At the highly anticipated annual DRS schoolwide Shabbaton, sophomores, juniors, and seniors, accompanied by their rebbeim and their families, spent the weekend at the Bridgewater Hotel in Somerset, New Jersey. After dropping their belongings off at the hotel on Friday, students traveled to nearby Colonial Park to partake in the annual Shabbaton Flag Football tournament, where 15 games were played simultaneously.
Friday night, after an inspiring KabbalatShabbat and moving zemirot during dinner, students partook in two enjoyable educational programs. DRS hosted Mr. Alan Veingrad. A former professional football player and member of the Dallas Cowboys during their Super Bowl XXVII winning season, Veingrad rediscovered his Jewish roots while playing for the Green Bay Packers, when a local businessman invited him to services on Rosh Hashanah. Shortly afterward, Veingrad retired from football and became a Torah-observant Jew. Veingrad inspired students with his story and exemplified the Shabbaton’s theme by discussing the pride he has from his Jewish identity. In another room, students heard from a panel of DRS rebbeim about what inspires them, and why they appreciate the Jewish religion.
On Shabbos day, students were treated to a fabulous kiddush after parashah time with their rebbeim. The seudatShabbat included more lively zemirot and divreiTorah from various students.
After an inspiring shaloshseudot and Havdalah, the students headed to the annual Shiur vs. Shiur Trivia Challenge, during which the students’ knowledge of Torah, DRS history, music, and pop culture were put to the test. Following the game, everyone was treated to a lavish barbecue and a spirited melavahmalkah with lively dancing. But the night was still young, as the students entered the grand ballroom which was transformed into a full-out game room, complete with ping-pong tables, basketball hoops, and six big screens that hosted the Madden Xbox tournament.
The Shabbaton was a great way for students of different ages to strengthen friendships, as well as their relationships with their rebbeim.