The Times, Trenton

Peace Festival Plans Set For Saturday

The Times of Trenton — Thursday, October 25, 2007

By Jake Remaly
The Times

The Princeton-based Coalition for Peace Action is scheduled to rally on the sidewalk in front of the River Line of New Jersey Transit, across Clinton Avenue from the main Trenton station, on Saturday, Oct. 27, from 9 a.m. to 9:45 a.m.

Demonstrators will then take a train to the Walt Whitman Arts Center at Rutgers-Camden, where they'll rally, and then march to Philadelphia for the Regional Peace Festival with speakers, music and poetry from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

The events are part of a series of 11 major regional demonstrations in the United Sates on Saturday, coordinated by United for Peace and Justice, a coalition with more than 1,400 affiliates.

Confirmed speakers at the Trenton pre-boarding rally include New Jersey Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman; State Sen. Shirley Turner; Jerome Harris, chairman of the New Jersey Black Issues Convention; the Rev. Rene Rory John, dean of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Trenton; Yoel Bitran, of the Princeton Campus Anti-War Network; and Ladonna Blount, Central Jersey organizer of New Jersey Citizen Action.

The "Peace Train," using New Jersey Transit's River Line, is scheduled to leave at 9:45 a.m. Tickets will be available at the pre-boarding rally for $2 each. The train is scheduled to arrive in Camden at 10:50 a.m.

From 11 a.m. to 11:45 a.m., Peace Train riders and other supporters from southern New Jersey will join for a Feeder Rally at the Walt Whitman Arts Center of Rutgers-Camden, located at the intersection of Second and Cooper Streets.

Confirmed speakers and performers include: The Rev. Bob Moore, executive director of the Coalition for Peace Action; Bohemian Sunrise, a musical group; Lamont Dixon, a Camden poet; Tony DeSantis, a guitarist and actor; Mary Cortes, of South Jersey Environmental Justice; Ryan Bates, jazz musician and vice principal of Camden High School; Dr. Cathy Santos, of the National Alliance of Women Veterans; and Kenneth McIntosh, president of the Camden Educational Association.

At about 11:45 a.m., the New Jersey marchers will go over the Ben Franklin Bridge toward Independence Mall in Philadelphia, joining marchers from elsewhere in the Mid-Atlantic region for the Regional Peace Festival.

Scheduled speakers and performers at the Regional Peace Festival include: Chief Dale "White Panther" Fryer and Drummers from the Lenape Nation; Latin jazz by Suzette Ortiz Ensemble; Brooklyn hip hop band Rebel Diaz; Tom Mullian & Friends; Sori Mori Korean Drummers; poets Eleanor Wilner and Martin Wiley; spoken word by MC Therapist Smarts and Culture Punk Hip Hop Band.

There will also be an open mike for youth to sound off and speeches by Iraq veterans, military families and community activists from around the Mid-Atlantic region.

Those coming from the Princeton area are encouraged to carpool at 8:15 a.m. from the Rite Aid (formerly Eckerd Drug) end of the Princeton Shopping Center, 301 N. Harrison Street. The public is invited to the pre-boarding rally, even if they don't continue on the train to participate in the remainder of the day's events.

As the activities of the day go through the lunch hour, participants from New Jersey are encouraged to bring a brown-bag lunch or money to purchase food from street vendors. For more information, visit www.peacecoalition.org or call the CFPA office at (609) 924-5022.
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