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Celebrate 2021 Hanukkah with eight crazy days of running or walking! This is a progressive challenge set to take place between Sunday November 28th and Monday December 6th. The minimum goal is to complete a 1K on Day 1, 2K, on Day 2, 3K on Day 3 all the way through an 8K on the final day. Others who wish to run longer can see how many miles they can run during the 8 day celebration. For Flagstaff locals, on December 5th, join members of Chabad of Flagstaff for a special candle lighting ceremony at 4:30 PM at Buffalo Park. Stay tuned as additional members of our Flagstaff Jewish Community may host on additional evenings. As you complete your challenge each day, you will enter your distance completed, and you can optionally add your time for all to see.
While the run is free, we encourage those that can, to please make any kind of donation to Flagstaff Shelter Services; Flagstaff Shelter Services is on a mission to end homelessness in Coconino County. They are open all day, every day, ready to provide emergency shelter and services to all people crisis, regardless of faith, sobriety or mental health and give them the tools and resources needed to move out of homelessness for good. It costs $6 a night to provide emergency shelter to someone experiencing homelessness and for $2500, Flagstaff Shelter Services can give someone a fresh start in a new home. Whatever you contribute, your donation helps cover the critical expenses that make their programs possible and move us that much closer to eliminating homelessness in Flagstaff. Our goal is at least $5000, so join the fun for a great cause too.
For those not familiar with Chanukah (we are choosing the traditional spelling over the more popular spelling "Hanukkah",) it is Hebrew for “dedication,” and the celebration is known as the Festival of Lights. Hanukkah commemorates the victory of the Maccabees over the Syrian Greek army, and the subsequent miracle of rededicating the Holy Temple in Jerusalem and restoring its menorah, or lamp. The miracle of Hanukkah is that only one vial of oil was found with just enough oil to illuminate the Temple lamp for one day, and yet it lasted for eight full days. Jewish people celebrate Hanukkah at home by lighting the menorah (each night we light one additional candle to the number from the previous night), playing dreidel, and eating special foods. Some people also sing Hanukkah songs or exchange gifts after lighting the menorah, which is also called a hanukkiah.
Many Hanukkah foods are deep-fried in oil, symbolizing the oil from the menorah used in the Temple. These include latkes, or potato pancakes, and jelly doughnuts. Other favorites include the Sephardic delicacy bimuelos and use, of course, applesauce as a latke topping. Chocolate gelt, a candy that gets its name from the Yiddish word for money, is another popular Hanukkah treat and those in Flagstaff who attend the in-person lighting ceremony in Flagstaff will be rewarded with chocolate coins.
So no matter whether you walk or run, and no matter your faith, celebrate Chanukah with Northern Arizona Trail Runners Association and join the free fun by registering today and if you can, please consider any kind of donation to Flagstaff Shelter Services.
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