Welcome Home CITs!

  • Every day as I walk around camp, I realize how lucky I am to work at Camp Tevya. Where else could I see the most beautiful Lake Potanipo sunsets? Where else could I be surrounded by happy children making memories of a lifetime? Where else could I work with such an amazing group of talented, passionate, and creative young adults? These young adults, our camp Tevya staff, work extremely hard 24 hours a day to be the caretakers, the teachers, and the role models who make our campers happy.

    Although each of them deserves a medal of excellence, last Shabbat we recognized two of them as we presented the Aaron and Blanche Gordon Award. This award is given in honor of Aaron, a former Tevya director, and his wife for their long-time dedication and contribution to both Tevya and the greater Jewish community. This award is given to two second year staff members who are entering their first year of college. Recipients are chosen based on their exceptional leadership and strong character during their JC summer. These traits are greatly valued by the Gordon family and the Tevya community. I was honored to present the 2015 Gordon Award to Sam Beermann and Mollie Carroll. Thank you to Temple Israel of Boston and the Gordon family for allowing us to recognize our staff in celebration of young Jewish leaders. Aaron and Blanche would be proud of today’s Tevya community. Mazel Tov to Sam and Mollie.

    As soon as Shabbat ended last week, campers and staff continued the Color War chant. While it was another week of “1,2,3,4. We want Color War,” it was also another week of “5,6,7,8. You will have to wait.” As our Tevya community continued to wait for Color War, we enjoyed camp activities and tournaments. In addition, we welcomed home our CITs, which was an exciting event for the whole camp community.

    Last Sunday we welcomed sixty prospective camp families as we shared the excitement and fun of our summer home. They took tours, participated in camp activities and had an amazing Tevya BBQ. Our campers and staff shared the warmth that makes Tevya our happy place. Many of these families shared that they could feel the specialness of our home and they looked forward to joining our community next summer. We can’t wait to welcome them to our family!

    The feeling of family continued into Sunday evening as I experienced one of those “proud mama moments.” You know what I am talking about. The moment when your kid is on stage dancing and singing his or her heart out and you sit back in your chair smiling and thinking, “That’s my kid.” Only it wasn’t actually my kid, and it wasn’t actually one kid. Watching twenty of our Bogrim and Bogrot campers perform at this year’s Jewish Arts Festival made me so proud. They showcased their talent, their energy and their spirit. While I was certainly proud of them, the best part was seeing how happy they were on stage and how much pride they had in their own performance. A big thank you to Dan Wulf, Melanie Gundersheim, Shoval Yemini, Bella Hayes and Alyssa Berkson for their hard work and dedication. And a thank you to our JAF performers for allowing me to be a proud mama!

    Campers had other opportunities to showcase their talents this week. On Tuesday, forty campers traveled to Camp Pembroke to participate in their annual swim meet. Everyone had a great time and Tevya proudly returned with the second place trophy. On Wednesday, our Tsofs traveled to Camp Bauercrest for a basketball tournament. For the second time this summer, they returned to camp with the championship trophy. On Thursday, Camp Young Judea joined us here for an archery tournament. Thank you to Jess Drooks and Robyn Adelkopf for organizing this event. The kids had a great time. An amazing week of games came to an end today as we traded places with Camp Young Judea for soccer and ultimate Frisbee games. Even our staff joined in the fun this week inviting the staff of Camp Young Judea for a late night basketball game.

    This week all of our campers enjoyed evenings out of camp. Our Bogrim/Bogrot saw the movie Mission Impossible at Chunky’s. While the movie is stated as the attraction, we all know that the best part of a trip to Chunky’s is the all you can eat pizza and popcorn followed by an ice cream sundae. Tsofim/Tsofot bounced the night away at Altitude Trampoline Park and Olim/Olot had a great time playing miniature golf and getting soaked on the bumper boats at Max’s Country Golf in Tyngsboro. In addition to these events, Kinneret and Birya participated in a self-defense course. Thank you to the Lily Konowitz Foundation for sponsoring this yearly event. It makes a huge impact on our girls as they gain self-confidence and learn important life skills.

    While all of these activities made our days busy and fun, the highlight of the week was welcoming our CITs back home. On Wednesday afternoon, our 2015 community was made whole again when our CITs returned back to camp after 5 weeks in Israel. They will be participating in activities and bunk life as they learn from our counselors, help our campers, and participate in coursework focusing on leadership and life skills. We are so happy to have them back at camp!

    Though it was another Color Warless week, it was a week of fun at Tevya. With only 12 more days of camp left, it must be breaking soon. I’ll let you in on a secret…It is not breaking in the next 24 hours. Now it is time to prepare for Shabbat and enjoy this peaceful, reflective period at camp. We’ll see what next week brings.


    Shabbat Shalom,




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