photos by Boyd Loving
JULY 17, 2020
To Ridgewood Central Business District Businesses:
As you know, the Central Business District Welcome Back to Ridgewood event creates a pedestrian mall by closing streets from North Walnut Street to Broad Street every Saturday and Sunday. Every other weekend there have been about fifty protesters from Ridgewood 4 Black Liberation gathering, marching, yelling and using bullhorns. Although disruptive, the demonstrations, comprised primarily of Ridgewood residents, have been mostly peaceful. Unfortunately, some protesters have physically tried to grab customers sitting in chairs or otherwise harass CBD patrons. On July 4th, one of the protesters was arrested for obstructing traffic.
This is to notify you that another Ridgewood 4 Black Liberation protest is planned for this Saturday, July 18th at 4:00 p.m. Due to the ever-increasing hostility in the country, we are concerned that the protest planned for this weekend has the potential to bring even more protesters. We want Ridgewood businesses to be aware and prepared for the possibility of a larger group, as we work to ensure public safety.
The Village is planning accordingly while working to encourage protesters to remain peaceful.
Please be aware that if protesters threaten, harass, or physically touch patrons, you should advise your customer that a police report can be filed if they have a description of the protestor.
We know that the Welcome Back to Ridgewood event, and especially the pedestrian mall, has been helpful to our businesses and can assure you we are working diligently to ensure the effort is both successful and safe.
Heather A. Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk
Susan Knudsen, Mayor
Jacqueline Luthcke, Chief of Police