Report back on Running Down the Walls 2021 from New York City Anarchist Black Cross (ABC).
It’s no newsflash that the global pandemic, which has devastated so many, including imprisoned folks, is not over. So, for full transparency, we didn’t really know what to expect when we asked friends, allies, comrades, and others with whom we share affinity, to show up for a 5k run and barbecue. We were certainly heartened after tabling a couple of recent events at which we got great interest and met a lot of folks we’d never seen before, but that doesn’t always translate into a successfully attended event. Regardless, we put out the call and New York CAME THROUGH. Throughout the day, we had over 100 folks come through, participate, donate, and eat. We exceeded our fundraising goal of $4,000 and that means more loot for elder former NYS political prisoners and the ABCF warchest. There is still time to donate at venmo.com/nycabc or paypal.me/nycabc
Running Down the Walls in NYC is always a multi-generational event and we knew that meant having folks more vulnerable to Covid-19 there to show support (or have their parents show support for the young ‘uns). We implemented appropriate protocols for keeping everyone as safe as possible, and it turns out to be slightly annoying, but not difficult. Thanks to everyone who came out for understanding and being patient as we took longer to hand out food and drinks, kept everything wiped down, and all that other hoopla.
Setting up early, we were able to distribute a lot of free literature and talk with plenty of folks enjoying a day in the park and curious about the colorful flyers. By the time folks started showing up to register, everyone was hype. Recognizing not everyone participating has the same relationship to time (our nice way of saying there were plenty who were tardy for the party), we waited until after 2:30 to start the actual run. As always, some showed up eager to get the five kilometers behind them and a plate of food in front. And with so many folks, the event organizers left with nothing but empty containers (and a bunch of funds for our PPs and POWs) as the vegan cookout got entirely housed.
Running Down the Walls 2021 was familiar and unique at the same time. It was incredible to receive such great support from so many communities who showed up. We are grateful and deeply appreciate everyone who came through, donated online, promoted RDTW, or supported in myriad other ways. That’s what’s up and that’s how we get down (the walls).