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Tips for Organizing a Successful Rally

 
Permits:

Contact local police and other government agencies well in advance to schedule rally and to file required permit applications.

Publicity:

Send out flyers (include date, time, location of rally; travel directions; and phone number to call for information) to all school parents, churches and other nonpublic schools. Provide notices for parish bulletins and school newsletters. Send press notices to all local media several days in advance of the rally. Distribute media packets at the rally and choose spokesman ahead of time for media interviews.

Attendance:

Recruiting letters from archdiocesan and school administrators to school parents are extremely helpful in lending legitimacy and urgency to your rally. Solicit solid support from schools or parishes located closest to site of rally.

Visual effects:

Encourage schools to bring banners and other visual effects that will attract media cameras. Consider other creative visual props to convey your message.

Sound and lighting systems:

Be sure arrangements for sound amplification and lighting will be adequate for speakers to be heard and seen by T.V. and newspaper cameras. Consult other groups that have held rallies for recommended sound and light companies. Check on availability of electrical outlets, podium, platform and weather protection for speakers.

Transportation:

Encourage school groups to hire buses. Be sure to provide clear directions to rally location and instructions for parking. If possible, make arrangements with a nearby school or other organization for the use of their parking and building facilities. To anticipate attendance, ask schools to send in response forms.

Marshals:

Station marshals in parking lots and at intersections of streets in vicinity of rally to direct crowds. Ask local police for assistance. Police or municipal agencies may also provide reflector vests and flashlights if needed.

Speakers:

Appoint someone to "emcee" rally and introduce speakers. Be sure to review a written script of everyone's remarks (including emcee's), and have an extra copy of all remarks on hand. Line up backup speakers in case of emergencies.

Visits to legislators:

If participants plan to visit their legislative district representatives, remind them to identify their legislators' names and office locations prior to the rally, and, if possible, to schedule appointments ahead of time.



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