Photos: A community Hanukkah celebration at Congregation B’Nai Israel

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  • Rabbi Jacob Fine, right, of Congregation B’Nai Israel helps light a candle for his daughter Meira Fine, 9, for the community menorah lighting on Sunday, the first night of Hanukkah. Joining in, as they all say a blessing are, from left foreground, Isaac Marks, 7, Dawn Doucette-Kaplan and her daughter Haly, 10, Meira’s mother, Julie Fine, and Judi Bajgot. STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Children and adults share candles to start a community menorah lighting at the Congregation B'Nai Israel Hanukkah celebration in Northampton on Sunday, the first night of Hannukah. —STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Alona Fleischer, 8, of Northampton watches Emmett Leader, right, fry latkes and sufganiyot jelly doughnuts) over a wood fire. Behind Leader is Matan Fields of Northampton. —STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Emmett Leader tends a wood fire for frying latkes and sufganiyot during a Hanukkah celebration on Sunday. —STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Emet Fine, 7, of Northampton watches Emmett Leader fry latkes and sufganiyot over a wood fire for a Hanukkah celebration at Congregation B'Nai Israel. —STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Emmett Leader pulls a ladle of freshly fried latkes from a vat heated by a wood fire during a Hanukkah celebration on Sunday, the first night of Hanukkah. STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Aram Rubenstein Gillis leads about 200 people in song during a Hanukkah celebration at Congregation B'Nai Israel. In background, left, is Rabbi Justin David. —STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

Staff Photographer
Published: 12/22/2019 11:25:14 PM

NORTHAMPTON – Congregation B’Nai Israel held a community Hanukkah celebration for all ages on Sunday, the first day of Hanukkah, with the theme “Songs and Stories of Surprising Strength”. After the lighting of multiple menorahs, many of the 200+ gathered remained in the sanctuary for storytelling and music with Aram Rubenstein Gillis and Molly Bajgot while the younger children retired to the library for a singalong with Lander-Grinspoon Academy teacher Felicia Sloin. The vegetarian dinner menu that followed included potato latkes and sufganiyot (jelly doughnuts) that were deep-fried right outside on a wood fire tended by Emmett Leader.

Kevin Gutting can be reached at

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