As you can imagine, there is a lot going on in these last days before Christmas and Hanukkah. In addition to all the last-minute shopping, cooking, baking and decorating you may be facing, here are five local happenings you can add to your to-do list for the week. Before we get to the list, here is something not among of the five, but certainly a heartfelt wish from Patch to you: Whatever your tradition, please have a peaceful, safe and joyous holiday. That said, on to the five things:
- If you're a senior, the township wants to help you stay healthy. To that end, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. at the at 1130 Knoll Road in Lake Hiawatha. Appointments are required. To reserve a time or to get more information, call the Department of Human Services at 973-263-7160.
- The Parsippany-Troy Hills Planning Board meets for its final general business session of 2011 on Monday night. Council Chambers in is the setting for the meeting. If you are interested in issues relating to the township's master plan, you'll want to be on hand. President Kaushik "Casey" Parikh is scheduled to bring the gathering to order at 7:30 p.m. sharp.
- The Jewish Festival of Lights begins at sundown Dec. 20 and goes on, as comedian Adam Sandler sang so amusingly, for eight crazy nights. The township marks the wonder of Hanukkah with its annual Parsippany Menorah Lighting at Wednesday . Whether or not you follow Judaism, here is a wonderful opportunity to build community and share the joy: Join with your neighbors to witness the lighting of the giant candelabra and to commemorate a miracle everyone can appreciate. The event is slated to take place at 7:30 p.m.
- , Parsippany's reform Jewish congregation, throughout the week. The first candle lighting takes place Dec. 20 at sundown; contact the shul for details. On Friday, a candle lighting is scheduled for 4:15 p.m. At 6 p.m., the congregation celebrates a Tot Shabbat service followed by a Hanukkah Family Dinner at 6:30 p.m. The evening culminates with a special Hanukkah Shabbat Celebration starting at 7:30 p.m. Temple Beth Am is located at 879 S. Beverwyck Road.
- Of course, Christmas Day is Sunday. In observance of the holiday, the will be closed for business Friday and Monday. Patch wishes everyone at Town Hall and throughout the township the happiest holidays ever.