple Isaiah. Learn about the exciting growth of the modern Israeli wine industry,hear from experts in the field, and try a selection of award-winning Israeli wines.

Date: Sunday, December 12
Time: 7:30 pm
Place: Temple Isaiah in the Social Hall, 3800 Mt. Diablo Blvd., Lafayette

$10 per person, $18 per couple.
Tickets will be available for purchase at the door only, but we ask that you click here to RSVP.
This event is open to the entire community. Friends and family welcome! Questions? Call the Contra Costa Jewish Day School at (925) 284-8288.

Posted in Chanukah
Published on November 4th, 2010