Youth Activities

Printable 2014-2015 Youth Activity Calendar (pdf)


United Synagogue Youth (grades 9-12)
USY develops leadership skills as our teens plan and implement monthly events. Activities can include both social programming and social action. Participants have the opportunity to develop their own interests and to explore what the Triangle area community has to offer as well as opportunities to travel to other cities for conferences.

USY also provides opportunities for our youth to strengthen their Jewish identity and to become a part of Jewish life at Beth El.

For more information, please contact: or 919-682-1238, ext.170

Contact Beth El to request a membership form.

Past events include:

Emerald Pointe with Kadima
Night-time Corn Maze Adventure
Sunday program and Macabbiah info session at JCC
Benefit Dance-a-thon
Regional Fall Convention
International Convention
Regional Dance
Drag Bingo
Regional Great Wolf Lodge overnight in Willliamsburg
Post Pesach Pizza Party
Overnight trip to Charlotte
And more..

Kadima (grades 6-8 grades)

Kadima gives middle-schoolers a chance to bond with their peers through social and social action programming. Kadimaniks begin developing leadership skills by helping to choose, plan, and support their programs.

Past events include:

Annual Iron Chef competition
Movie Night
Defy Gravity trip
Social action events
Lazer Tag
Annual Mystery Bus Ride
Pool Party
Emerald Pointe
State Fair trip
Movie making project
Ice skating
Late night evening out at Adventure Landing
And more..

For more information, please contact: or 919-682-1238, ext.170

Contact Beth El to request a membership form.



Annual Young Family
Shabbat picnic!

Saturday afternoon, May 9, 2015
3:30-5:30 pm

Enjoy a light dinner and a casual afternoon of
socializing, running around, playing games, and
hanging out on the playground.

For families with children in 2nd grade or younger
(Joint alef-bet and early childhood program)

We’re still looking for a few volunteers to help prepare our light dinner—let us know if you’re available!

Simchat Tot Havdallah in Pajamas!!!
January 31, 2015

Check out the great time we've had in past years:


Calling all kids in
Kindergarten - Second Grade!!!

Alef-Bet, our youth group for children in grades K-2. Our youngest elementary school children have the opportunity to enjoy a taste of youth group participation, as they enjoy various activities and form their own community. We began in 2010-2011 with one activity, and we look forward to enjoying a full calendar of events this year.As with our other groups, membership is not required for participation—our events are open to all Jewish K-2nd graders! Invite your friends!!!

For more information, please contact: or 919-682-1238, ext.170

Past Alef-Bet Events include:
Monkey Joe's trip
Trip to the North Carolina Museum of Life and Science
Pizza & Glow Golf
workshop at The Scrap Exchange
Adventure in Pullen Park
Ganyard Hill Farm trip
Percussion Party at Music Explorium
Indoor adventure at Go Bananaz
Circus trip

Trip to Three Bears Acres
Annual young family picnic

And more...

Pre-Kadima (grades 3-5)

Pre-Kadima, for all 3rd-5th graders, provides a taste of youth group participation and some exciting social opportunities. Children have the opportunity to get to know one another in a fun and interesting environment. Our pre-Kadima members have the opportunity to develop their connections to each other and to Beth El, preparing them to take on leadership roles in Kadima and USY.

For more information, please contact: or 919-682-1238, ext.170

Past Pre-Kadima Events include:

Glazed Expectations
Duke Gardens Scavenger Hunt
Social Action Soiree
Morehead Planetarium & Science Center trip
Social Action Projects
Rock climbing
Roller skating
Circus trip with Alef-Bet
Pizza and a movie
Durham Earth Day Festival

And more...



USY Project Z'Mirot:
This USY project is a great online source for Jewish Songs.

Simchat Tot
A program for Early Childhood families

We invite all families with children ages 4 & under
to join us one Sunday morning each month,
9:45-10:30, in the upper level of the Freedman Center
for fun-filled activities.

Our monthly Sunday morning program includes songs, stories, and craft projects, and gives young children and their families an exciting opportunity to get to explore a monthly Jewish theme in a fun and friendly environment.

Sunday, October 12th (9:45-10:30 AM)
Sunday, November 23rd (9:45-10:30 AM)
Sunday, December 7th (9:45-10:30 AM)
Sunday, January 11th (9:45-10:30 AM)
Saturday, January 31st (Havdallah in Pajamas 5:30-6:30 PM)
Sunday, February 8th (9:45-10:30 AM)
Sunday, March 8th (9:45-10:30 AM)
Sunday, April 19th (9:45-10:30 AM)
Saturday, May 9th (Shabbat afternoon picnic)


Camp Ramah Darom
404-531-0801 •

There is this lovely spot just around the end of the lake,  towards the back way in and out of Camp Ramah, where one  can turn around and see  all the main buildings of camp: the chadar (dining hall), mirpeset tifilah (prayer porch), the kikar (playing field), bet am  (ampitheatre/stage), pool, lake and blob, tennis courts, climbing tower, bunks...a special place that I always go when I first arrive at camp and as I leave each year.  I always feel touched by that site and whenever  I take visitors around it is inevitably the "wow" spot on the tour... My 7th summer at Ramah Darom and the first time I didn't have a child in residence.  Rachel's group was traveling in Israel for their last year as campers and will return next year as staff.  Luckily, I had my "other kids" from  Beth El  and Chapel Hill to enjoy... and enjoy they did! To be in the presence of 400 Jewish kids and staff, to eat and sleep, to play and learn, to pray and experience daily life in this special Jewish context together is so remarkable and joyous that just thinking about it makes me want to...well, let me try to capture a couple of those images ... Kabbalat Shabbat with all our beautiful kids who have spent Friday afternoon cleaning up camp for Shabbat...taking time and effort to prepare Torah and haftorah readings, straightening up the bunks, making special place cards and table decorations for Friday night dinner, getting dressed up, clean and shining and looking fine for all those other nice Jewish boys and girls... gathering in the bet am, bringing flowers to friends...the "Shabbat rap...oo, ah, oo, ah ah..." lighting candles together and davening as the sun goes down over the lake...led by, yes our children,  who just get up there and lead several hundred campers and staff in tefilah... Shabbat dinner all together, birchat and amazing shira...still led by those shinning kids. Shabbat as "an island in time" where everyone walks and eats and plays and celebrates many different minyanim to choose, special foods, free time, onegs, games, books, naps, stories, swimming,basketball, hanging out with friends and camp "family"...being Jewish in this natural place, this completely different space and time...suedah shlishit, more shira, that feeling of anticipation of the all time favorite part of Shabbat at camp...havdalah...those, still shining beautiful faces, happy, relaxedin a way that I think we rarely get to see in our kids...laughing and hugging  and waiting until we count the stars and hand-made havdalah candles and bisamim and "shavua tov! "and skits and cheers and dancing and motzei Shabbat parties and programs...and that's only one day in the life of Ramah Darom! o many more images, but for another time... So, "what do we know" about Jewish camping and the impact it has on our kids?  what's not to like... it's hands-on-Judiasm at  it's develops strong, positive Jewish identities and profoundly affects choices those kids will make as adults  about marriage, raising kids and being involved in synagogues and wider Jewish communities. Jewish camping and Jewish day schools are consistently identified as primary influences in choosing to lead Jewish lives as adults. ---Sally Laliberte (October 2005)

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