Camp Nirkoda Ba'Kerem
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Camp Nirkoda Ba'Kerem
An Israeli dance and wine tasting adventure!
December 16-19, 2021 *
Wonder Valley Ranch Resort,
Sanger, California (near Fresno)
* Due to the pandemic, Nirkoda Ba'Kerem will not take place in 2020. The camp has been rescheduled for December 16-19, 2021, and will feature the same staff (Michael Barzelai, Yaron Elfasy) at the same location (Wonder Valley Resort).
Group photo from NBK 2019!
What is Nirkoda Ba'Kerem?
Set in the lush landscape of a private ranch, Nirkoda Ba'Kerem is all about community. Come join your friends — some you've known for years, and some you've yet to meet — for a fun-filled weekend of nonstop Israeli dancing located at the beautiful Wonder Valley. We'll enjoy the benefits of California's famous vineyards by incorporating a wine tasting adventure during the camp! Excellent wine and fantastic Israeli Dancing—what could be better?! Don't miss it!
Meet the Staff
Michael Barzelai has created some of the most popular dances in the last couple of years — Normali, Aneni, Be'chayai, Yahalomim, Shneinu, La Trompeta, and many others. Despite being only 30, Michael has a vast repertoire, both new and old, Ashkenazi and Mizrachi, popular and obscure. Beyond his fantastic choreography and dancing, he's just incredibly friendly and boundlessly energetic, and we are so excited that he will be part of our Ba'Kerem community this year!
Yaron Elfasy is the choreographer of dances including Mor Ve'Kinamon, Eich Efshar Shelo, Ohev Lihiyot Ba'bayit, and Kanfe Ha'ruach. He can do it all: circles, partners, and yes, lines! He spends the summers teaching dance to the kids at Camp Szarvas in Hungary, always with a big smile and tons of ruach. Yaron is part of an Israeli dance dynasty; his four children are all dancers, and his father was the legendary Moti Elfasy, creator of El Ha'derech, Al Kanfe Ha'kesev, Lo Na'atzor, and more.
Latishya Steele returns as our Mistress of the Computer, our Granter of Requests, our Voice upon the Microphone — in other words, our incomparable DJ. She will keep you on your feet all night long — and well into the morning! Latishya started her dancing career in Boston and Chicago, and she is now one of the Bay Area's favorite teachers and programmers, with an incredibly deep repertoire and a talent for keeping the party going.
Aaron Alpert is your camp director and host for the weekend. His main job is to ensure that you're having an awesome time! He's been teaching, running sessions, and organizing workshops in the Bay Area for 12 years, and last year, he ran a resoundingly successful first Camp Nirkoda Ba'Kerem. Let him know if there's anything that can make your camp experience better.
Housing Options and Prices
The prices above include all meals (Thursday dinner to Sunday breakfast) and snacks. Meals are kosher-style (no pork, no mixed meat / milk, no shellfish). For those requiring Glatt kosher meal, those will be available for a surcharge.
Access to all Israeli dance and other camp activities (games, Shabbat services, etc.) is included.
All levels include our signature wine tasting experience. Camp Nirkoda Ba'Kerem's wine experts have chosen several local vintages for you to sample as our sommelier helps you to identify the subtle flavors of each wine. For those participants who do not drink, we will have a simultaneous fancy non-alcoholic beverage tasting. All dancers have the opportunity to evaluate their favorites and to enjoy the hors d'oeuvres selected for their harmonious pairing with the wines.
Schedule of Events
The full, detailed schedule will be released as we get closer to the event, but to give you a general sense of what's going to happen...
|Morning||Learn new dances||Review dances that we taught|
Learn a few more
|Breakfast and goodbyes|
|Afternoon||Registration and welcome session||Specialty sessions (e.g., horas, partners, cardio,...)||Specialty sessions (e.g., oldies, debkas, international,...)|
|Evening||First dance party (until ~2 AM)||Shabbat|
Second dance party (until ~4 AM)
Third dance party (until ???)
Note that we are aiming to learn approximately 8 dances over the course of the weekend.
Wonder Valley is a pleasant 3 hour drive east from Silicon Valley, and we encourage you to carpool, and we will even help to arrange carpools. For those coming from out-of-town, you probably want to consider San Jose Airport (SJC) or San Francisco International (SFO). SJC is about 30 minutes closer, but SFO has more flights. There is also a small regional airport, Fresno Yosemite International (FAT), which is a 35 minute drive from the camp, but there are fewer flight options. From FAT, Wonder Valley offers a shuttle for a fee, you can take a cab, or you can arrange for another dancer to pick you up on the way.
Details will be posted later.
Registration will open later.