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Chanukah Welcomed in West Hartford with ‘Fire on Ice’ Celebration

Rabbi Shaya Gopin (right) holds the shamash that will be used to light the giant ice menorah. Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

The public enjoyed a celebration of the first night of Chanukah on Sunday at Chabad of Greater Hartford’s annual ‘Fire on Ice’ at West Hartford’s Blue Back Square.

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

By Ted Glanzer

Hundreds turned out for a festive, sometimes raucous affair at Blue Back Square on Sunday evening for the Chabad of Greater Hartford’s 12th annual “Fire on Ice” to celebrate the first night of Chanukah. 

Music, dancing, singing, and train rides for children – as well as special food and arts and crafts highlighted the celebration.

Rabbi Shaya Gopin, organizer of the event, shared the message of Chanukah: a holiday of light and freedom over dark forces, of hate and oppression from all over the world.

Chanukah is an eight-day celebration (this year Dec. 22 to 31) of the victory more than 2,100 years ago of the Jewish people over Greek forces that had occupied Jerueselum. 

Gopin said he hopes people will carry the good will of the evening forward in their lives.

“We hope you take away from here a lot of power to continue all year round to spread light, because each one of us has a huge candle of light inside,” Gopin said.   

The event closed with a rousing performance by Israeli superstar singer Gad Elbaz followed by the great gelt drop by the West Hartford Fire Department.

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Gad Elbaz performs at Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

From left: Alexis Davidoff, Deputy Mayor Leon Davidoff, Mayor Shari Cantor, Rose Granow, and Town Manager Matt Hart at Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Courtesy photo

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

State Sen. Derek Slap (left) and West Hartford Town Council member Ben Wenograd. Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

Chabad of Greater Hartford’s Fire on Ice. Blue Back Square, West Hartford. Dec. 22, 2019. Photo credit: Ted Glanzer

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