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Occupy Midwest Conference Will Gather Regional Movements In St. Louis Next Month

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Protesters demonstrate during an Occupy Chicago march and protest at Grant Park in Chicago, late Saturday Oct. 22, 2011.  Protesters demonstrate during an Occupy Chicago march and protest at Grant Park in Chicago, late Saturday Oct. 22, 2011.  Protesters demonstrate during an Occupy Chicago march and protest at Grant Park in Chicago, late Saturday Oct. 22, 2011.
Protesters demonstrate during an Occupy Chicago march and protest at Grant Park in Chicago, late Saturday Oct. 22, 2011. Protesters demonstrate during an Occupy Chicago march and protest at Grant Park in Chicago, late Saturday Oct. 22, 2011. Protesters demonstrate during an Occupy Chicago march and protest at Grant Park in Chicago, late Saturday Oct. 22, 2011.

Occupy Chicago organizers may have migrated indoors for the winter, but they'll join protest groups from across the midwest at a regional conference to be hosted in St. Louis in March.

First announced by the General Assembly of St. Louis on their website in December, the conference will commemorate the six-month mark of the movement that began on Wall Street in September, and seeks to connect regional occupations to "share best practices and learn from each other on how we can be more effective in our individual occupations," according to InterOccupy.

The conference kicks off on March 15 at the Gateway Arch, and runs through March 18, according to the group's Facebook event page. The four-day occupation will be hosted at a different location that hasn't been disclosed.

The St. Louis occupation says on InterOccupy that the arch was chosen as the central meeting place for very specific reasons:

We have chosen this site as our first meeting spot as it symbolizes much of what we are fighting for. The site on which it now stands used to be low income and working family housing. It was taken from these families in order to build this monument. We would like to meet there and propose that we rename this monument as the Gateway to Freedom!

Occupy St. Louis says up to 3,000 protesters from at least seven states are expected, the Associated Press reports.

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