The big personalities and the storied names at Machaneh Ramah sometimes make the experience. I remember leaving camp at the summer’s end with Rabbi Melamet’s Shabbat Musaf ringing in my ears. Chanichim might remember the bellowing voice of the tzevet member who sings Az Ich Vil Zingen each week or perhaps the Rosh Edah who makes iconic funny motions in Hadar Ochel during Birkat Hamazon.
If camp invites an extraordinary and memorable experience simply by joining a show stopping tzevet with its chanichim, imagine the memories that we create when we bring in guests to enliven our t’fillot and our sports. Coaches in football, basketball, softball and even hip hop visited CRB to give chanichim the opportunity to choose two sports to play for an hour each day. Some chanichim tried something completely new. During T’fillah, Jewish Rockstar, Saul Kaye, graced us with warm melodies that bring new light to our daily routine. Simple moments that we might remember only as fun become intertwined with the intrinsically Jewish moment. The Bracha Carnival invited Cochavim chanichim to play ring toss and learn a new dance with the new association of a bracha for the food that they eat. It is my hope that as our time together this summer continues and even after it ends, our chanichim will carry with them their own projections of the enthusiastic identities that have colored their experience.