Brooklyn’s progressives were in the house and partying down last night at the Prospect Park Bandshell as more than 1,500 people turned up at the #GetOrganizedBK Civic Festival.
City Councilmember Brad Lander and Assembly Member Robert “Bobby” Carroll, who both represent Park Slope, Windsor Terrace and Kensington, were the point people in organizing the event, which gave like-minded political progressives the chance to network while enjoying live music and cultural performances.
“After the unconscionable vote by the GOP members of the U.S. Senate, yesterday’s #GetOrganizedBK Civic Festival truly helped to restore our spirits for resistance & progress in the days ahead,” said Lander. “Thanks to Assembly Member Robert Carroll for organizing this together, and to BRIC for making it possible, and Fifth Avenue Committee for serving as our fiscal sponsor. And thanks most of all to the activists whose organizing and resistance and hope and inspiration is leading the way.”
Besides networking attendees made calls with Indivisible Nation BK, held a health-care die in, a voting right obstacle course by Common Cause, participated in screen-printing and button-making by Interference Archive, checked out books from the resistance library, and met dozens of activist organizations.
Among the highlights were rousing speeches from Mayor Bill de Blasio and Comptroller Scott M. Stringer, plus Public Advocate Letitia James singing an unforgettable performance of “I Will Survive” with The Occaisionalists.
Besides The Occaisionalists the performers included: Isaac Oliver (http://isaacoliver.com), the Gowanus Wildcats (https://vimeo.com/7549950), Xavier Cardriche (http://www.xaviercardriche.com), Artists for a Free World (http://www.artsforart.org/advocacy.html), Natalia Zukerman (http://www.nataliazukerman.com), Jean Rohe (http://jeanrohe.com), Girls Be Heard (http://girlbeheard.org) and the Bangladesh Institute of Performing Arts (http://bipa.tumblr.com).
Partners for the event included: Planned Parenthood of New York City Action Fund, Make the Road New York, The New York Immigration Coalition, Arts & Democracy, Park Slope Parents, DRUM – Desis Rising Up & Moving, Hand in Hand Family Services, IntegrateNYC4me, CBID – Central Brooklyn Independent Democrats, Fifth Avenue Committee, Center for Anti-Violence Education (CAE), OM Digital, 350 Brooklyn, PEN America, Park Slope Civic Council, Fast Food Justice, Common Cause, Atlas DIY, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, Brooklyn SolarWorks, Participatory Projecting Project, Rise and Resist.
“This idea for a festival started out over a cup of coffee with Councilmember Brad Lander and I months ago in the dead of Winter,” said Carroll. “Not surprisingly Get Organized BK produced a spectacular community event that represented the diversity, creativity and thoughtfulness of Brooklyn, while incorporating community performers and activists with professional artists, longstanding organizations and elected officials. I hope we are able to do something like this that brings all of Brooklyn together again next year!”