A Holiday Respite at Eastern Market, a Midwestern Institution

On a weekend when the nation was consumed by an act of unspeakable violence at Sandy Hook School in Connecticut, I joined my cousin Linda in seeking consolation from the pain in a joyful community experience in the heart of Detroit.  The Eastern Market is notable as one of the most authentic urban adventures in the country – a local food district with more than 250 vendors and merchants.  And it dates back to 1891 at that location! http://www.detroiteasternmarket.com/

On a weekend when the nation was consumed by an act of unspeakable violence at Sandy Hook School in Connecticut, I joined my cousin Linda in seeking consolation from the pain in a joyful community experience in the heart of Detroit.  The Eastern Market is notable as one of the most authentic urban adventures in the country – a local food district with more than 250 vendors and merchants.  And it dates back to 1891 at that location!  http://www.detroiteasternmarket.com/

It was an incredible experience to mingle with joyful families and food vendors in a holiday atmosphere, watching children’s faces light up as they sampled holiday specialties and listened to the live music.  A special van featured freshly cooked beignets, which always reminds me of the French Quarter in New Orleans – and it was an opportunity to introduce my cousin to this wonderful treat. We laughed that the company was based in Hamtramck, a Polish neighborhood, eliciting visions of beignets and kielbasa!  We also tasted spicy, warm Apple Cider, nibbled on delectable pears, and marveled at all the varieties of holiday baked goods.

I finally felt that I had found a local institution that could inspire the devotion I had for my beloved Brooklyn neighborhood, with its thriving Flatbush Food Coop in Ditmas Park, featuring locally grown produce, and a Sunday farmer’s market ( http://flatbushfood.coop/).

In fact, I can now add the Eastern Market to my list of favorite local farm produce experiences around the country.  In Los Angeles, I was part of a publicity team for the famous Original Farmers Market at Third and Fairfax and grew to love the uniqueness of its vendors and their histories (http://www.farmersmarketla.com/)

In San Francisco, the downtown farmers market was housed in the historic Ferry Building and you could spot famous local chefs like Alice Waters sampling the mouth-watering produce (http://www.ferrybuildingmarketplace.com/farmers_market.php).

Last Saturday evening reality returned as I watched the news unfold on the national tragedy and mourning.  I remain convinced it is the many healthy ways we express our sense of togetherness and community across this country that will ultimately heal us.

It was an incredible experience to mingle with joyful families and food vendors in a holiday atmosphere, watching children’s faces light up as they sampled holiday specialties and listened to the live music.  A special van featured freshly cooked beignets, which always reminds me of the French Quarter in New Orleans – and it was an opportunity to introduce my cousin to this wonderful treat. We laughed that the company was based in Hamtramck, a Polish neighborhood, eliciting visions of beignets and kielbasa!  We also tasted spicy, warm apple cider, nibbled on delectable pears, and marveled at all the varieties of holiday baked goods.

I finally felt that I had found a local institution that could inspire the devotion I had for my beloved Brooklyn neighborhood, with its thriving Flatbush Food Coop in Ditmas Park, featuring locally grown produce, and a Sunday farmer’s market ( http://flatbushfood.coop/).

In fact, I can now add the Eastern Market to my list of favorite local farm produce experiences around the country.  In Los Angeles, I was part of a publicity team for the famous Original Farmers Market at Third and Fairfax and grew to love the uniqueness of its vendors and their histories (http://www.farmersmarketla.com/).

In San Francisco, the downtown farmers market was housed in the historic Ferry Building and you could spot famous local chefs like Alice Waters sampling the mouth-watering produce (http://www.ferrybuildingmarketplace.com/farmers_market.php).

Last Saturday evening reality returned as I watched the news unfold on the national tragedy and mourning.  I remain convinced it is the many healthy ways we express our sense of togetherness and community across this country that will ultimately heal us.

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