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Image of Pam Weinstein

© Gilles Perrin http://www.gilles-perrin.com/

Pam Weinstein
Market Master, Northwest Detroit Farmers’ Market

Someone said, oh, let’s start a farmer’s market. I’ve never worked harder in my life and I’ve never had more fun.

My organization that I work for is a neighborhood nonprofit. People see it as a social good. This is meeting an important need in our community for access to fresh, healthy food, and people need a place to be with each other. Detroit is a food desert, but it’s also a place desert. There aren’t places for people to be with each other in a social way. So in a very small, micro way we meet that social [need].

I was very lucky last year. The Detroit planning commission sent us to Turin [Italy] to study the neighborhood markets. Oh my God! What amazing markets! They operate seven days a week, and they’re embedded right in the neighborhood. They have everything; not just food, there’s clothing, there’s underwear, there’s a hardware store, there’s everything you could possibly want. It was revelatory because a big problem in Detroit is not just that there’s no access to food, there’s no access to anything. There’s no retail. There’s no place to go shopping. So the model in Turin, even though it’s very ambitious to think of it, it’s a model that really would work in Detroit.

From June 14, 2012, interview