First Full Week in Our Tevya Bubble

  • Shabbat Shalom,

    I love Shabbat at camp. It is the perfect time to think about the week that has passed and the exciting things planned for the coming week. It is a great opportunity to reflect on our own actions of the week, and set goals for the week to come. The theme “be your best self” was introduced during staff orientation week and our staff is truly “their best selves” as they guide and teach our campers. Everywhere I look around camp I see campers having fun, learning new things and being led by counselors who support and encourage them.

    It was an amazing first full week in our Tevya bubble, a week filled with activities, tournaments, ruach (spirit), and even some royalty.

    Our first Shabbat together was also the 4th of July so last Saturday’s Shira included a medley of patriotic songs. Following Havdallah, our community changed from our Shabbat blue and white clothes to our red, white and blue clothes for a celebration of America’s birthday. We began the evening with our annual Red, White and Blue Social before heading to the beach for our front row seats to the town of Brookline’s fireworks display. It was a perfect ending to our first Shabbat of the 2015 season.

    All week long, campers participated in daily activities including waterskiing, boot camp, ceramics and so much more. Our new mountain biking elective has been a huge success and it makes me wish I brought my bike to camp! I guess I will have to stick to running with my couch to 5K group. I am thrilled to have 10 campers running with me and our Program Director Margo as we plan to run a 5K together in the fall. I was also thrilled to see the draft of The Weekly Show’s first video during yesterday’s walk around camp. Don’t worry…it will be posted for all of you to see soon.

    The fun continued into the evenings with activities by age groups, such as Minute to Win It, Capture the Flag, Square Dancing and Meshugena Races. Birya and Tel Chai planned our traditional Spirit Night where they led the camp in songs and cheers in preparation for our athletic games and tournaments that began this week. The spirit of the night was captured in a video that has posted on our facebook page.

    Our kids had a great time at the Camp Tel Noar Water Carnival. The Water Carnival was a combination of swimming and boating events — our campers made us proud. We also participated in an Olim/Olot Jamboree at Camp Young Judea. This new event got our youngest campers involved in a fun day of gaga, kickball and dodge ball. Yesterday our Bogrim and Bogrot traveled to Camp Yavneh for a track meet and this morning was our first game day with Camp Young Judaea. We look forward to hosting Sunday’s Volleyball tournament.

    I remember my first summer as Program Director at Camp Tevya. A group of Tel Chai campers came to me and asked for material to make a pillow for their queen. I had no idea what they were talking about and thought maybe their British counselor had confused them. Then they taught me about the tradition of Camp Tevya royalty. This tradition includes the crowning of a Tel Chai Queen, a Birya King, a Yavneh Princess and a Dalia Prince. These royal figures are chosen by our youngest and oldest age groups from among our staff. The staff chosen act as big brothers and big sisters to campers as they get to know them and spend time with them in special activities. Each group shares a special ceremony that ends with the surprise announcement of their royalty. This was the week that all of our royalty were crowned. Congratulations to the 2015 Royal Court: Birya King Drew Steinberg, Tel Chai Queen Lindsey Ades, Yavneh Princess Marissa Kirshenbaum and Dalia Prince Matt Nierman.

    I was awoken this morning by our entire camp chanting “We’ve got spirit yes we do, we’ve got sprit how about you” on my front steps. And I will go to sleep tonight with the sounds of our entire camp singing at Shabbat Shira. Different sounds, but both beautiful sounds of our community’s ruach, both beautiful sounds of the Tevya spirit. As I reflect on the week, I realize that it is this community spirit that helps each of us be our best selves. And it has only been 9 days…

    Shabbat Shalom.


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