"We have to stop letting people use September 11 as a day of fear," said Caffe Democratica co-chair Jenni Simonis. "Instead, we should use it as a day to celebrate democracy, what makes our country great, and those who have fought, and continue to fight, to protect it."
As part of that celebration, the Multnomah County Democrats will be holding its annual Caffe Democratica on Saturday, September 11. The event features a spaghetti dinner, democracy fair, and silent auction.
"Hope, love, and support are what we should be celebrating on Patriot Day, not fear," explained Simonis, whose husband is a Gulf War veteran. "A patriot is defined as one who loves, supports, and defends one's country. Nowhere in that definition is the word fear."
When the event's committee began meeting several months ago, it felt that Patriot Day was the perfect time to come together and celebrate America and the troops who have fought to protect the country. Planned activities include a moment of silence to those who have died fighting for our country, recognition of those attending who have served, and a democracy fair. The fair will be attended by a variety of groups and organizations who work to better our country by getting people involved in civics and politics, running for office, protecting civil rights, and more.
The keynote speaker for Caffe Democratica will be Congressman Dennis Kucinich, who recently ran for the Democratic nomination for President. Last month he spoke at the Democratic National Convention, giving a moving speech on why Democrats should come together and vote for John Kerry in November.
There is also a second surprise guest expected at the dinner.
This event is a family friendly event. Advance tickets for the event are $10 for current precinct committee people and $12 for general admission. A smaller portion plate for children ages 5-12 and seniors is also available for $5 if purchased in advance. Children 4 or under are free; however, the number of those attending is needed in order to ensure there will be space for them.
The dinner will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. at Madison High School, 2735 NE 82nd Ave., Portland.
Tickets can be purchased online at http://www.multdems.org. A printable order form is also available for those who prefer to send in their orders through the mail. As the dinner is expected to sell out, those wanting to attend are encouraged to purchase their tickets now.