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Public Menorah vandalized for second year in a row

For the second year in a row, a menorah placed in a small grassy plot in New Windsor has been toppled to the ground and damaged.

But is it anti-Semitism that’s damaging the menorah at Route 94 and Blooming Grove Turnpike?

Or is the answer just blowing in the wind?

Rabbi Yacov Borenstein, director of Chabad of the Mid-Hudson Valley, which erected the menorah, is pretty sure this is the work of someone with an ax to grind.

He said plastic bags filled with sand, used to weigh down the menorah, are “able to withstand 70 to 80 mph winds.”

“I have maybe 20 to 30 menorahs out there and none (of the others) has ever fallen down,” Borenstein said yesterday. Nor has there been any vandalism to any of the others, in places like Monroe, Kingston, Cornwall, the City of Newburgh, or even a second one in New Windsor, at Town Hall.

The menorah was found toppled sometime on Saturday, and a town employee came in to right it and further secure it. Borenstein did not answer a phone call from police that day because it was the Sabbath, nor did he respond to the site before yesterday because he was assured the menorah was OK.

But in fact, he said, it was scratched, a sign wishing all a Happy Hanukkah was missing, and the electric candle lights weren’t lighting.

Initially, police said indications were that the menorah blew over in the wind.

But upon learning about the wires in the menorah being disconnected, police Chief Michael Biasotti said his officers were trying to find out whether the town employee disconnected the wires for safety, or if someone with sinister motives was responsible for cutting off the power.


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