Here's Your List Of MLK Day Events For The Weekend
Additional reporting by Yazmin Nuñez.
January 15 marks what would have been the 88th birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. On Monday (the third Monday in January) King's birthday is officially observed as a national holiday. As with every year, festivals, marches, and other celebrations will honor the Civil Rights-era leader. And though many see MLK Day as simply a day off of work, organizations around the country provide the opportunity to make the day one of service to others.
Below is a list of some celebrations throughout the Los Angeles area honoring King, as well as a few opportunities to give back to your community.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 14
- The Long Beach Department of Parks, Recreation, and Marine, along with Councilman Dee Andrews will be holding the 29th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Peace & Unity Parade And Celebration. This year's theme is "Love & Forgiveness". Festivities will occur throughout the day, and center at Martin Luther King, Jr. Park near Long Beach City College.
- The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. branch of the Los Angeles Public Library in Carson will hold a reenactment of King's life with Saul Lankster (who recently won a Congressional Gold Medal for his work) playing the part, as he has for many years. King's speeches will be read, and his life's story will be acted out. The Voice of Dr. King event is held from 2:00 p.m. to 2:45 p.m. and is intended for all ages.
- Annual Martin Luther King Day Concert
The Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra will hold their annual Martin Luther King Day concert at the SGI Auditorium in celebration of Dr. King. Guido Lamell will conduct the orchestra as they play Adolphus Hailstork's "Epitaph for a Man Who Dreamed", Samuel Barber's "Violin Concerto", and Aaron Copland's "Appalachian Spring". Violinist Annell K. Gregory will be featured. The event is free and begins at 2:30 pm.
MONDAY, JANUARY 16
- The 32nd Annual Kingdom Day Parade, presented by CORE-CA and televisied on KABC, will begin at 10:00 a.m. The parade will start at Martin Luther King, Jr. boulevard and march west to Crenshaw boulevard, before turning south and ending at Leimert Park Plaza. This year's parade motto is "Now More Than Ever, We All Must Work Together". Seating is available along the parade route.
- The City of Inglewood will hold their 34th annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration (also known as King Fest). The celebration begins at 9 a.m. at the Faithful Central Bible Church, at 321 N. Eucalyptus Ave., which will be followed by a march, starting around 11:15 a.m., down Manchester Blvd. to the Forum. Live entertainment will continue at the Forum until 5:00 p.m., Food and games will be available.
- The California African American Museum will be holding a full day of activities honoring Dr. King -- all of which are free. Between 11:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., families are asked to drop in on a series of art projects including making MLK posters, creating a crown, and a map-making project called "How Can I Change The World?" Several area food trucks will be parked on the museum's patio serving food between 12:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m., while DJ Melquan plays music. And from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., a marathon of King's speeches will be read by Long Beach City councilmember Rex Richardson, singer Sha’Leah Nikole, and others.
- The East Side Riders Bike Club will be hosting a community clean-up event at the Watts Civic Center will run from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. The event, dubbed Clean Watts on MLK Day 2017, will help clean several blocks in an area northeast of the Watts towers.
- Between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., Organizing For Action will host a blood drive at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center along Beverly Blvd. Blood donors will be entered in a raffle to win classes at Aura Yoga.
- Big Sunday is hosting its 5th Annual Clothing Collection and Community Breakfast at 6111 Melrose Ave., between 9:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. Big Sunday asks that you bring new and gently-used work clothes. Also, new socks and underwear are always in great need.