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Seneca Falls Women's March Expecting Thousands for Equal Rights, to Honor 100th Suffrage Anniversary


People who participate in this year’s Women’s March are honoring more than the call for equality and justice.  The expected thousands that go to Seneca Falls this weekend are also commemorating the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage, as well as a significant milestone for the Equal Rights Amendment. 

March organizer Melina Carnicelli hopes the weekend of events follows three themes.

“…to celebrate the centennial year of the 19th amendment, to commemorate the 700+ marches that started the women’s marches around the world, but also to invigorate the electorate to get out and vote this year.”

She says there’s also a deep commitment to diversity and inclusion, across ethnicity, age, gender identities and more.  Activities started Friday at the Auburn Equal Rights Heritage Center.  Saturday a rally at 12:30 is followed by the March at 1:30.  Sunday follows with a statue dedication and discussion on women, leadership and social change. (Weekend Details Below)

National Organization of Women President Toni Van Pelt will address Virginia’s passage of the Equal Rights Amendment.  It marks the 38th state to do so, the number needed to ratify the possible constitutional amendment.  Many state ratified before a 1982 deadline; years of political and court battles are expected before the ERA could ever become an amendment.


Carcinelli says past marches that drew thousands had a sacred feel, since they were in the birthplace of women’s rights.  The marches began in 2017, the day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration.  As many as 15,000 participated in 2018.

“It felt sacred for that exact reason.  It was so powerful … in a way that uplifts everyone who’s involved.  It was an exhilarating type of energy that many people felt…. We heard from dozens and dozens of people on how it affected them.  … it was also evidence of people coming together who are like-minded and like-hearted.”

More details at


FRIDAY, Jan 17, 2020 – At the NYS Equal Rights Heritage Center & Auburn Public Theater, Auburn, NY

  • 5:30pm: Diane & Michelle Shenandoah, Haudenosaunee Faith Keepers; Opening Ceremony; Gathering Reception immediately following. Open to Public. No admission fee/donations accepted.
  • 8:00pm: Holly Near in Concert, legendary American feminist singer/songwriter, social change activist & Women’s Music Movement founder

SATURDAY, Jan 18, 2020 – Seneca Falls, NY

  • 4th Annual RALLY & MARCH, Trinity Park, 12:30pm.
    Leader of Ceremonies: Maureen Quigley.
    Invited Speakers & Performers: Coline Jenkins; Holly Near; Toni Van Pelt; Rev Jacqueline Lewis; Hon Joseph Morelle; BETTY.
  • 1:00pm: Featuring the Nationwide “1@1 Minute” with Alyson Palmer
  • Women March in Seneca Falls STEP-OFF, 1:30pm (route less than 1 mile)
  • 4:00pm: BETTY in Concert, iconic activist rock trio, 4pm; Seneca Falls venue TBA; opening performance by Central New York musical phenom, Madison Yearsley
    (doors open @ 3pm)

SUNDAY, Jan 19, 2020 – First Presbyterian Church of Seneca Falls, 1pm

  • UNVEILING – ALICE PAUL Bronze Bust Rhode Island-based sculptor Victoria Guerina has gifted her monumental new work to this church’s congregation. This piece, part of the sculptor’s Notable Women series, commemorates the day and place in Seneca Falls when Alice Paul spoke from the church’s pulpit which remains in use to this day. On July 21, 1923 Alice Paul, suffragist, political activist and civic leader, delivered remarks seeking equality for both women and men under federal law. Her words became the text of the Equal Rights Amendment, and today almost 100 years later, the ERA is still only proposed and NOT YET ratified for inclusion into the US Constitution!
  • “An EPIC CONVERSATION”- moderated panel discussion tracing the legacy of women in leadership for social change in America and passing the leadership torch to activist Millennial young women and Gen Z girls. Confirmed: Louise Herne, Mama Bear Clan Mother; Coline Jenkins; Toni Van Pelt, National NOW President; Sally Roesch Wagner, Women’s Suffrage historian; Megan Smith, Shift7 Technology CEO & LGBTQ Activist; Katie Eder, Future Coalition, Founder; Gwen Webber-McLeod, Gwen, Inc, CEO; Leslie Myers-Small, New York State Assistant Commissioner of School Reform and Innovation;
    MODERATOR: Betty Bayer, Hobart William Smith Colleges, Women Studies professor. CONVENER: Sheri Dozier-Owens, Women March in Seneca Falls Organizer

Chris Bolt, Ed.D. has proudly been covering the Central New York community and mentoring students for more than 30 years. His career in public media started as a student volunteer, then as a reporter/producer. He has been the news director for WAER since 1995. Dedicated to keeping local news coverage alive, Chris also has a passion for education, having trained, mentored and provided a platform for growth to more than a thousand students. Career highlights include having work appear on NPR, CBS, ABC and other news networks, winning numerous local and state journalism awards.