Though it’s been a tradition for over 20 years now and a tradition much appreciated by the Rebbe all the years, when the Rebbe would give the children special attention, this years trip to the Ohel & 770 by The Rebbe’s Camp, the camp he established 47 years ago, Gan Yisroel, NY was very special.
Early Monday morning the camp had reveille followed by Mikva. After davening & breakfast the camp was ready to leave to the Ohel.
Every year camp travels via yellow school buses. This year however, there were air conditioned coach buses. 10 coaches buses, 3 – 15 passenger vans & 1 mini-van transported the 500 k”ah campers & staff to the Ohel & 770.
Upon arriving at the Ohel, shortly after 2:00pm, the campers were directed into the tent behind the Chabad House @ the Ohel where they were given drinks. @ 2:30pm there was a very special International Kinus for Camp Gan Israel’s around the world. The Kinus was conducted live via hookup.
Campers from CGI’s in different parts of the USA as well as CGI Montreal, Sweden, Russia, England and Argentina participated in the recitation of the Rebbe’s Kapitel, 12 Pesukim, Ad Mosai, Niggunim & listening to a part of a Sicha Kedosha from the Rebbe. CGINY H.C. Moshe Steiner served as MC for the rally.
After the rally the bunks were dismissed to the Ohel where the campers said Tehillim and read their Panim.
When the campers left the Ohel they washed their hands and went into the second tent for supper. The tables were set up in an orderly fashion – a private table for each bunk. Tuna & Peanut butter & jelly sandwiches as well as cold drinks and fruit were served for supper in a very orderly fashion.
A bit after 4:00 pm the camp boarded the busses for the trip to 770. When they arrived @ 770 all the campers with their counselors and staff who were wearing their beautiful new CGI t-shirts were seated on benches that occupied the entire front of 770 until the Bima HaKriah. The Staff of CGI & Yeshivas Kayitz stood on benches around all the campers.
As the campers waited for their comrades to arrive and be seated they sang camp songs.
H.C.’s Mendy Kornfeld, Asher Deren & Moshe Steiner conducted the singing and davening in 770.
When everyone was seated a smashing Mincha began. The Amen’s & Yehay Shmay Rabas were heard outside!
Following Mincha the entire camp began singing songs. The singing and chayus reverberated throughout the whole 770 where everyone stopped what they were doing and focused on the Rebbe’s camp “Shepping Nachas”. The type of chayus displayed by camp is impossible to put in to words and has to be seen to be believed.
After about 20 minutes of singing the bunks were dismissed to the buses.. Outside of 770 the sweated up campers were cooled down from the excitement with ice cold drinks before their trip back on the very comfortable air conditioned coach buses to The Rebbe’s Camp.