Israel @ 70

What’s not to love about a summer night on the Detroit Riverfront, a spin on a Ferris wheel, a picnic in the park, music in the air, dancing in the streets, a birthday to celebrate with friends and family? This was Israel@70 . . . a Jewish community-wide party we’ll long remember.

Almost on cue, just as the fairway gates opened to welcome more than 3,500 in attendance from 4 to 10 pm, the sun burst out and smiled on a picture-perfect event presented by the Jewish Federation and the Jewish Community Center of Metropolitan Detroit, in partnership with GM River Days and the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy.

 Our photos say it all.


“The sun is always shining over Israel, so I guess Israel is sharing a little bit of sunshine over Michigan today. It’s nice to see everyone coming down to enjoy the Riverfront, and what a great spot to celebrate the history of our community.  It gets back to basics, because the Jewish community of Detroit has roots in the neighborhood centered around 12th Street, and I was born on 18th.  So there’s always been a close connection – it’s nice to see the community come back home.”   -U.S. House State Sen. Mike Kowall, the Senate majority floor leader

“It’s nice to see the community come back home.” U.S. House State Senator Mike Kowall (center) with Scott Kaufman, CEO Federation and David Kurzmann, Exec. Director JCRC/AJC.


“I think Tamarack being here is a really key thing— not only because we’re a part of Federation, but also because our campers are the younger generation of Judaism in our community, and it’s a cool thing to see the impact of our whole community – Jews and non-Jews – coming together to express our happiness with Israel and to celebrate its 70th birthday.”  – Shane Sterling, Tamarack staff member 

“It’s cool to see the impact of our whole community celebrating together.” – Shane Sperling, Pioneer Supervisor, Tamarack Camps – with Ashley Schnaar of Federation

I’m not sure where to start, so I’ll just say, Thank you, Jewish Detroit for sharing the love and your passion for Israel! Celebrating here in the city of Detroit means the world to me. Knowing that there are people here who care about Israel, love to be a part of it and feel that it’s in their DNA is not something I take for granted. It’s something I take to heart every day. So thank you, thank you, todah, Detroit!”  – Nina Yahalomi Klevitsky, Community Shlicha (Israeli Emissary)

“My favorite part of Israel@70?  The view from the Ferris wheel. Awesome!” – Levi Yaker

“Aweome view from the Ferris wheel!” – Levi Yaker with mom, Julie.


More Photos!

Click here for more photos on our Flickr page!