Reflecting on First Flagpole
On Sunday, May 22, JCC Camp Chi celebrated our “First Flagpole” of Summer 2022, with the dedication of many upgrades to the Lake Delton campus. Dozens of donors, alumni, staff and families gathered at Camp Chi to tour camp and celebrate the kick-off to summer. Perhaps the most exciting activity was the big reveal of The Lecker Family Outpost Village, generously named by Lisa and Lee Bloom and family, in memory of Lisa’s parents. The Outpost Village was supported by the Foundation for Jewish Camp’s Competitive Edge program, which provided 2:1 matching funds for all donations in support of the project.
The outdoor adventure-focused village features two yurts (permanent tents), where mezuzot (doorpost hangings) were hung. The yurt “Mekorot M.A.P.” was named by Chi Alumni Laurie Greiman, Marcie Achler and Sue Donley-Klein, in memory of their parents; the Hebrew word “Mekorot” translates to “foundation”. In addition, the Outpost Village includes the Greiman Family Pavilion, A.K.A. “Big Al’s Place,” a large fire circle, trails and fields, as well as a beautiful garden of native species planted by Camp Chi’s Outdoor Adventure Coordinator, Jordan Goldberg, and his parents Vicki and Bill, both Chi alumni.
At the Outpost Village’s special two-week session, campers will learn about the outdoors, participate in various outdoor adventure and activities such as orienteering, trail building, tent pitching, fire building, natural arts, and canoeing. Campers will live in yurts and cook outdoors all while experiencing the magic of Camp Chi. Plus, campers will experience wilderness trips to enable them to apply their new outdoor adventure skills!
Visitors toured additional campus upgrades, including the SIT Fire circle, dedicated in loving memory of Jerome D. Schiffman and the Firsel Family Welcome Arbor at the Picnic Grove. The tour included a stop at Noar Village (teen camp) where Marc, our song leader, treated guest to a song session around the roaring fire in the Teplinsky Hangout. After a canteen stop for some Chi gear, visitors peeked in on upgrades to the Atkins Family Health Center, the Hochwert Family Media Center and the Pinsky Family Culinary Center, before meeting at Flagpole for the first flag-raise of the season and a delicious lunch.
The beautiful, sunny day concluded with a formal presentation by donors and alumni as well as JCC Chicago and Camp Chi leadership. Ally Berkowitz, SIT Staff for Summer 2022, presented powerful reflections on what the Camp Chi experience has meant to her. We are ready to kick-off a fantastic Summer 2022 and look forward to staff and campers to arrive in June!