Authorities in San Francisco and Alameda counties prepared for the influx of fringe-right supporters over the weekend, hoping to squelch the assemblies from turning violent — like they have in the past — through a series of legal maneuvers and bureaucratic red tape.
And it seems to be working.
Patriot Prayer organizer Joey Gibson canceled his initial rally for Saturday afternoon at San Francisco’s Crissy Field and announced a press conference at Alamo Square. Then, on Saturday morning, he scrapped the Alamo Square event. It was unclear if he intended to organize other events.
In the meantime, it appeared that the protests of the far-right rallies could dwarf any activities by Patriot Prayer or fringe-right activists planning another gathering in Berkeley on Sunday.
Here are photos of some of the action on Saturday.
Thousands of people gathered at Civic Center to protest far-right activities in S.F. on Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017. (Sheraz Sadiq/KQED)
An image of Heather Heyer, an anti-racist demonstrator killed while protesting in Charlottesville, Virginia, can be seen in the crowd of people rallying against far-right events planned for San Francisco (those activities have now been canceled). (David Markus/KQED Arts)
“We are just here to spread love and peace,” says S.F. based Jenny Elephantae Fou at Civic Center. (Farida Jhabvala/KQED)
At Civic Center, people did yoga as a form of resistance against far-right rallies planned in San Francisco and the Bay Area on Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017. “We’re not here to fight Nazis … We want to make a safe place for everybody.” (Farida Jhabvala Romero/KQED)
Protester at Alamo Square where people had gathered to protest the far-right organizer Patriot Prayer. (Eric Westervelt/NPR)
Protester near Alamo Square holds up sign reading, “What Would Mr. Rogers Do?” in response to Saturday’s far-right events. (Christina Reagan/KQED)
Crowd of thousands marched through the Mission District, near Alamo Square on Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017 (Alex Emslie/KQED)
Protester near Alamo Square holds up sign reading, “Never Forget/Queer Resistance” in response to Saturday’s far-right events. (Christina Reagan/KQED)
San Franciscans living on Alamo Square, where far-right Patriot Prayer planned to hold an event Saturday afternoon that was later called off, posted a few signs ahead of it. The San Francisco Police Department has limited access to Alamo Park. Patriot Prayer scrapped a rally it had initially planned for Crissy Field. (Polly Stryker/KQED)
Signs at San Francisco’s Alamo Square, where the far-right group Patriot Prayer had planned to hold an event Saturday afternoon that’s now been called off. The San Francisco Police Department has limited access to the square. (Scott Shafer/KQED)
James Morrison, 70, from Oakland grew up with the threat of the Ku Klux Klan attacking his grade school in Baton Rouge LA. He says “the most important thing is to show up … the KKK, Nazis never left. Now with Trump, they have some credence.’ (Farida Jhabvala Romero/KQED)
Counterprotesters pose for a photo at the Conservatory of Flowers before starting their march. Many attendees heard of the event through their schools and arrived with dozens of people in attendance. (Creo Noveno/KQED Arts)
People protest at Alamo Square where Patriot Prayer had planned to hold a gathering on Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017. (Erika Aguilar/KQED)
The sounds of the Velvet Underground’s “Who Loves the Sun” was the soundtrack that kicked off the rally in the Castro. (Kevin Jones/KQED Arts)
Humera Nawaz (L) and Amina Haque (R), are from Pakistan and today live in Pleasanton. “I feel as a Muslim Hijabi woman, I need to be present and build bridges and make my voice heard where hate is being thrown out not only against Muslims but also other minorities.” — Humera Nawaz (Sheraz Sadiq/KQED)
A police officer among protesters near Alamo Square in San Francisco on Aug. 26, 2017 (Alex Emslie/KQED)
Police join a line on Aug. 26, 2017 near Alamo Square in San Francisco. (Alex Emslie/KQED)