Chanukah Menorah Lighting on State Street 

Chanukah celebration on State Street on December 7, 2023 (Photo by Amy Katz)

Santa Barbara celebrated the first evening of the 8 nights of Chanukah by lighting a giant Menorah at the corner of State Street and Canon Perdido at sundown on Thursday.

Hundreds of people dropped by to help make fresh oil from olives, eat potato pancakes and chocolate donuts, dance in the streets and “schmooze”.

Photo by Amy Katz

“When we add more light, that adds more light to the entire world. We are all connected,” said Rabbi Mendell Loschak. His wife gave birth to a baby boy last month, so he has special reason to celebrate the miracle of light.

The celebration was sponsored by Chabad of Santa Barbara. Rabbi Loschak is carrying on the tradition of his late father, the Rabbi who use to hold this event at La Cumbre Plaza for many years.

Shavit Rootman, who was in Israel during the October 7th Hamas attack and previously served in the Israeli Special Forces, is visiting Santa Barbara and was honored, along with all the victims, by lighting the first candle.

Lighting of the menorah (Photo by Amy Katz)
Photo by Amy Katz

Photo by Amy Katz


Written by Amy Katz

Amy Katz is a edhat contributor and photojournalist. All of her photos are available for commercial licensing via Zuma Press or by contacting Amy directly at

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