Florence Indivisible very visible every Saturday

Mary Washkoske (left) and Ray Sherrill (right) stand on the corner of Highways 101 and 126 on a Saturday in early April. Both are members of Florence Indivisible, a local group that is part of a larger, national movement. Photo by Zac Burtt/Siuslaw News

Group holds regular rallies at corner of Highway 101 and 126

April 13, 2023 — A familiar Saturday site for Florence residents is Ray Sherrill and the simple signs that he holds at the corner of Highways 101 and 126.

The statements on Sherrill’s signs are straightforward. Some examples include “racism is bad”, “be nice”, “hate is bad” or “lies are bad”.

Though simple, the signs seem to get quite a reaction out of those who see them, both positive and negative.

According to Sherrill that means the signs are doing what they are supposed to and if passers-by are bothered, he says they should take a moment to reflect.

“If you see the sign and feel bad, you should probably think about why,” said Sherrill.

Sherrill is often not alone, as he is frequently joined by other members of a local organization called Florence Indivisible.

The group holds rallies at the corner of the two highways every Saturday, from 1 to 2 p.m., rain or shine. Numbers of participants differ depending on what is happening in the world at the time.

“We cover whatever is going on in the world,” said Darlene Norwood, a member of Florence Indivisable’s leadership committee. “We are out there in support of Ukraine. When George Floyd was murdered a few years ago we were out there with Black Lives Matter.”

Reactions to the rallies are mixed, according to Norwood.

“Black Lives Matter is probably when we got the most negative feedback from people on the street,” said Norwood. “Most people are responding positively to what we are doing but there are those who don’t and that’s just part of the world we live in. We try to stay peaceful and positive about what we’re doing but we’re activists and we want to make our voices heard and to try and make this a world for everyone.”

For more information on Florence Indivisible visit their website here: swingleft.org/group/florenceorindivisible.