- The new Kibbutz Eco-Village was a huge success.
- The new S’ganim unit in the renovated Kibbutz area is a program that allows us to concentrate on our Melachim 8th graders and our S’ganim 9th graders in ways unique to their age-group. And all of them rode horses!
- Lake Jake boasted new activities, a new pavilion, and a new beach!
- We added hiking and biking trails on GFC’s new 160 acres, land that we didn’t even own last summer
It was a fantastic season and now of course, it is time to look ahead. Here’s eight reasons why we’re already excited about Summer 2013:
- We get an extra Shabbat each session!
That’s right – another Shabbat stroll, one extra chicken dinner; one more night of song session and Israel dancing; and one more white shirt!
In an effort to create a camp schedule that works for a many of our families as possible, we will start the summer one-half week later, ensuring that most schools have ended and that most graduations have occurred. We are also returning to the camp tradition (pre-2008) of the session beginning on a weekday and ending on a Sunday.
We took a survey right after session two ended and asked whether families would prefer we keep our start and end dates similar to this past season (June 9 thru July 31, 2013) or move one week later (June 16 thru August 7, 2013). Ninety percent of Session One parents asked us to move to a later start date. Session Two parents were split in their opinions about the earlier or later dates. Many of their strongest comments dealt with potential conflicts if we moved camp a full week later.
There are many advantages to the new dates even though they require beginning on a weekday and ending on a Sunday (2013 Dates are posted on our website):
- One more Camp Shabbat each session
- We can reduce the number of scheduling conflicts for our staff orientation, getting more of our staff to more of Staff Orientation week
- The early dates similar to 2012 were just too early and had too many conflicts
- The later dates would require many session two campers to leave too early. Fewer campers may have leave early because of the start of band camp, sports practice, etc.
- There are TWO ways to SAVE MONEY on camp tuition by registering early.
Campers who register prior to November 9, the Friday after our Camp Retreat, will receive a significant discount. Campers who register prior to December 31 will receive a smaller discount. Anyone who registers prior to Rosh Hashanah (September 17) will receive a free, limited edition, Early-Bird T-shirt.
- We are building on our success by creating another unit.
We plan to continue on the path that we blazed last summer in our older units, and will be making some changes to our younger units as well.
Thanks to the positive response from campers, parents and staff following the split of Melachim into two units, one for 8th graders (Melachim) and one for 9th graders (S’ganim), we will be splitting Kohanim into two units.
Campers entering 6th grade after next summer will still register for Kohanim. Campers who were in Kohanim last summer, who are entering 7th grade after next summer, will register for our new unit, “Shoftim.” Shoftim are “Judges,” in keeping with the naming of our units after eras of Jewish history.
We are definitely excited about being able to better serve campers in 6th and 7th grades. By having smaller units with more staff and making our units smaller, we are able to provide more direct supervision of staff and programming and tend to the camper’s needs.
- We are building on every camper’s experiences with new opportunities each year.
We believe that campers should progress through camp, participating in new and different activities each summer that they are here. With our new structure of units that correspond to specific grades, we are better able to do that. You will be receiving more information about the specific programs of each of our units as the next few weeks go by, but there is no doubt that all of our campers will still have a great time, participating in the activities that they have come to know and love at GFC.
- Lots of new activities that we can’t even tell you about yet.
Why be a spoiler and tell you about all of the surprises. We will say that there will be more to do for every camper at the Eco-Village. There will be some exciting new additions to Lake Jake (and more time down there to enjoy them). The horses will be back, with more campers getting to trail ride. And more and more…Stay tuned!
- We can’t wait for the summer… camp happens all year!
Come visit camp for different events throughout the year. November 2-4, we have the Camp Retreat Weekend for all 3rd through 6th grade students. If you’ve never been to camp, it’s a great chance to check things out and see what camp’s all about. It’s also an opportunity for veteran campers to see their camp friends from other cities and escape to camp for a weekend. Want to bring the whole family to camp? Come to GFC for the Family Retreat – Machaneh Mishpachah – March 1-3. What better way to experience camp for yourself and find out why your kids (or your friend’s kids) are so excited about camp! This weekend is perfect for every member of the family – kids of all ages, parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles. Unfortunately, though, pets have to stay home. In high school? Be sure to check out the NFTY-TOR programs – another fun way to see your camp friends and come to camp during the year.
- We can’t wait to see you at camp, so we are visiting your congregation.
We are so excited about the summer, we want to share it with everyone. Be sure to check out the GFC Roadshow to find out when someone from camp will be at your congregation! On that day, be sure to wear your GFC shirt and show your camp pride. If you don’t see your congregation on the list, check back soon – we are still scheduling visits.
- Keep up with us when you aren’t at camp – follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
Find out what we do all year when you aren’t at camp. We update the GFC Facebook page and Twitter feed often – and we want to hear from you, too. We look for your ideas also, so be sure to check the pages often and help us out. You can also post pictures of you wearing your GFC gear – we would love to see where you go to show off your camp!
Registration begins RIGHT NOW! Just login to your Camp account and you are ready to go.