Frequently Asked Questions
What ages is All Star Israel for?
The program is for boys and girls entering Kindergarten through Grade 10, with separate age groups, and a special "CIT Program" for grades 9 and 10.
What are the dates for Summer 2020?
Dates for Summer 2020 are July 1 - August 20, and campers can be registered for individual weeks, or any combination of weeks.
What does the day to day schedule look like at All Star?
Every day can be different - but, broadly speaking, we have 4 “types” of days:
Swim Day - we usually start with sports, then head to the pool, and get back in time for a campwide activity!
Trip Day - this can be nearly anything! A water park, the Climbing Wall, an Escape Room, a “Camping Survival Skills Day”, you name it.
“Special Day” - just about every week there will be at least one day like this - e.g. Color War or Maccabia. This is often a good opportunity for some extracurricular activities like arts and crafts (even the most sports-oriented kid is enthusiastic when it comes to making “color war tie-dye team shirts” or singing the “team song” at full volume!).
“Normal Day” - about once or twice a week, these are when we do sports plus “Electives”, which give kids an opportunity to explore something new that interests them - anything from First Aid, to Dance, to Drama, to Magic, to focusing on a specific sport.
What does a normal schedule look like for the “extended day” program?
About 2/3 of our kids stay for “Extended Day”. We generally start with lunch, then Grades K-3 have either a sport, or (depending on how active things were right before lunch) a quieter activity, e.g. a craft or story, then move on to a sport. Grades 4 and up have "Extended Day Leagues". We have teams and a schedule (e.g. "Sunday - Team A plays Team B in basketball, while team C plays Team D in Softball"), culminating in Playoffs. The kids really get into this.
The CIT program (Grades 9&10) either join the leagues in a co-captains role, or have a separate activity.
Where is the camp located?
All Star Israel has two locations: Jerusalem and Chashmonaim
All Star Israel Jerusalem is located at our new campus, the “Mabat”+”Kangaroo” complex in the Katamon neighborhood. The complex includes great outdoor and indoor spaces!
All Star Israel Chashmonaim is at our campus at the Chashmonaim outdoor field and indoor gym!
Are you allowed to register for one week now and add weeks later?
Yes, you can register for one week at a time, the multi-week discount will apply, and the early registration discount will apply to the early registration.
We'll try to give people a heads-up before we close registration, but be aware that it’s quite possible that registration will fill up.
What does swimming at All Star Israel look like?
We have both Instructional and Free Swim. The younger kids tend to have a mix, depending on the circumstances - the older kids are more into free swim, but they sometimes have instruction as well. Generally, swimming is not separate (occasionally, when it’s been logistically possible, we’ve done it). We do sometimes have campers who don’t want to go swimming (either for religious reasons, or just because they don’t want to - we never “force” a camper to do an activity if they don’t want to), and there are usually other things to do during swimming for those who aren’t going in.
From what locations can I get transportation?
Transportations is usually available in Jerusalem, Bet Shemesh, Efrat and the Gush, Ma’aleh Adumim, Bet Shemesh, RBS, and Modiin!
Is the food at All Star Israel Kosher?
All food is purchased with rabanut hechsher (or occasionally rabanut mehadrin or badatz), most is pre-packaged, and any preparation is with utensils used either for dairy or meat exclusively (and generally disposable).
Do I need to send my children with food and drinks to camp?
There's no need to bring any food or drinks - we have plenty!
During “Short Day” we have a simple "aruchat eser", plus snacks and drinks, and during "Extended Day" we have lunch - generally a catering company hot lunch, once or twice a week we do a special treat like Pizza, or sandwiches on a trip. We also have plenty of water. For convenience, campers can bring water bottles, which can be empty (we have cups, but campers ofteb find it convenient to have their own bottle).
Is All Star Israel “Dati”?
The majority of staff and campers are dati, but it isn't "only for dati families" – our experience has shown that kids from different families and backgrounds can play sports together on the same field (shocking, right?). We do have tefila in the morning, we incorporate Jewish values in our programming, and of course, all food is kosher.
How many kids are in a group? How many counselors for each group?
A typical group is 16 campers and 2 staffers. This varies based on a few variables, especially age. E.g. for the youngest groups, 2 counselors with 8 campers would be more typical - smaller groups are usually better at that age, plus no one works harder than those counselors of the youngest groups, so they deserve a ”better ratio”.
Is the facility outdoors and indoors?
We have indoor+outdoor facilities!
Do the staff members and campers speak both English and Hebrew?
All camp staff speak English and Hebrew - and so do most campers. Communication at camp has always been fine, partially because it's easy to communicate about sports, and partially because people are just very nice and friendly.
Are there other activities besides sports, such as arts and crafts etc?
We throw in a lot of variety! This can include whole events like Color War, which incorporate elements like song contests, team banners, skits, etc.
Depending on the age group, we have some of crafts, like tie-dying t-shirts. For the older groups, this is often as part of a bigger event, like Color War or “Bunk Day” (if you call it "arts and crafts", some campers are turned off, whereas if it’s about creativity and having fun, kids really get into it).
We also usually have “Electives” a few times a week! Campers choose from a variety of things that they love or want to try out - last year we had Dance, “Cool and Crazy Crafts”, Magic, Hip-Hop and Fitness.
What specific sports do the kids play at All Star Israel?
You name it! The "basic sports" at camp are usually basketball, football, kickball, "ultimate football", soccer, volleyball/newcomb, softball (for the younger kids - whiffle-ball), gaga, dodgeball, floor hockey, and netball (a.k.a. handball - the one where your team is throwing a ball into a soccer net, not the one where you're bouncing a ball against a wall, which my grandmother excelled at in Brooklyn in the 1920s - no kidding!), and when it's hot, the ever-popular "3-ball sprinkler soccer".
Every year the counselors bring in (or invent!) new games, and every year there's something unexpected that really catches on. "Frisbee golf", "Molecule Freeze Tag", "Opposite Basketball"... one year, one of the bunks was really into a game that was a strange and unexpected hybrid between kickball and basketball - I never would have expected it, and I'm still not sure I even understand it - but they loved it! For the younger kids, there are adjustments both to the types of games (e.g. for kindergarten, some of the "sports" would be games like "Duck-duck-goose"), and to the way specific games are played (say, a smaller ball and basket for basketball, etc.).
Can I still send my kid to All Star Israel if they aren’t very athletic?
All Star Israel isn’t a "training camp" kind of camp - it’s meant to be fun and include kids at all skill levels. We all try to improve, learn some new sports and skills, and have fun playing together.
As we like to say, in any activity "we can't all be the best, but we can all be our best."
We throw in a lot of variety, like "unconventional" sports – things like "artificial turf lawn bowls", "wet-faces-cup-races", and the ever-popular "3-ball-sprinkler-soccer" - plus whole events like Color War, which incorporate elements like song contests, team banners, skits, etc.
We also generally have Electives a few times a week, in which campers choose from a variety of things that they love or want to try out - last year we had Dance, “Cool and Crazy Crafts”, Magic, Hip-Hop and Fitness.
We also sneak in some camp-wide crafts, like tie-dying t-shirts, often as part of a bigger event, like Color War or “Bunk Day”. (If you call it "arts and crafts" some campers might be turned off, whereas if it’s about creativity and having fun, kids really get into it).
Of course, Trip Day can be anything - a science museum, a water park, etc. etc. – and doesn't necessarily have anything to do with sports.
We don’t have regular camp activities on Tisha B’Av (because it would be difficult, and also because we just don’t think we should), but we do generally “make it up” to people that week. Until a couple of years ago, this usually meant a special trip/activity on a different day. But recently we’ve tried something very, very special, on Tisha B’Av - and we plan to do it again this year.
Before we get ahead of ourselves here, I want to stress that (like all activities) there are a million reasons that the logistics of this could change. But the plan is to do an activity with a brilliant and wonderful organization called Kid2Kid, which takes used toys and games, fixes them up with volunteers (us!), and gives them to children’s hospitals. (They’re working with over a dozen hospitals and shelters in Israel!)
The past few years we've created an entire “assembly-line”, with stations for sorting the games and toys, checking them, repairing them, replacing missing parts (e.g. we had a whole bin of dice, a printer and cardboard for replacing missing things like “properties” in Monopoly and puzzle pieces, etc. etc.), and finally game-testing them.
It was amazing, for all campers and parents who attended (we invited families too). I would almost say it was “too good for Tisha B’av” - but I think that if kids (and adults!) are putting real effort into ahavat chinam and tikun olam - very literally, and with real results! - we’re definitely doing the right thing. There’s such a thing as a Tisha B’Av experience that is both “appropriate” and “good”.
Have more questions? Give us a call, or send us a Whatsapp, at 050-790-4788. Or email firstname.lastname@example.org .