Machzor Sheini Begins!

Wow!  What an incredible day it’s been as we opened our gates to all of our Machzor Sheinei (Second Session) hanichim & hanichot (campers)!!

We’ve had an incredibly packed day of fun and ruach (spirit/energy).  Old friends were reunited and new friendships have already begun to be formed as our hanichim had fun all over camp today.

On Tzad Aleph (A-Side), after some fun introductory games and a yummy snack, we kicked off our official programming at 1:00 with a huge Tzad-wide peulah (program), a Hakarat Hatov Derby!  Hakarat Hatov (the value of gratitude) is our camp’s educational theme this kayitz.  The kids divided by tzrif (bunk) and raced together all around the tzad aleph migrash (field), trying to complete as many challenges as possible, together as a tzrif!  In front of every tzrif (building) was a staff-member running a different game or challenge.  Some were designed to introduce the theme of Hakarat Hatov, while others were designed to teach new kids about different aspects of camp, while others were just fun silliness.  (My own station was Connect Four, in which I challenged any hanich to try to beat me in Connect Four.  I won a lot of games, but two clever tzrifim were able to beat me!)

After that program, we all gathered as a machane (camp) in our new Chadar Ochel (Dining Hall) for Aruchat Tzohorayim (lunch).  Those of us who have been here since the start of the kayitz have been eating in this amazing new binyan all summer, but it’s still a special experience every time we enter (it is for me, at least!), and it was so much fun today to see the faces of all of our new Machzor Sheini hanichim as they walked into our brand new, large, air-conditioned Chadar Ochel!

After aruchat tzohorayim (lunch) we began a Tzohorayim Tzrif (Bunk Afternoon), in which the tzrifim together had an opportunity to participate in different activities all around camp, including: making slime in omanut, sports, team-building games on our ropes course and in our Spider’s Web, face painting, zumba, ga-ga, and lots more.  This Tzohorayim Tzrif is a new tradition that we’ve started this kayitz, and it was a ton of fun!

At the end of the afternoon, the entire machane gathered in our Bet Am Gadol (our gymnasium) for another new tradition: a Tekes Petichah (Opening Ceremony).  There was a ton of ruach and a lot of singing and dancing.  It was incredible to see the entire camp gathered together, singing and dancing together.

Following that ceremony, Tzad Aleph headed to the Chadar Ochel for aruchat erev (dinner), followed by peulot erev, fun evening activities by edah.  Tzad Bet had the first Machzor Sheinei assembly of their Roo sports teams (for our intercamp with Ramah Berkshires), followed by aruchat erev and their peulot erev.  As I write this, Tzad Aleph campers are already on their way to sleep, while Tzad Bet campers are in the middle of their peulot erev.

What a day!  We are so grateful to all of our camp parents who have entrusted us with your children.  It’s been a fantastic yom rishon (first day) here at camp, and we can’t wait to start the regular program machar ba-boker (tomorrow morning)!  Layla tov (good night)!