The vibe and the handmade signs were positive, inspiring and creative at the Missoula Women's March on Saturday, January 20th, marking the one year anniversary of the 2017 Women's March on Washington.

I can't be sure exactly how many people participated, but there were definitely thousands calling for justice and equality at the event created by Missoula Rises. My family approached the starting point and massive crowd at the XXXX's, and I was all smiles, beaming with pride for my community.

As I took in the awesomeness of the crowd, I saw families, Native princesses, dads, politicians, kids, friends and thousands of strong, vocal women. Favorite things over heard as we waited to begin the march? "Let's start a mosh pit!" As city workers reminded us to keep our marching on the sidewalks and out of traffic, "the peaceful resistance that actually stops at stoplights." And simply, "I love this."

The peaceful march of thousands began at the XXXX's and ended at Caras Park, where Salish women invited an 82-year-old Salish elder on stage to lead the crowd in a prayer in her native language. The Missoula march was overflowing with love, support, leadership, encouragement, important reminders, hugs, chants, strength, powerful women and their supporters. As similar marches happened around the country, I wouldn't have wanted to participate anywhere else.