How long is the March route?
It is a bit less than two miles on a fairly wide, flat, and well maintained sidewalk. There is one minor hill over the railway tracks.
Ample parking is available at the Diamond lot with entry via Hermitage Rd/Squirrel Rd only. The parking lot/entrance off Boulevard is reserved for expo tablers and handicapped only, and will be blocked without in/out access by the March from roughly 9 - 10:30am.
Can I bring my sign/banner? pet?
Yes, bring it! We march on public sidewalk. Please keep banners to no wider than 4'. Please remember, no helium balloons, glitter or pets inside the Ashe Center.
How can I help?
You can donate here: gofundme.com/womens-march-rva
You also can contribute to the Women's March tradition of leaving spaces better than we found them, by bringing your coffee etc in reusable containers, packing out trash. We also ask that you embrace the spirit of community in the day and watch for ways to help/uplift those around you who may be struggling with handicaps, social/crowd anxiety, claustrophobia, lost children, etc.
Why March the week before the ‘real’ March?
We are marching together on Sat Jan 12, 2019, a week prior to the anniversary of the original Women's March. This date was set intentionally, so as not to distract from the Martin Luther King Jr weekend activities (Jan 19-21, 2019) and so those who wish to attend Women’s March National in Washington DC may do so (Jan 19). We seek to complement these unaffiliated efforts, not compete with them.
Is this event family friendly?
As friendly as any public event can be. All are welcome. Be aware that some of the music and vended items WILL have profanity. So long as you bear no guns, alcohol, smoking, pets, helium balloons, or (gasp) glitter (RPS owns the venue, and them’s RPS rules). We do not have childcare in place for this event - sorry. Women’s Marches are traditionally very friendly, nonjudgmental, and nurturing spaces, please help us keep it that way.
Are you affiliated with Women’s March National?
Women’s March RVA is a separate, independent organization from Women’s March National. National has never had a presence in Richmond and has not been in DC since 2017 (DC 2018 was run by March Forward Virginia, which is also unaffiliated). Although we share similar values, such as equality, diversity and inclusivity, we operate independently. We are a group of Richmond volunteers who do not take direction nor receive financial support from National.
Our focus is to engage, uplift, and connect local energy to Richmond orgs doing the daily work in our community of supporting all womxn, particularly those of color and from historically marginalized groups.
If you are independent of National, why are you using their branding?
We are committed to re-branding. By the time this group even decided to engage with hosting an event, given skepticism about the Women’s March Movement broadly, there wasn’t time for a full, considered, intentional rebranding. At that point we as a group agreed to press forward, knowing we would later rebrand. Our brand person is passionate and talented; she will do it right and well. Here’s hoping we can demonstrate another way forward as we focus on and serve the needs particular to our own community here in Richmond, in all its wonderful facets.
We will have a poster area at the Expo seeking crowd input on what they would like to see going forward in terms of actions, name, branding from us in the service of Richmond. We are thinking of asking the same question online as well, in debrief.
Why haven’t you fixed the typo that says womxn? Why do you use genderism instead of transphobia? Are non-binary folks welcome?
Womxn is an intentional spelling. Womxn is a spelling of “women” that is a more inclusive term, and is more intersectional than womyn because it includes trans women and women of color. Genderism (and cissexism) refers to the pervasive system of discrimination and exclusion that oppresses people whose gender and/or gender expression falls outside cis-normative constructs.
Basically, we welcome and support trans- and non-binary gendered folks. We probably should have just said that instead of trying to be cute with the thesaurus.
What is the plan for bad weather?
Lalala, we can’t hear you! Humperdink, Humperdink, Humperdink. Bad weather is categorically not allowed to happen. Should something drastic occur (snow, ice, monsoon, that kind of thing), we would announce any closure on the website, Facebook page, and Facebook group as soon as possible, and strive to keep the indoor Expo going. Because the Arthur Ashe Expo venue is a Richmond Public Schools property, we would be affected by public school decision to close, however.
Will you have translators?
Yes, we have a volunteer ASL translator for the on-stage speakers. We have another ASL volunteer who will float around the organization and vendor tables to help as needed. We are working on Spanish language translator(s). Please contact us at WomensMarchRVA@gmail.com if you would like to volunteer as a translator.
Is this event accessible?
Yes! There are handicap parking spots and the venue is accessible, as a Richmond Public Schools facility. We will have a floor chairs and wheelchair section near the speaker stage, for those who need it, in addition to bleacher seating. Please contact us if you need other accommodations.
What’s the deal with the hats?
It’s such an opinionated area. We have to admit the pink pussy hats were genius branding/marketing/photo ops and community-builders. Yet, some in our beloved community feel excluded by them. We suggest you wear what resonates with you. We recognize that the hats we had made are still an imperfect emblem. With pink, brown, black, and rainbow stripes, to us they represent solidarity for various social issues and causes. We love them as they reflect our goal of intentional, radical inclusiveness. If you would like to make this hat, there are instructions posted here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1691529190909364/permalink/2176982592364019/
Why aren’t attendee names public in your Facebook event?
Great question. That was intentional. Especially since Charlottesville, some in our community are intensely uncomfortable with their names in public. We made the promise early on to maintain privacy, so are unwilling to surprise change the policy on folks now. Yes, we realize this may decrease event reach on Facebook. Please feel free to share, like, post the event to help us reach everyone!
Humperdink, Humperdink, Humperdink?
Just checking if the Princess Bride fans were still with us. It did make sense, promise.