Every year Nassau Suffolk Region kicks off their programming year with a fun fall-themed kickoff at a local amusement park. This is one of the most memorable and one of the most popular events the region holds. In light of the current pandemic, this event could not be held this year, especially considering the region's mass size. NSR has over 600 members. Yes, it was a bummer, but the region found a way to come together and create the same kickoff feel in a virtual format: NSR Live!
Teens from across the region joined the call to compete against other chapters in several competitions. If that didn't draw you in enough, there were also many appearances by some very special guests. After the 63rd regional board introduced themselves, we were greeted with a video message from Jim O'Heir, who played Jerry Gergich on the hit TV show Parks and Recreation. After an excellent introduction and some jokes about our regional staff, we all thought there was no way they could surprise us even more. But we were wrong. We got a cameo from the famous TikToker Willy Wonka and even a shoutout from our very own Grand Aleph S'gan and International S'ganit Jared and Abby.
The first competition was a battle for the best TikTok. We were sent into breakout rooms consisting of three chapters and two regional board members. There were no rules on how far you could go. My chapter, Citadel BBG, decided to use our theme of cheerleaders to create a dancing chain. Against the other two chapters, our two regional board members agreed that Citadel BBG had the best Tik Tok, and we got the point! When we returned to the main room, we got to watch the other chapters'' Tik Tok'sTok's, and hear who won in their room.
The next game we played was just for fun and not part of the competition. We were sent into breakout rooms of ten people or less and played a giant game of Among Us. Among Us has recently become a highly popular game in the United States for those who don't know. In the game, there are 1-3 people who are selected as the imposters. The imposter's goal is to kill the other players without having anyone find out who they are. We listened to music while playing and had so much fun trying to figure out who the imposter was. Playing together and competing against other chapters helped members of the region form new friendships and build upon older ones.
Although this year's kickoff looked different, I can say that I felt connected to people in the region and made some incredible new connections. Overall, every chapter had a great time, and there wasn't anyone who wasn't laughing or smiling. For my chapter, this was some of the new members' first regional events ever. After talking with them after the event, they thought it was fun and interactive, and they cannot wait for future events to come.
Alexa Helder is a BBG living in Oceanside, New York. When Alexa is not participating in BBYO she is either dancing or spending time with friends and family.
All views expressed on content written for The Shofar represent the opinions and thoughts of the individual authors. The author biography represents the author at the time in which they were in BBYO.
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