Holidays in Carefree

Celebrate the magic of the season with your loved ones in beautiful Carefree!


Carefree Lights Up! Tree Lighting Ceremony   

RESCHEDULED: December 14, 2022 | 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM | Sanderson Lincoln Pavilion | Livestream Link

Join us as we light up the Town for the holidays! Local music talent, Kevin Glenn, will delight us with the sounds of Christmas. 


Chanukah in Carefree - Nightly Menorah Lighting and Celebrations  

December 18-25, 2022 | 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM | Sanderson Lincoln Pavilion

Celebrating its sixth season, join us for 'Chanukah in Carefree' every evening at 5:30 PM during Chanukah 2022. Enjoy presentations and the menorah lighting led by community leaders each night under the stars in Sanderson Lincoln Pavilion.

Each year, Chanukah in Carefree selects a local charity to support through charitible giving. This year's charity is Foothills Caring Corps. 

December 18 | Temple Chai: 

This evening of music will feature Cantor Ross Wolman & the Temple Chai Adult Choir. There will be a mix of classics and new tunes so please join us for singing and frelich fun!

December 19 | Desert Foothills Jewish Community Association: 

Desert Foothills Jewish Community Association is a Jewish organization located in the North Scottsdale/Carefree/Cave Creek area. Bonnie Clewans, President of DFJCA, will be representing the group in lighting the menorah and Dorothy Gaynor, Cantorial Soloist will be leading us in song.  Everyone is encouraged to bring a small holiday gift (approximately $5.00), to donate to Jewish Family Children’s Services (JFCS) this evening.

December 20 | Valley of the Sun JCC - Family Night:

The JCC early Childhood Center, Shemesh Camp, and Sports Department will be lighting candles, and the JCC will lead us in song, plus we will have games, activities, and art to do with the children in the community.

December 21 | Jewish Social Group of Cave Creek and Carefree:

The Jewish Social Group of Cave Creek and Carefree will be leading candle lighting tonight.  The group’s Founder and Leader, Ora Kurland, will recite the blessings in Hebrew.  Victoria Angelone, the owner of the Holy Land Book and Gift shop, will recite the English translation of the blessings.  Ora and Victoria will speak about the meaning and values of Chanukah as they are found in the past and present.

December 22 | Phoenix Holocaust Association:

Featuring guest speaker and Holocaust Survivor, Dr. Hersh Altman. Dr. Hersch Altman will share his experiences during the Holocaust and provide great insight into his amazing story of survival.

December 23 | Bauman Family (Shabbat):

The Bauman family has been leading a heartwarming family Shabbat ceremony during chanukah for all five years of this event. Tzedakah recipient Cave Creek Unified Education Foundation (CCUEF).

December 24 | Congregation Kehillah (Havdalah): 

Rabbi Bonnie Sharfman will be leading the closing ceremony of Shabbat (Havdalah) before lighting the Chanukiah (Menorah), on the 7th night of Chanukah. In addition to the wonderful tradition of Havadalah, we will be providing Chinese food from Jade Palace. 

December 25 | Community Night:

Movie night and games. Food, Drink and raffles. In the spirit of giving, cash donations benefit Foothills Caring Corps. (recommended $15 donation)


Chanukah in Carefree is made possible by these generous sponsors:

APS | Varsity Sports Show | Grind and Gears | Jade Palace | Culinary by Julie | Athens on Easy Street | Why Hello Modern Home | The Grotto | Grace Renee Gallery | Keelers Neighborhood Steakhouse | Local Johnny's | Cave Creek Olive Oil Company | Venues Cafe | The Mohr Group | Spirit in the Desert Retreat Center | Herbert & Lyn Hitchon

Temple Chai | Desert Foothills Jewish Community Association | Valley of the Sun JCC | Jewish Social Group of Cave Creek and Carefree | Phoenix Holocaust Association | The Bauman Family | Congregation Kehillah | KA Consulting Corp.


History of Chanukah

Chanukah, or the Festival of Lights, commemorates the recapture of Jerusalem and re-dedication of the Temple in 139 BCE after it was looted and desecrated by the Seleucid Greeks. the re-dedication followed a series of improbable military victories over larger and better equipped forces by a group called the Maccabees (Maccabee means "hammer" in Hebrew).

Not only was G-d's providence evident in the military sense, but when the Temple was cleaned and the Menorah (seven-branched candelabra) remade it was discovered that there was almost no oil available to burn for the lights, perhaps a day's supply. In the great miracle of Chanukah, the lamps were lit and the oil lasted - eight full days until more was made available. These eight days are the reason for the length of the holiday according to legend.

Today we celebrate each year in early winter by lighting a nine-branched menorah or "Chanukiyah". One candle commemorates each day of the miracle and a ninth is called the "Shammash" meaning "helper" or "servant" - it is used to light the others. The Shammash also has a connotation of "teacher", one who coaxes learning from a student in the way a flame is brought from wax.

More recently, other fun traditions have sprung up including giving gifts, playing games including with the "dreidl" or four-sided top and eating potato pancakes (latkes) fried in oil, of course!


Sanderson Lincoln Pavilion
101 Easy Street
Carefree, AZ 85377

Outdoor Venue