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Protesters march, dozens of restaurants close for 'Day Without Immigrants'

Hundreds of protesters marched on the Minnesota State Capitol in opposition to the federal government's immigration agenda.
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More than 50 restaurants across the Twin Cities have closed and hundreds of people have marched in St. Paul in solidarity with Minnesota's immigrant population Thursday.

They are marking "Day Without Immigrants," a nationwide protest movement opposing the immigration agenda being pursued by President Donald Trump and the Republican Party in Congress.

As of Wednesday only a few restaurants had revealed they intend to close for the protest, but since then more than 50 across the Twin Cities have closed shop.

WCCO's Jason DeRusha has an updated list, with many of them Mexican restaurants but also Chinese, Indian and Cuban restaurants among those closing for the day.

Prominent Twin Cities eateries including the World Street Kitchen and Milkjam Creamery are also among those closing.

"We are immigrants and our business relies on immigrants," the restaurant said on its Facebook page. "We wouldn’t be here without them and you. We wholeheartedly appreciate and want to show our solidarity to everyone in this nation."

The Star Tribune reports that the Blue Plate Group of restaurants, which includes the The Lowry, Highland, Longfellow and Edina grills, explained that it was closing "since we are a family of community restaurants, we listened to our community. And believe we are strongest when we are united."

The newspaper notes that there hasn't been one single organizer of Thursday's boycott, instead much of the momentum appears to have derived from social media.

Signs have been placed on closed restaurant windows with messages of support for the movement.

The Pioneer Press reports that the Bilingual Child Care & Centro de Education early-childhood Spanish immersion in Roseville also closed partially on Thursday, and was planning a gathering with staff and families in Roseville’s Lexington Park.

Meanwhile in St. Paul, marchers gathered Thursday morning at the Mexican Consulate on E. 7th St. and walked to the Minnesota State Capitol.

Images taken on the protest route show hundreds, possibly thousands, of marchers making their way to the Capitol building.

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