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CHICAGO (AP) — Legions of women flooded streets and city squares from Sydney to South Carolina on Saturday, marching in solidarity as a show of empowerment and a stand against Donald Trump.
More than 600 “sister marches” took place across the country and abroad in conjunction with the Women’s March on Washington, which drew hundreds of thousands of women and men to the capital a day after Trump became president of the United States.
Turnout was bigger than expected at some events. In Chicago, organizers canceled a march through downtown for safety reasons because so many people showed up, and instead extended a rally at a park.
Here’s a closer look at some of the events taking place around the world:
TRENTON, NEW JERSEY
Sarah Gospodar likened the chilly, damp rally at Trenton’s War Memorial to the civil rights marches of the 1960s, when people came together peacefully to effect change.
“As a middle-aged black woman, I’ve seen a lot in my life — things that divided this country and things that united it,” the 53-year-old Ewing woman said. “These issues we address today are things that should unite us. How can anyone be against equal pay and fair and equal rights for all Americans?”
Gospodar acknowledged she’s no Trump fan but said she will give him the chance to “show he really does want to make America great.”
Mary Morrisey, 35, of Trenton, said she didn’t mind demonstrating in the cold because it was an opportunity to make things better for people across the nation, especially LGBT people and minorities. She held a handmade sign that read “Girls just want to have fundamental rights.”
“We may go about things differently, but we all want the same thing: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” Morrisey said.
Several thousand people, including many American workers and students living in France, gathered in the Eiffel Tower neighborhood in a joyful atmosphere.
They sang and carried posters with slogans such as “We have our eyes on you Mr. Trump” and “With our sisters in Washington.”
“It’s important because Trump wants to destroy 50 years of progress,” said Anne Tiracchia, from Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, who was on vacation in France where her son lives.
“He wants to go back to smoke coming out of factories and women staying home and having babies,” she said. “We have to show we don’t agree with him.”
More than 40 feminist and anti-racist groups organized the Paris march.
So many people turned out for the women’s march in Chicago that organizers had to cancel the march portion.
They said the planned march through downtown Chicago was no longer possible due to public safety concerns, but they instead extended at an overflowing Grant Park that had turned into a sea of people.
Dorothy DeCarlo was among the hordes who gathered near the park. The 69-year-old burned her bra for women’s rights in college 50 years ago and said it was shameful that Saturday’s marches and rallies were even necessary.
“I thought we took the bruises. I thought it was over,” she said.
As the crowds cheered, some marched anyway — heading toward Trump’s hotel and tower along the Chicago River a few blocks north of the park.
Donna Martin, 42, of Chicago, said she came out because “I wanted to be counted” and thought the Chicago rally sent a clear message to Trump and his supporters.
“I wanted to show there’s more of us than them,” Martin said. “It means we are powerful. Everything’s going to be OK.”
Tracy Showalter and her 13-year-old daughter, Eliza, were among many mother-daughter duos at a rally at a Cincinnati park.
“I want to show my daughter solidarity among women, and among people,” said Showalter, a teacher from Lebanon, Ohio, some 30 miles northeast of Cincinnati.
“Raising a daughter in a society where disrespect toward women is accepted is not acceptable to me,” she said. “I want show her that is not OK.”
Her daughter carried a poster that read “Who Runs the World?” and had an arrow pointing up to her.
Tracy Showalter said she wants to support Trump as president and hopes he brings positive changes, “but this is just a message that women aren’t going to be forgotten.”
Samantha Moyo looked out at the tens of thousands of marchers sardined into Trafalgar Square with a look of contentment.
The 30-year-old Londoner, originally from Zimbabwe, was overwhelmed by the size of the crowd, and its determination to challenge Trump’s world view.
“I’m a black, immigrant bisexual woman, and the fact that women all over the world are standing up for what they believe in, and that I was invited to be on the front line, feels like a huge privilege,” she said after helping to lead a march that snaked through central London, stopping traffic at times.
Moyo said she was initially worried about Trump’s policies but has come to believe he will inspire resistance.
Police described the event as peaceful with no arrests.
Demonstrators crammed the streets outside Trump’s Manhattan home, saying the new leader might be from there, but he’s no New Yorker.
“New York is a community in itself, and people care about each other, and it’s diverse,” said Ashia Badi, 44, who brought her two daughters to the march. “He doesn’t feel like he has those New York values I see.”
Trump was born and raised in New York City, but the majority of the city and state voted for Hillary Clinton.
Thousands of protesters carrying signs that read: “Women’s rights are human rights” and “A woman’s place is in the resistance” funneled past Trump Tower to thunderous cheers on tony Fifth Avenue, where he conducted nearly all of his post-election business. It’s also where first lady Melania Trump and the couple’s young son, Barron, will live.
Brooklyn resident Zakiyyah Woods, 32, said Trump doesn’t understand how the city’s working men and women struggle.
“He definitely represents that one percent of New Yorkers who built this city for themselves,” she said.
COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA
Rebecca Munnerlyn had never marched at the South Carolina Capitol before. But when she listened to Trump’s inaugural speech, she knew she had to join Saturday’s demonstration.
“His words are against women. His actions have been against women,” Munnerlyn said. “I had to come out.”
Several thousand women filled the Statehouse steps with signs like “Make America Think Again” and “You Can’t Comb Over Sexism.” They chanted “Black Lives Matter” and “Health Care For All” before walking around the capitol grounds and to a nearby business to plan for more protests.
Trump’s speech rekindled Munnerlyn’s worst fears about the next four years.
“The next war won’t be started by sinking a ship,” Munnerlyn said. “I fear it will be started by a bad tweet.”
Swarms of people gathered at a popular Sydney park carrying placards with slogans such as “Women of the world resist,” ”Feminism is my trump card” and “Fight like a girl.”
Alyssa Smith, who went to the rally with her husband and 2-year-old daughter, said she worried about the future after Trump’s election. She said she didn’t want her daughter growing up in a world “where hatred is commonplace.”
Charlotte Wilde said she shed tears watching Trump being sworn in. The 33-year-old said the businessman’s rise to the presidency left her in a state of horror, and attending Saturday’s demonstration was a way to feel empowered.
A plane was seen skywriting “TRUMP” over the event. Skywriting Australia owner Rob Vance said the sign was commissioned by Trump fans who wanted to remain anonymous.
Dozens attended a “solidarity picnic” in Yangon organized by U.S. expats including Alyssa Paylor of Colorado.
“We’re not able to have a march in this climate, so we wanted to just gather together in solidarity with our sisters and brothers marching in Washington and all across the world because of what we believe in,” said Paylor, 26. She is in Myanmar working for an organization called Mote Oo Education for Curriculum Development.
Paylor said Trump’s election and the United Kingdom’s Brexit vote served as a wake-up call.
“I think these things have energized a lot of people and made many people, especially women, very angry about what they may have to deal with in the coming years,” she said.
PARK CITY, UTAH
Charlize Theron led crowd in a chant of “Love, not hate, makes America great” on Main Street in Park City.
Marchers there included many celebrities gathered for the Sundance Film Festival, including Chelsea Handler and Benjamin Bratt. A steady snow fell as marchers headed past one of the festival’s theatres.
About 150 people gathered outside the U.S. embassy, then marched peacefully through the city center.
“We are in solidarity with the women in the United States,” said Petros Konstantinou, a Greek left-wing activist. “We stand against Trump because, for us, he represents war, sexism, racism and the greediness of multinationals.”
A few dozen people also protested outside the U.S. Consulate in Thessaloniki, northern Greece, the country’s second-largest city. They unfurled a banner that read: “No to the planet ruler of war, racism, sexism and profit.”
Katz reported from London. Also contributing to this report were: Dan Sewell in Cincinnati; Jeffrey Collins in Columbia, S.C.; Sylvie Corbet in Paris; Esther Htusan in Yangon, Myanmar; Bruce Shipkowski in Trenton, N.J.; Demetris Nellas in Athens, Greece; Ryan Pearson in Park City, Utah; and Rachelle Blidner and Colleen Long in New York.