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The March for Our Lives: A Regional Preview

The student-led protest over gun violence called “March for Our Lives” will take place Saturday in Washington and communities across the nation.

Speeches, rallies, marches, demonstrations of the kind reminiscent of the 1960s. Thousands upon thousands of teens are boarding buses headed for D.C. and many more plan to make themselves seen and heard in their hometowns.

"March for our lives in Albany" begins at 10 a.m. on Swan Street by West Capitol Park. Democratic state Assemblywoman Pat Fahy will speak.   "I'm proud of those and thrilled that people are heading to Washington, but I want to be here with the students here."

Fahy says gun violence is "completely out of control."    "I don't want to let these students down. They  really have given me renewed hope that after years of not being able to do anything, that we can do the bump stock, that we can do extreme risk protection orders, that we can do serious background checks that will prevent this kind of violence."

Organizers in the Hudson Valley expect hundreds to join hands and surround Poughkeepsie High School Saturday at 1 p.m. Organizers say they are making "a stand for the protection of our children from violence and for a return to school as a safe place."

SOS Surround Our Schools will be held from 1 to 3 p.m.

"March for Our Lives Utica" begins at noon. Proctor High student Tina Mistric:   "Our goal is to have both students and any adults who attend the march to contact their government - contact their legislators. Vote out those accepting money from the NRA or staying silent or just giving condolences to the  situation that's happening... because, the adults of our government, it seems like they just wanna sit this one out and they wanna wait it out. And clearly, over the years, the school shooting rates have done nothing but risen, and that's not going to cut it for students anymore."

In Massachusetts, protestors are set to gather at Northampton High School at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, before "The Pioneer Valley March For Our Lives" makes its way to City Hall for a noon rally.  Half an hour due south, Springfield students will march from Court Square through downtown to the steps of City Hall, where they'll be joined by Democrat Elizabeth Warren. Organizer Trevaughn Smith considers landing the Senator "a huge victory."   "And I think that she'll really be able to speak on a federal level about gun reform that needs to happen."

Marches are also set for Pittsfield and Boston.

Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.
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