Pinat Teva Continues to Flourish and Grow! by Andy Katz

Pinat Teva, the “Nature Corner,” which has grown dramatically over the last few years, has taken a major leap forward this summer. In addition to the three original stations – the animal farm, vegetable garden, and outdoor cooking area – we have added a new “nature art” chug (elective).

Outdoor cooking now has two large fire pits, four small ones, and a wood-fired brick oven. So far this summer our chanichim (campers) have prepared pizza, shakshuka, potato/chickpea curry, minestrone soup, macaroni and cheese, and more – all by wood fire.

The garden, which is now three times its old size and includes a greenhouse, is growing tomatoes, zucchini, peppers, three kinds of lettuce, corn, green beans, herbs and more. Campers weed the garden, prepare signage, and periodically cook simple meals with the garden’s bounty.

The farm has two areas, one with chicken, ducks and geese, and another with mini-donkeys and goats. Chanichim tend to the animals and periodically prepare small meals with the eggs the chicken and ducks lay.

The Pinat Teva chugim are consistently the most popular at camp. Whatever the weather, chanichim are happy to be engaged in hands-on activities outdoors, learning science, practical skills, and the values of sustainability and environmental stewardship. There is magic in participating in every stage of farm-to-table eating. And in the process of preparing foods from different cultures, many of which have some unfamiliar element, chanichim open themselves to new experiences and discover they enjoy things they never imagined they would.