The Festival of Lights arrived in the District Thursday night, and Washington, D.C., kicked it off with the lighting of one of the world’s largest menorahs. Washingtonians and visitors alike made their way over to the White House Ellipse on Thursday, Dec. 7, to admire the giant, 30-foot menorah and celebrate the start of Hanukkah!
The lighting of the National Menorah first began in 1979 under President Jimmy Carter and has since become a staple of Hanukkah celebrations around D.C. and the world, even attracting international media attention.
Like in years past, the lighting featured special appearances, the National Menorah Essay Contest winner read their essay to the crowd, and organizers welcomed guests with plenty of latkes, doughnuts, menorah kits, dreidels, and more! The stunning celebration also featured a special performance by the Military Bands of the Military District of Washington.
As is tradition, a new candle will be lit on each of the eight days of Hanukkah, so make sure to stop by!
The article was written by Alex Striano, Ma Del Rosario Castro Diaz, and Jenna Romaine