In celebration of Chanukah, Kent M. Swig, president of Swig Equities, joined Rabbi Shmuel Butman, of the Lubavitch Youth Organization, to light the world’s largest menorah on December 29, 2019, marking the eighth and final night of Chanukah.
“I have participated in lighting the Menorah on 5th Avenue for more than 10 years and I am honored once again to have been invited by Rabbi Shmuel Butman to light the world’s largest Chanukah Menorah as this tradition is so meaningful to me,” said Swig.
“In such difficult times where we are experiencing many horrific anti-Semitic attacks, the Menorah continues to spread its meaning of light, perseverance, and positivity to all persons around the world.”
Located at Fifth Avenue in front of The Plaza Hotel, the giant menorah is a 32-foot high, gold-colored, 4,000-pound steel structure that features genuine oil lamp and glass chimneys to protect the light from strong winds. It was designed by world-renowned artist Yaacov Agam.
“The Menorah stands as a symbol of freedom and democracy, strength and inspiration, delivering a timely and poignant message to each person on an individual basis,” said Rabbi Shmuel M. Butman, director of Lubavitch Youth Organization.
Jews celebrate Chanukah by lighting candles each night in a menorah, an eight-branch candelabra with a ninth, elevated branch known as a shamash.
The shamash, which is lit first, is used to light the other candles each night of the holiday, which celebrates the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem after Syrians were chased out of the Holy Land in 165 B.C.E. It also marks the miracle of the eight days that the menorah burned with one day’s worth of oil.