Organizers say Saturday’s BLM vigil in Nevada City will be peaceful |

Organizers say Saturday’s BLM vigil in Nevada City will be peaceful

Organizers with the Coalition for Racial Justice say a vigil set for Saturday in Nevada City will be peaceful and is meant to “mourn Black lives lost,”

In a release, the Coalition for Racial Justice stated, “We wanted our first event back since Aug. 9th to focus on remembering why we as a community have chosen to fight against racism, white supremacy and stand in solidarity with our black brothers and sisters across this country who have faced police brutality at staggering proportions. We wish to continue encouraging peace, as we always have since we first started organizing protests months ago. We are also using this event to come together as a community and take action together.”

The vigil is scheduled for 5 p.m. Saturday at Robinson Plaza, at Commercial and Coyote streets. The coalition encouraged those planning to attend the vigil to bring flowers, flameless candles or art, and to support local businesses by eating or shopping in town before and after the event.

Nevada City Mayor Erin Minett said the city is taking precautions, adding, “This is important. This is about healing.”

Police Lt. Paul Rohde said additional resources were requested from other agencies and there would be an “adequate” law enforcement presence for the vigil.

After Aug. 9, vigil organizer Ana Mendez Mora said the coalition took a deliberate break from holding demonstrations — both to heal from the physical and emotional trauma, but also to participate in nonviolent direct action training.

Authorities have charged three people in connection with an Aug. 9 counter-protest. A video shows counter-protesters apparently assaulting Black Lives Matter demonstrators.

“We have a security team to keep the peace,” she said, describing de-escalation techniques. “We are asking all attendees to not engage with counter-protesters. Their role is to be present and to not pay attention to outside forces, to heal as a community.”

Mendez Mora had one message she hoped would reach anyone still concerned about the intent behind the vigil.

“There’s a notion that we are from out of town,” she said. “There’s a lot of misinformation and a lack of education. Antifa is a political ideology, not an organization. We are local. We are families, we’re teens, we’re elders, we’re students, farmers, you name it.”

The common denominator?

“We all feel passionate about racial justice.”

Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at

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