Chanukah Party Ideas

There are so many ways to celebrate Chanukah, here are some ideas that work just as well for a small party of 10 or a big crowd of 75 or more. Plan your party as it appears here, or pick and choose what you like best from each one. Whatever you do, your family and friends will love celebrating the holiday.

Matzoh Ball
A Matzoh Ball works wonderfully as a large party; have everyone dress in blue and silver and decorate the room in the same colors. Use silver or Star of David tablecloths, Chanukah balloons and white twinkle lights to create a truly festive atmosphere. Design your own invitations in the shape of a matzoh ball; it will make everyone laugh before they even get to the party.

A Matzoh Ball in your own home is a great way to entertain. Invite your guests over for steaming, delicious bowls of matzoh ball soup, salad, delicious bread and Chanukah cookies. Ask your guests to bring a few of their own matzoh balls and let everyone decide which are the best – the light and fluffy ones or the ones that bounce like golf balls!

Chanukah Gift Exchange
A Gift Exchange can be part of your Matzoh Ball or a party all by itself. Instead of having guests bring just any present, give them some guidelines, under $10 (or whatever amount of money you think is appropriate), Jewish theme, a recycled or white elephant gift from your basement. To distribute the presents, have each guest choose a gift or take one from someone else. This game can get pretty competitive, in a friendly way of course, but will leave your guests rolling on the floor with laughter.

Want to remember others during the Chanukah season? Have your guests bring a second present to the party. It can be theme based, like school supplies or warm mittens and hats, or a small inexpensive toy. When the party is over, give the items to a school, day care center or Toys for Tots campaign.

Menorah Auction
A Menorah Auction is a fun and easy fundraiser for your synagogue, school or favorite nonprofit organization. Ask local stores, artists and synagogue gift shops to donate menorahs to your event. Create some excitement for the event by placing the menorahs on display a week or two in advance.

To raise as much money as possible for your organization, keep your costs down by sending out a simple invitation, in the shape of a menorah of course! Create your own or purchase one at a party store. Don’t forget to include a return envelope with your invitation since guests will be sending back money.

This event is a fundraiser so keep the food simple and inexpensive. Heavy hors d’oevres and desserts are perfect. Serve them on cute menorah paper goods. Offer a signature cocktail like a “Maccabee Mojito,” soft drinks, coffee and tea and let the bidding begin! This promises to be an event that your guests will look forward to attending year after year.

Chanukah Cookie Party

Want to have your friends over for a fun and easy party? How about a Chanukah Cookie Exchange? Have your guests bring over their favorite sugar cookies cut out and decorated in the shape of dreidels, menorahs, candles, stars, gelt or any other traditional shape they like. Make it a friendly competition and let your guests decide who should win a blue ribbon for tastiest, most creative shape, most attractive. Serve coffee, tea, hot chocolate and hot apple cider and you’re ready to go. Be sure everyone brings extras to share and a copy of their recipes too!

Chanukah Storytelling and Sing-Along

Need entertainment for your Cookie Party? Why not include Storytelling and a Sing-Along? There are wonderful Chanukah stories that your guests will love to share and hear. Pick up a Hanukkah CD, toss in some jokes, Chanukah song sheets and everyone will be having so much fun, they’ll never leave!

Chanukah Sameach!