Locke Street may be in the crosshairs of duelling protests this weekend.
The mob vandalism on March 3 brought about a wave of support, but one group is planning a march on Locke Sunday at noon called a Patriot Walk on Locke.
That’s prompted pushback from a group calling itself Hamilton Against Fascism.
It’s planning its own event for the same time to confront what it says in a Facebook post “is an anti-immigrant and alt-right hate group trying to cast itself as more than being racist, xenophobic goons.”
Hamilton Against Fascism has announced plans for a Locke Street anti-fascist counter-rally scheduled to start at 11 a.m. in Victoria Park, 451 King St. W. — the same place where the Patriot Walk is supposed to begin — before progressing to Locke.
Locke Street merchants are bracing for the possibility of further trouble.
WATCH: Hamilton police link Locke street vandalism to anarchist book fair
Tony Greco of the local Business Improvement Area (BIA) says they “are hoping their neighbourhood doesn’t become the capital of the protesters. That’s something we don’t want.”
“We are all hoping that if the situation gets worse and there’s a need for some form of action, that the police will take it; that they won’t let a riot get any worse,” he adds.
Greco says the last thing they want is for people to “get the idea they can come here and do what they want.”
LISTEN: Tony Greco joins The Bill Kelly Show on 900 CHML
Hamilton police say they are aware of the planned demonstrations and will monitor the situation.
“We are encouraging demonstrators to be considerate towards our community and respect the laws,” the police force said in a statement on Thursday. “There will be a zero-tolerance approach to any unlawful or criminal activity.”