On Friday, the Chidon boys visited the Ohel. For many, it is one of the few times a year that they can personally deliver their panim. “Watching the boys farbreng with their counselors on the bus to the Ohel was incredible,” shared Rabbi Zalman Shimon Itkin, Chidon director. “They are surely bringing the Rebbe much nachas.”
“I felt proud to be able to write about all the Sefer Hamitzvos that I learned,” contestant Eli Rabin from Lubavitch Educational Center, Florida told his counselor.
From the Ohel, it was off to bowling for some and a trampoline center for others. Energy was high as the boys continued to create great memories of their time on the Chidon Shabbaton.
After the trips, when the bus dispatchers mistakenly sent the double-deckers to the wrong pick-up location, the campers and staff of the boys’ Chidon were quick to make the most of their time. As Tzivos Hashem Headquarters raced the clock to reroute the buses, a nearby school invited the boys to wait in their auditorium. There, division head Shmuli Bronstein shared a story, after which the boys created an impromptu Tzivos Hashem rally, complete with pesukim, songs, and games.
“It was beautiful to see what a true chayol in Tzivos Hashem is,” noted Shmuli Bronstein.
“We are sorry for the agmas nefesh that parents, chaperones, and hosts experiences on Erev Shabbos,” says Chayolei Tzivos Hashem director, Rabbi Shimmy Weinbaum. “And a big thank you goes out to our campers and staff who came through like the champions that they are.”
Shabbos morning, hundreds of chayolim showed up for the Shabbos Mevorchim Tehilim. Although it was voluntary, the boys still sat for hours—many even finished the Tehilim! It was straight off to Shacharis, a visit to the Rebbe’s house, Mincha, and shalosh seudos. Shimon Rivkin, director of CTeen, led the Shabbos meal. Imagine more than 600 people filling the hall of Oholei Torah, arms around each other as they sing niggunim like “Ani Maamin” and “Tzomo Lecha Nafshi” in unison. “Never in my life have I experienced something like this,” Rabbi Weinbaum shared. “It is impossible to describe the energy that filled the room. Hopefully it melted Hashem’s heart and He will finally bring Moshiach.”
Tomorrow morning, the Shabbaton comes to a close with the grand Chidon event. It’s the final hoorah of what has proven to be an incredible weekend—only a small bonus for the hard work that each contestant invested in learning. As Rabbi Rosenblum, principal of Yeshiva Schools of Pittsburgh and one of the Chidon originators over twenty years ago, said, “the real reward is the wealth of knowledge that our students walk away with.”
Doors open at 9:30 a.m. Sunday for the Chidon game show and award ceremony at the School of the Deaf. The Chidon will also be broadcast life by Chabad.org. Join us virtually by logging on to Chabad.org/chidon on Sunday morning.
Questions about Chidon? Contact [email protected]