The crew of the International Space Station (ISS) recently came together to celebrate a unique and multidenominational Christmas and Hanukkah in space. Led by NASA astronaut Jasmin Moghbeli, the crew embraced the festive spirit and made sure that both holidays were commemorated onboard the ISS.
Moghbeli, who brought a felt menorah with her, lit a flame each night during the eight-day Hanukkah celebration. Drawing inspiration from her family traditions on Earth, Moghbeli wanted to ensure that both Hanukkah and Christmas were celebrated in a meaningful way during their time in space.
In addition to the religious observances, the crew took part in other festive activities. They enjoyed a holiday meal together, fostering a sense of unity and camaraderie. Cookie decorating proved to be a popular activity among the crew, allowing them to showcase their creativity while enjoying some tasty treats.
For Christmas day, the entire Expedition 70 crew, including Moghbeli, Andreas Mogensen, Satoshi Furukawa, Loral O’Hara, Konstantin Borisov, Oleg Kononenko, and Nikolai Chub, gathered to spend the day together on the ISS. They had the day off to relax, open presents, watch a movie, and indulge in a special Christmas dinner.
While the crew may have been far from home, they didn’t forget the festive traditions of Santa Claus. The crew chose grey and black thermal socks as their stockings, but they added a touch of holiday cheer by wearing Santa hats that stood straight up due to the microgravity in space.
Despite being thousands of miles away, Mogensen sent heartfelt Christmas greetings from the ISS, extending warm wishes to everyone back on Earth for a joyful holiday season.
The crew’s celebration highlights the importance of inclusivity and unity, even in the unique and isolated environment of space. As they continue their important work in orbit, they find solace in coming together to commemorate the holidays and bring a sense of normalcy to their extraordinary setting.
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