Women's March Chicago ( WMC ) will once again take over Grant Park on Oct. 13, 2018, calling upon women and allies to come together and march as the polls open for early voting in Illinois.
Dubbed March to the Polls 2018, the event is a follow-up to the march held in January. As the assault on both women's rights and democracy continues in this country, women and allies are more united than ever in their focus on the 2018 elections. This rally and march is a critical next step in voter engagement, as women deliver on the promise that they are changing outcomes at the ballot box to protect a fragile democracy. This rally will reflect the power of the women's movement as we march and head to the polls in greater numbers than ever before.
The rally and subsequent march will be held Saturday, Oct. 13 at 9 a.m. and will honor first-time voters, while firing up thousands more as they head to the polls. Early voting will be open in downtown Chicago where Chicago and Cook County voters can literally "March to the Polls" and cast their ballots on Oct. 13.
WMC is building a special First Time Voter Experience to celebrate new voters, in particular young women, immigrants, and other youth. Participants will be identified through a coalition of youth organizers working with Women's March Chicago. Perks will include facetime with elected officials, VIP entertainment, a parade of young voters to the early voting site, and a celebration of their voting power from the main rally stage on Oct. 13.
March to the Polls 2018 will include special guest speakers and live musical performances, and will feature a new sponsor village in the rally area, where attendees will have access to participating candidates and sponsors in hosted booths. All campaigns will have an opportunity to take part in the sponsor village, along with local and national non-profit organizations. The day will culminate with a march through the streets of downtown Chicago to Federal Plaza, and access to the Board of Elections downtown early voting site.
"We know that hundreds of thousands of women and their allies are excited and energized to vote this fall, and the October march will enable us to come together and harness this energy and excitement and turn it into action," says Jaquie Algee, WMC Board member and March On Board President. "Women are organizing themselves and others to get to the polls, and Oct. 13 is an activation point for that in Chicago. WMC plans for this event to be particularly special for those who are voting for the very first time, at a time when every vote is critical."
WMC is a not-for-profit organization whose programming inspires women and allies to support women's rights and social justice and to share that message with other potential voters in their circles. WMC challenges the political system regarding issues affecting women, and is an affiliate of March On, the coalition of sister marches nationwide.
More information will be published at www.womensmarchchicago.org as plans progress.