Peaceful Demonstrations

Protesters with signs

Join a Demonstration

There were 69 weekly demonstrations between January 10, 2021 when news broke of the sale of the theatre and April 21, 2022 when the City Council voted to purchase the theatre.

Independent demonstrations continue every Sunday morning from 8 am - 11 am on the northeast corner of Wishon Avenue and Olive Avenue, across the street from Tower Theatre. Several concerned community members will be out there to show their support of the Tower District until the operation of the Theatre is fully in line with the needs of the community. #TowerToThePeople

Many neighborhood locals use Sunday morning demonstrations as a time to check in with neighbors before a Tower District brunch.

Is it safe?

It's okay to ask! And it's okay to be careful. We want everyone to exercise their right to peacefully assemble . . . well . . . peacefully! This is how we work to maintain a positive demonstration each Sunday:

We encourage our demonstrators to stay on the NE corner of Olive and Wishon.
Demonstrators are encouraged to stay on our corner to better provide for their safety and to reduce the risk of confrontation with others.

We create a safe space in the Chicken Pie Shop parking lot.
For official events, we have permission to use the Chicken Pie Shop parking lot, and we create a clear boundary between the private lot and the public sidewalk. Any trespassers are asked to leave the lot or the Fresno PD will be called.

We practice the "Three Ds": De-escalate, Disengage, and De-compress.
"Keeping the temperature down" is important to us during the protest. The presence of counter-protestors can be stressful, so we encourage non-engagement and focus on our message. If any demonstrator feels unsafe, harassed or rising stress, we encourage them to step back to take a break in the lot.

We also practice the "Three A's": Awareness, Anticipation, and Accountability.
Our committee and volunteers are trained to actively survey the lot and corner for any potential problems, needs, or issues. We do our best to meet the needs of our unhoused community, give information to passersby, and be on the lookout for potential escalation. Clear instructions are given if there is ever a safety issue. We also communicate regularly with Fresno PD in case of any anticipated issues. Any demonstrators who exhibit disruptive or aggressive behaviors are asked to leave immediately. If they do not, Fresno PD is called. We are committed to accountability toward regular demonstrators who are disruptive and act in an unsafe manner.

Other notes:

  • We ask anyone carrying large signs, flags, or umbrellas to be aware of when they may be unsafe or blocking walkways.

  • Please keep your signs on message regarding the zoning of the Tower Theatre and the health and community of our neighborhood.

Please review this information from the City of Fresno regarding when unlawful protestors can be cited and/or arrested. Organizers reserve the right to ask any group or individual to leave, at any time, without prior warning if they cannot adhere to our code of conduct. Please see our full code of conduct below and recommended safety precautions list.

Here are some PDFs with sources and links to important information:

Demonstration Guidelines

The Dos and Don'ts of Demonstrating PDF

Protest Safety Recommendations

Recommended Precautions for Safe Protesting PDF