Shoafim welcomes campers and Shabbat!
Bruchim Habayim l'kayitz al payim echad esrei im Shoafim! (Welcome to Summer 2011 with Shoafim!)
On Tuesday, the staff at Camp Ramah had the pleasure of welcoming 67 campers to Shoafim! After the campers spent some time unpacking, they gathered by bunk to play ice breakers and games. Soon after, we had a peulat edah (Edah-wide program) during which we played "The Cool Wind Blows If…." and Shoa-speed questions in which campers shared fun facts about themselves.
I, the Rosh Edah (head of the group) also welcomed the hanichim by introducing myself and announcing a few very exciting opportunities to receive rewards throughout the summer. For example, especially clean tzrifim (bunks) are rewarded an ice cream party. Also, seven hanichim each week are honored a "Sho-aliyah" (Shoafim aliyah on Shabbat in which a hanich(a) is called to the Torah) for being a great camper throughout the week. Further, each morning we announce a Kochav Hatefilah (Services Star) to a hanich(a) who is praying with extra kavannah (passion). That camper has fun wearing a uniquely designed star necklace all day. Campers Nate and Chani already received the kochav hatefilah and we are excited to find out who else will receive them throughout the summer! All of these ideas were introduced on the first day to start the summer with an focus on encouraging, recognizing, and rewarding acts of lovingkindness, devotion to Judaism, and positive teamwork.
After aruchat erev (dinner), we finished off the day with puelat erev (evening activity). First, we learned the Shoafim cheer and song (to the tune of "Living on a Prayer"). Then we played a game that introduced fun facts about the tzevet (staff). All of the hanichim had to guess which fun fact belonged to which tzevet member. Who knew that Sarah was a childhood figure skater champion, that Or milked cows at 4am every morning on his kibbutz, that Erica plays the ukelele and that Sam knows how to ballroom dance! After a long day of games, cheers, and songs we are excited for getting to know each other even better throughout the next few weeks!
On Tuesday, we welcomed our wonderful hanichim to a kayitz with Shoafim '11 and tonight we will all join together as a kehilah (community) to welcome in our first Shabbat at Machaneh Ramah (Camp Ramah). As we write our Shabbat-o-Grams, take our showers, and pick out our nice dresses and shirts for Shabbat, we share in the excitement of what is sure to be a fantastic kayitz together!