Sunday, August 1
Shavua tov! Sha-sha shavua tov!
We celebrated another beautiful Shabbat together in Machane Stone. Our outdoor Kabbalat Shabbat was full of singing and dancing — the atmosphere so joyful. And the spirit continued into Friday night dinner — with plenty of singing there as well! One highlight of Shabbat day was hevruta time— tzevet members were spread across all the migrashim (fields) engaged in learning with their 2 or 3 chanichim. After having met each other for the first time last week, this week the hevrutot really dug in to their learning together — so many smiles during this special Shabbat tradition at Stone. Slow Shira in the late afternoon brought the whole camp together in “Indoor World” (our largest outdoor venue) for singing full of ruach and a moving story told by Adira Botwinick about the Pesach her grandmother celebrated during the Shoah. After a melodious Havdalah, the chanichim had special evening activities by edah. These included night swimming, nighttime high ropes, climbing wall, dodgeball, gaga, and basketball.
The Mishna was redacted today! In shiur, our chanichim learned about Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi’s courageous decision to collect the Oral traditions into the Mishna. They discussed the counterarguments, pressures, and concerns he faced, and they learned about his ability to push through. Playing broken telephone helped to concretize the difficulties in relying solely on oral transmission.
Kaytana loved their Color War on Friday — red vs. blue! Activities included lots of sports, a baking competition in the “baby-Bach” (special kitchen), and their very own Apache race. Today, it was back to a full schedule of activities, including making their own “limonana,” by picking their own mint from the camp herb garden.
Chanichim continued to travel back in time to the village of Tzipori today, where campers bound their own copy of the Mishna of Masechet Avot at the book-binding station, and took a trip to Machane Stone’s very own planetarium to learn about the importance of the constellations of the zodiac to ancient people, including Jews living in the time of the Mishna and the Gemara, and baked bread in a real wood-burning oven.
After departing late last night, Machal arrived in Virginia today to begin their week of outdoor adventure, hiking and boating on the James River.