Occupy's 135-Day Vigil at Colton Hall to End Sunday
March 30, 2012
When occupiers were ordered by Monterey city officials to depart from the Veteran's Park encampment in January, they weren't sure where they'd go next, having come from disbanded encampments in Santa Cruz, Oakland and as far as Las Vegas.
Their last semi-permanent physical presence in the city will end Sunday when Jimmy O’Reilly stops his 24/7 vigil on the steps of Colton Hall after 135 days, according to members of Occupy Monterey.
"I looked around at all these good people who cared so much about our country, and I wanted to do what I could to help," O'Reilly said in a statement. He began his vigil Nov. 18 after a three-day vigil by Timothy Barrett and a 150-person march.
O'Reilly's permit did not allow for sleeping outdoors. "It is still a mystery how he managed to maintain a 24-hour vigil for 135 days without sleeping," according to a statement released by Occupy Monterey.
Locally, the end of O'Reilly's vigil marks a transition away from occupying physical spaces to more targeted protests as the movement looks to keep its relevance.
"We’re go to continue to do protests where it meets our mission, and also education and outreach," says Occupy Monterey participant and Monterey Peninsula College professor Alan Haffa. "We’re going to try to continue to have an event every other week or so protesting at banks, particularly fraud in the foreclosure process." Next up is a protest at a lecture the Panetta Institute's hosting April 9 on fiscal responsibility April 9.
Occupiers will celebration O'Reilly's vigil—which they say is the longest continuous occupation on the West coast—at 2pm Sunday, April 1.