Friday, December 07, 2012

Santa Monica Park Rules Change Impacts Hanukkah As Well As Christmas Displays

A good deal of attention has been given by the media to the change in rules adopted in Santa Monica, California, ending the traditional Christmas story dioramas in Palisades Park during the holiday season.  The new city ordinance, upheld by the courts, excludes unattended displays and has led a coalition of Christian groups plans to hold a Live Nativity Display instead. (See prior posting.) Less noticed has been the impact of the rule change on other displays.  Yesterday's Los Angeles Jewish Journal reports that it also impacts the two 12-foot-tall, propane-fueled menorahs normally set up in the park by the Chabad of Santa Monica during Hanukkah.  This year instead the menorahs will lit, and then moved away each night on pick-up trucks. The change also impacts the separate menorah lighting that has been held for the past 5 years on the Promenade sponsored by Downtown Santa Monica, Inc. They will now move their 10-foot tall menorah onto the Promenade on dollies each time it is to be lit, and then take it away.