What hipsters buy for Chanukah

Customers make their way through the Hipster Hanukkah Holiday Market. Photo by Samantha Cooper

With little room to move, visitors to the Hipster Hanukkah Holiday Market on Nov. 28 sampled food, bought gifts and enjoyed musical entertainment by Jewish artists.

“The point of the event was to bring young professionals to share Chanukah together,” said Stacy Miller, director the Edlavitch DC Jewish Community Center’s EntryPoint DC. “There aren’t a lot of options for young people for Chanukah shopping.”
She said more than 200 people passed through the doors of the Foundry United Methodist Church, where the center is holding events while its building is being renovated.

The market’s 43 vendors were also millennials or had products to appeal to millennials. There were the usual dreidels, menorot and Judaica jewelry.

But there was also Elyse Wallnutt, of the online card store BEpaperie, who was selling Chanukah cards that said “Happy Hanukkah to my best Jew” and “Menorahs and Sh*t, Happy Holidays.” She said she comes up with all the sayings herself.
Julia Alpao, of Stupidly Cupid, was selling pins that read “You Had Me at Shalom” and “I like the way you roll,” with drawings of dreidels.


Other vendors were geared toward interfaith living. Alissa and Greg Seroka, an interfaith couple themselves, were selling cookie cutters in the shape of reindeer with menorah antlers. There was also a gingerbread person holding a dreidel, Star of David Christmas tree toppers and mistletoe with dreidel charms.

“[Our products are] not just for Chanukah,” Alyssa said. “We also sell stuff for Easter/Passover. We have a card with an Easter bunny eating matzah that says ‘Look Who Found the Afikomen.’”

A couple stopped by the booth, introducing themselves as an interfaith couple, and were happy to see something that represented them.

Not far away, a booth was giving out samples of vegan, gluten-free waffles. Another was selling fudge, including a selection called “Chanukah in a Box,” with flavors including latke, jelly doughnut, sour cream and applesauce.

Over the conversations between vendors and customers, the chatter of friends and the music being piped in from the next room over, including local singer/songwriter Ariel Jacobson doing Adam Sandler’s “The Hanukkah Song,” it was hard to have
a conversation.

The night ended with a performance by from the Makela Jewish a cappella group, including their modified
“Winter Wonderland.” “In the meadow we can build a snowman /And pretend that he is Rabbi Brown…”

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