UPDATE: Protesters are now marching to Nicollet Mall (5:15 p.m.)
UPDATE: Protesters are planning a noise rally at 10 p.m. in solidarity for the California prison hunger strike.
Close to clearing their first weekend, demonstrators taking part in the OccupyMN protest outside the Hennepin County Government Center plaza in downtown Minneapolis are staying busy.
"Right now, we're still setting up," said Toby Iverson, 36, of St. Paul, who helps stream the protest online.
The Minneapolis demonstration has been going on since Friday mirroring similar protests happening across the country. The event has been a learning experience for the group of activists, said Amanda Rudelt, 34, of north Minneapolis.
"We are kind of reinventing representative democracy in a couple of weekends...It's a crash course," she said.
The group has had regular meetings and forums throughout the weekend. This afternoon committee meetings began at 1 p.m. during which time committees were supposed to elect delegates to help plan the demonstration's general assembly meeting. At about 3 p.m., participants also marched to the Metrodome as Vikings fans were departing the stadium.
Still, there are some logistical issues the group needs to work out.
For one, electricity has been an issue, Iverson said. Power was turned off at the plaza for the weekend. While protesters were able to use some donated solar panels to generate power, that hasn't been quite enough to last through the night into morning, Iverson said.
Water has also been an issue since the building is closed, Iverson said. On Saturday, the water supply ran low early in the evening, but after the word got out, more water was donated, he said.
Also, demonstrators haven't been allowed to setup tents.
"Last night, it rained a bit," Iverson said. "People were wrapping sleeping bags in tarps."
Osha Karow, one of the activists who initiated the protest, said that better internal communication is another priority for the group going forward.
Karow, 23, estimated that Friday, about 1,000 people came and went in the plaza. Saturday he said the number dropped to 600. Karow was unsure about how many people were out when asked this morning, but I'm guessing it wasn't more than 200.
We'll have better numbers soon.