The "Mensch on a Bench" Brings the Idea of "Elf on a Shelf" to Hanukkah

Here's a new tradition that brings the interactive fun of Elf on a Shelf to Hanukkah time: The Mensch on a Bench is a kind little fellow that carries a candle and keeps an eye on the burning menorah each night.

Not wanting children to feel left out of the Christmas Elf on a Shelf tradition, Neal & Erin Hoffman took to Kickstarter in 2013 to create a similar tradition for Jewish families: The Mensch on a Bench!

A 'mensch' is a Yiddish word for a admirable person of good moral character, and the Mensch on a Bench exemplifies this by watching over the Hanukkah menorah and holding the shamash candle, which is used to light each of the other eight candles in the menorah.

The Mensch set comes with a 12 inch tall stuffed Mensch doll and a hardcover book that tells a story of Moishe the Mensch watching over the original menorah lamp in the ancient temple. And of course, you get a small bench for the Mensch to relax on! Each night of Hanukkah, you can move the Mensch around the house and take pictures of the adventures he finds, but be sure to follow the rules!

Want to get a Mensch of your own this Hanukkah? Check out the official website, order one on Amazon, or keep an eye out this season at stores like Target and Toys R Us!

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