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First day of Chanukah on Christmas

As many have noted, the first day of Chanukah coincided with Christmas this year (December 25, 2016).

This happens approximately three times each century. Prior to this year, the most recent occurrence was in 1978, and the next time this will happen will be in 2027.

For completeness, here are the co-occurrences of the first day of Chanukah and Christmas during the past 400 years:

And here are the next two hundred years:

Users of hebcal for UNIX can verify this for themselves using a command like the following:

./hebcal --years 600 1617 | \
  grep 'Chanukah: 1 Candle' | \
  grep '^12/24' | \
  cut -c 7-10

Yom HaAliyah / יום העלייה

We’ve added a new modern holiday, Yom HaAliyah (יום העלייה). Yom HaAliyah recognizes Aliyah, immigration to the Jewish State of Israel.

More info from Wikipedia:

Yom HaAliyah (Aliyah Day) (Hebrew: יום העליה) is an Israeli national holiday celebrated annually on the seventh of the Hebrew month of Cheshvan, to commemorate the historic events which happened on the tenth of the Hebrew month of Nisan (Hebrew: י’ ניסן). The holiday was established to acknowledge Aliyah, immigration to the Jewish state, as a core value of the State of Israel, and honor the ongoing contributions of Olim to Israeli society.

The holiday was first observed on 7 Cheshvan 5777 (November 8, 2016).

Number of years in Hebcal calendar feed subscriptions

We’ve made changes to the number of years included in our calendar subscription feeds. Previously all feeds were 5 years long. Now, depending on options you select to include extra events, feeds may be shortened to only two years.

Calendars exported from Hebcal to Google Calendar or other services that support iCalendar subscription feeds are typically “perpetual”. That is, they contain events for the current year (Gregorian or Hebrew) plus some number of years into the future. Our calendars typically have 5 years of events (current year plus 4 years into the future).

Size limitations imposed by Google and other calendar clients require that we limit the number of events per feed.  The total number of years is now reduced to 4 years if you check some options that include many events (“Candle lighting times”, “Days of the Omer” or “Show Hebrew date for dates with some event”) or 2 years if you check options that include one event every day of the year (“Daf Yomi” or “Show Hebrew date every day of the year”).

Note that if you’d like to include the Hebrew date for every day of the year, you can subscribe to that calendar via a separate calendar feed at our Jewish Holiday downloads page. Look for Hebrew calendar dates (English) or Hebrew calendar dates (Hebrew).

An added advantage of this approach is that you can choose separate colors in Google Calendar or iOS/iCloud calendar for the daily calendar event feed.