May 26, 2024
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May 26, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

This past Sunday, Camp Kaylie hosted an incredible wedding on their premises, showcasing the remarkable sense of community and camaraderie fostered within the camp. The campers took charge of all the preparations, resulting in a magical and unforgettable experience for the couple and all attendees. Throughout the day, the campers diligently crafted floral centerpieces, adorned the chuppah, created a stunning cupcake cake, made signs, prepared water bottles for the chosson and kallah, served as waitstaff, and decorated the “just married” golf cart, among other tasks. The level of unity and collaboration displayed by everyone involved in the camp was truly remarkable, as they worked together to ensure every detail was flawlessly executed. The genuine enthusiasm of the campers was particularly heartwarming, as they wholeheartedly dedicated themselves to making this wedding a true celebration of love and unity.

A total of 500 campers, along with the lower and upper staff members at Kaylie, gathered on the grass to witness the chosson and kallah walking down the aisle in front of Lake Kestenbaum. For many campers, this was their first experience attending a wedding. They observed the chosson being escorted by family and esteemed rabbanim from various parts of the world, including the chosson’s rav from Quito, Ecuador, and rabbanim from the Morristown Yeshiva. Under the chuppah, Rav Weinberger from Aish Kodesh officiated as the mesader kedushin, while Rav Wolowek, the rabbi of Chabad of the Five Towns, served as eidei kiddushin. Distinguished guests from around the globe, such as Gloria Kaylie, the camp’s namesake; David Mandel, CEO of Ohel; and Jay Kestenbaum, co-president of the board of OHEL, graced the event. The wedding was further enhanced by the captivating performance of world-famous singer Eitan Katz, who serenaded the couple down the aisle with a Chabad niggun. As the night progressed, the dance floor exuded an infectious energy, with campers and staff joining in to dance the night away.

Rebetzin Nalini, the kallah’s mentor, expressed her awe at the spectacular event, emphasizing the overwhelming love, generosity, support and genuine simcha displayed for a couple who were practically strangers just a few hours prior. The wedding exemplified the concept of “מצוה גוררת מצוה, one good deed leads to another,” as acts of chesed continued to multiply, culminating in a wedding filled with incredible energy, pure joy and selfless giving. She extended her gratitude for the meticulous attention to detail, including the menu, flowers, chuppah, golf cart decorations, posters during dancing and the overall atmosphere of excitement created for the wedding party and the girls in camp. The infectious energy of the campers reverberated on the dance floor and permeated the entire room.

Camp Director Rabbi Eli Brazil regarded this event as one of the most significant moments in Camp Kaylie’s history. Witnessing Gloria Kaylie observing the chosson and kallah walking towards the chuppah on Kestenbaum Lake, along with the campers’ exuberant dancing and the remarkable unity among the staff, made it a night he will cherish forever.

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