They got a whole latke love!
A record crowd congregated in Grand Army Plaza on Saturday to watch our gigantic mayor light the first candle of a gigantic menorah for the first night of Hanukkah. The organizers say they know the turnout was one for the books because they handed out more than 2,000 free potato pancakes on the night — more than ever before.
“It went extremely well,” Rabbi Shimon Hecht, leader of Chabad of Park Slope. “The crowd was much bigger than last year.”
Six-and-a-half-foot-tall Mayor DeBlasio and his similarly towering son Dante — neighborhood residents before they relocated to Gracie Mansion — rode a cherry picker and used a blowtorch to light the first candle of Hecht’s 34-foot-tall menorah.
The organizers went all out this year, shelling out big bucks to hire popular Israeli rock band Moshav to regale the audience with both traditional holiday songs and a few original tunes, Hecht said.
Along with the latkes, the religious organization offered crowd members complimentary orange juice and gifts for kids — free pick-up sticks for every tot in attendance.
Hecht previously advertised his colossal candelabra as “the world’s largest” but was forced to rebrand it as simply “the largest” after a rabbinical court ruled this month that the title belonged to a similarly gigantic menorah in Manhattan.
Chabad of Park Slope will continue light a candle on the menorah every night through the Festival of Lights’ conclusion on Saturday, with live music and free latkes at every event.
The group will also light a menorah made entirely of ice at Third Street and Prospect Park West on New Year’s Eve, in a special celebration of the festival of light coinciding with the end of the year.
Menorah lighting and hot latkes at Grand Army Plaza (between Plaza Street West and Plaza Street East in Prospect Heights), nightly through Dec. 31. See www.world