The Student News Site of Granada High School

The Pomegranate

The Student News Site of Granada High School

The Pomegranate

The Student News Site of Granada High School

The Pomegranate

Grabbing Life by the Horns

What’s In and What’s Out for Chanukah?

Whats+In+and+Whats+Out+for+Chanukah%3F

The holiday season has come around once again, and many students and teachers are eagerly awaiting Christmas. But that’s not the only holiday people are celebrating at this time of year. Alongside Christmas and the other holidays is Chanukah, the Jewish holiday. There are many traditions surrounding the holiday, but what’s “in” and what’s “out” for Chanukah this year?

 

Menorah Lighting: Lighting the menorah is probably the most well-known Chanukah tradition. There are eight candles (not including the shamash), each corresponding to one of the eight days of Chanukah. This tradition reaches far back in time. Sophomore Kai Sexton shared that he “lights the menorah that we got from my great grandma that she brought over during the holocaust.” Lighting the menorah every year is an absolute necessity.

 

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Latkes: Best described as a “potato pancake,” latkes are a traditional Chanukah food. They are definitely in! One student even stated that “Hash browns have no right to exist when Latkes are just them but better.”

 

Gefilte fish: Though not specifically a Chanukah food, gefilte fish is definitely out. It’s a dish made up of ground up fish, sometimes mixed in with eggs or vegetables. It’s disgusting, and junior Alex Pepper described it as “old people food,” saying that gefilte fish is “what they give you before you die.” 

 

Jelly donuts: Jelly donuts as a Chanukah tradition seem to be a relatively new thing. Vice Principal Ha stated that eating jelly donuts “was never a thing I did. I grew up in New York and I’d never heard that until recently,” (though she did have a very nice donut-scented candle). Even if it is a newer thing, the donuts are a nice addition to a holiday meal. 

 

Dreidel: For those who don’t already know, dreidel is a gambling game in which you spin a top-like toy called a dreidel. Each side of the dreidel has a letter on it. Depending on which side the dreidel lands on, the player can win or lose things from the prize pool. The “prize” is usually chocolate coins, also known as gelt. Dreidel is in! It’s a fun way to celebrate with friends and family. 

 

Gifts: Gift giving can be an unexpectedly controversial part of Chanukah. Though it is definitely fun, one student mentioned that “I do think it is a bit of colonialism from Christmas that we receive presents… and y’know it’s not even. Cause it’s not like Christmas has picked up stuff from Chanukah. And the fact that Chanukah is viewed as the ‘Jewish Christmas’ is kind of sad.” So while gift-giving is entertaining, it may not be everyone’s favourite thing. 

 

It seems most traditions (except gefilte fish, of course) are in this year. Of course, not everyone celebrates the same way. Some families have their own separate traditions, which are just as fun as the universal ones. However -and whatever- you celebrate, the holidays are a good time to have fun with family and friends as we charge into the next year. Happy Chanukah, everyone!

 

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About the Contributor
Angel Pepper, Reporter
Angel Pepper is the president of the GHS Dead Poets Society, alongside being a member of Drama Club and the Workers’ Rights Club. They joined journalism in their sophomore year of high school. In their free time, Angel enjoys reading and writing, as well as drawing.

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