Ramah in the Rockies

A nonprofit organization

The mission of Ramah in the Rockies is to create a Jewish educational community, situated in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, which combines outdoor adventure and environmental awareness with Jewish living and learning.


The feedback from families of campers is absolutely wonderful. According to one parent, Karen Jaffe of Irvine, CA:

"What an amazing two weeks my kids have had! I'm having a difficult time putting this into words, but I can tell you from the camper and the campers' parents' perspective, it was a huge success ... Some comments: We learned so much Hebrew ... Rachael read Torah (amazing) ... Three deer came to the pardes (field) while we were davening ..." Kol Hakavod to you and your staff for providing such an incredible, Jewish, and warm experience for our kids."

Camp Director Rabbi Eliav Bock wrote the following update in his blog at the end of the summer:

"It has happened!

Another successful summer at Ramah Outdoor Adventure has come to an end. All is quiet on the ranch. The goats, chickens and duck have gone home; the alpacas and horses will be picked up shortly. A few hours ago, we said goodbye to the last of our chalutzim (campers). Our tzevet (staff) are packing away equipment, sweeping the ohalim (tents) and readying camp for the long nine months of hibernation. Today is one of the hardest days of the summer. There is no cheering in the Chadar Ochel (dining hall), there are no yelps of joy coming from the chalutzim biking down the single track, and there is no one hanging around the table in the middle of the kfar (tent village) playing cards during free time.
If I had to describe the summer in two words, they would be MAGICAL and TRANSFORMATIVE! There were magical and transformative moments of personal challenge on the rock wall. There were magical and transformative moments of personal discovery during teffilot (prayers). And of course there were magical and transformative moments of relation happening almost every waking minute of the summer, as chalutzim and tzevet went about their daily activities, eating meals together and singing around the camp fire together.
To fully experience the magic of camp, one has to actually visit our ranch. Although this summer we had a record number of visitors, I know that most people reading this email/blog post have never come to the Ramah ranch in the summer. While hopefully more people can visit next summer, until then, I wanted to give you a flavor of the camp by sharing a few highlights.
Highlight #1: The Farm Program
While there were many program areas that experienced significant growth this summer, none grew as much as our farm program. Under the leadership of second year staff member, Nadav Slovin along with an awesome team of farmers including Elan Keshen and Chava Goldstein our farming program grew from a nice program with a few animals and a small area for vegetables to a major part of camp, with a second garden plot in the middle of camp, two milking goats, five egg-laying chickens, four egg-laying ducks (three of whom were unfortunately eaten by a fox one night), and of course two adorable kid goats. The farm team created a program where most members of our camp community had a chance to participate in the process of growing and harvesting vegetables and caring for the animals. Examples of this included: creating a rotation of ohalim who would come to milk the goats; involving over 100 chalutzim during first session with sinking posts and wire for a new fence; the first session baby naming for our baby goats, Shaina and Panim; and Monday's chagiga B'chava (garden festival), a mock bar mitzvah held in honor of Shaina and Panim where chalutzim had a chance to participate in a variety of farm games and activities.
Highlight #2: Shabbat
Despite all the outdoor activities we have at camp, despite the amazing peaks and valleys our chalutzim explore during their massaot (backcountry excursions), when we ask members of our community what their favorite time is, most will say Shabbat! This summer we introduced some new tunes into our Kabbalat Shabbat repertoire. We also revamped our Shabbat morning services for the entire camp and ensured that the older chalutzim had a chance for more singing of niggunim (wordless songs) and that the younger campers had different teffilah experiences tailored to their needs. We also reworked the Shabbat afternoon schedule to allow for a healthy balance of free time and structured activities. But most importantly, we did not tamper with the incredible energy that makes Shabbat such a special time at camp. From everyone dressing in white on Friday evening, to the more relaxed meals throughout the day, and to the atmosphere that ensures that Shabbat is a day for people to hang out and chat with each other, the essence of Shabbat as a day of rest and relaxation remained strong...


The mission of Ramah in the Rockies is to create a Jewish educational community, situated in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, which combines outdoor adventure and environmental awareness with Jewish living and learning. Ramah in the Rockies intends to create a physical space that enables and nurtures a vibrant, knowledgeable, and Jewishly committed corps of youth and adult volunteers and professionals to actively participate in, and lead, the Jewish community.

Background Statement

During the 1940s The Jewish Theological Seminary of America, the central institution of Conservative Judaism, began to initiate programs to reconnect Jewish youth with community institutions and life. One of these programs was Camp Ramah, a now hugely successful youth camping program. The first Ramah camp opened in Wisconsin in 1947. Over the next 25 years, a network of seven residential camps was established. Today, in addition to the Wisconsin site, there are Ramah camps in Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, California, New York, Georgia, and Ontario, Canada. The absence of Ramah-style camping opportunity in the beautiful Colorado Rocky Mountains has captured the attention of members of the local Jewish community for over a decade. Colorado's natural beauty and thriving outdoor culture seemed a wonderful fit to establish a Ramah camp locally. The explosive growth of Jewish communities in the Southwest supported this idea. With the encouragement of local leaders, and in partnership with the Colorado Jewish Foundation, a site was purchased in 2007, and the first Ramah in the Rockies program began this past summer. The camp, a former Girl Scout property, is on a magnificent 360 acre site, surrounded by a million acres of National Forest, located in Jefferson County. Ramah Outdoor Adventure at Ramah in the Rockies is the first specialty camp of the national Ramah movement. Ramah in the Rockies completed its inaugural summer in 2010, bringing 120 campers from 17 states, Canada and Israel. While educationally affiliated with the national Ramah camping movement, Ramah in the Rockies is governed and operates independently.

Organization Data


Organization name

Ramah in the Rockies

other names


Year Established


Tax id (EIN)




Organization Size

Large Organization

Colorado State Tax Credits

Colorado Child Care Credit


300 S Dahlia Street #205
Denver, CO 80246

Service areas

Denver County, CO, US


303-261-8214 100

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