The Elf on the Shelf Has Jewish Cousin

    November 16, 2013
    Kimberly Ripley
    Comments are off for this post.

The Elf on the Shelf has a Jewish cousin. Now (or actually not until 2014, unless they find one on eBay) Jewish children can enjoy the same kind of holiday tradition as those who celebrate Christmas.

The Mensch on a Bench was created by former Hasbro Toys employee and loving dad, Neal Hoffman. He felt bad watching son Jacob left out of a tradition his Christian friends were very excited about. Every morning Jacob’s friends eagerly searched for their Elf on the Shelf and reported where they’d found their exciting little friend. Hoffman claims he was driven by “elf envy” to create the Mensch on a Bench. He brought the plush character to life via a Kickstarter campaign.

As with the Elf on a Shelf, the Mensch on a Bench comes with a story book about Moshe the Mensch. He was in the temple when Judah and the Maccabees celebrated their win over the Greeks. Moshe stayed in the temple overnight to watch the Menorah, because there was only enough oil for one night.

Unlike the Elf on the Shelf, the Mensch on a Bench watches over the Menorah in each child’s home. The family can move the Menorah to different places within their home to add to the excitement of locating Moshe each morning.

Neal Hoffman promotes his toy with the tagline “Add More Funnukah to Your Hannukah.” Twitter followers are helping spread the word, too.

It would be very interesting to learn what Elf on the Shelf creators, Carol Aebersold and daughter Chanda Bell, think of the Mensch on a Bench. It shouldn’t ire them in the least, as Jewish children certainly deserve their holiday fun, too. Sales of the Elf on the Shelf, its clothing and accessories, Christmas ornaments, a video and books is certainly keeping Aebersold and Bell rolling in ample dough, so hopefully they don’t mind sharing a bit of the holiday wealth.

Sadly, the Mensch on a Bench has sold out until 2014. Perhaps a search on eBay or other resale sites could render a Mensch in plenty of time for Hannukah.

Photo Source: Wikipedia

  • JewsAreThe FilthOfThePlanet

    Jews find a way to weasel in to everything, then destroy it.

    • phil

      your ignorance is why this world is so screwed up

    • Christian Reynolds

      Isn’t it amazing that those who are ignorant and uninformed and those who make nasty comments about the Jews. Go get an education!

      • Christian Reynolds

        Thanks Phil. It’s refreshing to know there are good people out there. Those people who make such nasty comments about Jews must be unhappy people who are filled with hate. Sad people.

      • Cindy

        Your an idiot

        • Fenix

          Nothing quite so amusing as one person calling another and idiot in 3 words… and misspelling one of them.

          • It’s Grammar

            Your is spelled correct. You’re should have been used. It’s a grammar mistake.

    • JesusWasJewish

      So, Mr. JewsAreWhatever…. You do know that Jesus, Mary, Joseph, and the Apostles were Jewish, right? Right?

      So, WWJD? I’m sure Jesus is incredibly proud of your attitude….

    • Youareanidiot

      Wow, that was awesome… what’s your tradition… Palestinian on a Plane Ride? Nazi on a Nutsack? Anti-Semite as an assclown?

  • http://camocuddles.com Amanda

    My neighbor wrote and published an “elf on the shelf” for children of deployed parents. Camo Cuddles flies hugs and kisses back and forth while mom or dad is deployed. My kids had so much joy from Camo while their dad was deployed last year in southwest Asia. It’s available on Amazon. Camo Cuddles.

  • Sue

    Cute, but this is how Hanukkah gifts reportedly got started – trying to keep up with the Jones (1950’s). The dad could have just helped his kid realize that Christmas is not a Jewish holiday. One of our fave books is “There Is No Such Thing As A Chanukah Bush, Sandy Goldstein”. Like the camo version! Live & Let Live. And yes, Jesus and family were Jews.

  • Sarah

    I’m Catholic and I think this is soooooo cute!

  • AJ

    I am a Christian but have worked for a Jewish organization for over 16 years and those of you who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones… I am well loved by my Jewish “work” family, and proud to be associated with the organization. The Mensch on a Bench is terrific and should be embraced! We are all special in God’s eyes regardless of our religious preference – for some to post hatred with regards to this fun “holiday” item is sickening… for those who truly love the reason for our season it is for peace and goodwill to all!

    • phil