SHABBAT AT GILBOA
Shabbat is a camp-wide experience that everyone shares in preparing. One week, you might set the tables and decorate the dining hall. The next week, you might make challah for the whole camp, or write your own blessings to accompany traditional ones. To welcome Shabbat, we walk hand-in-hand to our beautiful Bluff Lake. We listen to a story and sing Hebrew melodies as the sun sets. After a delicious Shabbat dinner and a round of shira (singing) led by campers, we gather for some spirited Israeli dancing.
Camper-Run Skit (oneg Shabbat): Each week, a different kvutzah (age group) has the chance to write, direct, star in, and create costumes for a skit. It’s another way to build teamwork skills in a fun and creative way.
Israeli Dancing (rikud): Everyone loves dancing late into the evening on Fridays! We learn traditional circle dances, modern line dances, and even make up our own! No previous experience or skill needed - counselors and older campers teach and escort new campers throughout dances, and make sure everyone is included.
Morning gaga: Calling all gaga-enthusiasts - Shabbat morning starts with a sleep in, plus board games and a gaga tournament for the early risers!
Electives (chugim): Our Shabbat schedule is much more relaxed than the average day. There are multiple opportunities to choose special chugim (electives) to match different Shabbat vibes - reflective and calm or fun and wacky adventures!
Musicale: During Musicale, campers have a chance to perform in front of the rest of camp - they can play an instrument, sing, or read poetry. It’s a fantastic opportunity to share musical and poetic passions in a warm and supportive environment.
Jewish Learning: We call our Saturday morning Jewish learning time “Jewce” - it’s where we learn about relevant themes from this week’s torah portion, while drinking juice, of course! Jewce activities use experiential education to explore where we find social justice values within Jewish tradition.
Zman Madatz: To make Shabbat even more special, the CITs (madatz) plan and run special games and activities. Sometimes everyone is in teams, playing a camp-wide game, and sometimes we’re experiencing smaller group bonding activities by kvutzah (age group.)
Hyde Park: Hyde park is where democracy at camp comes to life! This town hall-style meeting brings all campers together to voice their opinions and have a say in what happens at camp. Each kvutzah (age group) gets a chance to report back to everyone on how their week was and what their favorite activities were. Older campers facilitate the meeting and meet with the directors afterward to provide the feedback.
Camp families (mishpachot): We spend time on Shabbat with our camp families, which groups campers based on where they live. Gilboa meets throughout the year in local chapters (the ken) and this is a time to get to know each other and get excited for all the fun things we’ll do while we’re counting down the days until next summer!
Havdallah: Havdallah marks the end of Shabbat on Saturday night. During Havdallah, the entire camp comes together to sing the Havdallah songs, reflect, and listen to music. Sitting or lying down under Big Bear stars is a beautiful way to welcome in the new week.
Bonfire (medurah): Medurah is yet another wonderful chance for campers to showcase their talents or just be goofy! These performances, unlike Musicale, are geared towards comedy, skits and dancing. Oldest campers play hosts in our SNL-style showcase around the campfire.