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Fed Up With Gun Violence? 

Head to Troy Field to see what Oregon's trying to do to solve it

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Orange! It's the new flower in the end of a gun barrel. Don't get the reference? During the Vietnam War, hippies would place flowers down the barrel of National Guardsmens' rifles in protest of the war.

Now students and other people—who've grown tired of gun violence—will don orange tie-dyes in solidarity against gun violence. This year's Wear Orange for National Gun Violence Awareness Day is scheduled for Saturday, June 2.

The Bend Wear Orange Event—Popsicles in the Park—will include music and speakers such as Paul Kemp, the organizer of Initiative Petition 44—which in part would make gun owners in Oregon use trigger locks and would be held liable for injuries caused by their guns.

Bend is home to the Central Oregon Moms Demand Action group, which has grown from a handful of members to well over 500, according to the group's new leader, Lindsay Shaver.

"Membership is going up almost weekly as we see these incidents (like the school shooting at an Indiana middle school on May 25) happening," Shaver told the Source Weekly. "There's not that feeling of those things don't happen here anymore. It's more being prepared for when that does happen."

In 2013, a group of teens at a Chicago high school asked students to wear orange to raise awareness about gun violence after then 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton was shot and killed. A week prior, Pendleton had performed at President Obama's second inaugural parade.

Formed in December 2012 after the Sandy Hook shooting, Moms Demand Action, a program of Everytown for Gun Safety, has mobilized mothers across the country to become the largest grassroots movement working to reduce gun violence. The Bend chapter has been around since 2014 and has participated in the Wear Orange Day for the past three years.

"I think we're seeing an increase in our youth wanting to be more involved," Shaver said of the expanding events nationwide, and the growth of the group locally.

Shaver said she was raised in Tillamook in an outdoorsy family that hunted and fished, but doesn't understand people who don't want to have a conversation about gun safety.

"It's so strange to me to meet people who feel so strongly about not being told what to do with their guns," Shaver said.

Tie-Dye Orange Event
Wed., May 30, 4 pm to 5:30pm
Environmental Center, 16 NW Kansas Ave., Bend
Wear Orange Day
June 2, 1-3 pm Troy Field, 51 Louisiana Ave., Bend
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