Another guest post from Felix Mitchell, who helped plan the rousingly successful rally we held in Fresno after the debate this weekend. Take a look, and don’t forget to check out all the great pictures from the event below and on our Flickr page.
It was Saturday morning in Fresno. The Ahwahnee Warriors, a middle school football team, were getting ready to play their weekend game.
They went through their usual routine, putting on gear and listening to their coach’s pre-game speech. But an unusual air of excitement surrounded them as they buzzed about what was going to happen in their gym later that day. As I passed by the locker room, I caught a fragment of a conversation: “I can’t believe Jerry Brown is going to be here!”
Such excitement was by no means confined to middle school athletes ignoring their coach in order to catch a glimpse of what was going on outside the door. Everybody was thrilled to see and hear Jerry Brown, from the early bird volunteers who helped us set up to the estimated thousand who arrived later for our rally.
The event was a rousing success. Following speeches given in both Spanish and English by the Fresno Democratic Central Committee Chair Michael Evans, Senator Dean Florez, and Merlyn Calderon, Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer introduced Jerry Brown, citing Jerry’s exemplary record fighting crime. By the time Jerry walked on stage, the crowd was chanting his name so loudly that I was worried the speakers would not go loud enough for us to hear him.
They did. Jerry spoke about water, crime, and jobs. He discussed issues that, from the response they elicited from his supporters, resonate with Fresno residents. Most obvious from his speech? The people of Fresno clearly matter to Jerry.
The rally, like the debate, was a resounding success thanks to the unsung heroes of any campaign: the student who hands in an assignment late to spend a day putting up signs, the retiree who suffers the Central Valley heat to register voters, and every person who sacrificed their Saturday morning to listen to a man speak because they believe in what he has to say.
In addition to the flourishing rally, we hosted a debate watch party in East Los Angeles that drew significant turnout.
Check out images from both gatherings below, and please consider setting aside some time this month to help with one of the many events happening near you. Join us on my.jerrybrown.org to connect with your local Volunteer Coordinator.
Supporters gather at Ahwahnee Middle School to hear Jerry speak after the Fresno debate.