Joining the 1 billion rising on Feb. 14
V-Day Petaluma joins the global uprising to put an end to violence against women and girls
Published: Tuesday, February 12, 2013 at 3:00 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 9:50 a.m.
Playwright and activist Eve Ensler read a United Nations statistic last year that shocked her — 1 billion women on the planet, a number equalling one in three women, will be raped, beaten or sexually assaulted in her lifetime.
WE ARE RISING
What: “We Are Rising” V-Day Petaluma art show
When: Artists' reception is 5-9 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9. The work is on display through March 3
Where: Worthy of Love, 226 Petaluma Blvd. North
ONE BILLION RISING: NORTH BAY/PETALUMA RISES
What: V-day Petaluma campaign's community event
When: 3-9 p.m. Feb. 14
Where: Petaluma Community Center, 320 N. McDowell Blvd.
SILENT NO MORE
What: Silent No More is a peaceful walk for an end to violence through downtown Petaluma. There will be two flash mobs, one beside Central Market on Petaluma Boulevard North and one at the crosswalk near Copperfield's Books on Kentucky Street. Participants are asked to wear black with shades of red, pink and fuschia. Participants may also bring signage with personal statements, such as “We are the 1 billion,” “Rape-free city” “Victory over violence,” etc.
When: Meets 11 a.m. Feb. 14. The walk begins at 11:15 a.m.
Where: Oasis, 141 Second St.
THE VAGINA MONOLOGUES
What: Performances of Eve Ensler's play, “The Vagina Monologues.”
When: 8 p.m. Feb. 28, March 1-2. Doors open at 7 p.m.
Where: Rooster Run Event Center, 2301 E. Washington St.
Tickets: $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Tickets are available at www.brownpapertickets.com.
It's unsettling to think about that statistic, particularly when the Petaluma community has been rocked by the violent murders of Kim Baucom Conover last year, and Buapha Mullennix in 2010.
Ensler, who is known for her groundbreaking piece, “The Vagina Monologues,” has been active in the issue of domestic violence since 1998 as the founder of V-Day, a nonprofit organization with a mission of ending violence against women. As part of V-Day, Ensler has permitted performances of “The Vagina Monologues” by communities around the world as a way or raising awareness, educating and raising money for local organizations that help women.
In light of the United Nation's statistic, Ensler felt that the theme of this year's V-Day program should be “1 Billion Rising.” The idea is to get 1 billion women around the world “rising up” and taking a stand against the violence.
Trisha Almond, founder of Petaluma's Guided to Safety, a domestic violence awareness and education organization, brought the V-Day program to Petaluma in 2008. The V-Day Petaluma campaign is now hosted by Guided to Safety and has grown each year to include not just performances of “The Vagina Monologues,” but film screenings, an art show, a peace march and a community event.
The “We Are Rising” art show is on display through March 3 at the Worthy of Love Gallery on Petaluma Boulevard. Curated by Sheridan Gold, the show features contributed pieces by local artists that are a positive expression of women, and what the V-Day movement means. The art also relates to women's empowerment and prevention of violence against women and girls. An artists' reception for the show will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9.
A new addition to the campaign this year are flash mobs, which are being performed around town throughout February. Internationally known choreographer Debbi Allan created a dance to the song “Break the Chain,” which was written to go with the One Billion Rising theme.
“V-Day Petaluma has really grown,” said Val Richman, who has been in charge of the V-Day Petaluma flash mobs. “It's amazing.”
Richman said that there are about 60 women who have learned the choreography to “Break the Chain” and that there have been half-a-dozen flash mobs performed around town. The most recent was at Aqus Café Foundry Wharf on Sunday, and many others are planned.
“We bring a portable music player and do the dance, which is about 4 1/2 minutes long,” said Richman. “It's super fun.”
The V-Day Petaluma community-wide event “One Billion Rising: North Bay/Petaluma Rises” takes place Feb. 14. The day begins with the Silent No More peace march at 11 a.m. through downtown Petaluma. There will be flash mobs around town, followed by an indoor dance event from 3 to 9 p.m. at the Petaluma Community Center.
“During that time there will be interactive art, booths, food, drink, informational videos and a variety of things,” said Richman. “After that, there will be just a free form dance party for a few hours. We know it's Valentine's Day, but what a great way to create love by bringing a date, or not, and celebrating safety for women.”
At the community event, V-Day Petaluma will be honoring Lori Burleson with the V-Warrior Award. Each year, the award is given out to a woman in the community for her spirit of equality and her efforts to end violence against women. Burleson is the sister of Kim Baucom Conover and has been outspoken on the issue of domestic violence.
Admission to the community event is $12.
The V-Day Petaluma campaign comes to a close with live benefit performances of Ensler's “The Vagina Monologues” Feb. 28 through March 2 at the Rooster Run Event Center.
The play addresses women's sexuality and the social stigma surrounding abuse and violence against women and girls. This year's director is Jennifer March, founder of Petaluma Readers Theatre.
Show times are at 8 p.m. Feb. 28, March 1-2. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door.
Proceeds from V-Day Petaluma events benefit Guided to Safety, which provides resources and education for awareness and prevention of domestic violence, teen dating violence and sexual assault.
For more information on V-Day Petaluma and sche
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