April 15, 2024
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April 15, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

MTA Sophomores Relax Upstate

Last week, the 10th graders of Yeshiva University High School for Boys (MTA) made their way onto two air conditioned Monsey Tours coach buses. And we were off! Our first stop was the Danbury Sports Dome in Connecticut, where we were split into groups to play kickball, dodgeball, ultimate frisbee and bubble soccer. Midway through, we paused for pizza and fries and rehydrated ourselves. We then went back to the bus and headed to the Palisades Mall.

At the mall, there were three activities: escape the room; a ropes course and Dave & Buster’s. After enjoying the recreation, we took a short ride to perhaps the most exciting part of our trip: a visit to New Square.

We stopped off by an event hall for mincha and a geshmake dinner. Our own Rabbi Kerner shared a dvar torah, and then we were privileged to hear from a New Square native. He spoke about how it is living in such a different community from what we are used to, where everyone davens in one shul (they get a few thousand people on shabbos), only those born there are permitted to live in the community and hachnosas orchim is so ingrained into everyone that anyone, anytime, is welcome for shabbos. There was even a chance for questions and answers before those who desired to visit the Skvere Beis Medrash were able to do so. (We sort of stopped by a wedding on the way too, mazel tov!)

Then for the last leg of our journey: getting to Pinegrove Dude Ranch in Kerhonkson, New York, where we would spend the rest of our trip. We arrived late at night, but we were just getting started. After maariv, some of us opted to star-gaze with chemistry teacher Mr. Goldberg, while others hit the heated pool and waterslide. We capped off the night with a midnight barbecue, replete with cuisine to satisfy the most carnivorous among us.

The next day, after an 8:10 Shacharis, shiur and breakfast, we had many options, including handball, shuffleboard, bounce pillow, basketball, volleyball, ping-pong, mini-golf, rock-climbing watching Rabbi Soniker and Rabbi Kerner battle it out on the tennis court. Later, those so inclined went horseback riding, and afterwards there was an ultimate paintball battle. Those who shied away from paintball lounged around for a few hours, and some even found Pinegrove’s best kept secret: the lake, complete with a couple of paddleboats. The weather was beautiful, and it was very enjoyable.

This trip was extremely well organized, which could only have been done with a tremendous amount of hard work. We therefore give our sincerest thanks to the rebbeim and Mr. Goldberg for joining us; our student council representatives; our faithful driver, Reb Kasriel, and his colleague; and last but in no way least, to Elie Hirt and Rabbi Green, our dedicated Student Activities directors who put in so much time and effort to make the trip so incredible.

By David Tanner

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