There is simply no place in the world like summer camp. To create a universe where children can grow and mature, be surrounded by role models with positive energy and spirit, all while having the time of their lives is not only important for our children's development -- it's central to it. As the final lights are shut, bunks are locked, and boats are stored, I'd like to take this moment to thank you for your support and reflect on what was another historic and proud summer for Morasha.
We like to say that campers may leave camp but camp will never leave them. The impact that summer camp has on children is fundamental to our commitment to provide not only a camp of value - with incredible fun, trips, activities, and events - but also one that instills Jewish values: Teaching our campers that living as a Jew is not only about fun, but also about paying respect, observing and studying Jewish law and text, taking responsibility, showing appreciation, building skills, approaching everything with heart and soul, and living in a community with a sense of achdut.
We've hosted our largest camper population in our 51-year history, with a record-smashing 160 July-to-Full Summer extensions after the first session. We launched Yagilu, a brand new Wilderness program, with an astonishing 54 members in its inaugural season. And, last but certainly not least, we brought nearly 100 campers to Israel on our Sulam program, which was an extraordinary success on so many levels.
With that said, I have always believed that it is QUALITY - not quantity - that matters most. We worked day and night to ensure that we were properly set up on Day 1 for our growth with an astounding fifteen new bunks, brand new sports facilities, a refurbished Boys' Gym, fridges on every bunk porch, new staff housing -- just to name a few. We hired a caring and qualified staff from a record 612 staff applications for 232 positions. We took measures to create a safer environment with formal training in safety, health, and bullying prevention. We updated our website and mobile app and continued to share thousands of photos, videos, and news so that our parents and friends at home can experience the "magic" first-hand. We created a program and daily schedule so that every moment of every day would offer a fun and positive experience for our children. And, most importantly, our steadfast commitment to Eretz Yisrael, Am Yisrael and Medinat Yisrael was not compromised but rather seamlessly integrated and delicately balanced through every aspect of camp. We couldn't be prouder of our campers and staff.
We appreciate the positive e-mails and inquiries about next summer. As always, we are also open to constructive feedback to help us create an even better camping experience. Applications and information on Morasha 2015 will arrive home shortly. Until then, please enjoy the photos and videos online. We didn't want to have a Shabbat without a video so please enjoy the recently uploaded Summer 2014 Final Night Video on our camp website (many more videos to be uploaded over the next week!).
Registration is now open for Camp Morasha 2015! Applications are available under the "Register Today!" menu.
A big Mazel Tov to:Mazel Tov to Rabbi Ira and Paula Spodek, our Executive Director and Registrar/Office Manager, on the Bar Mitzvah of their grandson Chaim Medetsky on Shabbos Parshas Behar.
Rabbi Ira Spodek, our Executive Director and to Paula Spodek, our Registrar/Office Manager, on the birth of a new grandson, Ezra Akiva, born to their children Yaffi & Rabbi Matan Wexler (current Ed Staff member).
Shalom & Tina Lamm on the engagement of their son, Shmuel,to Sara Lamar!
Shalom & Tina Lamm on the marriage of their daughter, Penina,to Eitan Kaplansky!
Gary & Meryl Hoffman on the marriage of their daughter, Zahava, to Jeremy Siegel!
Yoni Pollock on his engagement to Leba Rauch - another Met-in-Morasha couple!
Lisa & Phil Baratz on the engagement of their son, Zack, to Shira Lerner!
Amy & Michael Berger on the Bat Mitzvah of their daughter, Jordana!
Ariel & Ronit Cohen on the very recent birth of a new baby boy, Ohr Eitan!
Tami & Yitz Prus on the marriage of their daughter, Michelle, to Daniel Loeweinstein!
Chaye & David Warburg on the birth of a granddaughter born to their children Tova and R' Tzvi Sinensky!
Vivian & Menacham Rosenberg on the birth of a granddaughter Meira Bracha, born to their children Dena & Moshe Rosenberg!
Shalom & Tina Lamm on the birth of a granddaughter, Sara Ruchama, born to their children Ari & Shlomit Lamm!
Chani Oratz on the birth of her first great-grandchild, born to her grandchildren Yisrael & Shoshie Skaly-Cohen!