About 100 neo-Nazi white supremacists carrying guns, knives and crowbars gathered in the cold rain on barricaded farmland at the "First Aryan Woodstock" Saturday while 450 riot-geared law officers kept angry protesters away.
The white-power rally on a private 70-acre ranch - reportedly owned by a Jew who fled Nazi Germany in 1937 - in the pastoral Napa Valley wine country created a furor in northern California and was denounced by Gov. George Deukmejian.White supremacist groups, including the skinhead American Front, White Aryan Resistance and Ku Klux Klan, went ahead with their controversial "invitation only" gathering after a judge pulled the plug on their planned rock concert.
About 400 protesters crowded in the rain outside the gates of the rally, denouncing the skinheads as they arrived from as far as Southern California.
But an army of sheriff's deputies, police and California Highway Patrol officers maintained order and, except for a few minor confrontations, the event was peaceful.
As darkness fell, about 75 law enforcement officers with guns drawn surprised a six-vehicle caravan of about 30 departing skinheads on Highway 12 five miles from the rally site, ordered them out of the vehicles, handcuffed them, photographed them and then released them after searching the vehicles.