The JRCC’s annual Public Menorah Lighting, one of over thirty JRCC Chanukah events, was held on the first night of Chanukah, Sunday, December 2 at Mel Lastman Square. The event, sponsored by Stan Cho and his family, attracted over 300 community members, local residents, as well as a number of passers by who were curious about the festive event, live music, refreshments and the 13-foot tall menorah in front of City Hall. Several dignitaries and public figures were in attendance, including Toronto Mayor John Tory and members city council, as well as provincial and federal representatives, who honored the celebration and the community with their presence and their warm words.


The fifteenth annual JRCC Chanukah Wonderland Carnival brought an exciting day of activities to the Lebovic Campus in Maple to the delight of over 2,000 participants. As in past years, the event was held at the Schwartz/Reisman Centre. The event featured amazing performances by Doo Doo the Clown and Steve the Magician, as well as jugglers, bubbles and a dogs and birds shows.Parents and children enjoyed an afternoon full of different activities: An crafts area, menorah making and olive press workshops, rides, carnival games, and live music. Special thanks to the staff volunteers and partner organization, including BBYO, JCC, JBCT and the Jewish Gorsky Community, who helped make this a successful, memorable event for the whole community.


All JRCC branch and program held their own unique Chanukah parties for its participants, complete with a menorah lighting and Chanukah refreshments like doughnuts and latkes. Several branches hosted evenings especially for adults, including JRCC Steeles & Hilda (Chanukah Party), JRCC S Richmond Hill & Maple (Bistro Chanukah evening), JRCC South Thornhill (Chanukah Cafe evening), JRCC West Thornhill (Wine & Cheese) and JRCC East Thornhill (Saturday night Chanukah Cafe evening). These festive evenings, billed as “An Adult’s Night Out,” giving parents in the community the opportunity to get together and meet new friends in a relaxed setting while enjoying refreshments and entertainment, lighting the Menorah together, and enjoying the festival atmosphere. For children, there were special Chanukah parties just for kids, featuring activities and crafts focused on “edu-tainment” to teach kids about Chanukah in a fun way, including a Chanukah Kids Party at the JRCC West Thornhill and Kiddie Holiday Chefs Chanukah Parties at the the JRCC S Richmond Hill & Maple and JRCC East Thornhill, where children made their own working menorahs, baked their own Chanukah treats, and experienced an interactive donut game show.


The Annual JRCC Chanukah Spiel was an interactive and entertaining hit. Participants were treated to a series of creative and original improvisational comedic sketches in Russian by the hilarious shpiel troupe, poking fun at Jewish family stereotypes. The evening also featured musical performances, interactive song, and refreshments. The Shpiel is a biannual occurrence on Chanukah and Purim, which means that fans won’t have to wait too long for the next installment as Purim is only a few weeks away. 


Rabbi Yoseph and Chiena Zaltzman hosted a farbrengen gathering to commemorate 38 years since they began their work serving the Jewish Russian community as the Rebbe’s emissaries to Ontario. The event also coincided with the Chabad festive day of the 5th of Tevet (a.k.a., Hei Tevet), which celebrates the day the US Federal Court ruled in favor of Chabad regarding ownership of a priceless library of Chassidic manuscripts. Learn more at The JRCC Bookstore also marked the say with its annual 5 Tevet Book Sale, offering 10% off its entire inventory containing the best selection of Jewish Russian books in North America, plus many great English and Hebrew books. Learn more at


Looking for challenging and fulfilling work that offers leadership development and growth opportunities? The JRCC, one of Canada’s most recognized nonprofits, is currently seeking qualified candidates for Hebrew School Director and Events Manager. For more details and to apply visit The JRCC is also always looking for volunteers of all ages to support its important work by joining various projects. Volunteering at the JRCC is a great way to earn community service credits, meet new people, be part of a team, and give back to your community. Call 416.222.7015 to join or learn more.