Temple Israel roots go back to the late 1800’s. The Reform congregation is located in the Temple/Center, a facility which is co-supported by Temple Israel congregants and the Northland Jewish Fund (NJF). The building is the hub of the Jewish community, with educational and cultural events sponsored by the Northland Jewish Fund and/or Temple Israel. The Jewish Center also houses the Ida Cook Hebrew School and the Temple Israel Religious (Sunday) School.
At its peak the Jewish population of the area numbered 3,000-3,500 people. However, the population currently numbers about 800-900 people. With the decreases in population, the Reform and Conservative congregations merged in 1971 and created Temple Israel. In 1975, the Jewish Educational Center and Temple Israel merged physical resources. A sanctuary addition was constructed. As the needs of the Jewish community have evolved, the Temple/Center has grown to handle the needs.
Also in Duluth, Chabad Lubavitch of Northern Minnesota was established in 2001 to serve the Jewish needs of communities in northern Minnesota and Wisconsin. Chabad endeavors to reach out to every Jew, regardless of affiliation or background, reviving the sparks of Jewish consciousness embedded in the heart and mind of every Jewish person. Chabad's programs in Duluth and throughout Northern MN & WI include: Adult education classes, Talmud Torah, Congregation Chabad Lubavitch Gan Israel winter camp, camp Gan Israel summer camp, holiday awareness programs, hospital visitations, Jewish calendar, the L'Chaim Torah publication, Jewish student outreach at UMD, N'Shei Chabad women's programs, Shabbat Dinners and more. For information, call (218) 722-3517.