My Florida Shabbaton Experience

5 years ago ssalles 0

This weekend I had an amazing, spiritual experience with my Florida Mishpacha at the 1st annual Florida shabbaton. I was thrilled my region came together for this spectacular shabbaton.

This CTeen Shabbaton was very laid back and relaxed.. This gave me a chance to learn so much about myself, and enabled all of us to become a connected family and enabled us to become a family. We started off the weekend by playing a really fun icebreaker where we introduced ourselves and had to learn what color toothbrush we had. We got to light candles and play a fun game after davening for a few minutes. Little did I know then that these twenty five hours were what I needed during this stressful time around finals and AP testing. Once we played the game, we were all laughing and the ice was definitely broken. I sat with some amazing teens from Boca and Orlando that were amazing. We heard from the Rabbis,Rabbi Yossi Denburg and Edi Leibowitz and heard some amazing stories and fifteen people got to say an interactive dvar torah. Getting to connect to all the teens and chaperones was amazing. Everyone was so nice and welcoming. We played stump the rabbi and took part in a farbrengen, both of which were inspiring and amazing. Something that I really enjoyed this weekend was walking to and from shul. Also seeing the hospitality and kindness of the community was eye-opening and wonderful.

Throughout the weekend, we also attended many workshops and discussed different topics. Some that stood out were balancing being doctors and keeping shabbos, its beautiful they travel to a different house to keep shabbos. Another workshop was the road to recovery, which was about the choices we make and how it affects others and ourselves. Some people shared their battles and experiences. We also heard the amazing love story of how Rabbi Edi and Bracha Leibowitz met. After an amazing lunch filled with more games and another inspirational story, and a workshop, we walked to this incredible house. At this house I hung out and played with some friends I made. At this moment I realized how powerful and special shabbos was. Getting to connect and get back into focus was incredible. In fact it reassured me of why I wanted to become religious. After dinner and more workshops and fun, we did havdalah. I was sad to see shabbos end, but good because havdalah is such a special time. I even got to hold one of the candles. We then got to go to Boomers where we went on go karts, played lazer tags, rode on bumper cars, and played air hockey. But the night wasn’t over yet. When we got back we had a dessert bar of marshmallows, strawberries, and cotton candy with chocolate fondue, and fires so we could roast the marshmallows. We then had an amazing dance party and then it was off to bed.

Sunday we had this delicious brunch where I got to have breakfast with my friends the
last night. Us girls go to learn about and visit a mikvah that was so beautiful. Before we left we heard a story of one of the heads who became religious. We then took on new mitzvahs which was equivalent to one ticket in the raffle. While I will miss the shabbaton, I am inspired to bring the light and joy of this weekend to the world. For those who are debating whether or not to go to a regional shabbaton, go for it. It could change your life.