Lake Eola Ladle Fest!
On April 4th, Eric Montanez became the first Food Not Bombs member in Orlando arrested under the City's anti-homeless food sharing ordinance. That measure, aimed at Orlando FNB and other groups that help hungry and homeless people, bans unpermitted food sharings of more than 25 people in more than three dozen downtown parks. Groups only are allowed two one-time permits per per park in a 12-month period. Eric's trial starts Mon., Oct. 8. In addition, five other FNB comrades arrested under a City noise ordinance while drumming outside a fund-raising event for Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer have a pre-trial hearing on Oct. 10.
Eric is, of course, one of hundreds of Food Not Bombs members arrested over our movement's more than 25-year history for the "crime" of sharing food with the hungry and homeless and directly challenging the poverty and inequality that make FNB necessary. His trial will set a precedent that will affect FNB and other anti-poverty groups throughout the country; so what happens to Eric and Orlando Food Not Bombs should be of concern to all of us. Cities and developers around the country are keeping a watchful eye on Orlando to see what they may be able to get away with. The City and business interests need to know that we will not let them take away our rights and tighten thescrews on the poor and homeless through gentrification and criminalizing homelessness. To put pressure on the City, we will hold Lake Eola Ladle Fest--a three-day event in Lake Eola Park in the very spot where Eric was arrested by more than a dozen uniformed and undercover Orlando police for ladling out stew to the homeless.
From Oct. 8-10, we would like FNB members from around the country to stand in solidarity with Eric, OFNB, and the local poor and homeless by helping us share breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and also holding various events and workshops throughout the day. We hope to attract as many of our community's homeless and low-income residents, and supporters from around the country, as possible. We also as a group will walk to the courthouse each morning and we encourage people to show support for Eric by attending his trial. The third day we will hold "The March of Mimes" in support of the Cruddy Dyer-rhea Drum Corps 5--Ryan Hutchinson, Bryan Jones, Brett Mason, Eric, and Will Vertlieb--and also free speech rights.
We here in Orlando we can provide some sleeping space. People are encouraged to bring items such as canned goods, fresh veggies and prepackaged snacks to donate. Also there will be a really really free market that will be available for the homeless and low income residents, so brings things to donate to that, too.
The Lake Eola Ladle Fest begins on the morning of October 8 in the park's picnic area which is located at the corner of Central and Osceola in downtown Orlando. If you are coming the night before or have any questions, e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll try to find you a place to stay at our collective house(s).
Please forward this message far and wide. We need as many people as possible to participate.
Orlando Food Not Bombs