By Jocelyn Pedersen
The Norman Transcript
NORMAN — The third annual Norman Community Menorah Lighting and Open House for Lohmann’s Good Things was hosted on the seventh night of Hanukkah.
There was a good turnout of about 60 people, despite the event being hosted a little later this year in parallel with other Jewish events around town.
Hanukkah converged with Thanksgiving, causing some to celebrate Thanksgivukkah — a calendar quirk that won’t happen again for more than 70,000 years.
Once again, Eli Davidsohn, of Dallas, the son of holocaust survivors, entertained with his accordion and singing. Davidsohn led the blessings and encouraged attendees to participate in Israeli folk dancing.
He quipped that it’s easier to say how long he hasn’t played accordion than to say how long he has, since he’s been squeezing out tunes since he was 9.
Attendee and customer Shari Ransley said she and her family have attended other menorah lightings. Her daughter, Layla, learned about Hanukkah in Montessori school, and they have friends in town with whom they spend every Hanukkah and Passover.
“I love it,” Ransley said. “This is our third year. It’s nice to see a community event for Hanukkah.”
Mary Grace Berkowitz said she came to last year’s menorah lighting as well as this year’s.
“We just love the store and we love Roland. He’s a very attentive shopkeeper. He tries to guide people to what they’re looking for,” Berkowitz said.
“The event has been very meaningful to the community, especially last year with Eli,” proprietor Roland Lohmann said.
In addition to the hors d’oeuvres Lohmann served at the event, he had macarons that he flew in from New Jersey for the occasion. Two macaron wafers with smooth, flavored ganache spread between them comprise the airy delicacies.
“They’re all the rage on the West and East Coasts,” Lohmann said. “Stores sell nothing but macarons.”
Berkowitz said eating a macaron was an experience.
“I’ve never had one (macaron) like it before. It’s an unexpected treat,” Berkowitz said. “You bite in and it lets all the air out.”
Along with Judaica and Christmas items, candies, bon bons, made in Oklahoma items and Watkins products, Lohmann said he plans to carry macarons soon. He carries many items for all occasions, including Hanukkah, in his shop.
Hanukkah is an eight-day celebration of light honored by lighting a nine-branch candelabrum, commonly called a menorah or hanukkiah.
Traditionally, one light is lit for each night of Hanukkah until the eighth night, when the entire menorah shines, completely lit.
Lohmann said he hopes to have the lighting on the first night of Hanukkah next year.
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