Thursday, April 26, 2012

MayDay Celebration this Saturday!!!

Unprecedented Assembly of Community Organizations Plan to Join the Party at MLK Park

Grand Rapids - For the last 2 years the closest Saturday to May 1st MLK Park has been reserved for a community celebration. Hundreds of people have come to the park for food, entertainment, and resources to organize for a better Grand Rapids and society. This year the celebration will take place April 28th at Martin Luther King Jr. Park from 12 noon to 8pm.

* A diverse group of acts from poets to hip hop to rock are scheduled.
* There will be a community potluck from 12-2 with Bartertown Diner and Food Not Bombs (Grand Rapids) participating as well.
* Grand Rapids Really, Really Free Market will be at the park where people can give and take items at no cost.
* The local group, Stop Targeting Our Kids (STOK) will offer activities for children and in between performers, resources for working people will be offered by other participating organizations.

International Workers Day May 1 (May Day) is a holiday celebrated around the world in remembrance of the Haymarket Martyrs and the fight for the 8 hour day. May 1st marks the 126th anniversary of International Workers Day. The origins of International Workers’ Day go back to 1886. Hundreds of thousands of workers across the United States went on strike. In Grand Rapids, 7,000 furniture workers of the Knights of Labor left their workplaces for an impromptu march. Workers demanded that their 10- and 12-hour work days be shortened to an 8-hour day with no reduction in pay. Over the next few years, thousands of workers won the 8-hour workday that many of us still enjoy today. The memory of the Martyrs, and the struggle that they died for is what continues to bring hundreds of thousands of workers into the streets, around the world every May 1.

This years event has seen an increase in local organization’s participation. Participating organizations include: Our Kitchen Table, The LGBT Network of West Michigan, The Bloom Collective, Grand Rapids Institute for Information Democracy, Move To Amend, DecriminalizeGR.

“As workers generally and Grand Rapids workers specifically we are glad to join our community again this year in celebration of our achievements as well as for what we can do to build a better place for all of us, the workers, the 99%”, said Onya Jackson IWW member and chef at vegan/vegetarian restaurant Bartertown Diner. The IWW will unveil an organizing campaign that may affect ArtPrize.

The Industrial Workers of the World is a rank-and-file labor union open to all workers.


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