Category: Camp News

Virtual Talent Show

Posted by July 2, 2020 • Share:

 

JCC Maccabi Sports Camp Talent Show

Wednesday, August 5th

7:00pm on Facebook Live

The Maccabi Talent Show started during our first session of our first summer in 2014 and we are not going to let this virus stop us from continuing this important tradition.

This year’s show will be a little different but still have all the excitement, fun, and of course…talent, that we’ve all come to expect!

Here’s how it’s going to work…

  • Prospective acts must sign up no later than Monday, July 20 using this form.
  • Division Leaders will review all submissions and circle back with follow up questions
  • Depending on the number of acts, we will decide how many to accept
  • Acts must record their performances at home and submit to Matt Reitman by Monday, July 27 (more information will be sent providing more guidance on this aspect)
  • All acts must be limited to 2 minutes

Sign up today and be part of our first ever virtual Talent Show!

 

Maccabi Fellowship in Sports Leadership (M-FiSL)

Posted by July 1, 2020 • Share:

Maccabi Fellowship in Sports Leadership

Legends and Leaders

For campers 13 – 16 years old
July 20 – August 14 (4 weeks)
$150 per camper, registration required, max 25 participants
Click here to register – must be completed by the teen, with permission and supervision of a parent

Join a cohort of Maccabi campers as we explore and develop leadership skills over the course of a 4-week program. Participants will learn about leadership, explore their own skills and hone new ones, plan and lead programs this summer, develop new ideas for the year round camp community, and of course, make new friends.

Participants in M-FiSL will discuss what it means to be a leader and the many ways you can lead and develop the skills of a leader. Discussions about current events, reflections on leaders and leadership styles, and real life applications, will help campers to think critically, become better problem solvers and put their own leadership skills to practice.

Through this leadership program campers will gain knowledge, in addition to feeling a sense of accomplishment in helping this summer, this program will have a meaningful and tangible impact beyond the summer

Commitment:

  • Attend all scheduled online meetings (tentative calendar below)
  • Complete pre-call reading, viewing, or other preparation
  • Be present and ready to share, discuss, and absorb the ideas and content
  • Allow themselves to be vulnerable, humble, and ready to learn

Goals & Outcomes – Participants will…

  • Meet new people, making new friends and strengthening bonds with old friends
  • Cultivate important leadership, collaboration, and communication skills
  • Share their voice as part of a team creating, planning, and implementing camp programs
  • Have the opportunity to learn from leaders, from within and outside the camp community
  • Feel further connected to camp friends and the camp community during these challenging times

Schedule:

  • Meeting #1 – July 20, 5pm pacific – Icebreakers, discuss video homework, begin prep on summer project
  • Meeting #2 – July 29, 5pm – Discuss pre-call homework,  begin prep for in-summer camp program, brainstorming community service project and year-round engagement ideas
  • Meeting #3 – August 3, 5pm pacific – discuss sports leadership, start planning year round camp programs, communication/public speaking skills
  • Meeting #4 – August 7, 5pm pacific – continue with year round programming and community service, conversation about leadership styles
  • Meeting #5 – August 11, 5pm pacific – final touches on programming, continued skill development, prep for final gathering and what comes after summer
  • Meeting #6 – August 14, 5pm pacific – Culminating Gathering, M-FiSL Shabbat

*dates tentative, content subject to change

 

 

 

 

 

Commemorating Moments

Posted by December 17, 2019 • Share:

Sometimes I close my eyes when I’m at camp and just listen. I love it. The squeaking sneakers on the gym floor, laughter of all types, a whistle blowing, it’s all music to my ears. And to me, 

Playing Guitar Singing Campfire Jewish Camping Bay Area

that is always what it has been about – the music.

***

I recently had the honor of being named JCC Maccabi Sports Camp’s newest Camp Director, the second in our young history. It is a tremendous honor and responsibility that has been both humbling and prideful. (Camp’s founder and long-time Camp Director, Josh Steinharter, is still very much with camp and has been promoted to the position of Senior Director). I have been looking for a way to mark this occasion.

When I finished grad school I got an iPhone (it was a BIG deal at the time). When the Cub’s won the world series I made a pilgrimage to Wrigley Field. I even jumped out of an airplane to mark my 30th birthday, but this occasion is different. An occasion worthy of being marked with something meaningful, not just to me, but to my experience at camp.

I considered a new baseball glove. A former competitive baseball player, when I have free time at camp you can often find me on the diamond. One of my fondest memories as a child was going with my father, a Rabbi and former pitcher at the University of Chicago, to buy my first catcher’s mitt. The smell of new leather always brings me back to that moment. But a new glove would easily spend six months a year in the back of my closet.

I thought about a watch. I have always been a collector of interesting timepieces. A watch is something I could use every day and is certainly fitting to mark professional growth. But a watch is almost too personal. I would never really be able to share it with anyone. The same way a glove is meant to be used for playing baseball, I wanted something that could be used at camp.

I closed my eyes and tried to listen to camp. I heard the crack of a bat, a ball being spiked, high fives and silly cheers, and I knew what I wanted.

***

There is nothing more meaningful to me than playing music. I have been playing a variety of instruments (“playing” may be a bit of a stretch for many of them) for most of my life. But to me, the neck of a guitar has always made more sense than just about anything else in the world. My best moments have been spent shared with people I love, by the campfire, guitar in hand. When I have been at my lowest, and disconnected from others, music has brought me back. Thoughts become clear to me as verses unfold into a chorus and I’m not sure I even know how to drive anymore without singing along to something.

One of the reasons I love camp is because my love of music is combined with the beauty of community. The sound of my guitar starts and ends our day, gets us pounding on tables, and welcomes in Shabbat. Around the campfire my guitar is amplified by the sound of our voices, and I can be the truest and best version of myself.

After over two decades of camp, the guitar that has always been with me will be staying home this summer. While I know she still has a long life ahead of her, the physical trauma that a serious-camp-song-session has on a guitar has caught up with her. She needs to be retired from camp, and I need a new companion. A guitar worthy of leading our Kehilla Kedosha (sacred community) and standing in for a dear friend.

***

I would like to introduce everyone to Bessie. The very first thing we did was sing “Fly” together. You will all get to meet this summer.

 

About the Author

Eytan Graubart – Camp Director eytan@maccabisportscamp.org or 415-997-8844 x2

Eytan has been involved in Jewish camping since he was very young. Before joining the JCC Maccabi Sports Camp team, he served as the Director of Camp BB-Riback in Calgray, Alberta.

Eytan grew up in Chicago, IL, and spent his summers at Camp Young Judaea Midwest in Waupaca, WI.

Staff Spotlight: Jason Sinkoff

Posted by April 10, 2019 • Share:

Welcome Back Jason Sinkoff – Tennis Head Coach and Athletic Director!

Jewish Tennis Coach Bay Area

Jason Sinkoff is excited to return to Camp for his 6th summer as Head Tennis Coach and his 2nd as our Athletic Director. Welcome back Jason!

Coaching Tennis in College

Tennis Head Coach Jason Sinkoff is in his third season as the Assistant Men’s Tennis Coach at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA.  In his first year they finished with the 3rd most wins in program history going 16-7.  Under his leadership, the program was completely turned around and became a serious contender for the conference title. In his second season they moved up to the #3 seed in their conference tournament for the first time in the program’s history.

Prior to his time at James Madison, Jason was the Head Men’s Tennis coach at Wagner College where he also received an MBA with in Management, finishing #1 in his class.

In addition to coaching at the collegiate level, Jason has coached youth at summer camps in the San Diego area and worked as the Tennis instructor at a residential camp in Wisconsin.  In 2009 he served as the Assistant Coach for the boy’s tennis team at Torrey Pines High School.  That team won their conference title as well as the San Diego CIF Div 1 Title and sent graduates to compete at the collegiate level at UC Santa Barbara, Princeton, University of Arizona, UC Santa Cruz, UC Davis, UC San Diego, and Pomona College.

 

Playing Tennis in San Diego

Before he became a coach, Jason played tennis at Torrey Pines High School (San Diego, CA), Palomar College, and Hofstra University and was a Team Captain on his high school and college teams.

At Torrey Pines, Jason was named a two-time San Diego Union Tribune Scholar Athlete, and named to the All-City and All-Palomar League 1st Teams during his senior year.  At Palomar College he played #1 Singles and Doubles and was voted Team Captain and Freshman MVP while obtaining a 4.0 GPA.  He then transferred to Hofstra University to play Division 1 Men’s Tennis, was elected Team Captain for 3 years, Intercollegiate Tennis Association Scholar-Athlete, CAA Commissioner’s Academic Award recipient, and Senior MVP. Jason graduated in 2012 with a BBA in Marketing and a Minor in Management.

Tennis at the JCC Maccabi Games

He competed at the JCC Maccabi Games three times, 2002 Montreal, 2003 Houston, TX (Silver Medal in Doubles), and 2004 Boston, MA (Gold Medal in Doubles). In 2010 he competed in the Men’s Open Division representing Team USA at the Maccabi Australia Games and won a Bronze medal in Doubles.

This Summer at JCC Maccabi Sports Camp

Jason is extremely excited to be back at JCC Maccabi Sports Camp. He’s eager to see many returning faces and to help develop confidence on and off the court.

Preparing Your Child for Camp

Posted by April 1, 2019 • Share:

This is the sixth in a series of emails & blog posts covering important topics about sending your child to camp. If you missed the previous emails & blog posts, you can view them here.

Parent Play-by-Play 6: Preparing Your Child for Camp

Going away from home for an extended period of time can be difficult for some children (and not just first-time campers).  It is natural for them to be a little anxious as camp grows closer.  Some will carry their concerns to camp.  To help your child with these feelings, we have compiled this guide for parents.  The pointers below will help prepare your child for the enriching experience that camp provides.

If your child is apprehensive about going to camp or showing any resistance or anxiety, the most important thing you can do is talk about it. Ignoring their feelings or hoping they will go away is not helpful. At the same time, you also don’t have to have a long drawn out conversation. Sometimes a simple recognition of their feelings and the understanding that going away can be scary is all that is needed to help your child feel supported.

If your child exhibits concerns about going to camp, encourage an open expression of feelings. They are worried about the unknown and are looking for your understanding.  It is helpful to tell your child that these concerns are normal and that many other campers feel the same way.  Permit your child to call the camp office to ask questions and receive reassurance.  Let them know that the camp director is always available to help, before and during camp.

Please do not be ambivalent about your child’s stay at camp. Your child needs to understand that they will be coming to camp for 2 weeks (or however long they’ve committed).  It is important that a camper understands this commitment and is not encouraged to think he or she may leave before the session ends.  A “try it out” approach does not work.  Although it may temporarily calm the child at home it creates challenges at camp.  Remember, fees are not refundable for early departure.

Remind your camper that summer camp is about having fun, meeting new people, trying new things and taking on challenges. This approach may not work for all children, but as these are important values of our camp, if the moment feels right, it’s a good time to explore these aspects of being away from home.  Our camp is designed to help campers, new and returning, to meet new people and make new friends. Make sure your child knows this as they prepare for their summer camp adventure.

Reassure your child that everything at home will be the same as when they left. This means that pets will be cared for, possessions will be protected from siblings, and that their room will stay as it was left. If for any reason this cannot be promised, inform the camp office of the circumstances – we can be most helpful when we are informed.

Please notify the camp office of any upsetting event that may have occurred prior to camp or you anticipate happening during the summer. In this category would be an illness or death in the family, poor school grades, divorce, or moving to a new house or city.

When seeing your child off at the airport or dropping your child off at camp, make your parting brief and pleasant.  Prolonged or tearful good-byes can be emotionally upsetting to your child.

Lastly, please discuss with the Camp Director if your child has been under any psychological or psychiatric care at any time prior to camp.  JCC Maccabi Sports Camp is well prepared to deal with most children and the common problems of growing up.  Our knowledge of the facts will give your child the best chance of success. On the flip side, being left in the dark regarding a serious situation leaves us unable to properly care for your child.

As you can see, open conversation and support are best and key to your child’s success. By spending some time properly discussing your camper’s feelings, you can do wonders to set them up for an amazing overnight camp experience away from home.

As always, please feel free to call camp to discuss further. We are happy to be part of any conversation that will offer more support for your child.

Upcoming Topics

  • Summer Communication  – photos, Facebook, blogs and more

Previous Topics

To view all of the topics in this series, click here.