OF FOOD NOT BOMBS
THE STORY OF FOOD NOT
DECADE OF FOOD NOT BOMBS 1980 -1989
- May 24, 1980 - Food Not Bombs cofounder Brian Feigenbaum was
arrested at the May 24th Direct Action to Stop Seabrook Nuclear Station
in New Hampshire inspiring bake sales to raise money for Brian's defense
and the Bake Sales to Buy a B-1 Bomber.
- March 26, 1981 - Food Not Bombs shares food at its first
action protesting the interlocking directors at the Bank of Boston and
local nuclear industry by and dressing as hobos and setting up a soup
kitchen outside the stock holders meeting at South Station with the
message that their policies could cause another Great Depression. Over
50 people came to eat.
- August 20, 1981 - Food Not Bombs shares food and outside a
weapons bazaar at Boston University the day after we spray-painted the
outline of "dead" bodies on the ground, stenciled mushroom clouds with
the word "Today?" and wheat-pasted "War is Murder for Profit" posters
along the route that the weapons buyers and sellers would take from
their hotel to the conference hall.
- August 6, 1981 - First Food Not Bombs march for nuclear
disarmament co sponsored by Cambridge City Council leaves from
Cambridge, Massachusetts City Hall traveling to Draper Laboratory near
M.I.T. where a volunteer burned the Boston white pages as an example of
all the people who would die in a nuclear attack like the bombing of
- October 30, 1981 - First night that the first Food Not Bombs
banner was used while sharing food at a protest this time at a torch
light march against Bush speaking at M.I.T.
- December 20, 1981 - "Walk For Peace," organized by Food Not
Bombs marches down Massachusetts Avenue through Harvard Square on one of
the coldest days of the winter.
- May 2, 1982 - First
"Free Concert for Nuclear Disarmament" in Senot Park, Cambridge,
- June 12, 1982 - Boston Food Not Bombs shares food with
thousands of protesters in Great Lawn in Central Park, New York during
the Second United Nations Special Session on Nuclear Disarmament
- May 7, 1985 - Food Not Bombs helps organize the
occupation the J.F.K. Federal Building in Boston with Pledge of
Resistance in a protest against the war against El Salvador and provided
food to many of the 500 protesters that sat in in the lobby.
- October 29, 1985 - Food Not Bombs organizes the "Boston Pee
Party" to protest President Regan's new drug testing laws mailing urine
collected outside the Federal Building in Boston.
- October 23, 1986 - Boston Food Not Bombs organizes the
"Welcome to Kenmore Square" meals to defend the rights of the homeless
during the American League play offs and World Series between the Red
Sox and Mets.
- March 11 - 20, 1988 - San Francisco Food Not Bombs
participates in it's first action by feeding the protesters at the
"Reclaim the Test Site" action at Mercury, Nevada gate of the Nevada
Nuclear Test Site. Over 8,000 people participated and nearly 3,000 were
arrested during the action making it a record for most civil
disobedience arrests in a single protest. A giant banner saying "Food
Not Bombs" was placed across ground zero held down with rocks.
- August 15, 1988 - The first nine Food Not Bombs volunteers
arrested for sharing meals at the entrance to Golden Gate Park in San
- August 22, 1988 - Police arrest 24 volunteers for "making a
poetical statement" by sharing free food with the hungry at Haight and
Stanyan Streets in San Francisco.
- September 4, 1988 - 54 Food Not Bombs volunteers arrested
"for making a political statement" by sharing free food at the entrance
to Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, California.
- September 6, 1988 - Mayor Art Agnos issues San Francisco Food
Not Bombs a "temporary" permit to share food at the entrance to Golden
- September 27, 1988 - San Francisco Police memo written by
officer Richard Holder reporting that he was able to gained information
about an October 15th protest against the war in El Salvador by
wiretapping the Food Not Bombs telephone.
- October 15, 1988 - Food Not Bombs co-founder Keith McHenry
arrested and beaten sharing food to protesters against the war in El
- June 28, 1989 - Food Not Bombs starts to share meals 24 hours
a day in solidarity with the homeless at their Tent City Protest outside
San Francisco City Hall.
- July 16, 1989 - Eleven Food Not Bombs volunteers arrested
sharing food at San Francisco City Hall in defiance of a court order
because of the groups support of the Tent City Protest.
- September 11, 1989 - San Francisco Department of Public
Health issues first Permit to Operate numbered D2258 to certify Food Not
Bombs field kitchen at Golden Gate Park.
- October 5, 1989 - San Francisco Food Not Bombs feeds the
survivors of the Loma Prieta Earthquake in Civic Center Plaza sharing
meals to the police and ending this round of arrests.
DECADE OF FOOD NOT BOMBS 1990 - 1999
13, 1990 - San Francisco Department of Public Health issues second
Permit to Operate numbered D2260 to certify Food Not Bombs field kitchen
at Civic Center Plaza.
- June - July, 1990 - Food Not Bombs provides food at the Earth
First! base camp during Redwood Summer in the forests of Northern
- July 19, 1990 - The San Francisco Recreation and Parks
Department deletes the permit process for sharing free food in city
parks in Resolution 15585 Section 1, subsection IV.
- September 13, 1990 - Food Not Bombs co-founder Keith McHenry
beaten and injured in an elevator of police headquarters in San
- June 24, 1991 - San Francisco Police rush up to a rally
against health care budget cuts smash Gloria La Riva's head into stone
wall as the officers beat and injured Food Not Bombs co-founder Keith
McHenry as he was request signatures on post cards asking to be placed
on the next Recreation and Parks Department agenda.
- January 17, 1991 - San Francisco Food Not Bombs starts to
feed hundreds at Civic Center Plaza protesting Desert Storm as the giant
Food Not Bombs banner travels up the Bay Bridge and through out the city
as tens of thousands blockaded the Federal Building for five days and
others blockaded the Pacific Stock exchange. Food Not Bombs groups
provide meals at local actions in a number of other cities in the United
States and Canada.
- March 22, 1991 - Food Not Bombs wins first civil contempt of
court case before Judge Daniel Hanlon in San Francisco and then police
arrest Richard Edmondson, Keith McHenry, Eric Warren and Tom Osher
during a police riot where those jailed were accused of stealing a gun
from officer Broadnick.
- March 3, 1992 - First anti-
police brutality protest one year after the video taped beating of
Rodney King. Van Jones's first arrest as San Francisco march nearly
reached police headquarters.
- September 1, 1992 - First edition of Food Not Bombs - How to
Feed the Hungry and Build Community published by New Society Press in
- October 7 - 11, 1992 - First International Food Not Bombs
Gathering held in San Francisco where the three principles of Food Not
Bombs were adopted - Free vegetarian and vegan meals without
restriction, dedication to nonviolent direct action and every group
autonomous with out leaders and using consensus to make decisions.
- November 1, 1992 - The first Food Not Bombs Radio
Network radio program "Puerto Rico: Nation, State or Colony?" produced
by Richard Edmondson.
- September 2, 1993 - 15 Food Not Bombs volunteers arrested
outside San Francisco City Hall to stop the groups effort to protest
the mayors quality of Life Enforcement Matrix Program against the
homeless and charged with felony conspiracy to commit a misdemeanor.
- November 26, 1992 - First Homes Not Jails occupation
of hotel at 90 Golden Gate Avenue and empty business in the Tenderloin
of San Francisco to protest mayor Frank Jordan's anti-homeless policies
as he came to have his photo taken carving a turkey at Glide Memorial
Church on Thanksgiving Day.
- January 4, 1994 - Food
Not Bombs co-founder Keith McHenry arrested on his first "Three Strikes"
charge after being attack by the mayors film commissioner Nick Roomel
while calling a towing company to retrieve the Food Not Bombs truck.
- January 24, 1994 - United Nations Human Rights
Commission letter announcing an investigation into human rights
violations against Food Not Bombs by the government in the United
- May 10, 1994 - Food Not Bombs co-founder Keith McHenry
arrested for felony assault with a deadly weapon against a public
official at San Francisco City Hall and possession of stolen property
consisting of 24 Berkeley Farms Dairy milk crates no facing 25 years to
life in prison.
- July 11, 1994 - Eight arrested for felonies share food at
Civic Center Plaza on the opening day of Food Not Bombs co-founders
"Three Strikes" trial in San Francisco.
- September 26, 1994 - All nine City Councilors of the City of
Cambridge Massachusetts adopts resolution in support of Food Not Bombs.
- October 20, 1994 - Arcata Food Not Bombs volunteers issued
first summons ordering the group to stop feeding the hungry.
- October 28, 1994 - Amnesty International letter about arrest
and violence against Food Not Bombs volunteers declares all those
arrested would be considered "Prisoners of Conscience" and would work
for their unconditional release if convicted.
- February 15, 1995 - Food Not Bombs co-founder Keith McHenry
settles California Three Strikes Case ending possibility of a 25 to life
- June 15 - 27, 1995 - Second International Food Not
Bombs Gathering held in San Francisco during the 50th Anniversary
Celebration of the United Nations. San Francisco make over 600 arrests
during the gathering. Food Not Bombs sets up first Indymedia Center to
report on the gathering.
- September 2, 1995 - "The
Rent Is Theft Tour" starts at Olympia, Washington with Food Not Bombs
cofounder Keith McHenry demonstrating the making of Tofu Spread and
shares the history of Food Not Bombs over a low watt FM radio station
visiting 35 cities in the United States and Canada
- February 25, 1996 - Robert Norse Kahn convicted and sentenced
to to 59 days in jail for handing out food to the homeless without a
permit after being arrested October 1993 outside San Francisco City
- October 5, 1997 - "The UnFree Trade Tour " starts at Long
Haul in Berkeley traveling to 60 cities in the United States and Canada
calling for direct action to shut down the next World Trade Organization
summit in North America.
- November 28, 1999 - Food
Not Bombs helps organize the action against the World Trade Organization
meeting in Seattle and provides food to the protesters.
- December 15, 1999 - Los Angeles Food Not Bombs organizer, Dan
DiPasquo, was arrested by the Pershing Square park rangers and the Los
Angeles Police Department.
- December 26, 1999 - Seven more Los Angeles Food Not Bombs
volunteers arrested sharing food at Pershing Square.
DECADE OF FOOD NOT BOMBS 2000 - 2010
- June 4, 2000 - Soupstock 2000 a free concert in Delores Park
in San Francisco celebrating the 20th Anniversary of Food Not Bombs with
over 15,000 people coming to see Fugazi, Tilt, Ali Khan Band, Bonfire
Madigan, Vic Chestnutt, Michael Franti, Sleater-Kinney
- February 15, 2001 - 19 year old Long Island Food Not Bombs
volunteer Connor Cash arrested by the F.B.I. and indicted on the charge
of arson conspiracy in first false terrorism case of a Food Not Bombs
- June 15, 2001 - Gothenburg Sweden Food Not Bombs co-founder
Hannes Westberg shot in the chest by police during the protest against
the EU Summit and jailed for 5 months
- February 7, 2003 - The Danish Peace Foundation awards the
Danish Peace Prize to Copenhagen Food Not Bombs
- February 15, 2003 - Food Not Bombs chapters in hundreds of
cities shares meals to thousands of people protesting against the U.S.
invasion of Iraq communities all around the world.
- April 19 - 21, 2003 - Melbourne Food Not Bombs provides
meals to the protesters outside South Australia's Baxter Immigration
Detention Centre near Port Augusta.
- September 10 to 14, 2003 - Food Not Bombs volunteers from
around the world share food outside the Ritz Carlton at the start of the
World Trade Organization's meeting in Cancun, Mexico and provides vegan
meals in downtown Cancun to the protesters all week.
- August 1, 2003 - Denver Police Raid Food Not Bombs House
without Provocation and eight are arrested.
- October 8, 2003 -
Food Not Bombs activists arrive in Milan, Italy at the
start of "The Drop Bush Not Bombs Tour."
- November 20-21, 2003 - Food Not Bombs volunteers
from all over America provide free meals to the protesters at the
actions against the Free Trade Area of the Americas Summit in Miami,
Florida. Cooks attacked by police.
- March 21, 2004 - Tampa Food Not Bombs volunteer Mark Parrish
arrested on charges of trespassing in Massey Park in downtown Tampa,
Florida while sharing food
- March 28, 2004 - Tampa Food Not Bombs volunteers James Dunson
and Lily Lewis, both USF students, were also arrested on charges of
trespassing in Massey Park.
- April, 18, 2004 Tampa Food Not Bombs volunteers Amberly
Banks, James Dunson, and Christopher Ernesto were arrested and jailed on
charges of trespassing on public property.
- May, 10, 2004 Tampa city government agrees to drop all
charges against Food Not Bombs and lets the group share food and
- December 7, 2004 - The F.B.I. Joint
Terrorism Task Force memo written on investigation of Denver Food Not
Bombs and volunteer Sarah Bardwell before the national political
conventions in Boston and New York.
- May 18, 2005 - "Since when did feeding the homeless become a
terrorist activity? " asked ACLU Associate Legal Director Ann Beeson.
"When the FBI and local law enforcement target groups like Food Not
Bombs under the guise of fighting terrorism, many Americans who oppose
government policies will be discouraged from speaking out and exercising
- August 9, 2005 - Food Not Bombs volunteers start to provide
the food at Cindy Sheehan's Camp Casey in Crawford, Texas outside Bush's
- August 31, 2005 - Hartford Food Not Bombs volunteers Dave
Rozza and Ross Harmon arrive in New Orleans and start feeding the hungry
displaced by Hurricane Katrina. American Red Cross gives out the Food
Not Bombs toll free number to anyone seeking food.
- November 13, 2005 - Food Not Bombs volunteer Timur Kacharava
stabbed to death by 8 to 10 neo-nazis while sharing meals for Food Not
Bombs on Ligovsky Prospekt in St. Petersburg, Russia.
- December 7, 2005 - In the most serious case of framing Food
Not Bombs volunteers as terrorists FBI agents arrest Chelsea Gerlach,
Bill Rodgers, Kendall Tankersley, Kevin Tubbs, Daniel McGowan and
Stanislas Meyerhoff most of whom were volunteering with Food Not Bombs
while under investigation by informants in "Operation Backfire."
- January 13, 2006 - Food Not Bombs volunteers Eric McDavid
Zachary Jenson and Lauren Weiner arrested by F.B.I. charged with
Conspiracy to damage and destroy property by fire and an explosive after
the F.B.I. paid an informant $65,000 to frame them. Eric McDavid was
sentenced to 19 years even though he was innocent of any crimes.
- February 14, 2006 - Eleven Food Not Bombs volunteers
arrested and tortured in the Philippines while hitchhiking from Buguias
to Sagada, Mountain Province. The Food Not Bombs campaign SAGADA 11 wins
their freedom after 11 months in prison.
- March 8, 2006 - In a guest lecture at the U.S. Law and
National Security course at the University of Texas School of Law, FBI
Supervisory Senior Resident Agent G. Charles Rasner listed in his
powerpoint Indymedia, Food Not Bombs, and the Communist Party of Texas
as three of the ten Terrorist Watch groups they were infiltrating in
- June 11, 2006 - Food Not Bombs Activist Peggy Lee Kennedy
Arrested at the meal in Venice, California.
- August 12, 2006 - Food Not Bombs from groups around Florida
provide meals to protesters at the sate wide action in Orlando against
the Israeli war on Lebanon and Palestine
- January 4, 2007 - Food Not Bombs volunteer Helen Hill was
murdered by a random intruder at her home in New Orleans. Helen started
theHalifax, Nova Scotia, Canada chapter and volunteered with New Orleans
Food Not Bombs both before and after Hurricane Katrina.
- April 4. 2007 - Eric Montanez, a member of Orlando Food Not
Bombs arrested sharing food at Lake Eola Park in downtown Orlando
- June 27, 2007 - Six members of Orlando Food Not Bombs were
arrested for drumming outside a fundraiser for Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer
in protest of his support for an ordinance that bans the serving of food
in public parks. They were arrested on charges of violating a City of
Orlando noise ordinance even though it is not an arrestable offense.
- August 11 - 20, 2007 - First International Food Not Bombs
Gathering outside the United States held near Transcarpathia, Ukraine
at the No Border camp.
- November 25, 2007 - Dipepi Free Food Gang/Jakarta Food Not
Bombs organize huge Really, Really Free Market on Buy Nothing Day with
people coming for all over Indonesia to participate.
- July 5, 2008 - Reykjavik Food Not Bombs provides meals at the
Eat the G8! Solidarity action in Iceland.
- August 29, 2008 - Joanne M. Smith, Judge of Ramsey County
District Court signed the warrants for raids on the Food Not Bombs cook
houses in Minneapolis. Food Not Bombs houses raided by F.B.I. and
Homeland Security the day before the Republican National Convention
arresting 8 volunteers on Patriot Act charges as terrorists.
- March 6, 2009 - Jonathon Gerhardt with the New Mexico
Environment Department issue Albuquerque Food Not Bombs with $3,000.00
Fine and Arrests.
- March 13, 2009 - East Bay Food Not Bombs volunteer Tristan
Anderson shot in the head with a tear gas projectile from around 60
meters by Israeli forces during a demonstration in the West Bank village
of Ni lin.
- March 28-30th 2008 - Food Not Bombs gathering in Nashville
draws over 150 volunteers who agree to start more Food Not Lawns gardens
and seek ways like Homes Not Jails to address the dramatic increase in
food prices and the housing foreclosure crisis.
- September 26, 2008 - Federal judge Gregory Presnell in
Orlando, Florida rules -- for the first time in the USA -- that sharing
food with hungry and homeless people in public spaces is expressive
conduct protected by the First Amendment.
- May 3, 2009 - Food Not Bombs volunteer Abe Bobman arrested
sharing food in Middletown, Connecticut.
- October 3, 2009 - Connecticut General Statute 19A-36 changed
to allow Food Not Bombs to share meals without interference by the state
as a result of the arrests of the Middletown Food Not Bombs volunteers.
- December 17, 2009 - The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in
Atlanta hears arguments on whether sharing food with hungry and homeless
people in public spaces is expressive conduct protected by the First
Amendment. Orlando Food Not Bombs was represented by lawyer Jacqueline
DECADE OF FOOD NOT BOMBS 2010 - 2019
Email us your
additions. Tell us the date your chapter first shared food, your
participation in major protests or dates of when your volunteers were
- April 24, 2010 - Food Not Bombs/Food Not Corporations
solidarity action for the Victims of Lapindo Mud - Porong, Sidoarjo in
East Java, Indonesia
- May 23, 2010 - Boston Food Not
Bombs celebrates the 30th Anniversary of the movement at Soupstock on
the Boston Commons. Concerts also in Europe, Australia and other areas
of the world.
- July 6, 2010 - The 11th Circuit Court
of Appeals in Atlanta rules against Orlando Food Not Bombs claiming the
city can restrict the groups right to free expression.
- August 30, 2010 - The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in
Atlanta vacates its July opinion in favor of the City of Orlando and
grants a rehearing en banc on Feburay 15, 2011.
- February 15, 2011 - The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in
Atlanta hears case of Orlando Food Not Bombs.
- February 17, 2011 - Fort Lauderdale, Florida Police
Department raids the local Food Not Bombs house in the departments
campaign to stop the group from sharing in Stranahan Park.
- April 12, 2011 - The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta
rules that the City of Orlando can limit Food Not Bombs to the sharing
of meals to twice a year per park.
- June 1, 2011 - First three volunteers arrested for sharing meals in defiance
of The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling on Orlando's large group feeding law at Lake Eola Park
- July 8, 2011 - Food Not Bombs co-founder Keith McHenry
freed from the Orange County Jail after being held 17 days for sharing meals at Lake Eola Park
- August 15, 2011 -
HUNGRY FOR PEACE - How you can help end poverty and war with Food Not Bombs is finished and delivered to publisher
- August 19, 2011 - Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer announces that charges have been dropped against the people who were
arrested sharing meals at Lake Eola Park
- September 17, 2011 - Food Not Bmbs delivers peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to Occupy Wall Street
- September 28, 2011 - Food Not Bmbs delivers peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to Occupy Chicago
- October 1, 2011 - Food Not Bombs doantes a couple of copies of
HUNGRY FOR PEACE - How you can help end poverty and war with Food Not Bombs to the Occupy Wall Street Library
- October 3, 2011 - Food Not Bombs sets up kitchen at Occupy DC at McPherson Square
- October 6, 2011 - Food Not Bombs sets up kitchen at Occupy
DC at Freedom Plaza as Food Not Bombs groups all over the world help with their own local occupations
- October 16, 2011 - St. Petersburg Food Not Bombs and The People's Share take down the Russian flag and replace it with a Jolly Roger flag that
features a skull and crossbones, with a slice of pie on the mast of the Aurora cruiser,
a national relic and tourist attraction docked in downtown St. Petersburg
- October 27, 2011 - Two San Francisco Food Not Bombs volunteers Ted and Collin arrested at Occupy Oalkand
- November 8, 2011 - Three Pensacola Food Not Bombs volunteers arrested for trespassing while supporting Occupy Mobile
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