Group 4: Israel Pilgrimage/Poland Seminar (1st Departure)
July 3, 2013
The group left Eilat and headed to Kibbutz Ketura where they were given a tour of the Kibbutz and did a program about the desert and the environment. They then went for a swim in the beautiful Kibbutz pool before heading to Mizpe Ramon where they went mountain repelling. Their next destination was to the desert where they will be staying for the night and having a “desert experience”, a fun experience which will involve navigation and survival.
July 2, 2013
Today the group had an exciting and fun day in Eilat! They began with snorkeling and observing the beauty of the Red Sea (which is in fact, blue). Then, they continued to the underwater aquarium, where they saw sharks, tortoises, and an entire assortment of fish. From there, they had a delicious lunch in the Hallelujah Restaurant, followed by some free time in the mall. They then had an evening activity, which discussed Jewish identity and Israel, before heading to the Disco Boat, certainly a memorable night for the group!
July 1, 2013
Group 4 had an awesome and exhausting day! They woke up at 3:45am to hike Masada and fortunately, they made it up before sunrise! On top of Masada they davened a spiritual shacharit while looking at the beautiful view. They continued to Ein Gedi where they got to spend some time in the fresh water spring. After that, they headed to the Dead Sea, painted themselves in mud, and enjoyed floating around in the water! Then, then headed to Eilat where they will staying for the next two nights. In the evening they will be spending some free time at the beachfront of Eilat.
The group headed to the Negev this morning and started their day with a pleasant stroll in Ein Ovdat. After that, they continued to Ben Gurion’s Hut on Kibbutz Sde Boker, followed by a visit to Ben Gurion’s grave. The group then headed to Kfar Nokfdim, the Bedouin Tent where they will be enjoying some Bedouin hospitality this evening along with a bonfire before heading to bed!
June 28, 2013
This morning the group headed to the City of David to learn more about the First Temple period. Their highlight was walking through Hezekaya’s Tunnel, a water aqueduct that brought water to the city during the time of King Hezekayah (700 BCE). They had a wonderful time walking through the water! Then they headed to Bet Ha’Kerem to have lunch before returning to the hostel to prepare for their second Shabbat together. The group will be davening at Yemin Moshe, which overlooks the Old City walls. They will also be joined by a very special guest, Rabbi Dave Levy (the director of USY)and his family this evening. They are all extremely excited to be spending their first Shabbat together as a group learning, singing and hanging out! Shabbat Shalom!
June 27, 2013
The group began their day with a visit to the Israel Museum. Then, they went to the Old City and walked around the Jewish Quarter. Later, they visited the south wall excavation remains from the Second Temple period. They saw the site of the “last supper” and the tomb of King David on Mt Zion. The group’s last stop of the day was at the Kotel before returning to the hostel for a relaxing end to their day.
June 26, 2013
Group 4 spent their first full day in Israel doing a variety of awesome activities. This morning, they did an archeological dig at Tel Maresha where they found some very interesting artifacts! Then they went spelunking, which is the exploration of caves in ancient tunnel, and from there went swimming at the nearby Kibbutz Bet Gurvrin. Upon returning to the Fuchsberg center, they got ready for a study session with Rabbi Paul Freedman, followed by a boys and girls bonding program to end off the day.
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