(New York Jewish Week) — This year, Dec. 24 and 25 are the seventh and eighth nights of Hanukkah — meaning the tail-end of this eight-day Jewish festival just happens to overlap with a little-known Christian holiday called Christmas.
Of course, the tried-and-true tradition of “Jewish Christmas” — a.k.a. “Chinese food and a movie” — is a classic for a reason, and here in NYC there’s no shortage of movie theaters (from art houses to cineplexes with stadium seating) and world-class Chinese restaurants.
However, if you’re looking to do something a little bit different this year, you’re in luck: The confluence of Hanukkah and Christmas means that in this oh-so-very-Jewish city in which we reside, there’s a myriad of Jewish-oriented entertainment options this upcoming Christmas weekend. Keep reading for some of our top picks.
Joel Chasnoff: Christmas for the Jews
City Winery, 25 11th Ave.
After a two-year hiatus, Jewish comedian Joel Chasnoff returns for his long-running Christmas Eve comedy show at City Winery. “Passover candy sales, El Al security guards, his short-lived stint on the Solomon Schechter basketball team and his year as a tank gunner in the Israeli army,” reads the promo copy. “If you’re a fan of Joel’s often absurd, always insightful take on Jewish life, this is the show for you!” Chasnoff will be joined by fellow comedians Talia Reese and Eli Lebowicz. Doors open at 6:00 p.m., show starts at 8:00 p.m. From $30.
A Very Jewish Christmas
Gotham Comedy Club, 208 West 23rd St.
Join “some of the best Jewish comedians in the country” for a night of Christmas Eve laughs at Chelsea’s Gotham Comedy Club. Featuring Ariel Elias, Gary Vider, Neko White, Rafi Bastos and Ashley Austin Morris. Two shows: 7:00 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. $25.
Harbor NYC, 621 West 46th St.
If you want to get your drink and your dance on, there’s no shortage of Jewish-oriented dance parties on Christmas Eve. Most iconic of all is the MatzoBall, the classic Jewish singles party, which this year is at Harbor New York City, “NYC’s newest rooftop lounge and event venue.” 10:00 p.m. From $50.
Slate, 54 West 21st St.
Nebula, 135 West 41st St.
+972 Events is hosting not one but two Jewish events in NYC on Christmas Eve: Hanukkah Lit at Slate, a multi-use club in Chelsea that has a games area and an indoor slide, and the Hanukkah Ball at Midtown’s Nebula. Both events start at 10:00 p.m.; tickets start at $28. Get Hanukkah Lit tickets here and Hanukkah Ball tickets here.
“The Night Before Christmas” Hanukkah Party
Tao Downtown, 369 West 16th St.
“You know it’s time to celebrate when Christmas Eve and Hanukkah overlap on a Saturday night!” reads the promo copy for The Streicker Center’s first-ever “The Night Before Christmas” party, held at Tao Downtown. This Temple Emanu-El-affilated event is for those ages 21 to 39 and will feature all-you-can-eat Asian food and “unlimited premium open bar,” plus tunes by DJ Ann Streichman and a set by rapper Kosha Dillz. From 8:00 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.; tickets $48.25.
Yiddish New York
Museum of Jewish Heritage — A Living Memorial to the Holocaust, 36 Battery Place and online
Dec. 25 is the first full day of Yiddish New York — an online and in-person event at the Museum of Jewish Heritage described as “the nation’s largest festival of Yiddish music, culture and language.” Featuring concerts, workshops, performances and more, the festival runs through Dec. 29. Sunday’s program includes a puppet-making workshop for kids and a lunchtime concert by Kateryna Ostrovska. From $12.24; for tickets and information, click here.
Music at the Museum: Celebrate Chanukah at Eldridge
Museum at Eldridge Street, 12 Eldridge St.
Head to the Lower East Side’s Museum at Eldridge Street “for an afternoon of infectious Klezmer energy for all ages.” Sing and dance along to the sounds of the Litvakus Collective (Zisl Slepovitch, Joshua Camp, Larry Eagle, Dmitry Ishenko and Jake Shulman-Ment) as well as National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene actor and singer Maya Jacobson. While you’re there, check out the exhibit on menorahs from around the world and — bonus! — should you have a post-concert hankering for a Chinese feast, you’re smack in the middle of Manhattan’s Chinatown. Concert begins at 2:00 p.m.; tickets $27.28, with reduced prices for seniors, students and children.
“A Very Jewdy Christmas”
Stand Up NY, 236 West 78th St.
27th Anniversary David Broza “Not Exactly Xmas Show”
City Winery, 25 11th Ave.
Israeli superstar David Broza is doing his annual Christmas Day show — which encompasses “Broza’s signature fusion of his Israeli hits, Spanish flamenco, Cuban rhythms, American folk and rock and roll.” Plus, as in previous years, expect performances by “unannounced guests.” Doors at 6:00 p.m., concert begins at 8:00 p.m. From $65.45.