Hundreds of East Hawaii residents are expected to convene Saturday for a 1.1-mile, peaceful march and demonstration on the one-year anniversary of President Donald Trump’s inauguration.
The Stand Up for Your Rights march begins at 11 a.m. at Lili‘uokalani Gardens across Lihiwai Street from Hilo Bay Cafe. It will proceed along Kamehameha Avenue and end with sign-waving at the Mo‘oheau Park Bandstand. At noon, there will be an expo themed “IMUA: Doing My Part” that will include food vendors and booths with activities, educational materials and female candidates running for and serving in public office.
“There’s a sense of solidarity in coming together with other people and it kind of reinforces that feeling that you’re not all alone,” said organizer Phil Barnes on Wednesday. “Plus, you’ll meet other people involved in various causes. You’ll see there are a bunch of us here and we all want the same things. So it takes away a lot of those feelings of isolation.”
Saturday’s event is one of about 250 marches and rallies planned to mark the one-year anniversary of the Women’s March — an international political protest aimed at Trump after his inauguration. More than 600 Women’s Marches took place last year. An estimated 2,000 people attended last year’s Women’s March in Hilo. Barnes said he hopes to see at least 1,000 people attend this year.
Saturday’s Hilo event encompasses multiple issues in addition to women’s rights, including LGBT rights, environmental issues, health care and rights for immigrants and Native Hawaiians, Barnes said.
“There’s a really long list,” Barnes said. “It’s … the basic safety net of rights people have come to expect in this country.”
On Sunday, West Hawaii residents will gather for the Wahine Power, Kona Women’s March Anniversary 2018. It begins at 1 p.m. at Hale Halawai Park. It will include women vendors, arts and entertainment and speakers hailing from throughout the state, including Teresa Shook, a Maui resident who helped launch the global Women’s March movement.
Those interested in attending the Saturday event in Hilo are advised to plan and dress appropriately for the weather. Parking is limited so carpooling is encouraged.
To reserve a booth or for more information, call Shannon Matson at 937-3037 or email hilowomensmarch@gmail. com.
Email Kirsten Johnson at email@example.com.