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CAMP ARRIVES TO CROWN HEIGHTS FOR CHOF AV

This past Wednesday, in preparation for our trip to the Rebbe the next day, the head staff farbrenged with the campers. The camp was divided into five groups, based on age. The farbrengens were conducted by Learning Director Oshi Hecht, Head Counselors Yudi Steiner, Shaya Gopin and Chezzy Deren. The head staff related stories of the Rebbe and explained to the children the significance of going to the Rebbe. Special song sheets were printed out, with songs befitting the occasion. The farbrengens definitely helped make everyone understand the enormity of the trip.

The next day after breakfast, everyone went to mikveh, in the pool, to prepare for writing a pan to the Rebbe. Following mikveh, every camper was given a camp T-shirt, and went to their learning class to write a pan. After lunch, we boarded the comfortable coach busses, destination: 770! Some staff members came to 770 before the campers arrived, to set up the benches for camp. The entire front section of 770 was partitioned off for camp. Everyone filed into 770, where we davened a smashing Mincha, the likes of which 770 hadn’t seen since last year’s Chof Av. Following Mincha we sang some niggunim with great enthusiasm. We then walked out to the front of 770 where everybody lined up to go into the Rebbe’s room. While we waited, the pesukim were recited and more songs were sung. Head Counselor Yudi Steiner spoke about the great zechus we have to go into the Rebbe’s room. One by one, each bunk went into the Rebbe’s room. Where Head Counselor Shaya Gopin directed each camper to give tzedakah, and recite some Tehillim.

After everybody came out of the Rebbe’s room, we boarded the busses, and headed off to the Ohel. At the Ohel there was a rally with yet more leibidike singing. Yudi Steiner later said that in all his fifteen years in camp, he had never seen such lively singing. Each bunk went into the Ohel, read their pan and said Tehillim. A delicious supper consisting of salami and turkey sandwiches and plenty of drinks was served in the beautifully set up third tent behind Ohel Chabad Lubavitch. After everyone finished eating and davening Maariv, it was back to the back to the busses for the ride back to camp, uplifted, invigorated and inspired by the day’s events. Believe it or not, after such a packed day, we arrived in camp a full half hour ahead of schedule!