We enjoyed reading Jonathan Mizrahi’s Hanukkah and Thanksgiving: A once in eternity overlap:
Next year features an anomaly for American Jews – The first day of Hanukkah coincides with Thanksgiving, on 11/28/2013 (meaning the first night of Hanukkah is actually the night before Thanksgiving). I was curious how often this happens. It turns out that it has never happened before…and it will never happen again.
(Correction: it happened once before, in 1888: see Addendum.
We’ve rolled out a new website design!
Please let us know what you think — consider posting a comment on our Hebcal Facebook page.
We’re hard at work on a refreshed website that will work better with multiple devices (namely mobile phones and tablets). Take a look at the preview and share your feedback!
For developers curious about the redesign, we’re using the Bootstrap front-end framework. The functionality of the website is still a mish-mosh of Perl, PHP, C, SQLite and MySQL.
Ta’anit Bechorot (Fast of the Firstborn) falls on Friday, April 6, 2012. An earlier version of the calendar we publish incorrectly had this minor fast on Thursday.
When this fast day falls on Friday, we do in fact observe the fast on Friday, even though Shabbat follows immediately.
It is only in years when the date of the fast falls on Shabbat that the fast is moved. In this case, Ta’anit Bechorot is moved back to Thursday, because it is preferable not to fast immediately before Shabbat.
Source: Mishnah Berurah: the classic commentary to Shulchan Aruch Orach Chayim, comprising the laws of daily Jewish conduct, Volume V (B), Pesach. §470: “That the first-born fast on Erev Pesach.”