OLYMPIA, Wash. — A 9-foot menorah was placed at the Capitol Campus near Tivoli Fountain on Friday, coinciding with the first evening of Hanukkah.
The display is the first allowed under a new state policy that limits displays on state-owned property to the outdoors. A second menorah went up in state-owned Sylvester Park downtown; both menorah requests came from the Chabad Jewish Discovery Center of Olympia.
Last year, the Washington state capital was wracked with controversy as more than a dozen displays crowded into the Legislative Building, including a nativity set and an atheist group's placard. The conflict prompted the new policy.
A placard from Seattle atheists is expected to be placed near Tivoli Fountain on Saturday. The atheists' display will be placed about 25 feet from the menorah, spokesmen for the Department of General Administration said.
Other than a state-sponsored “holiday” tree that was lit inside the Capitol Rotunda on Dec. 4, no requests for displays are pending this year, GA spokesman Steve Valandra said Friday.
Read the full story at theolympian.com