Behind the Curtain at the ACORN Convention

ACORN Community Organizing

 Los Angeles Every two years ACORN has a national convention.  The members love it!  They also pay almost all the freight, so attention must be paid!

 ACORN has held conventions since 1978.  There was a brief spell of insanity when we met in 1978, then 1979, and again in 1980 before we came to our senses and started meeting every other year.  This 15th Convention is the first time we have ventured west in twenty years since 1984 when we camped on the banks of the Trinity River in Dallas in over 100 degree temperature in a “Reagan Ranch” to protest the re-nomination of Reagan for a 2nd term.

 Now we are in Los Angeles.  The members were excited to come — this will be our biggest convention with 2200+ people ready to roll.  The convention will be in Pauley Pavilion on the UCLA campus, which is a beautiful venue, though, unfortunately a bit hilly for some of our troops.  Everything about the logistics of Los Angeles is a nightmare, and since half of the members flew from around the country, we have the added complications of doing the actions, sending our message, and then also navigating the traffic out of downtown Los Angeles and making it to one of the many airports in the area.

 Staff has been here in various complements for a week in some cases, so by this point they are moving on raw emotion and what’s left of adrenalin.  There’s still a lot of tedious, hand work — assembling packets, drawing maps, making signs, writing intros, hanging banners, hauling, twisting, tugging everything together.

 It’s amazing how much has to be done by so many to support 2200 people dropping from the sky and rolling in on busses.

 Proving once again how much of organizing the grand moments lies in the intense repetition of details and skills.

Staff work into the night to prepare for the second day of the ACORN National Convention.