UPDATE: 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 14.
More than 65 people danced Thursday at Oxbow Public Market for the 15th annual One Billion Rising event.
"We had a great turnout," said Karen Calhoun, of Napa Emergency Women's Services. She said many prominent Napa area social welfare activitists turned out to give support to the message, which is to end violence and abuse against women and girls.
"Cope Family Center sent over several staff members including Executive Director Joelle Gallagher," Calhoun said. "Napa Community Housing’s Executive Director, Kathleen Dreesson, was there, and Tracy Krumpen from California State Senator Lois Wolk’s office was there.
"Also Jane Hinshaw from the Napa DA’s office and Terry Cox, Napa-Solano-Marin SANE/SART* Board President," she added.
Calhoun said a man and a woman wearing One Billion Rising T-shirts showed up.
They said they had been en route to the San Francisco One Billion Rising event, but when they saw we were having one in Napa they came to it to support the local effort, Calhoun said.
The "Break the Chains" dance, which has been choreographed by famed dancer Debbie Allen (see attached video), was the heart of the event.
"We practiced the dance about three times in the 15 minutes leading up to 1 p.m., when we performed the full dance," Calhoun said. "
DJ Lipton, Napa Zumba Instructor, had worked for the past week adapting the choreography to make it simple enough for everyone to follow with minimal rehearsal.
"They all looked fantastic!," Calhoun said. "Everyone was encouraged to wear red and black, the colors of the One Billion Rising campaign."
Original story, 9 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 13.
Napa Valley will join a global Valentine's Day event to end violence against women and girls.
The rally, called One Billion Rising, will be at 1 p.m. Thursday at the Oxbow Public Market parking lot, 644 1st St.
Napa Emergency Women’s Services is leading the effort, joining with activists around the world for One Billion Rising, being touted as the largest day of action in the history of V-Day, the global activist movement to end violence against women and girls.
A One Billion Rising Napa dance will be led by Zumba instructor DJ Lipton of Joyful Body Fitness starting just before 1 p.m.
Playwright Eve Ensler, who founded One Billion Rising 14 years ago, said it began as a call to action based on the staggering statistic that one in three women on the planet will be beaten or raped during her lifetime.
With the world population at 7 billion, this adds up to more than one billion women and girls.
“When we started V-Day 14 years ago, we had the outrageous idea that we could end violence against women,” said Ensler.
“Now, we are both stunned and thrilled to see that this global action is truly escalating and gaining force, with union workers, parliament members, celebrities, and women of all backgrounds coming forward to join the campaign," she said. "When we come together on February 14, 2013 to demand an end to violence against women and girls it will be a truly global voice that will rise up.”
Napa Emergency Women’s Services (NEWS) believes that those who have become victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse have the power to strengthen and heal.
To sign up and learn more, visit www.onebillionrising.org
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