A Greek themed day to offically begin Session 3, and it was filled with food, dance and our beautiful Hellenic Culture! OPA!
We started our first full day at Fanari Camp with an Agiasmos service, led by Fr. Chris Mihalopoulos, the Associate Pastor of St. Demetrios, Chicago. Following the blessing, we introduced the campers to “Alone with God”, where we spend a few minutes each morning spread out in silence, to be alone with our thoughts in prayer and begin our day focused on Christ. A beautiful way to nourish our souls.
It’s not a Greek breakfast without feta eggs, potatoes and Greek yogurt! Once our souls and stomachs were properly nourished, we headed to our daily activities to begin our day. We started to learn about St. Paul’s life in Orthodox Life and Bible Study, while we got creative in Theater with Ari Cussick, and brain stormed ideas for Skit Night. Our Flex session today was Greek Culture, lead by Connie Savas, where our campers rotated between 3 stations: Greek dancing, building the Parthenon and learning Tavli. Campers were engaged in our Greek Culture, while enjoying fellowship with one another.
Our Greek themed lunch of Gyros, tzatziki sauce and pitas were a big hit! Before dimissal, CampGrams were passed out and everyone read them with great anticipation to see what’s going on at home. We know you miss hearing from your campers, but they’ll be filled with lots of stories of their adventures at camp, to tell you on Saturday.
Free time brought many activities to keep everyone busy! Any camper who wants to swim this week, took their swim test at the pool. Other future NBA players were active on the basketball court, while some chose to play foosball and an intense round of Ping Pong! The Main Lodge was refuge from the humidity, as campers and staff played card games, listened to music, made friendship bracelets and loaded up on swag and snacks at the Camp Store. Fun is around every corner we turn at Fanari!
You’d think Yia Yia was here, with our delicious Greek chicken, potatoes and green beans for dinner. Once we were all well fortified, it was time for GREEK NIGHT! Our very own DJ Chyrs Cross mixed it up with all our favorite Greek songs! Some of our sports enthusiasts enjoyed watching the Home Run Derby, while others listened to saint stories with Mr. D out on the balcony. Campers and counselors showed off all the new dances they learned in Greek Culture under the carport outside, as it was the perfect evening activity to culminate all we learned about our heritage today!
We concluded the evening with “Closing Day” in the Main Lodge, where we listened to Louie Pappas, from Saint Demetrios Chicago, speak about St. Paul and how we should be passionate about showing christian love towards one another, to get the most out of Fanari Camp this week. Tonight’s 1st Spirit Sticks went out to the Spartans and Delphians! Truly, the Holy Spirit was shining through them all day long! We’re so proud of you!
Before dismissal, our guest guitar player Jonathan Tatooles, lead us in a lively rendition of “Deep” and then slowed it down as we sang arm in arm,“Father I Adore You” and “Take My Hand”. To close out the night, Fr Sotiri Malamis and Alex Magdalinos introduced the beautiful hymn “Lord of the Powers”, as this hymn reminds us that we have our staff here, our family, friends etc., but in the end no matter what happens, we will always have God. What a blessing to be together, with our Orthodox faith as our common denominator, to let us learn more about ourselves, each other and Orthodoxy!
Campers headed back to their cabins to settle in for the night and do their devotionals. We will all sleep well after such a full and blessed day together. Glory be to God! Goodnight for now, Fanari Camp!