Peaceful protests unfolded Thursday night in Ferguson, Mo., a marked change from five nights of unrest that included heavily armed police officers lobbing tear gas into agitated crowds. Police took a decidedly low-key approach and were mingling with the boisterous crowds.
Times reporters Matt Pearce and Molly Hennessey-Fiske saw that people were laughing, shaking each other's hands and, after a long week, feeling relieved.
Angela Smith, 39, of Ferguson, stood beaming on the sidewalk, preaching to everybody who passed.
“Better than yesterday, y'all!” Smith said to a passing woman while holding a bright pink sign reading, “NO JUSTICE NO PEACE.”
Another woman approached. “Feels like our 'hood, our home again!” Smith told her. “There's no invaders telling us we can't protest.”
Read Pearce and Hennessey-Fiske's latest report from Ferguson and follow live updates from them and others below.