May 28, 2022

Posted by: Ryan Bocchino

The First Shabbat

When we drove onto the property with our supervisory team this past Saturday, I couldn’t believe I was standing at camp jumping into summer 2022. It was an instant reminder of all the things I love about camp. From rapidly built connections to the melting pot of worldviews and cultures, it was amazing seeing our Israeli staff meet our South American staff meet our North American staff meeting our European staff. Where else in the world can you bring like-minded people together from across the entire planet, all here to do the same thing: make a difference in the lives of the next generation.  

To add to the wonder of this first week – we spent our first weekend walking into camp with a foot of snow on the ground. And then it kept snowing throughout the week. It was quite wild to go from playing outside in t-shirts on Thursday, to explaining to our team here that there would actually in fact be summer at some point, and that Colorado is in fact not a land of perpetual winter. Despite the precipitation challenges it brought to some logistics of the weekend, and the obvious temperature battle most of our staff were fighting having come from more warmer sections of the globe, it was also awesome to see the joy in the eyes of adults who had never seen snow fall from the sky – something quite magical to have happen when you arrive at summer camp.  

It has been one of my favorite weeks of training ever. We’ve got an amazing supervisory, trips, corral and ropes team all reaching the tail ends of their training for this summer. The maturity, grace and collective passion for camp all departments are bringing to the table is soul-filling and quite honestly inspiring to be around. I’m so excited to introduce these new Ranch Camp family members to all of you in the upcoming weeks – you likely met a few already on Instagram. The world they create for our camp family will be grounded in mutual respect, an understanding of diversified worldviews, and most importantly, friendship, inclusivity, and compassion.  

As we go into our first Shabbat, it’s hard not to think of the tough year we’ve had and the tragedies we’ve encountered this week as a nation. It’s in these difficult circumstances that I’m most thankful for the social space that camp offers – a chance for kids to just be kids, disconnected technologically and academically, and just present with their peers and enjoying time together outdoors. I’m hopeful that the physical and social bubble we create here can be a welcomed disconnect from the madness of the outside world and provide a place of solace for staff and camper alike over the next ten weeks.  

Shabbat Shalom Ranch Camp. Have a great weekend!