This weekend, we welcomed over 200 alumni, current camper families and friends of camp back home to Porter Creek Road – some folks joined us for an entire Shabbaton and many spent their Sunday together with us at camp. With CIT classes represented from the 1970s all the way to future classes reaching into the 2030s, it was a true l’dor v’dor experience.
Participants climbed the Alpine Tower, hiked to the star, tie-dyed camp shirts, sampled apples and a variety of honeys, explored campgrounds – including the new 20,000 sq ft living and program space that will be completed just before Summer 2023. All were inspired by the 10+ year vision of West Coast Jewish living that’s being offered through Camp Newman summer and year-round programs and retreat experiences created by our Koret Conference Center.
Many participants said the highlight of their return to camp was the opportunity to create art together again. Art has a deep and rich history at camp, dating back to the original days of Hagigah at Camp Swig with artists like Helen Burke, when much of the art created at camp became permanent installments whether stained glass, our metal-worked arks and other ritual objects, silk painted wall hangings, murals or mosaics. Most of that art was lost in the fire.
We extend immense gratitude to artists and teachers Rabbi Shawna andIsaac Brynjegard-Bialik for designing and facilitating a new multi-generational art installation – a circular mosaic that depicts people together underneath a tallit, a shelter of peace. The words ufros aleinu sukkat shlomecha echo through two of the most meaningful moments of community at camp: during Friday night Shabbat services when our counselors hold talitot over our campers creating a shelter of peace and when we close each day singing Shema and Hashkiveinu during Siyum (closing circle). Those words are now forever built into the foundation of our own Sukkat Shalom, at the heart of camp, in a mosaic that was created communally this weekend.
What a wonderful way to kick off our 75th year and triumphant return to offering year-round experiences at home on Porter Creek Road! Missed out this time? Can’t wait for the next retreat? Us either … Check out our calendar of year-round experiences: