For the first time in what has felt like forever, we were “home”. Last weekend we gathered our Leadership Team at camp. This traditionally starts the summer for our seasonal staff. Thanks to our song leaders Nick and Michelle there was music in the air and after Havdalah we even had s’mores. It felt so good to be back at camp!
We have leadership team members who will be returning for their 21st year at camp and others who are joining us for the first time. Like we do at the start of each camp session, we spent time reconnecting and welcoming in our newest team members. We talked about how the past year has included loss, grief and struggles for us personally and in the world around us. We discussed how to help everyone feel safe physically and social-emotionally. And of course, since it was camp, we had fun. We created art from found items from nature and challenged each other to think of as many songs as possible that included the word “summer”. We laughed and talked and hung out with our camp friends.
During Shabbat we explored what we mean by “Capital Camp’s Jewish”. We talked about community closeness and shared values. We talked about being inclusive, welcoming and flexible. We talked about acknowledging human strength and weaknesses, capacities and limitations while believing in maximum human potential. We reminisced about favorite Capital Camps traditions including song session, rikud (Israeli dancing) and Havdallaqua (Havdalah at the pool).
A highlight of the weekend was a walk to our new LIT Village. Thanks to a capacity building grant from the Foundation for Jewish Camp (FJC), we are building new Yurts for our leaders-in-training (see picture below). Our 2021 LITs will be able to create their own “makom kavua,” a fixed place for their unique programs. The foundations have been poured and we look forward to sharing the progress of creating this village with you.
We are so excited, we simply cannot wait. This weekend we were wearing our masks, we maintained our social distance and ate outside in Habimah. At the same time there was magic and there was fun. We can’t wait to be together. We can’t wait to be back at camp.