Eighth grade students will taste-test six BBYO-Wisconsin Region chapters in one night through youth-led games and activities before choosing a chapter to join.
The BBYO Mystery Bus Tour is set for Saturday, Jan. 26. Boys and girls will get on separate school buses, each bus visiting three locations with a different chapter. This is much like a sorority and fraternity “rush” process.
“The bus tour is like open house day,” said Associate Regional Director Ariel Kohll.
Parent drop-off is at 6:30 p.m. at the Milwaukee Jewish Day School parking lot and pick-up is 10:30 p.m. The “Mystery” part of the Mystery Bus Tour is that the eighth grade students don’t know where the buses are headed.
The eighth grade students will meet about 20 to 30 current high school chapter members and participate in games, ice-breakers and other activities such as cooking food. The activities are specifically chosen to best “showcase” the chapter, as each chapter has a certain “personality,” according to Kohll.
The three boy chapters are Bereshis, Nivayim and Solomon.
The three girl chapters are Ahavah, B’Sheret and Eden.
These chapters offer “all different possibilities and the eighth grade students pick the one they feel most comfortable in,” said Senior Regional Director Rachael Badt.
By the end of the night, students have a good idea about which chapter they will choose. “Most go home and tell mom and dad ‘I’m going to be in this one,’” Badt said.
This rush process is unlike college sororities and fraternities as the current members do not have the ability to pick or reject the students.
Students will be given a form at the event to rank their top chapter choices. The decision deadline is Feb. 8 if they would like to participate in Placement Day on Feb. 10. Placement Day is a day of surprises, where the chapter members go to the newcomer’s home to celebrate and say, “You joined!” Badt said.
If students miss the Mystery Bus Tour or the Feb. 8 deadline, there is no need to worry. “We never close our doors on anyone,” Badt said.
Students participate in their chapters’ social activities such as “dances, community service days, sports events and weekend-long conventions,” according to the BBYO website.
The organization is pluralistic and according to Badt, “BBYO is a great chance for teens from all areas of Milwaukee to come together.”
Parents may contact Badt or Kohll to be put on the email list for all BBYO updates: Wisc@Bbyo.org.
Any Questions? Call 414-326-2808.
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How to go
BBYO Mystery Bus Tour
Where: Drop off in Whitefish Bay.
When: Saturday, Jan. 26, 6:30-10:30 p.m.
More info: 414-326-2808 or Wisc@Bbyo.org