Occupy Chicago had a change of venue Saturday afternoon to Rogers Park and then the CTA's Red Line.
Rogers Park-area Occupy sympathizers and participants rallied at The Glenwood Bar on Glenwood near Morse. Glenwood patrons hear the Red Line rumbling past every few minutes on the embankment about 30 feet from the entrance.
From there, about 50 occupiers boarded the Red Line for the Loop and joined forces with their downtown compadres.
Jim Ginderske, one of the organizers of the Saturday event, said they decided to plan an outreach event in Rogers Park because about 20 friends and neighbors kept running into each other in the Loop. Jim also said:
Working class neighborhoods like [Rogers Park] are massively affected by the current economic circumstances, and many folks are more comfortable learning about Occupy in the community than by venturing downtown for the first time alone. We brought those factors together around public transportation because of the key role the Red Line plays in our neighborhood.
We held a mini-general assembly on the train, using the human mic. Nearly everyone talked about why they came, and for many it was their first 'occupy' experience. People that boarded while this was happening stayed in the car with us and several nodded along as people spoke. The train conductor even came on the intercom and welcomed us.
Downtown we joined about 500 other occupiers and participated in the citywide general assembly. There we discussed strategy, Movement organization, and relationships with other occupations. We also handed out specially-made 'occu-pies' that First Slice bakery donated at our event at The Glenwood.
Going forward, we will be hosting a weekly general assembly (GA) at 3 p.m. on Sundays in Rogers Park. Next week's GA will be on the patio of the Heartland Cafe. This kind of neighborhood presence will be happening all over Chicago as this movement continues to grow.
Godspeed to all involved.
All photos by ArtistJ.