Too many people (including some in my Jewish congregation who should know better) say "Hanaka" as if it is "Canada" in disguise, with an "H" for a "C" and a "k" for a "d"!
And, if that isn't bad enough, the media and Wikipedia (and sometimes even the newsletter of my Jewish congregation) spell it with an "H" at the beginning and a double "kk" in the middle, which, if you know anything about the Hebrew spelling, makes no sense at all.
In Hebrew, the name of our holiday is written with vowel points as "חֲנֻכָּה" (or as "חנוכה" without vowel points).
As my graphic above demonstrates, the first letter "חֲ" is the Hebrew Chet, which is a back-of-the-throat guttural sound (like the "ch" in the Scottish "loch") that has no directly equivalent English letter representation. There have been efforts to represent that sound as "Kh" (which I find ugly) or "Ḥ" (a dot or line under the letter "H"), but, why not stick with what, until the past decade or so, has been traditional, "Ch"? The vowel points under the letter stand for the short "ah" sound.
The second letter "נֻ" is the Hebrew Nun, which sounds like the English "n". The vowel points beneath it are sounded like the English "u" (or the "oo" in "too").
The third letter "כָּ" is the Hebrew Kaf, which sounds like the English "k". (Please note there is only ONE "כָּ", so there is no basis for the double "kk" misused by the media nowadays.)The vowel points under it are sounded like the English long "aw" in the traditional Ashkenazim pronunciation my wife and I learned as children, or "ah" in the Sephardi pronunciation that was adopted by the time our daughters went to Hebrew school.
The final letter "ה" is the Hebrew Hey, which sounds like the English "h".
Put them all together and you get Chanukah!
This past Sunday our Jewish congregation hosted a ceremonial lighting of the large Chanukah Menorah in the Spanish Springs Town Square in The Villages, FL. Despite some scattered showers, we had a huge turnout and a good time was had by all. The Chanukah spelling conflict is nicely illustrated in the songbook we prepared for the occasion, where "Chanukah" appears some 27 times, and the "kk" version appears only 10 times!