Happy Earth Day! I, like thousands of you, will celebrate today by attending one of the many satellite March for Science events. This is not my first protest, so I have a well crafter set of items to bring.
#1 Good shoes
This one may almost go without saying, but you may be surprised by how many people show up in their regular day shoes. I always am. You’ll stand for hours, without doing much. You will march – slowly – but still some distance. Leave the cute shoes behind. Wear your running/workout shoes.
#2 Comfy Pants
Don’t wear pants that you can’t wait to get out of by the end of the day. You’ll be on your feet for most of the time, so you want to wear something the lets you move and stretch easily when needed. You may have the opportunity to sit occasionally, but on things like the side of the road or parking lots. Do not wear a skirt. Or anything you’re not comfortable getting dirty.
#3 Supportive Bra
I think this one is pretty self-explanatory for those of us on the busty end. You may not plan on any running or jumping, but there’s often dancing and crowd mentality that leads to lots of bouncing.
Don’t wimp out on this! Yes, it’s heavy to carry in the morning, but you’ll be so happy by the end of the day that you stayed hydrated. So spring for the larger water bottle.
Chances are there won’t be food nearby. So bring some protein-heavy snacks with you (nuts, bars, etc).
A perfect suggestion for Earth Day. Make sure to protect yourself as you fight to protect our planet. And don’t forget to reapply throughout the march!
#7 First Aid and Personal Care
You’ll never know when you’ll need a Band-Aid (especially if you skip #1, blisters anyone?). But make sure to put some painkillers in as well in case you get a headache – or someone steps on your foot. Sadly, some protests can turn violent; this item may be more useful than you plan. Also bring wet wipes, menstruation items, ChapStick, or any other personal care things you may need.
#8 Weather Items
Bring layers if you need them. Bring a hat to keep your head warm or protect your face from the sun. Check the weather – if it’s going to rain bring a poncho with a hood (not an umbrella).
Don’t leave home without a valid identification (students, your school ID does not count). This item is extremely important should any incident occur in which the police get involved. Don’t be scared; be prepared.
#10 Tech chargers/batteries
Bring whatever portable chargers and extra batteries you need – phone, extra camera batteries. I highly recommend solar chargers, so even your extras don’t run out of juice.
#11 Empty bag
You and your fellow marches will create trash. Don’t just dump it on the street! Bring an empty bag to put your trash in so you can dispose of it correctly at the end of the day.
#12 Emergency Contacts
Keep your emergency contacts on paper, just in case your phone and chargers fail.
#12 Small Bag
Keep all your stuff in a small bag than can close. Don’t bring a large backpack. They may not look cool, but fanny packs are actually some of the best kinds of bags to bring because they are hands free.
But only those you want to carry the whole day. I gave up on them a while ago because after an hour or so, they’re mostly burdensome. Stick to ones you can fold or roll for easy transportation. Most organized marches and protests (included March for Science) ask you not to attach signs to posts as these can turn into weapons.
Have your public transit card loaded with enough to get you there and back. Carry enough change to make a phone call. Bring enough cash for a cab ride home.
#15 Friendly Spirit
Remember your fellow protesters are there to support the same cause as you. Let’s win this together!