A Trump caravan will roll into Riverhead Sunday afternoon on a road rally from East Northport to Greenport.
Its organizer, a 29-year-old West Babylon man, said he expects the “MAGA-Gras II” caravan to draw more vehicles than the first parade he organized two weeks ago, which drove from Copiague to Patchogue and then Shirley. The Sept. 6 parade had about 200 vehicles, decked out with American flags, Trump flags and signs, participate in the parade, Farash said.
“I set it up on the fly,” he said. “I posted it on [the Facebook group] Long Islanders For Trump, asking ’Hey would anybody be interested in a parade on LI?’ And people responded,” he said. “I thought we’d draw about 50 cars,” he said. “People will respond to Facebook events and say they’re going, but then they don’t show up.”
When he arrived at the designated meeting place in Copiague half an hour early, the parking lot was already packed.
“I thought, ‘Oh my God — this is going to be a lot bigger than I thought,’” Farash said. “When we got to Lowe’s, our regroup spot [in Patchogue] it filled the lot. It was crazy,” he said. About half of the vehicles proceeded on to the second leg of the parade, which took them to Smith Point in Shirley.
Farash said in a phone interview Friday night he expects the turnout to be bigger this weekend. The Facebook event page he started for MAGA-Gras II shows, as of this morning, 817 people responded that they are going and 3,000 people responded that they are interested.
“The energy and enthusiasm for this is amazing,” Farash said. And that’s the point, he said.
“We want to energize people, to turn out the vote,” Farash said. “It means nothing if we don’t vote.”
There will be voter registration going on in the East Northport parking lot where MAGA-Gras II participants will gather tomorrow morning, Farash said.
The old Walmart parking lot in Riverhead is the “re-group spot” for tomorrow’s caravan, which is scheduled to leave East Northport at 11 a.m. and travel east on Route 25, continuing on Route 58 to the parking lot at 765 Old Country Road, Farash said. The caravan should arrive in Riverhead between noon and 12:30, depending on traffic, he said.
There’s no way of knowing how many people will end their ride in Riverhead — or how many will join the caravan in Riverhead for the ride to Greenport, according to the organizer.
Some local residents have expressed concerns about traffic impacts on the North Fork, where the peak traffic season has already arrived, with families in search of pumpkins and corn stalks crowding local roads as they do every autumn — despite the pandemic this year.
Other local residents welcome the arrival of the caravan and have posted on social media that they plan to turn out along the parade route to greet the caravan in a show of support for the President.
According to a report by Patch, a counter-demonstration will be staged in Greenport by Biden supporters.
Riverhead Police Chief David Hegermiller said he does not expect a major traffic impact from the MAGA parade in Riverhead.
“Hopefully they’ll move with the traffic,” Hegermiller said in a phone interview Friday morning. “We’ll have plenty of officers on duty anyway because it’s peak traffic season,” the chief said.
He said he had not heard of any counter-demonstrations taking place in Riverhead. “But people don’t necessarily call the police to tell them they’re doing that,” Hegermiller said.
Farash, an ardent supporter of the President, said he believes Trump supporters have not been vocal enough over the past three years. Among his frequently used social media hashtags is #SilentNoMore.
“Those of us on the right, constitutional conservatives, we’ve been too quiet,” Farash said last night. “We’ve been too reactive, not proactive. We a have a president here who, one way or the other, energizes people. But we were letting the ‘I hate this guy’ crowd have all the limelight,” Farash said.
The caravans, he said, are a public display of support to get the President’s supporters engaged. And it’s working, Farash said. “The energy, the momentum, is tremendous,” he said.
“There are 40-some-odd days till the election,” he said. “This is about getting everyone, young and old, energized for it.”
Farash said he especially wants to motivate young people to join the conservative movement.
“I’m 29. My peers largely fall on the other side of the political spectrum,” he said.
The way he sees it, “the other side” is “not just Democrats but people who have endorsed Marxist ideals,” which Farash believes threaten American democracy.
Farash said he recognizes there is a lot of animosity, even hatred, on both sides of the political divide in America today, but that’s not what he’s about, he said.
He created a promotional video for the Sept. 20 rally, which he posted on Facebook and Twitter, calling on “we the people” to fight for a President “who fights for we the people.”
Set to a dramatic musical score, the video shows images and video clips of the Sept. 6 Trump parade Farash organized.
“Now,” Farash intones on the video, “we the people are fighting for him. The time for silence is over,” he says.
“This is our country and we’re taking it back,” Farash says in the voice over. “The American spirit cannot be held down. We’re seeing it. We’re living proof of that. And we’re not the only ones. There are more of us out there. And what we’ve done is only the beginning,” Farash says.
“On July 4, 1776, they fought to create our country. On Nov. 3, 2020 we fight to save it.”
Last night, Farash said he’s advocating to take the country back from — and save it from — Marxists, socialists and socialist influences.
“I’m OK with Republicans or Democrats. I love the open marketplace of ideas. Give me all the ideas in the world,” Farash said. “But don’t give me failed ideas that have failed across the planet. We’ve seen Marxism fail everywhere,” he said.
Marxism is a “sick, sick movement” and “that’s what we’re taking our country back from,” he said.
Farash, a 2014 graduate of Hofstra University, where he majored in radio and minored in political science, has dabbled in podcasting, is a prolific social media publisher — he dubs himself “Dr Deplorable” on Facebook — and does a spot-on impression of President Trump’s voice, which he showcased in a recent Twitter post.
“I love to do voices,” he explained. “I’m a radio guy.”
Farash said despite using the hashtag SF2028 — “a joke between me and my friends,” who told him, he said, “when you’re old enough, run for president” — he would love to have a career in radio. Farash said he admires the conservative radio talk show host, lawyer and author Mark Levin.
“For three years, I’ve been trying to do something like this,” Farash said of the Trump parades, “to get the base energized — and we’re doing it,” he said.
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