Occupy Cedar Valley starting Saturday in Overman Park - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Occupy Cedar Valley starting Saturday in Overman Park


A national movement is coming to the Cedar Valley. Saturday at noon, protesters will march from the University of Northern Iowa, down to Overman Park in Cedar Falls, and officially launch Occupy Cedar Valley.

Similar demonstrations have turned violent in the last few weeks, including dozens of arrests over the weekend in Des Moines. Cedar Falls Police Chief Jeff Olson said, he's seen what has gone on in other cities -- and watching as an officer, it's disturbing.

But he is confident that the protest in Overman Park will be a peaceful one. First, because the police station is located right across the street. But also because organizers contacted him earlier this week, and got his permission to camp out at the park indefinitely.

Olson did lay some ground rules with the Occupy Cedar Valley group -- basically, use common sense, don't disrupt the peace, and he'll allow them to camp at the park as long as they'd like.

The organizers of Occupy Cedar Valley said, they're learning from the problems protesters are facing at the state capitol. Some of them were at the planning meeting of Occupy Des Moines, and had concerns that was being thrown together too quickly. So before they launched Occupy Cedar Valley, they wanted to reach out to police, get the okay, and then plan a place and time.

Protesters will gather at UNI Saturday at noon and march down to Overman Park. They're starting at noon because there is a farmers market at the park each Saturday morning. The hope is, by the time protesters walk the 2.5 miles, the farmers market will be cleared out.

Organizers are not sure how many people will be part of the Occupy Cedar Valley demonstration. But to give you an idea -- they started a Facebook page Thursday, already the group has more than 200 members. They are meeting Friday night at 7:00 on the UNI campus to go over final details.

Watch KWWL News at 5:00 and 6:00 for the latest details from organizers and police.

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