Camp Gilgal Family

Once a part of the Camp Gilgal family, always a part of the Camp Gilgal family.

Category: Teen Camp West

Camp Gilgal East Teen Camp (July 16–23, 2017)

The Gilgal Gazette is published by Camp Gilgal campers for Camp Gilgal campers and their families and friends!

Yeshua Our Messiah

“But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” Matthew 15:15-16

Campers: Alana F., Netanya W., Rachel H., Abigail D., Eliana A., Simona B., Gracie R., Rachel M., Nazra B., Hannah K., Elie W., Shai K., Ilan T., Eithan S., Daniel C., Y’didyah B., Ephraim L., Asher W., Gavyn R., Paul G., Elliot A., Judah W.


Tribe Leaders:  Sneezy, Watson, Sitruce, Ruski, Gator, Hiccup, Beardo, Indiana Jones


Out of Cabin Staff:  RedSox, Anonymous

Camp Gilgal West Teen Camp (July 15–23, 2017)

The Gilgal Gazette is published by Camp Gilgal campers for Camp Gilgal campers and their families and friends!


Campers:  Angela A., Carrie M., Corey W., Elizabeth R., Elijah Y., Erica B., Isabella B., Isaiah L., Jonathan P., Madison H., Mekerah P., Michael K., Monique L., Nathan B., Sasha S., Sophia M., Steven M., Zoe N.

In cabin staff:  Hershey, Pippin, S’mores, Galaxy, Stix, Chewbacca

Out of cabin staff:  Streetlight, Sh-boom, Brickhouse, Dynamite


By Steven M. age 13

The panel is a question asking time. Take a piece of paper, write a question about your faith, relationships, God, or whatever you like. Fold it up and put it with no name in a little bucket. If you get chosen no one will know it’s you and it will be answered. For example, someone asked, “Why is Jesus so obsessed with himself?” Hershey answered, “He needed to talk about himself a lot because he is the Messiah, in a very humble way.” You can ask questions you’ve been wondering about for years that you don’t quite understand. The panel is a great way to let out intricate questions and get a great response. Chewbacca said “It’s a great chance for campers to have some of their bigger questions answered by some of the more experiences leaders at camp.” If you ever come to camp, you will very much appreciate the panel. It is read in front of the whole camp, so others can get something from the questions. The panel has been around for some time, showing it’s a great idea. I like the panel because questions are very important, especially questions about learning more about the Lord.

Capture the Degel

By Jonathan P. age 13

My name is Jonathan. And this year I am writing about Capture the Degal. This year, like usual the teams the men were with the ladies staff and girls with a the men staff. After the borders were told to us by Streetlight, she gave us 10 minutes to find a place within the boundaries of the camp to put up our degel and jail circle. After the 10 minutes, the whistle blew and the game started. I was on offense. After about two minutes the other team sent out screamers right away. They were my sister Mekerah and Bella.

I went to scout enemy territory and found that the majority of their team was on defense. After about 30 minutes of failed attempts at getting past enemy lines, a few people on their team tried crossing our side. Stix and Brickhouse were both caught, making some major points for our team. We were still having trouble getting to their side because both Chewbacca and Sh-boom were on defense, as well as about every single lady. After about another 20 minutes both Corey, Pippin, S’mores, and Michael had been caught. The game continued like this for quite a while. Finally, the match ended at a stalemate. Because it was a tie and it wasn’t too dark, a new match started, alas it also ended in a stalemate, concluding the game. After that we shared war stories.


By Isaiah L. age 14

This year at team camp we drove to Yosemite National Park. Yosemite is about an hour and a half away from Camp Oakhurst, where we spend most of our time. Anyway, once we arrived in Yosemite, all of the parking spaces were full, so we drove around waiting for one to become vacant.

When we finally got a parking spot, we walked to a campsite where we did worship and a Bible study. We had lunch for about 10 minutes before starting the hike. A few other campers and I had to run back to throw away the garbage from the lunch. Since we had to hurry up we were already tired when we started the hike. We hiked for five hours. We took the Vernal Falls hike. I enjoyed the hike, it was one that I haven’t been on before. The entire hike was around 4 ½ miles. It was a great challenge and a lot of fun. Jonathan, one of the other campers, said he would bring his family on the same hike after camp. We took our camp picture on a rock in front of the river.

On the way back there was a lot of traffic so we sang songs. After about two hours we finally drove away because it was about 7:30 pm and we had to go to a pizza restaurant for dinner the pizza was great and we had a good rest of the day.

Gaga Ball

By Elijah Y. age 14

The dust slowly fell to earth as Streetlight threw a ball into the pit. 1, 2, 3 bounces. We all held still, waiting to rush in as we chanted “gaga ball.” Chaos erupted with the third bounce and the game began.

Gaga ball is a game played in an octagonal pit where the goal is to be the last one standing. Any hit from the waist down with the ball results in an elimination. A person is allowed to hit the ball once with their hand until it hits the wall or another player. The only other way to get out is to hit the ball out of the pit, which is about four feet tall. The real fun, however, when multiple balls are in the gaga pit. Suddenly, instead of having to keep track of one ball, you have two or three to be aware of and dodge. It becomes much harder to be in the middle but the walls are just as perilous. An unwary camper has dodged a gaga ball only to have it bounce back and hit them from behind. One has to be prepared to dodge a ball twice when seeking solace at the wall. My favorite strategy is to be halfway between the wall in the middle and simultaneously jumping and straddling the ball when dodging. More dodging is required than the wall but the threat of the wall is avoided and I think it makes it more fun. To get a broader outlook on the game I asked Stephen, a first-time player and our first winner what he thought of the game. It was a really fun game, he said, and he especially liked attacking other campers. Steven was a real surprise this year. Straight out of junior camp and not looking to be much of a threat, he rose to the challenge and managed to take first place in the first game this year.

All in all, gaga ball will hold a special place in all of our memories and hearts. And that special place in us is just Camp Gilgal. And so, the dust settles around the gaga ball pen, a lone ball rests and memories of the moment before the third bounce floats around, waiting for the next group of campers to play.


By Michael K. age 15

This year I am writing about Chewbacca because he’s a really cool staff member. He has been a part of camp for at least 20 years or so. He says he loves the tradition of camp. His favorite food is sushi and mine is too. His favorite activity at teen camp is going to Vons because he thinks it’s really funny that teenagers get really excited about going grocery shopping unrestricted. His favorite worship song is “Set A Fire.” His favorite color is maroon red and his favorite animal is a raccoon. His favorite movie is Interstellar. He really likes the Beatles. Chewbacca would love to live in a big city or a beach town. He loves to hike and would love to backpack to Europe. The best thing that has ever happened to Chewbacca was way back when he was a camper at junior camp and Streetlight and Snapple brought Taco Bell to all the campers. His favorite Bible verse is I John 3:1. His favorite flavor of ice cream is strawberry sorbet and his favorite class in college is psychology. His favorite brand of shoes are hipster shoes. His favorite types of cars are old Cadillacs and his favorite genre of music is classic rock. His favorite pet is cat. His favorite type of candy is Butterfingers. His favorite character in the Bible is Jacob and he would love to go to Paris for a vacation. If Chewbacca was stranded on a desert island he would be with Google and they would have dare each other to jump off the boat. What I love about Chewbacca is that he is kind, courageous, funny, and a great leader.

The Rock Wall

By Corey W. age 15

The rock wall is considered a favorite among many tribe leaders, including Stix, who describes the rock wall as a tall wooden structure with rock like plastics bolted into the structure that people use to climb up. The Camp Oakhurst rock wall has three different difficulty levels including beginner, intermediate, and the challenge course. The beginner course is mostly used by people who haven’t done rock climbing before, since the plastic holes are very close together and provide a very good grip for the rock climbers. Nathan says his favorite part of the rock wall was when he got pulled down because he was proud of what he had accomplished, even as little as it may have been.

The intermediate course is different from the beginner’s course in that the plastic holds are spread out much more than they are in the beginners. Isaiah says the worst part of the intermediate course is how much smaller some of the other plastics are than the rest. Although the intermediate course is slightly more challenging than the beginners course the challenge course is much more difficult than both. There are two reasons the challenge course is the most difficult course. For one, the plastic is spread out very wide. The other reason is that some of the plastics are very small, providing minimal grip. This is why the rock wall’s challenge course is so large. The rock wall is very difficult and I went on the intermediate course. At first, I didn’t think I would make it through the course. However, through the cheers of my friends and tribe leaders I made it all the way to the top.


By Nathan B. age 14

Brickhouse went to high school at Abraham Lincoln in San Francisco. His favorite band is Thrice. His favorite thing to do at camp is hang out with people he loves. He lives in Los Angeles. He says he does not like his car. He said he is Brickhouse because that is the name his first tribe leader gave him. His best friend is Dynamite. His favorite hobby is recording music. He works for Jews for Jesus. His favorite food is a well-made hamburger. Moose said that Brickhouse was a fun camper. He started coming to camp at age eight. When he was at junior camp he was into cabin decoration day. And his tribe went in the woods to get stuff to decorate their cabin and one of the items was poison oak. He still is very allergic to poison oak and wore gloves to play Capture the Degel. Brickhouse is kind, loyal, a good leader, and a team player. That’s who he was as a camper and now as a member of the Camp Gilgal staff.

The Giant Swing

By Sasha S. age 13

Oh, so you want to know about our camp? Well, how about the giant swing? First, don’t worry, it is safe: you get a full body harness and you’re hooked onto the swing. And for the chain, they use airline cable to hold the swing. You’re pulled up on the swing by your friends, they pull you buy a big rope and they let go. Then you go flying, you go so fast that you can hear the wind. And you don’t know when you’ll fall and when you do fall through the air. Jonathan said, “I lost my stomach.”

And you maybe are asking, how do you get up? There are people that help you get in your harness and there is a ladder to get on the swing. The swing is 50 feet high so yeah it is a giant swing. And it’s about 60 feet wide. And you get off this the swing by people throwing a rope and they stop you. But the people that help you are funny, and cool, but they can make you go last. But the fun one is Mike. He wears glasses and he knows a lot about Star Wars. He helps at the rock wall, dinner, and high ropes.


By Sophia M. age 14

As we go through our relationship with God, we experience our love and devotion towards him through Tabernacle. Beginning with the cajon (A percussion instrument) as our heartbeat growing just as the drum and the lyrics guiding us to sing through this time of worship as it leads us on the path of walking with the Lord. Elizabeth R. claims her favorite song from worship is “King of My Heart.” This song declares that God is working and will continue to be our good ruler through all the times in our life.

As we enter the life of Yeshua, as a great teacher, we campers read and hear from the book of Mark. Streetlight portrays the book as a storyline of Yeshua. The book goes through his teachings at the age of 33, his 12 disciples, his spreading the Word of God, his crucifiction on the cross, and ending with the miracle of his resurrection. During Tabernacle, we display our love for Yeshua through our worship to him and his life in the Gospel and how he had suffered so that we, his people, didn’t have to. Here at Camp Gilgal we experience God’s love for us and that as his children we are more than blessed to have such a God as him, for he continues to love us forever and is with us forever.


By Erica B. age 13

Maybe you like your marshmallows burned or lightly toasted, maybe worship songs or camp songs are your favorite, nevertheless you, of course, find these things at team camp campfire and so much more. I’m here to give you a sneak peek of this awesome experience. The funniest topics that you can discuss with your friends, is the smoke that seems to follow you when all you want is to make a s’more. I will begin with my own personal opinions and facts that have happened at teen camp fire 2017. First of all, what’s a campfire without S’mores?! And I mean the S’mores herself. So, I interviewed her and she said she really liked worship. And I completely agree with her. This year we had Brickhouse as our worship leader for worship and campfire songs. He was also one of the selected staff who shares their testimony. Both Brickhouse and S’mores had great advice and I’ve learned a lot from both of them. In conclusion, camp fire is a great place to share memories and everyone should come.

The Slip and Slide

By Angela A. age 14

The slip and slide is one of my favorite parts about teen camp. I really look forward to it. It is so much fun. During free time, we get to go on it. It goes pretty fast and is slippery. People sometimes fall off the floaty on the way down. If you reach far enough to touch the grass on the other end of the slide you get a prize but it is very difficult. Only a few people this year were able to do it. One thing that is a little annoying about it, though, is that when it first opens up the line is really long. It is very popular. You can go down on your stomach, on your back, or sitting up. Only one person can go down at a time. S’mores thought that the slip and slide it was amazing. It is only open for us during free time. The line takes a long time at the beginning and then it slows down so I usually like to go later in the day when it is not as crowded. Nathan was so disappointed because he never made it to the top.

Pippin Q and A

By Carrie M. age 13

Teen Camp 2017 was one of the most fun weeks of my life. It was fun because I got to see Pippin! Pippin is a hobbit from the Lord of the Rings who loves second breakfast and sleeping, which she can really relate to. She comes from a full house of three other siblings the oldest is Willow who is about to have a baby! Then there is Sarai who loves to talk really fast. Last but not least is Eli! She is the youngest of them all who loves doing make up. Pippin’s favorite hobby is photography. She owns her own personal camera and loves taking pictures of her sisters. Her beauty secret is drinking water and at least 12 hours of sleep. She also uses Maybelline so she can look absolutely, fabulously stunning. Pippin met God at camp through worship. This is where she says, “God is noticeably working the most.” Pippin loves everyone at camp, but S’mores and the mascot baby Levi are her “go-to” friends.  Since Pippin loves second breakfast her favorite meal is all the warm, moist dinner rolls. Yummm! The one thing she loves most about the campers is the way we encourage each other and are great mensches!

The High Ropes

By Bella B. age 14

High ropes are one of the most exciting parts of Camp Gilgal: teen addition. High ropes are basically a bunch of ropes and obstacles about 20 feet in the air. Once you’re prepped and ready, you climb up the gigantic rope ladder, which is one of the hardest parts. Then you have to walk across the tight rope. Halfway through, you have to wave your hands in the air and sit in your harness. The next obstacle is the “log of faith.” The “log of faith” is a log that you are supposed to walk on holding onto nothing. Next, you transition onto the tires. The tires are about six tires, of various sizes, connected by blue rope. You have to only walk on the tires because the rope is lasers. The tires were Monique’s favorite part. The next stop is a rope. There are ropes attached on each side, left and right, like sideways monkey bars, but you have to climb on. I did this part closing my eyes, it was one of my favorite parts. Finally, you zip down to the ground. This was my absolute favorite part. The high ropes are scary but everyone should try them at least once.

Free time

By Monique L. age 15

After lunch we have free time. Usually we go to the pool first and play some games like water polo. After a short while we are allowed to either head to the waterslide and snack shack or just hang out. In order to swim in the pool, you must pass a short swim test and earn a green wristband. The water slide usually opens 20 or so minutes after the pool. When you go down to the waterside you sit on either a big boogie board or a floaty. The goal is to grab the piece of grass from the dirt embankment at the other side. Elijah and Chewbacca got to the top. Elijah made it after five tries. Both of them were very determined to get to the top and are very proud they made it.

The snack shack opens at around 3:30. They have ice cream, nachos, candy, soda, and Italian slushies. Out front of the snack shack there is a quaint little porch with fairy lights, bar stools, and tables. The prices are quite good on the food, and the staff are very nice. There are multitudes of Italian slushy flavors including caramel, blueberry, and coffee. You can enjoy your cold drink either outside or inside the shack in a cool room with board games and other fun activities. During free time you and your fellow campers can gather around and play some fun games: card games, mafia, and ninja are a few that are fairly popular. Most campers look forward to free time because it is a good time to relax and hang out.

Q and A with S’mores

By Elizabeth R. age 13

I interviewed S’mores for my Gilgal Gazette article and learned a lot about her. S’mores got her name from when her parents were camping and they were trying to think of a name for her while they were eating S’mores and thought it was perfect. S’mores is very cool and she likes a lot of things, her favorite color is baby pink. Her favorite memory was her second year at team camp and she had a tribe with about 14 ladies and on the first night they were getting to know each other and they laid down in a chain and started laughing. S’mores says her favorite sport is baseball and she loves the Giants. She also loves to read and listen to Broadway musicals and is completely obsessed with mac and cheese. When I asked her about what she liked most at the hike to Yosemite she answered that she enjoyed being in God’s creation and I hanging out with camp family. Her favorite part about being a tribe leader is learning about campers lives and getting to encourage them with their relationships with the Lord. She herself accepted Yeshua into her heart when she was six but recommitted her life at a winter camp. Her best camp friend is Pippin and her favorite part about camp is the campers. The career path she is currently pursuing is becoming a third-grade teacher. S’mores is such a great tribe leader because she is very sweet and loves Yeshua.

Cabin Inspection

By Mekerah P. age 16

The campers of teen camp 2017 once again subjected to the daily event known as cabin inspection. This year the inspectors consisted of Cinder Fella (out of cabin staff Brickhouse) and Fairy Goddaughter (Brickhouse’s daughter Nora). The main thing inspiring campers to clean their cabin (besides wanting to not trip and die on the way to the bathroom) is everyone working towards an end of camp party. A large requirement to gain the victory party is that every cabin together must receive an 85 average out of 100 overall. Points are taken away from the hundred points due to various infractions such as unzipped bags, sticks on the floor, or trash around The outside of the cabin. Each infraction reported by the inspectors takes five points from the score of 100. However, infections can be forgiven if the inspectors except a sugary bride. While this strategy has not worked for many campers in the past several year, bribes have been accepted somewhat regularly. This year the overall score for Cabin Seven was a 90, which meant all other requirements were completed, the teen campers got to enjoy a glorious victory party. Of every cabin this year, only the ladies of Cabin Five were the ones to nail it and get a perfect score of 100. Monique (age 15) says, “Cabin inspection is annoying but necessary.” This statement is agreed upon by several other campers. While cleaning the cabin is often time-consuming and annoying, cabin inspection does keep the campers from staying in a pigsty the entire camp.

Vons Trip

By Madison H. age 15

During free time I was reading when Brickhouse started yelling and said “snack shack is closed so we’re going to Vons.” Everyone gasped. Monique was really excited to go to Vons. We all got into the 15 passenger van and drove to Vons. Stix asked what people were going to get and some said nectarines, cookies, blueberries, candy, and other things. When we got there we had to run to the door so Streetlight could get a video. Some people went into the Starbucks inside to get drinks. Bella got a cotton candy frappe with extra caramel drizzle all. I gave her sort of a sugar rush because she hadn’t had it for a while. Galaxy, Monique, and I went to the candy aisle to get stuff. Monique got Swedish Fish and gummy Lifesavers. Galaxy got green tea mochi. I got gummy bears.

After we got all that we wanted Monique taught me how to use the self checkout machine. It wouldn’t accept the water bottle so we had to ask for help. Walking into Starbucks was pretty weird because the coffee smell was strong. Galaxy shared her green tea mochi once we found a spot to sit. Leaving Vons, Bella had a stick of celery because she had gotten that last year as well.

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