The Menorah Tree is Not Just a Jewish Christmas Tree
The origin of the Menorah Tree was that my wife had grown up with a Christmas tree and wanted something on that scale that would serve as a warm and festive centerpiece during our holiday celebrations. While I agreed with her that it would be great to have something big and bold for the holidays, I wanted something designed to make Hanukkah more festive and serve as a complement to our many Hanukkah traditions. Mostly, we wanted a fun and creative alternative to the typical Hanukkah bush.
Now, everyone has their own personal traditions, so we have designed the Menorah Tree with enough flexibility to provide both Jewish and interfaith families with a way to celebrate the holidays that works best for them.
It has a number of design characteristics that make it distinctly Jewish:
- A traditional menorah design with 8 branches of the same height and an elevated shamash.
- The ability to add LED candles on top to mark each night of Hanukkah.
- It has garland to represent a tree. The Tree of Life has long had a central role in Jewish iconography and the "Tree of Life Menorah" is well-known style.
- The Star of David is unique to Judaism and is integrated into the entire design.
- The ability to add hundreds of lights as a reflection that Hanukkah is the ‘Festival of Lights’.
The Menorah Tree comes unadorned - no lights, candles or ornaments - just a 6 foot tall menorah. Now, depending on how you choose to decorate your Menorah Tree, you can co-opt certain design elements commonly associated with a Christmas tree. But in fairness, those design elements are not unique to a Christmas tree.
On the specific point of using garland, we thought about different options, but for the 30% of the Jewish families that currently have Christmas trees, and the 70+% of intermarried families that do as well, we wanted to provide a Jewish alternative that included the ability to hang ornaments. For many people who have Christmas trees, the ornaments are the most meaningful part of their celebration. For them, each ornament represents a specific event, interest or memory. Garland works great for hanging ornaments and there is nothing inherently Christian about garland. At this point, ornaments, feel more cultural than religious, and Jewish ornaments have been sold for years. .
We know that the Menorah Tree is not for everyone, but it is much more than a Jewish Christmas tree. We believe that it will be a fun and wonderful addition to your Hanukkah celebration.