Well, another Mega-event over and done with. The participants liked it and had fun. But as someone who has been to more of these than I care to count (but not to all of them), it ranked pretty low on the excitement factor. It was outside at Latrun, which last year was great. This year, it was as if they were trying too hard.
When Lynn Schusterman, Michael Steinhardt and Charles Bronfman were called up to speak, Lynn and Michael spoke for a few minutes each, and then no one announced Charles and they went on with the program. That was just weird - who brings Charles Bronfman up on stage to have him speak and then forgets about him? Michael Steinhardt started by greeting the participants in the languages from their 14 home countries. If you've never heard the Brazilians or Argentinians cheer, you're lucky. Plus, it's soccer season, so they're just crazy no matter what.
They also welcomed the 100,000th participant. The poor girl has had to do all sorts of interviews, go on stage in front of 1o,000 people at the mega-event and probably hasn't had any fun at all. She did get a diamond pin out of the deal (so did Lynn Schusterman) presented to her by Shimon Peres.
Oh, and for 7,000 people, there were only 8 booths selling food. In addition to falafel, hamburgers and pizza, students could also buy "kreps", and, I kid you not, "fotdogs". Yes, fotdogs. They looked just like hotdogs, but being a vegetarian, I couldn't do a full investigation to find out how a fotdog might be different than their correctly named look-a-likes.
And, of course, our Hillel booth was excellent (just in case you were wondering).