JCC Maccabi Games, from an athlete’s perspective

The JCC Maccabi Games took place in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, in August 2023, and our athletes from the JCC Denver not only competed well, but made beautiful, long-lasting memories during their trip. We talked to several of them and wanted to put together a little “look-back” at what their experience was like. (The following conversations are fictional, but based in truth.) 

IMG_20230807_085518378Hey mom! We made it to Florida. The flight was pretty bumpy, the littler kids didn’t like it very much. I think that makes it more fun though. Heading to host family now. Call later. 

Reply – heart emoji 


I wish you could have seen the opening ceremony! It was totally insane – and there are so many kids here. There’s even a delegation from Ukraine!  

(new message right underneath) Host family is awesome, the parents both went to Maccabi games when they were kids too.  


Kay we’re heading out for our first game, I forgot socks and had to borrow some from a kid I met at the opening ceremony who’s also on my team. Since our team is so small, we got to merge with another team’s delegation from Georgia. He’s super nice and wants to visit us in Denver!  


I’m never going to forget this week. I’ve made so many friends and my teammates say I played really well… although we lost. I’m not too bummed though, the team is going to watch the championshipIMG-20230906-WA0011 game together.  

Getting ready to board, flight back to Denver got a bit delayed. I’m really sad it’s already over. I’m already excited about next year, I think it’s in Houston? Maybe someday I can be a host family too, I want to keep up the tradition.  

Boarding now, see you soon.  

The JCC Maccabi Games offer young people the chance to meet peers from around the world, compete in their favorite sport, connect with their Jewish heritage in a new way, and discover a new part of themselves. None of this would be possible without the generosity of Elaine and Steve Berman, who have been instrumental in our team’s ability to participate.   

If you would like to support the 2024 JCC Denver Delegation, click here.