NEW YORK, NY–After being at Bryant Park for about four hours, some of my group and I stopped for a minor snack break. In the midst of our meal we watched a stream of other protesters leaving the park, passing by us down 6th avenue, turning eastward on 40th street and up 5th Avenue and towards Grand Central.
We didn’t know exactly where the march was headed—there was so much scheduled to happen, and it was difficult to find pickets we attempted to visit earlier in the morning—but we decided to get in on the action. Overhearing the name “Grand Central” from someone ahead, we initially thought the station was our destination until we passed it; crossing the streets, a line of NYPD officers on their motorbikes attempted to stall the march by threatening (and trying) to ride through us as we crossed. But the march went on, stopping first outside the Capital Grille on 42nd street before 3rd avenue. “One, two, three, four, don’t go through that restaurant door!” we chanted as we circled around, “five, six, seven, eight, until they don’t discriminate!”
We backtracked the path we took to get there—more crossing streams of police on bikes, more crossing of streets—converging at Chipotle across from the New York Public Library’s north side. The march quickly became a picket for farmer and immigrants’ rights as a wall of NYPD officers watched from the parking lane, the public standing across the street with their cellphones. We were welcomed back to Bryant Park, which held a relaxed and celebratory atmosphere—confetti, music and art as the day continued.
You can check out more of our May Day posts here.