Powering Up Orange in Downtown Ridgefield on National Gun Violence Awareness Day

Many residents have asked about the orange ribbons on the trees in downtown Ridgefield. 

Today, Friday, June 2 is National Gun Violence Awareness Day, a national movement where people around the country come together to fight for a future free from gun violence. 

Helping to spread awareness locally is Anita Donofrio, the #WearOrange powerhouse who saw to it that downtown Ridgefield’s trees wore the defining color of the gun violence prevention movement. 

Donofrio is thankful for the outpouring of community support. “Without the hard work of staff and the amazing generosity of Mary Jones at Rodier Flowers, we couldn’t have lined our Main Street with ribbons,” says Donofrio.

Ridgefield High School student interns as well as local realtor Barry London joined Donofrio helping to secure the ribbons on the trees this week.

It was in 2016 when Donofrio first approached First Selectman, Rudy Marconi about recognizing National Gun Violence Awareness Day with orange ribbons. Soon after Donofrio spoke with Marconi, The Town of Ridgefield Board of Selectmen proclaimed June as National Gun Violence Awareness Month and June 2 as National Gun Violence Awareness Day.

“We need to bring awareness to what the orange ribbons mean,” says Donofrio. Reducing gun violence will take more than just a weekend of awareness. 

Wear Orange began in 2015 in response to the death of fifteen-year-old Hadiya Pendleton. Hadiya was shot and killed just one week after performing at former President Barack Obama's second inaugural parade. Soon after this tragedy, Hadiya’s friends commemorated her life by wearing orange, the color hunters wear in the woods to protect themselves and others, according to WearOrange.org.

Submitted by Ridgefield, CT

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