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BBYO’s Annual Convention Features Alums Passing The Torch To Current Teens

Read this story in the Detroit Jewish News.

It’s the most wonderful week of the year. From the opportunities for teens to bond with their regional brothers and sisters to the exciting competitions between the chapters, it is a week filled with memories, fun and spirit that can only be found in Michigan.

This is Regional Convention (RC), BBYO Michigan Region’s most anticipated event of the year held the last week of each year. At RC, teens from various chapters come together and participate in a number of events, including Iron Chef, Lip Sync Battle, volleyball, basketball, debate, song, cheer and talent. The theme of this year’s convention was “L’dor V’dor: From Generation to Generation.” The theme was incorporated throughout the week by including BBYO alumni as event judges and engaging parents, grandparents and alumni in activities.

One of the most special moments was at the convention’s Opening Ceremonies when past and present generations were connected through an unforgettable torch-passing ceremony. More than 50 BBYO alumni ages 19-70 from chapters still in existence participated in the ceremony and handed down a torch to the current leaders of their former chapters.

“Regional Convention is one of my favorite times of the programing year because it highlights the unique qualities of each chapter,” said Rachel Meyerson, a senior at North Farmington High School and current BBG regional president. “It’s a way for the region to bond as a whole and for members to get to know each other in a fun and social atmosphere.”

Thirteen chapters participated at Regional Convention this year, including Michigan Region’s newest co-ed chapter, Hatmadah BBYO #126. Made up of members from Ann Arbor and the surrounding areas, Hatmadah BBYO made a huge impact at their first RC.

The camaraderie between chapters was also on display as chapters supported members at all their events.

“RC allowed me to bond with the other girls in my chapter so much, and I can’t wait to bring that sisterhood back into the chapter after RC,” said Jordyn Taylor, president of Ruach BBG #83.

Even though RC was an intense competition, the RC Headquarters was always open for teens who needed to decompress. The RC Headquarters, a new addition this year, including a medical clinic, RC Shuk (market) and “The Lounge.” Sponsored by Jewish Family Service, The Lounge was a space for teens who needed a break or wanted to speak to someone about struggles that they or a friend may have been experiencing.

At the end of the day, it was not about the win — it was all about the memories and friendships that were created in just five days. From year to year, RC positively impacts members and is a true demonstration of spirit, cheer, friendly competition and fun.

Overall, RC 2017 was very successful and would not have happened without the hard work of this year’s Regional Convention coordinators: Jordyn Wolf, a senior at Groves High School, and Andrew Weiss, a senior at Frankel Jewish Academy. The dedication of BBYO’s regional staff, the RC 2017 Steering Committees, parent volunteers, chapter presidents and chapter RC coordinators, and alumni also did not go unnoticed.

We look forward to an amazing rest of the year with BBYO, and can’t wait to see what’s next!

Sydney Trepeck Special to the Jewish News

Sydney Trepeck is a senior at Bloomfield Hills High School.

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