Hanukah celebration…on ice

Giant ice menorah sculpted in Place d'Youville

Photo: Simon Jacobs

Eight foot high menorah made of ice

On Sunday, December 13, the Quebec City Jewish community invited their fellow Quebecers to join them in the celebration of Hanukah: the festival of lights. To mark this special occasion a giant menorah had been constructed out of ice next to the skating rink at Place d'Youville . The ice sculptor, Michel Lapierre, who is known for his work at the Ice Hotel, was very keen to take on this lovely project. After night fell, and under a magical snowfall, the beautiful giant ice menorah was lit before a crowd of dignitaries and spectators.

A crowd celebrated festival of lights

Rabbi Dovid Lewin led the ceremony, with speeches by Marie France Lebouc from the Jewish community, M. André Drolet, deputy for Jean Lesage, Mme Agnès Maltais, deputy for Taschereau, M. Christian Lévesque, President of the ADQ, Michel Létourneau, former minister responsible for Government affairs and Mme Michel Morin-Doyle, pro-mayor of Quebec City and responsible for cultural communities. Also present were representatives from the Quebec Jewish congress and the president of the Quebec City Jewish Community, Sebastian Deschenes.

Despite a microphone malfunction, the speeches were heartfelt, focusing on the perseverance of the Jewish people to overcome obstacles in the more than two thousand years since the miracle of Hanukah took place. The light of the candles were seen as beacons of hope in these dark economic times.
After candles had been distributed amongst the gathered crowd, eight year old Nathan Jacobs sang the prayer over the lights, and then the menorah and candles were lit. As most Jewish festivals include food, delicious traditional Hanukah donuts were handed out to the joyful crowd. This may have been the first time that the Jewish Community has celebrated Hanukah in public in its 250 year presence in Quebec but it will hopefully become an annual tradition!


Great photos Simon!  We will publish them in this week's Christmas Edition.