Vigil and commemoration of the 100th Anniversary of Armistice Day in conjunction with Performance of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem , Saturday November 10th, at Proctor’s Schenectady from 6:15 to 7:30 PM

After receiving the announcement of the Albany Symphony Orchestra’s upcoming performance of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem as the last of a series of events commemorating the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day, Marcia Hopple brought the idea of leafleting and vigiling for peace at that performance to the October meeting of  WAW’s Iran Project.  After a discussion it was decided to vigil and leaflet in the courtyard leading to the back doors of Proctor’s theatre.  We obtained permission from both the Orchestra and Proctors to be there and be a voice for peace. Alexandra Lusak got permission for us to park in the lot of a nearby church so that we could leave the Proctors’ parking to the concert goers. Here are a few details from our outreach flyer to Capitol District peace groups:

Women Against War is planning a peace demonstration on Saturday November 10 to dovetail with a performance of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem at Proctors Theater in Schenectady.  It will also allow us to stand in spirit with Veterans for Peace and others who will be vigiling on Sunday, 11/11/18 in Washington DC

TIME:  6:15  – 7:30 PM. There will be two groups: arriving for the Pre-concert talk with David  Alan Miller at 6:30 PM, and for the concert at 7:30 PM

LOCATION:  Rear of Proctors, 432 State Street, Schenectady NY 12305 (near State and Jay Streets) We will be standing in the courtyard outside doors to Proctors from rear parking areas

OCCASION:  Albany Symphony Orchestra performance of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem to commemorate the first Armistice Day 100 years ago, ending World War I (the war that was supposed to end all wars).

The concert is the culmination of several events commemorating the first Armistice Day 100 years ago http://www.albanysymphony.com/armisticecentennialevents/

ACTION:  Handing out leaflets and displaying signs related to the theme End Endless War, as about 2,000 concert goers enter the theater.

We will provide signs.  Please try to carpool and dress for standing outside for the demonstration.  We will leaflet and hold our signs primarily at the rear of Proctors where most patrons arrive from the parking lots.  The Symphony and Proctors welcome us to be present at this Armistice Centennial event.  Proctors even offered to hand out coffee to the vigilers.

Parking available  WAW has permission to park in the lot at the First United Methodist Church of Schenectady.  They are at 603 State Street, about two blocks east of Proctors.  The lot is behind the church.  Another option is to park at Schenectady County library at 99 Clinton Street, at the corner of Liberty St., about three blocks from Proctors.  Please avoid parking in the lots directly behind Proctors to leave room for concert patrons. A parking garage near Proctors is usually free during performances and is accessible from Broadway.  Parking in the lots behind Proctors is not free.

As an update about our action: on a bitterly cold evening with a strong breeze 12 brave vigilers carried signs reading End Endless War and War Is Not The Answer and handed out about 500 leaflets with the theme Working for Peace through Music, Art, Poetry and Policy and ending with the phrase “Together we can make a Peaceful World.”

 

 

Grannies for Peace vigil for an End to Endless War, on September 21, 2018, The International Day of Peace.

On an extremely windy evening 20 Grannies for Peace and their allies held a vigil to call for an end to endless war. We were there on the occasion of The International Day of Peace. A commemorative day that was established in 1981 by unanimous United Nations resolution. As it says on their website: “Peace Day provides a globally shared date for all humanity to commit to Peace above all differences and to contribute to building a Culture of Peace.”    

We stood from a little before 5 PM to 6 PM.  Because of the high winds we were unable to unfurl most of our banners. But we did hold the Women Against War banner. Wendy brought two peace flags of her own. Joan and Harry brought their peace flag. Pete also brought some sturdy plastic signs that he attached to poles at the spot where traffic came off the Northway heading to Central Avenue or Wolf Road.

A small committee of Grannies planned this vigil, including Joan, Doreen and Dot, with help from others on the usual tasks involving outreach. Our numbers were smaller than usual because several of us were out of town or had schedule conflicts. Nevertheless we still made a colorful and passionate group to which commuters responded with honks and peace signs.

Our outreach flyer shared our reasons for being there with these words, written by Maud:

Enough!
End Endless War!

War is not the answer. Let’s declare war on war so that the outcome is peace upon peace.
Let’s work to end U.S. wars and militarism, support peace and human rights initiatives, and redirect our tax dollars into healthcare, education, green jobs and other life-affirming programs.

And now for the pictures, taken by Harry Thornhill:

Grannies for Peace, SJC contingent, with Tom Ellis. Photo by John Amidon


There is also a short, 2 minute video taken by John Amidon.