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Richmond IndyMedia Live! Every Tuesday, 12:30 - 1PM on 97.3 WRIR LP-FM, and streaming online from wrir.org!

News :: [none]

Protestors March on Richmond Braves Promo Party.

The Defenders for Freedom, Justice and Equality and other concerned citizens marched on the Farmer's Market this evening, where the Richmond Braves were throwing a party to win support for their proposal to build a new stadium in Shockoe Bottom.


The Defenders for Freedom, Justice and Equality and other concerned citizens marched on the Farmer's Market this evening, where the Richmond Braves were throwing a party to win support for their proposal to build a new stadium in Shockoe Bottom.

The pro-stadium festivities included free hot dogs, tours of the proposed construction site, a lively brass band, a giant inflatable pitching booth and entertainment by "Diamond Duck", the mascot of the Richmond Braves. The event was well-covered by local media. Sports Radio 910 (AM) had set up a live broadcast booth, and was conducting on-site interviews.






Meanwhile, protestors were gathering at the Gabriel placard on Broad Street, handing out literature and displaying signs and banners for the passing traffic to see.






Just before 6:00, the group began its march down Broad and 17th Streets, led by a banner of Defenders of Freedom, Justice and Equality. Many held placards that read "Defend Richmond's Black History!" Chants of "No Stadium in Shockoe Bottom!" began to drown the sounds of merrymaking in Farmer's Market as the demonstrators neared and then congregated along one side of the grounds.








In response to the disruption, the brass band hired to play for the Braves began to perform more loudly - but the protestors just began to chant in time with the music. Local media reporters quickly rushed over to get footage of the demonstration and interview some of the participants.

Check your local news tonight for further coverage.


A few brief interviews conducted on site

For the park:

"I'm Sarah White and I'm here to support the proposed stadium in Shockoe Bottom. I'm a resident down here - I live right by Farmer's Market - and living down here I'd like to see the place cleaned up. From what I've heard and read about the proposed site, they're going to do more than just put a stadium up. They're going to build apartments and restaurants and shops, and it's going to really clean up the area. I think it would be great to have city support behind it."

"I'm Tyler Thompson, I'm a business owner down here, and I'm part of Progress Richmond. If people were to look at the actual facts, they would see that this is a great plan for Richmond. It comes down to tax revenue for the city. The city has to spend no money, yet the city makes all the money off of it. None of these buildings are actually registered historic. The ones that are getting knocked down are cinderblock, which is not historic, and the Braves have put forth a very big effort to try to appease everyone and make everyone happy with this proposal. It's all privately funded. The city doesn't spend any money."


Against the park:

"My name is Saida, and I'm out here because there's no reason to build a ballpark - first of all because of the history of the place. It's an old graveyard of slavery and it's just not the right place to do it. Secondly, it's going to break down all the small businesses downtown, which a lot of my friends own. There's no point in [going along] with this big corporate scheme for downtown."

"I'm Elizabeth, and I've done some research on the area - on the negro burial ground and on some of the slave sites down here. It's a really an important area, and if they tear it up and build on it, in 50 years when they want to get rid of the stadium, everything will be lost permanently. You can't get it back once you've lost it."
 
 


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