Summer 2015 in Review

Posted by September 18, 2015 • Share:

Shanah Tovah and Shabbat Shalom!

If this past summer is any indication, it’s clear the world was hungry for a Jewish overnight sports camp in California as we more than doubled in size for our second summer. The response has been one of excitement, support and appreciation. And for that, we extend a heartfelt thank you to everyone who continues to make JCC Maccabi Sports Camp a welcoming, vibrant community and a remarkable success.

With a solid foundation in place, summer two gave us the opportunity to continue to develop our program. Increased enrollment and the return of many of our Head Coaches allowed our Core Sports programs to thrive; campers continued to develop individual skills while learning what it means to be part of a team.

And as more than a sports camp, we continue to take pride in the Jewish elements of camp, creating deep and meaningful Jewish experiences through conversation, song, Shabbat and evening activities.

For a shining example, look no further than our camp song, “Fly”, which incorporates the Shema and the affirmative mantra:

I will run, I will fly 
I will look my fear in the eye 
Faster, Higher, Stronger
I know I can fly 

This wonderful message is inspired by Isaiah 40:31, “…but those who believe will remain strong. They will soar on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow tired, they will walk and not grow faint.

Credit goes to Joel Swedlove, Program Director and Songleader extraordinaire, who penned this amazing song, giving camp a profound way to end each day.

Click here to hear “Fly” as sung by staff at our final campfire of the summer.

It’s been wonderful to hear from parents, eager to share their children’s stories of success. We’ve been regaled with stories of campers returning home more mature, independent, inspired and eager to return to camp next summer. While improving upon one’s core sport skills is a primary goal, learning how to be a mensch, one who thinks of others before oneself, is at the forefront of our camper experience.

This value can be seen proudly stated on our camp t-shirts, “Strong in Character, Strength in Community”.

Lastly, a tremendous thank you is owed to our amazing staff.  Representing eight states and four countries, our staff bonded early in the summer and provided a memorable and caring experience for our campers. They were truly amazing and we hope many of them will return next year.


Josh Steinharter