Wall Street protesters gathering in Minneapolis

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Hundreds of protesters are gathering on the Hennepin County Government Center plaza in downtown Minneapolis in solidarity with the demonstrations against Wall Street.

Former Gov. Jesse Ventura made an appearance as the event got going Friday morning, He didn’t give a speech but spoke to people in the crowd, posed for pictures and signed autographs.

Occupy Minnesota organizers say they plan to “occupy” the plaza outside the courthouse and stay until they see major changes. They’re planning workshops Friday afternoon and a rally at 5 p.m. Authorities say they’ll allow protesters to stay as long as they’re peaceful and don’t break any laws.

The Occupy Wall Street protests started in New York Sept. 17. This is one of several related demonstrations that have popped up around the country.