Group 1: Israel Adventure
July 16, 2012
Group 1 woke up at an early hour of 5:30am to continue their desert experience with a hike before sunrise where they davened shacharit and watched the sunrise. Then they made lunch and headed to Kibbutz Yotvata, which produces some of the most delicious milk products in Israel, so everyone got to enjoy ice cream on a very hot day. Their next stop was their base in Eilat to shower and rest before a battle of the sexes program. In the evening, after dinner, they went on an awesome disco boat ride with groups 5 and 8 around Eilat!
July 15, 2012
After a fun and relaxing free weekend, group 1 reassembled and headed south for the next few days. Their first stop was the Alpaca Ranch which is the only farm in the world where over 400 exotic alpacas and llamas are raised and where the entire process of growing and spinning their fur can be observed. Then they got to go rappelling down the side of a mountain; everyone thoroughly enjoyed the experience! In the evening their desert experience began: they learned how to prepare their own dinner, they went on an evening hike and had a pleasant night star gazing program.
July 13, 2012
Yesterday, the group had a great time hanging out with the other USYers at the USY event. Today the USYers left for Free Weekend. Some went to relatives and others stayed on base, but all were excited for time to sleep and get refreshed for the week ahead. Shabbat Shalom!
July 12, 2012
This morning group 1 went to the Latrun tank museum and enjoyed seeing and climbing on some of the tanks used in Israel’s wars.From there they headed to the event with Ramah at Neot Kdumim. They got to meet other Ramah participants, interact and do various activities while enjoying lunch, singing and dancing. After, they drove to the Ben Shemen forest for the annual USY Event! Each year at this event, all USY groups come together for an afternoon of competition, cheers, and fun! They do ropes course activities, learn about Israel through games, and bond as a group, each with their own color t-shirt! After a delicious BBQ dinner each group performed a cheer or dance and enjoyed their time together. They came back to Jerusalem tonight before departing for free weekend tomorrow morning.
July 11, 2012
Group 1 left the desert and the Bedouin tent this morning and headed to Tel Aviv! They visited Independence Hall, where David Ben Gurion declared Israel an independent country. They ate lunch and went to Kikar Rabin, the site of Yitzchak Rabin’s final hours, as he went to a peace rally and was then assassinated. From there, they headed to the Olympic museum. This evening they will head to Old Yaffo for an overlook of the sea, enjoy some free time, eat dinner and head to the base to do some final Haevent practice before the big day tomorrow!
July 10, 2012
The group started their day in the Negev this morning with a visit to Ben Gurion’s home and grave in Sde Boker. They learned about his dream to make the desert as green as possible by planting as many trees as possible. Then they had lunch and headed to Ein Ovdat followed by a visit to the Bedouin tent where they are spending the evening. They had an amazing time riding on camels and learning about the Bedouin traditions. They got to experience Bedouin food for dinner and enjoyed interacting with the Bedouin.
July 9, 2012
Group 1 had an awesome and exhausting day: they woke up at 3:45am to hike Masada at sunrise. On top of Masada they davened a spiritual shacharit and participated in a great learning session as well. They had breakfast at the Ein Gedi youth hostel and took a stroll to the pool in Ein Gedi where they got to spend some time in the fresh water spring. After that, they headed to the dead sea and got to put mud on themselves and go into the water and float! Then they had lunch and headed Arad to rest and have some Haevent practice before enjoying dinner and a short evening program.