MIAMI (CBSMiami) – For the first time in almost 100 years Hanukkah and Thanksgiving will overlap this year.
It only has happened three times before and the next time it will happen is in 2070, then 2165, then in another 70,000 years, according to the JTA news service.
Hanukkah, or “The Festival of Lights,” begins at sundown on Wednesday, November 27th and concludes December 5th.
This year many Jewish families in South Florida are combining holiday festivities, devising hybrid menus and celebrating the fact that their out-of-town children will be here this year to enjoy both commemorations, according to CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald.
To mark the convergence, Comedian Adam Sandler has added a special verse to his Hanukkah song. Boston rabbi David Pashkin has coined a Thanksgivukkah ballad melding the two holidays, which has gone viral on YouTube, according to the paper.
On Hanukkah, people of the Jewish faith commemorate the victory of the Maccabees over the armies of Syria, and the subsequent liberation and rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem. Hanukkah celebrates religious and cultural freedom, and it’s a joyous time for families, especially kids.
According to the holiday story, the Jews had only a little bit of holy oil when they relit the menorah, or candle holder, in their holiest temple. They didn’t think it could last eight days, the time it would take to make new holy oil. But miraculously, it did, and that is why the holiday has eight days.
It’s also why Jews light one candle on the menorah for eight nights in a row.
Traditionally, families sing holiday songs, tell stories, eat potato latkes (pancakes), play games with a dreidel, which is a traditional Hanukkah game, and exchange gifts.
CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald contributed to this report.