OPA! The spotlight today was on our rich Hellenic heritage through food, dance and history!
Following our morning Agismos service, lead by Fr. Chris Mihalopoulos from St. Demetrios Chicago, campers were introduced to “Alone with God”–a time campers take for their own personal prayer to clear their minds and focus on Christ and the day to come.
After a breakfast of champions, consisting of feta eggs, Greek yogurt and delicious potatoes, we were ready for our first full day of camp. Our Flex session today was Greek Culture, where we journeyed through four major city states in Ancient Greece: We started with Greek dancing and learned about Ancient Athens; In Olympia we practiced our pool noodle javelin skills; in Sparta we showed our strength with exercises in boot camp; and in Delphi we built ancient Delphian ruins from play dough.
In our other rotations, we were busy brain storming ideas for skits in Theater, and we were introduced to our theme of camp this week, “Four Doors to Christ: The Four Evangelist” in Orthodox Life and Bible Study, where we will explore exactly how the Evangelists are doors to Christ. Growing in our faith and learning more about our culture, here at Fanari Camp!
With so many choices at free-time, campers kept busy playing sports, cooling off at our water slide, playing card games, Jenga! and making friendship bracelets together. Such a fun time, exploring the grounds, hanging out with friends and enjoying our beautiful surroundings. Everyone who wishes to go boating at our new Marina this week attended an orientation to learn the rules, so they’re ready to set sail tomorrow!
Today we were visited by Fr. Jim & Presbytera Nasia Gordon, who were part of the core of our Fanari Camp program and Youth and Young Adult Ministries for many years. We are blessed to continue to build on the foundation and traditions they started here at Fanari Camp and thankful for their continual love and support.
To celebrate our last Greek meal of the day, Plateia Mediterranean Kitchen in Glenview, IL and the Papadatos family, generously donated our entire meal! Pastichio, Greek chicken, potatoes, OH MY! And don’t forget the briámi, spanakopita and Greek Salad, too! No one went away hungry, as we wrapped up an amazing day, celebrating our heritage and culture! Thank you!!!
Our evening activity was the game show, “Let’s Make A Deal!” Campers and counselors were dressed up and ready to play for big prizes and avoid the dreaded ZONK! So much fun answering questions and winning Camp Store bucks, too! Then it was time for a few fun and games, lead by our rockstar counselors Peter, Andrew, Jeremy and John. There’s nothing like letting loose and making rain, riding a roller coaster, shouting “Boomba, Hey” and singing silly repeat after me songs about Bazooka Bubblegum. Rounding out the night singing a few Fanari favorites, Deep, Pharoah, Pharoah, Seek Ye First, and Take My Hand, were the perfect ending to our first evening activity of the week. So much fun packed into one day, we can’t believe the week has just begun!
At Closing Day, Staff Director Chris Chakonas spoke about how many times we read in the Bible that we should “have no fear’ and how the opposite of fear and anxiety is trusting in God’s plan for us. The Saints were fearless, even in martyrdom, because they trusted and loved God. Beautiful words to reflect upon!
Our first two spirit sticks were awarded to the amazing Olympians and Delphians, for shining bright with the Holy Spirit within, all day long! Campers will surely sleep well tonight, as we were all blessed with another full and beautiful day at Fanari Camp.