Julie Glick Davis, Kerem ‘95, Madricha, Rosh and Chair of the 2017 NYC Alumni event, has been connected to Yavneh since 1991. She recently shared with us her fond memories of Yavneh and reasons for giving back to Camp. Read more about Julie’s Yavneh experience below:
“Camp was a transformative experience for me. My ten summers at Yavneh, as a camper, counselor and Rosh Aydah were some of the best summers of my life. I remember the excitement I would feel driving up to camp with my siblings. I couldn’t wait to see my friends, choose my bunk bed and get freedom from my parents and teachers. I have memories of sitting at Bil Zarch’s table in the Chadar Ochel, playing newcomb while Ruby Gelman coached our team and being woken up in the mornings by my favorite counselor, Jen Smith.
I loved singing my heart out during Zimriyah, passing buckets of water during the Apache relay and Israeli dancing on Saturday nights. I also loved stargazing from the sports field, going on trip days to Water Country and cheering loudly during Maccabiah. I remember shivering in my sleeping bag at night, while mosquitos buzzed in my ears, and swimming in the waters of Lucas Pond, wondering if there really were leeches at the bottom.
I recall slow dancing to “Stairway to Heaven” at the camp socials, walking along the Zoog path with my first crushes, listening to the music of Safam and the Sussman family in the Ben Tzvi and relentlessly chanting “Kerem ’95, Kerem ‘95”. Havdalah was one of my favorite times at camp. The whole camp, young and old, would circle up, and sing and sway. It was so special to end Shabbat as a community, as a family, and to start the new week together.
I remember the feeling of becoming a counselor and the responsibility of getting 15 campers out of bed and to the flagpole by 7:30 am. I have memories of becoming a rosh aydah and finally getting to hang out in the air-conditioned office with Lisa Rubins and Debbie Sussman. And whether I was a camper, counselor, or rosh, I recall crying my eyes out on the last day of camp while hugging friends goodbye and then counting the days until Reunion…
Since I stopped going to camp in 2002, there have been some changes: The bunks are nicer, the showers are warmer and the athletics are better. There’s even a rock-climbing wall! Although camp has changed over the years, a few important things remain the same:
Yavneh is still a place that makes you proud to be Jewish, a place that supports Israel, a place that makes you feel connected and part of something bigger than yourself. And, Yavneh is a place that fosters long-lasting friendships. My best friends in the world are my camp friends, three of whom were bridesmaids in my wedding and to this day, we are still close friends, navigating our adult lives together.
So why have I chosen to give back to Yavneh? I’ve chosen to give back because I am so appreciative of the generous donations that people gave to the Scholarship Fund which enabled me, my three siblings and many of my friends to experience camp and have all the amazing memories I mentioned and more. I’d like to encourage everyone to stay involved with Yavneh, and to give back in whatever way you can.”
Camp Yavneh is a place where memories and friends are made for life. Campers count down the days until the next summer and remain part of the Yavneh community when summers as campers are long over. The Scholarship Fund is Yavneh’s greatest need, with more than 25% of our campers requiring a scholarship to attend camp. The Scholarship Fund helps ensure that campers from a variety of backgrounds can experience the magic of Yavneh. To find out more please visit www.campyavneh.org/donate.