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April 30, 2009 - Image 19

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2009-04-30

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Walk For Israel

Sunday show of solidarity will express pride for Jewish state.


Pe on emei pJ egoio

srael's 61st year of indepen-
dence will be celebrated on
Sunday, May 3, at the Walk
for Israel 2009. The Detroit Jewish
community event begins with a
picnic kosher lunch, Israeli dancing
and informational displays at 12:15
p.m. at Temple Shir Shalom in West
Bloomfield. It follows with a corn-
munity walk of solidarity at 1 p.m.
alongside Orchard Lake Road.
More than two-dozen Jewish corn-
munal organizations, area businesses
and individuals are sponsoring the
Israel Independence Day walk. Mark
Segel, walk chairman, has convened
the annual event in recent years to
demonstrate support for the State of
Israel and enable the Jewish commu-
nity and friends in Metro Detroit to
express their unity and pride for the
Jewish state.
"In a perverse world, where [Iran's
president] Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
is the guest of honor at the United
Nation's Durban II conference on
anti-racism, a walk supporting Israel
has been organized to honor a Jewish
state that believes in religious free-
dom, women's rights and individual
liberty:' Segel said. "These freedoms
are part of Israeli, American and
other Western democratic societies,
but not part of Islamic societies as
represented by Iran, Saudi
Arabia and others."
Beginning at 12:15
Walnut Road
p.m., a free kosher lunch
of pizza, humus, pita,
falafel and assorted Israeli
snacks will be available.
Shir Shalom cantorial
soloist Penny Steyer will
Israel Walk-->
lead an Israeli sing-along
and Uri Segal will conduct
Israeli dancing. There will
be opportunities to donate
tzedakah to Israeli chari-
ties and buy an Israeli T-
shirt. Young children can
have their faces painted
blue and white. And dis-
plays will be set up featur-
Maple Road
ing information about
modern Israel and Israeli

MI Shalom



organizations as well as Israel advocacy
"Following recent significant events
in the Middle East — a December war
with Hamas, a national election that has
brought Benjamin Netanyahu to be named
prime minister and visits to the region
by newly named U.S. Secretary of State
Hillary Clinton and special negotiator
George Mitchell — we are approach-
ing the date of Israel's 61st birthday on
Yom HaAtzmaut, April 29," said Allan
Gale, associate director of the Bloomfield
Township-based Jewish Community
Relations Council of Metropolitan Detroit.
"So while Jewish Detroiters may be
thinking spring:' he added, "we are also
encouraging them to 'think Israel!"
Andre Douville, Shir Shalom executive
director, said, "The Walk for Israel is such

an amazing experience. The clergy,
board of trustees and congrega-
tion of Shir Shalom are honored to
host this important event. For me
personally, my passion is Israel; it's
truly exhilarating to join together
and embrace our unified connec-
tion with such an incredible coun-
try and people."
Dany Saar, a board member of
the Walled Lake-based Michigan
Friends of the IDF, said, "Yom
HaAtzmaut is the day we celebrate
Israel's independence, which is a
privilege we have much because
of our IDE Therefore, here in our
community, the Friends of the
IDF must get together to celebrate
and make a clear statement: 'We
are 100 percent behind our troops
and we salute their efforts and love
them dearly.'"
The route of the Walk for Israel
will start at Temple Shir Shalom
(southeast of Walnut Lake and
Orchard Lake Road), proceed
south on Orchard Lake Road,
and turn around at the Sea Grille
Restaurant to return to Temple
Shir Shalom. Walkers will wave
Israeli and American flags and
sing and cheer in celebration of
the Jewish homeland.
Parking for participants will be
available at Temple Shir Shalom,
Doherty Elementary School, West
Bloomfield High School, Keter Torah
Synagogue, Shaarey Zedek B'nai Israel
Center and Green Elementary School.
Everyone is encouraged to attend
— intergenerational families, college stu-
dents (especially Birthright Israel alumni),
people with friends or family in Israel,
members of Zionist and other Jewish
organizations, day school students, syna-
gogue and youth groups, etc.
"On May 3:' Gale said, "let's walk with
our heads held high for our love of and
connection to Israel!' ❑

For information about the 2009
Walk for Israel and sponsorship,
contact the Jewish Community
Relations Council, (248) 642-5393,


April 30 2009


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