Supporters of the Occupy movement are gearing up for a national day of protest and direct action across America, taking in dozens of events from New York to Chicago to Los Angeles.
Thursday has been declared a day of "solidarity" with the Occupy Wall Street activists in New York after their camp in lower Manhattan's Zuccotti Park was raided and dismantled by police. But it is also aimed at highlighting several of the movement's broader aims in terms of income inequality and a desperate need for job creation in America's floundering economy.
The Occupy movement, which began two months ago with the occupation of Zuccotti Park, has since spread to scores of cities and towns across the country, with varying success. It has often rejuvenated left-leaning political activists but also brought down a heavy police response, frequently at the behest of city mayors.
In recent days, police evictions and crackdowns on protesters in New York, Seattle, Berkeley, Portland and other places have caused widespread condemnation of alleged heavy-handedness by police.
In New York, protesters are planning actions all day in each of the city's five boroughs. A potential early flashpoint will be a rally planned to begin at 7am that will target Wall Street itself, as the protesters seek to disrupt the operations of the New York Stock Exchange before the ringing of the opening bell that signals the start of trading at 9.30am.
Since the protests began, Wall Street has become a virtual permanent protest zone, ringed by steel fences and heavily policed. Later actions are planned to take place across the city's subway system, as marchers will enter at 16 different stations and begin protesting.
Finally, the day will end with a rally at Foley Square, near New York's Town Hall, and then a march to the Brooklyn Bridge, where hundreds of protesters were arrested in a previous headline-grabbing mass action.
Bridges will be the focus of some actions in other cities too. In Boston, Detroit, Washington DC, Portland and Seattle, protesters, some allied with union workers and community groups, will march on high-profile bridges in order to highlight the problem of America's crumbling and underfunded infrastructure.
"We don't want to make this about police and protesters," said Stephen Squibb, an organiser with Occupy Boston, whose group will target the city's North Washington Street bridge. "It is about jobs and other things. That has been our message for two months and we are going to keep saying it," he added.
The range of activities across America spans a spectrum from the dramatic to the small-scale, including teach-ins, rallies and direct actions aimed at banks and corporations. In Portland, Oregon, protesters plan to target a city bridge and then try to organise flashmobs to go to local banks. In Detroit, protesters are marching from their camp downtown to the city's municipal centre, where they aim to highlight the brutal impact of government cuts on ordinary citizens.
"Poor and middle-class people can't afford this. The rich are using austerity because they don't want to pay more in taxes," said Todd Brady, a Detroit organiser.
Elsewhere, protesters in Atlanta will hold events targeting two major corporations in the form of Home Depot and Verizon. In Las Vegas, protesters have vowed to set up an early morning encampment outside a federal building downtown and stay until police remove them. In Chicago, a major rally is planned with local union workers and community groups.
In Memphis, a "midnight march" is planned through the city centre. In Phoenix, local members of the movement are targeting the city's light rail network during the morning rush hour. They then plan to hold a flashmob that will protest at a secret target in the city's business district.
Occupy activists in Phoenix said that the action showed the movement was taking hold, even in conservative areas of the US. "There is a discontent that moves beyond party lines as more people get involved," said a local Phoenix organiser, Diane D'Angelo.
Occupy supporters across the country also believe that the recent crackdowns, especially in New York, have rejuvenated the movement despite the evictions and loss of equipment.
"It is just what the movement needed. It was like throwing rocks on a hornets' nest," Squibb said.