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Susan B.'s Big Year

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Rochester has grand plans to celebrate its favorite daughter — Susan B. Anthony — and her accomplishments throughout 2020, a year that marks a trifecta of important anniversaries.

The first is the 200th anniversary of Anthony's birth. The second is the 100th anniversary of 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which recognized women's right to vote. Lastly, the Susan B. Anthony Museum & House celebrates the 75th anniversary of its founding.

The museum, at 17 Madison St., Rochester, was the home of Anthony for 40 years and was where she conducted the bulk of her most important work. It was the hub for planning strategies, organizing campaigns, writing speeches, and preparing petitions. Indeed, the Finger Lakes region was the hub of the women's suffrage and equality movements of the 19th century.

To honor Anthony's legacy and the contributions of other important women, the city and the museum have partnered to hold myriad events, including a suffragist parade, several Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra events focused on women, and featuring only female performers at one of the city's weekly Party in the Park gatherings.

The Rochester Institute of Technology will spotlight its annual Big Shot photo project on the Susan B. Anthony neighborhood, and a 300-panel quilt commemorating the suffragist movement will be on display at the New York State Museum in Albany.

Votercade is a series of single-day events to be held throughout the Rochester region aimed at inspiring people to become more involved in civic matters. The event features a motorcade of vintage and contemporary cars, street theater, historical perspectives, music, displays, and interactive games.

Five Votercades have been planned, with the first being at the Ganondagan Historic Site in Victor on May 16; at the New York State Equal Rights Heritage Center in Auburn on June 13; at Mt. Hope Cemetery in Rochester on July 25; at the Rochester Public Market on August 29, and at the Finger Lakes Welcome Center in Geneva on October 3.

A parade celebrating women and encouraging voter registration will be held in Rochester on September 12. The parade route will start at West Main and Broad streets and will calumniate with a celebration in Susan B. Anthony Square Park, off Madison Street near the museum.

For a full calendar of events celebrating Susan B. Anthony and other important women in local history, go to rocsuffrage.org.

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