Martin Luther King Day 2016
Martin Luther King Jr. Day commemorates the life, lessons and accomplishments of the civil rights leader. In 1986, Congress designated the third Monday of January as a federal holiday honoring Dr. King. There are many Martin Luther King Jr. events, including parades, lectures, and concerts, taking place in the Baltimore and Washington D.C. areas this weekend.
National Day of Service
In 1994, Congress transformed the Martin Luther King Jr. Day into a National Day of Service. Volunteers across the country participate in community service activities such as cleaning and painting school buildings and community centers, building homes, delivering community meals, working in a food pantry, or tutoring children. Hundreds of thousands of people participated in National Day of Service activities in 2015 organized by national, regional and local groups.
Martin Luther King Jr. Events in Washington D.C.
Martin Luther King Jr. Monument
There are many events taking place in Washington D.C. celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. on Monday, January 18th. There will be a special wreath laying ceremony at the Martin Luther King Jr. Monument at 8 am. The Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial is located on a four acre site along the Tidal Basin adjacent to the Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial. The focal point of the memorial is a 30 foot statue of Dr. King, carved into the “Stone of Hope” combined from two large boulders. On the two boulders, the “Stone of Hope” and the “Mountain of Despair”, are text from Dr. King’s memorable “I Have a Dream” speech. A 450 foot inscription wall, made from granite panels, is inscribed with excerpts from fourteen of Dr. King’s sermons and public speeches.
Concerts and Events on Martin Luther King Day
The Washington National Cathedral and Kennedy Center will host celebrations to honor Dr. King’s life. The National Cathedral’s program contains music and poetry inspired by Dr. King’s work presented by the Cathedral and D.C. performing arts community. The Kennedy Center in collaboration with Georgetown University will present “Let Freedom Ring” performed by the Let Freedom Ring Choir and gospel singer, Yolanda Adams.
The Martin Luther King Jr. Parade in Washington D.C. will take place at 11 am on Monday, January 18th. The parade begins on Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE and Milwaukee Place SE. The parade includes marching bands and representatives from the many different cultures that make up Washington D.C.
Martin Luther King Day Events in Baltimore
Martin Luther King Jr. Parade Baltimore
The City of Baltimore and the Baltimore Office of Promotion and Arts will be hosting the 15th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parade on Monday, January 18th from noon to 2 pm. There will be over 50 groups participating in the parade including marching bands, community color guard units, equestrian units, dance squads, civic organizations and floats. The parade kicks off at Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Eutaw Street, then marches down Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and then ends at Baltimore Street.
Baltimore Museums hosts MLK Events
Three Baltimore Museums will hold special events honoring the life of Martin Luther King Jr. over the next week. The Walters Art Museum will host its celebration on Thursday, January 14th at 5 pm. The Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture will have a celebration with crafts, performances and film on Saturday, January 16th starting at 11 am. The American Visionary Art Museum will have guided tours, music, birthday cake and more to celebrate Dr. King’s January 15th birthday. The events at the museum start at 10 am on Monday, January 18th.
Loyola University hosts the 23rd Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Convocation on Monday, January 18th at 5 pm at McGuire Hall. The program will feature Claudia Rankine, a Jamaican born poet and writer.
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