The Bellmore-Merrick Chabad’s Hanukkah parade was a little brighter and louder this year, as the Merrick Fire Department led the route for the first time at this year’s annual procession on Dec. 8.
The fire truck sirens accompanied Hanukkah music that played from cars in the sixth annual Great Menorah Car Parade in Merrick. The route ran along Merrick Road and ended at the Merrick Long Island Rail Road station, where a 12-foot menorah was lit for the first night of Hanukkah.
Merokean Lawrence Knoll lit a candle for the first night of the Jewish holiday, with the help of a lift sponsored by Able Equipment Rentals. Before the menorah lighting, Chabad Rabbi Shimon Kramer spoke about the holiday in relation to current events, comparing the community’s perseverance after Hurricane Sandy to the way olives were crushed to produce oil for the menorah long ago.
“We were pressed like those olives. Yet, at the same time, just as from those olives came light, while I was going around Merrick, I saw the light that came out –– the unity, hospitality, generosity and an outpouring of kindness and love from one to another,” he said. “Just as oil always rises to the top, whatever good we do will always rise to the top, to make Long Island a strong island.”
Nassau County Legislator Dave Denenberg also spoke at the menorah lighting. After, attendees danced to live Hanukkah music by Mendel Felberman of Brooklyn.