The only way we’re going to get it together, is together
Welcome to a growing community of Metro Detroiters exploring health, environmental awareness, nature, the outdoors, and food in all its delicious interconnectedness. We are educators and learners. We are among those making a connection to our deep wisdom tradition grounded in wonder and gratitude. We claim justice and Tikkun Olam as part of who we are. Hazon in Detroit is here to support you in creating a healthier, more sustainable way of life, community, and world.
We work to strengthen existing congregations and organizations through education, earth-based ritual, greening for sustainability and regeneration, a CSA and garden development. And we create new opportunities to connect at the Oakland Avenue Urban Farm in Detroit’s historic North End, the Michigan Jewish Food Festival, and more.
Let us know the best way to reach you.
Wren is passionate about the outdoors and living sustainably. She grew up on a small animal farm in Southeastern Massachusetts where chickens and turkeys roamed free, and the woods, lakes, and cranberry bogs were her first playgrounds. She learned to organic farm between the pine trees and has continued the practice for over 30 years. Hence, coming to Hazon completes a life circle. She sharpened her horticultural instincts while managing greenhouses, and her love of natural healing was fostered in the health food industry and honed while raising her children, Maggie and Aaron. Education was a natural next step for Wren; she spent the next chapter of her life working in Waldorf and Jewish experiential education. Thus began her Jewish professional journey: she progressed from teacher to Director of Education at a Reform/Renewal synagogue to Director of the Berman Center for Jewish Education at a Conservative Synagogue to Senior Director of Adult Jewish Engagement at the Jewish Community Center.
Having recently completed building an eco-friendly house in Milford, you can find her in her off time protectively watching over her bees and seedling trees as she learns the ways of her land and her tractor. She is beyond excited to be working at Hazon – blending her love for Judaism, her talent for active community collaboration, and her passion for living sustainably.
Rabbi Nate DeGroot is the Hazon Detroit Co-Director and Spiritual and Program Director. In this role, he is helping the Detroit Metro Jewish community to reconnect with their own inherited earth-based Jewish spirituality and reinvest in their historic relationship with the Detroit community around its transformative environmental justice work. He was ordained at Hebrew College in Boston, where he also received a Masters in Jewish Education. He most recently served as the inaugural Jewish Emergent Network Rabbinic Fellow at IKAR in Los Angeles, and before that founded a grassroots cooperative Jewish community in Portland, Oregon. He is a lover of the wild and is excited to bring his passion for all things sacred to his work at Hazon.Detroit, MI | email@example.com
Brittany Feldman is the Program Coordinator for Environmental and Outdoor Engagement at Hazon Detroit. She attended Central Michigan University where she studied Recreation, Parks, and Leisure Services Administration. Prior to joining Hazon, she worked as an Outdoor Educator for Tamarack Camps and a Program Coordinator at the Farmington Hills Nature Center. Her background includes leading educational programs in teambuilding, adventure courses and environmental wilderness classes. In her spare time Brittany enjoys hiking, tie-dyeing, and watching the Food Network.Detroit, MI | 248.752.4294 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Hannah previously worked in environmental consulting and has lived and worked on organic farms across North and South America. A transplant to Detroit from the metropolitan area, Hannah has fallen in love with the city’s urban agriculture scene and when not getting her hands dirty she can be found exploring, talking to strangers, or planning her next trip. Hannah attended Wayne State University where she studied biochemistry and chemical biology with a focus in environmental science.Detroit, MI | email@example.com
Hazon’s work in Metro Detroit is made possible by the generosity of the following funders:
William Davidson Foundation
The William Davidson Foundation seeks to have impact in the following areas of interest:
- Preserving and enhancing Jewish identity and tradition in the United States and Israel, with a special interest in Southeast Michigan.
- Strengthening and revitalizing the Southeastern Michigan region.
Ben N. Teitel Charitable Trust
In our first year of operation in Metro Detroit (August 2015 – July 2016), we’ve been grateful for the opportunity to work with these organizations (among others):
Jewish Federation of Metro Detroit
North End Christian CDC/Oakland Avenue Farmway
Congregation Shaarey Zedek
Congregation Adat Shalom
Hillel Day School
Congregation Shir Tikvah
Temple Beth El
Michigan Fitness Foundation
The Boggs Center
Repair the World
Detroit Jews for Justice
Isaac Agree Downtown Synagogue
Congregation Beth Ahm
Detroit Food Policy Council
Keep Growing Detroit
JOIN for Justice
Song and Spirit/Everyone’s Garden
Chabad of Greater Downtown Detroit
Ann Arbor Reconstructionist Congregation
The Eastern Market Corporation
Hillel of Metro Detroit
Brightmoor Youth Garden
Eastern Market Corporation
Let’s celebrate Jewish food traditions, bring them into the public space, and let’s renew Jewish life and create a better world for everybody…
The day-long 2018 festival was attended by approximately 6,200 people and included:
- Food marketplace featuring emerging entrepreneurs from Food Lab and Kitchen Connect, and fresh produce from Detroit growers.
- Chef Demos and tastings: cookbook author and chef Paula Shoyer made tzimmes puree from her book The Healthy Jewish Kitchen and spoke about strategies for lightening up your favorite holiday family recipes. Cookbook author and chef Emily Paster demonstrated Jewish preserving, turning matbucha into shakshuka, from her book The Joys of Jewish Preserving. Also, Zingerman’s Principal BAKE instructor, Sara Molinaro, demonstrated techniques and tips for making flaky, crispy strudel, in the Community Kitchen in Shed 5. (Chefs demos supervised by the Council of Orthodox Rabbis of Metro Detroit.)
- Five food trucks and nine restaurant/catering booths included Truckshuka, Nu Deli, Nosh Pit, Cool Jack’s, Chef Cari, Sisters on a Roll, Soul Café, Zingerman’s Deli and Bakehouse, Taste of Ethiopia, The Clean Plate, Kravings, and more.
- 10-Minute Speakers’ Tent with topics that dealt with fermentation, plant-based nutrition, environmental justice, health and well-being, Detroit’s bee highway, The Farm Bill, heirloom plants and bioregionalism, Jewish law and factory farming, growing and selling cooperatively, and two speakers talked about their award-winning chicken soup and veggie stuffed cabbage.
- Demo tent for hands-on learning and skill sharing in the Family Pavilion, taught by Waldorf School instructors.
- Family and children’s tent for exploring, reading, and a chance to relax.
- Musical performances from Kidz Klez, The May Erlewine Trio, Mollywop!, PazMan SuperSession, and Hazzan Steve Klaper.
- Free guided walking tours of the Eastern Market.
- A place to meditate at the Meditation Works Truck.
- Tours of the Topsy Turvy Bus that runs on biodiesel and solar power.
Our Festival also included visiting, learning from, and doing DIYs with our more than 120 Jewish community sponsors, community justice partners, food entrepreneurs, and vendors.
We are looking forward to the 2019 Michigan Jewish Food Festival on Sunday, August 18, 2019 at the Eastern Market.
For more information and how to get involved email Marla Schloss.
Jewish Ferndale’s Public Menorah Promotes Environmental Ideals
By Keri Guten Cohen, The Jewish News, December 5, 2018
Menorah in the D honors ancient tradition, Pittsburgh victims
By Mark Hicks, The Detroit News, December 2, 2018
The Best Jewish Food in Detroit
By Liz Alpern and Jeffrey Yoskowitz, My Jewish Learning, November 7, 2018
Religious leaders hold call for unity in wake of Jewish attacks in Pittsburgh
By Briana Gasorski, Press & Guide, November 1, 2018
Religious leaders gather in Dearborn, condemn Pittsburgh synagogue mass murders
FOX 2 Detroit, November 1, 2018
Detroit’s Capitol Park Vigil
By Hannah Levine, The Jewish News, October 30, 2018
Metro Detroit Jewish groups hold vigil for Pittsburgh synagogue victims
By Francis X. Donnelly, The Detroit News, October 29, 2018
Jewish millennials reconnect with their Detroit roots through social activism
By Maureen McDonald, Model D, September 18, 2018
Sour Grapes? Nah, Sour Pickles!
By Louis Finkelman, Jewish News, August 30, 2018
Chef demos planned for Sunday’s Jewish Food Festival at Eastern Market
By Susan Selasky, Detroit Free Press, August 22, 2018
Celebrating Our Roots
By Vivian Henoch, myJewishDetroit, July 2018
Faces & Places: Hazon Detroit
Detroit Jewish News, April 26, 2018
No More Waste: Hazon Detroit serves up healthy heaps of compost — just in time for Earth Day
Detroit Jewish News, April 19, 2018
Social Justice Purim Celebration
Detroit Jewish News, February 22, 2018
Limmud 2018 – Jewish Learning Program
Detroit Jewish News, February 15, 2018
Minding The Environment – Hazon Inspires Environmental Change
The Jewish News, February 1, 2018
Envisioning Jewish Ed at the JCC
by Vivian Henoch, myJewishDetroit, November 6, 2017
Immersing Ourselves In Culture: Savorfull Hits The Michigan Jewish Food Festival & Hears From Joan Nathan, Author Of King Solomon’s Table
by Stacy Goldberg, Savorfull, September 6, 2017
A Feast from King Solomon’s Table
by Vivian Henoch, My Jewish Detroit, August 2017
Video Highlights of Jewish Food Festival
The Jewish News, September 1, 2017
Cooking Channel’s ‘Cheap Eats’ visits Detroit; Jewish food fest highlights sustainability
by Susan Selasky, Detroit Free Press, August 24, 2017
Second annual Jewish Food Festival coming to Eastern Market Aug. 27
Detroit Jewish News, August 10, 2017
Reflection on Returning to Detroit
by Zoe McCoon, July 10, 2017
Jewish Fare on Wheels
by Vivian Henoch, myJewishDetroit, June 2017
Nu Deli brings a new taste to Detroit
The Detroit Jewish News, June 22, 2017
Shaarey Zedek, B’nai Moshe and Hazon partner to provide organic produce
The Detroit Jewish News, June 16, 2017
Hazon Detroit celebrates Tu b’Shevat
by Sue Salinger, Detroit Jewish News, March 2, 2017
Deeper Roots, Wider Branches
by Sue Salinger, myJewishDetroit, February 2017
Welcome to Giving Gardens at Yad Ezra
by Vivian Henoch, myJewishDetroit, December 1, 2016
Food For Thought: Jewish Community Members Fight Hunger
Detroit Jewish News, October 5, 2016
Michigan Good Food Summit 2016: Faith-Based Organizations Working to Support Good Food in Michigan
Michigan Good Food, September 29, 2016
Michael Twitty: A Kosher Soul
by Vivian Henoch, myJewishDetroit, September 2016
A First! Michigan Jewish Food Festival
by Vivian Henoch, myJewishDetroit, September 2016
Eating Our Way Through the Michigan Jewish Food Festival
by Judy Lansky and Lauren Mazlin, myJewishDetroit, September 2016
Sue Salinger talks about the Michigan Jewish Food Festival
by Steve Byrne, Detours Podcast, August 25, 2016
The Israel Ride: Off the Beaten Path from Jerusalem to Eilat with Andy Roisman
by Vivian Henoch, myJewishDetroit, January 8, 2016
Why Hazon, Why Now
by Vivian Henoch, myJewishDetroit, November 20, 2015
by Barbara Lewis, Detroit Jewish News, June 4, 2015
Jewish Food Festival
2017 Michigan Jewish Food Festival
2016 Michigan Jewish Food Festival
Detroit Tu b’Shvat: Monica Lewis Patrick
Detroit Tu b’Shvat: Dr. Abdul El-Sayed
Detroit Tu b’Shvat: State Rep. Jeremy Moss
Detroit Tu b’Shvat: Jackson Koeppel
Detroit Tu b’Shvat: State Rep. Robert Wittenberg
Hazon in Detroit is proud to be a part of a national campaign to green Jewish organizations through the Hazon Seal of Sustainability. Functioning like LEED certification, or a “Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval, the Hazon Seal certifies that a Jewish organization has met a set of criteria marking it as a good world citizen with regard to its food and environmental practices, treatment of animals, and impact on climate change. Although the Seal of Sustainability is run on a national scale, Hazon in Detroit welcomes the following local Jewish organizations to its first Seal of Sustainability cohort. We’re excited about the kinds of projects they are considering:
- Congregation Adat Shalom – recyclables and outdoor gardening space for sustainability
- Congregation B’nai Moshe – recycling policy, CSA
- Congregation Shaarey Zedek – energy and sustainability; food policy work, CSA
- Congregation Shir Tikvah – certified natural habitat and self-guided Jewish Nature walk
- Hillel Day School – certified natural habitat and outdoor forest classroom; gardening
- Isaac Agree Downtown Synagogue – recyclables food policy work
- Jewish Ferndale – healthy spaces and garden development
- Kibbutz Detropia – solar powered water and growing food
- Tamarack Camps – healthy spaces and Farber Farm development
- Temple Beth El – garden development and support
- Yad Ezra – food policy and food growing
The Hazon Seal is capable of driving significant change within, and ultimately beyond the Jewish community in the next seven years. Specifically, it will:
- Enable organizations to establish baseline impact, in multiple spheres related to food, energy efficiency, waste reduction, carbon footprint, and health.
- Provide an easy and clear roadmap to enable Jewish institutions to become healthier and more sustainable, and save money, and enrich their Jewish education, and improve their branding, and excite existing members, and bring new members in the door.
- Celebrate success and progress, and incentivize institutions (via a series of awards and monetary prizes) to improve their performance, year-on-year.
Watch this page for updates!