Monthly Archives: March 2017

Meet Amos Pomp: Chalutzim Merakez

Amos Pomp, from Chapel Hill, NC, will return to Camp Judaea this summer as the Chalutzim Merakez. Having joined the CJ family in 2007, this will be his ninth summer spent at camp and his fourth summer as a staff member.

This will be Amos’s third time on the Chalutzim Outward Bound trip, as he participated as a camper in 2012 and as a madrich in 2016. He also completed an 85-day Outward Bound course in Costa Rica in the fall of 2015. Upon the completion of this summer’s Outward Bound trip, Amos will have 115 days of Outward Bound, including 128 solo hours, under his belt. We think he’s pretty qualified for this position.

Amos is a student at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL. He enjoys sunny and slightly breezy days, but is looking forward to powering through a few thunderstorms this summer at camp.

Meet Joe Silber: Bogrim Merakez

Joe Silber was born in Puerto Rico and moved to Aventura, FL when he was 12. This summer he will be the Bogrim Merakez!

He studies Hospitality and Restaurant Management at FIU with hopes of a future as a successful restaurateur.

Joe began his Camp Judaea journey in 2009 as a Kesher camper and returned again in 2010 for Bogrim. His favorite memory is from the Bogrim trip to Washington, D.C. This will be Joe’s third summer as a CJ staff member.

Joe is an avid Pittsburgh Steelers fan. “My dad and his brothers have been Steelers fans since the ’70s ever since they attended a football camp in Pittsburgh and were coached by the Steelers players,” Joe explains. “It’s a family tradition.”

Meet Coby Tuchman: Kesher Merakez

Say “Shalom” to Coby Tuchman, the 2017 Kesher Merakez from Plantation, FL.

Coby studies Film, TV, and Business at New York University. This will be his fifth summer as a staff member following his many summers as a camper. He recalls his favorite day of Bogrim 2010: Yom Sport. “What we lacked in athletic ability,” Tuchman reminisces, “we more than made up for in ruach.”

Coby is proud to share that he can do “that raindrop sound á la Cameron in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.”

Meet Leon Faigenblat: Tsofim Merakez

Leon Faigenblat, known as Papito to some of his friends, will be the Tsofim Merakez this summer!

He was born in Bogota, Colombia but grew up in Hollywood, Florida. He currently attends Santa Fe College in Gainesville, FL and will be starting at the University of Florida in the fall.  In his free time, he enjoys playing soccer (really any sport) and Xbox.

Leon was a Camp Judaea camper from Sayarim through Bogrim, listing his favorite memory as living in the Tabins with his friends during their Kesher summer.  He participated in our MIT (madrichim in training) program and Young Judaea’s Machon before his senior year of high school, then went on Young Judaea’s Year Course after graduating.

This will be his fifth summer working at Camp Judaea and his second summer in a supervisory role.  Welcome back, Leon!

Meet Jackie Hajdenberg: Sayarim Merakezet

It is so fitting that Jackie Hajdenberg, our 2017 Sayarim Merakezet, joined the CJ family as a Sayarim camper ten years ago in 2007– what a way to come full circle!

Her favorite memory as a camper was being a member of the Teva (nature) chug (elective) each summer.  She fondly remembers making organic soaps and lip balms, having picnics by the lake, and even starting to design and build the layout for the beautiful garden that we have today.  Her positive camp experience led to her participation in our MIT (madrichim in training) program in 2013.  She worked as a counselor the following two summers and returned in 2016 as the Oranim Merakezet.

Jackie grew up in Maitland, FL, which is just outside of Orlando, and now attends Barnard College at Columbia University where she studies Political Science.  Her hobbies include rock climbing (bouldering), traveling, cooking, and camping.

Meet Josh Lasday: Oranim Merakez

We welcome back Joshua Lasday, from Potomac, Maryland, as the 2017 Oranim Merakez! This will be his 10th summer spent at Camp Judaea. He also attended Tel Yehuda for two summers, participated in Machon, and experienced Year Course. Now he is a student at the University of Wisconsin where he studies Political Science—Go Badgers!

Josh’s fondest memory from CJ was writing his Bogrim Hatzaga (play) in 2011—something he’d been waiting to do since beginning his Camp Judaea journey as an Offarim camper. He is a fan of all sports but favors playing Shabbat Staff Softball at camp. He also enjoys playing video games and traveling: he’d like his Oranim campers to know that he has been to nine different countries!

Meet Sarah Selcer: Offarim Merakezet

Sarah, our 2017 Offarim Merakezet, has been nicknamed “Giggles.”  It won’t take more than you asking her how she got the nickname to figure it out– she just can’t help but smile and laugh!

Sarah was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico but her family now lives in Parkland, Florida.  She’s a student at American University studying International Relations in the Middle East.

Like many of her relatives, Sarah spent her summers at Camp Judaea; attending as a camper from Offarim through Chalutzim, then working on our Tsevet as an MIT one session and Madricha for two summers. Her favorite CJ memory (so far) is exploring New York City with her walking group in Kesher.  She is thrilled and ready to arrive for her 11th Camp Judaea summer and to lead Offarim!

Last year Sarah participated in a gap year program called Kivunim during which she lived in Israel and traveled to many places all around the world which are rich in Jewish history. When Sarah isn’t at school or camp, she is running half marathons, playing soccer, cooking, and doing omanut (arts and crafts) . 🙂

Meet Bar Landy: Rishonim “Taste of CJ” Merakez

Bar Landy returns for his third summer at Camp Judaea from Jerusalem, Israel.

In 2015, he worked on the ropes team as an instructor and was part of Rishonim and Offarim.  He enjoyed his experience so much that he returned last summer and worked as a Rishonim counselor.

His favorite Camp Judaea activity is the traditional camp-wide “rikkud” (dance party) on the basketball courts Saturday nights after Havdallah.

While he counts down the days until summer 2017, Bar is working in a boutique chocolate factory. He enjoys hiking, cooking, reading, and spending time with his friends. In recent travels, Bar had the opportunity to sleep under the Northern Lights of Ireland!

Bar looks forward to meeting all of the newest Camp Judaea campers, welcoming them to the CJ family, and getting to lead their “Taste of Camp Judaea” experiences.