Zekelman Holocaust Center in Farmington Hills waiving admission fee through end of year

Free admission comes after rise in antisemitism

News Story on Zekelman Holocaust Center in Farmington Hills waiving admission fee through end of year

FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich. – The Zekelman Holocaust Center in Farmington Hills is waiving its admission fee until the end of the year because of the rise of antisemitism.

Michigan’s only holocaust museum is hoping to attract more people after recent incidents of antisemitism. They want to make sure that nobody loses sight of the lessons learned from the holocaust.

Inside the Zekelman Holocaust Center are thousands of links to the past. Some big, like the cattle car used to bring Jewish people to Nazi death camps, and some small, like an Olympic pin.

Each is a story with a link to a person. The stories of the more than 6 million Jewish people killed at the hands of hate.

“They were people,” said Ruth Bergman, the museum’s director of education. “They drank coffee and they liked to go sledding, they had friends.”

From now until the end of the year the museum is opening its doors and its exhibits for free to combat a wave of antisemitism across the country and Metro Detroit.

Last year, incidents of antisemitism rose by nearly 60%, according to the Anti-Defamation League. A trend that’s only continued this year.

“The holocaust wasn’t a hurricane. It happened because people made choices,” Bergman said.

The museum is a look at the timeline of how the holocaust happened. How vibrant, diverse communities were the targets of hate.

“Whether it’s antisemitism, or it’s any kind of prejudice, when it becomes normalized, when saying terrible things out loud in public is considered to be just another day in America, when these lies are spread and people aren’t called out for it, then people get used to it and people think that’s the way it should be,” Bergman said.

Bergman knows that what the museum holds is heavy. A tour takes an emotional toll, and at the end, they want people to carry that weight.

“We want people to leave here empowered to speak up,” Bergman said.

The Zekelman Holocaust Center is open from Sunday to Friday. For more information, you can visit their website by clicking here.

Watch the full story in the video player above.

2022-12-20T12:44:32-05:00

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