This year’s King Holiday seems to come with a more urgent purpose. This year marks the 50th anniversary of Bloody Sunday and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the monumental piece of legislation that was signed to ensure everyone’s right to vote. Yet, many people are concerned about its enforceability after the US Supreme Court’s action in 2013 to severely weaken it.
This year’s holiday also comes in the wake of the controversial deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner. Community activists are hoping that these events will help reignite a passion in people of all races to pursue Dr. Kings Dream of justice and racial equality.
Help commemorate Dr. King’s legacy by getting involved in King Holiday events and celebrations around Atlanta. The National Holiday is observed on Monday, January 19, 2015. There are also several events on days leading up to the actual holiday.
Choose Nonviolence Now! Students with King!
Wednesday, Jan. 14 and15, 2015. K-12 students have the opportunity to engage with members of the King Family and people who worked with Dr. King and Mrs. Coretta Scott King. Free and open to K-12 students and chaperones. 10 am and 1 pm at the King Center’s Freedom Hall Auditorium. Call 404- 526-8911 for information.
DeKalb County’s annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration Friday, Jan. 16. DeKalb County hosts the 31st annual celebration. The theme for this year’s program is “Embracing Cultural Diversity through Empowerment and Education.” DeKalb County Schools Superintendent, Michael Thurmond will give the keynote address. It’ll be at the Maloof Auditorium at 11:30 am. Details on events.accessatlanta.com/mlk-dekalb.
MLK Civil and Human Rights Conference Jan. 15 – 19, 2015. This conference was established to commemorate the life and legacy of Dr. King. Organized by the AFL-CIO, this multi-ethnic, multi-gender conference reinforces Dr. King’s vision of civil rights. While this conference spotlights the struggle of African Americans, it also builds bridges to specifically include all people of color, young people, LGBTQ people, women and immigrants.” For more information and to register, visit events.accessatlanta.com/mlk-conference.
MLK Day 5K – Let Freedom Run Saturday, Jan. 17, 2015 at Piedmont Park. Race begins at 8 a.m. Runners will run on grass, road, gravel, wooden bridge, and dirt paths and there will be a 3.1 mile drumline along the race course. More information at events.accessatlanta.com/mlk-run.
2015 Salute to Greatness Awards Dinner Saturday, Jan. 17, 2015. The Salute to Greatness Award, one of the King Center’s highest honors, is presented during the Annual Salute to Greatness Awards Dinner, to individuals and progressive organizations in recognition of outstanding efforts toward building Dr. King’s Beloved Community. “ This year is the 32nd annual awards dinner. Honorees include President Bill Clinton and Kaiser Permanente. For more information call 404- 526-8911. Also event information at events.accessatlanta.com/mlk-dinner.
Annual King March and Rally
Monday, Jan. 19, 2015. March starts at Peachtree and Baker Streets and continues to Auburn Avenue. Rally begins at 1:45 pm, led by community leaders. The march will end in front of the King Center. For more information call 770-560-1959 or email@example.com.
Annual MLK Commemorative Service Monday, Jan. 19, 2015. Join the city of Atlanta, the birthplace of the civil rights movement for the official King Holiday Commemorative Service. Hear inspiration from Keynote speaker, Dr. Gwendolyn Boyd, President of Alabama State University. It’s at Ebenezer Baptist Church at 10 am. For more information call 404- 526- 8911.
MLK Day of Service
Monday, Jan. 19, 2015. Dr. King always encouraged people to serve the community. Spend the holiday helping others by participating in the Martin Luther King Day Service Project sponsored by Hands of Atlanta. Call 404- 979- 2800 or www.handsonatlanta.org.
MLK Day MIllenials Courage Project
Monday, Jan. 19, 2015. Millennials Courage in Action Service Project. Young adults will engage in a 3-hour service project illustrating the first principle of nonviolence: “Nonviolence is a way of life for courageous people.” For more information, call 404- 526- 8971. Or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Georgia Tech MLK Celebration Jan. 8 – Jan. 25, 2015. Civil Rights to Human Rights: The Courage to Act. Georgia Institute of Technology will commemorate the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with a full schedule of events organized by the Institute. Events include educational programs and service opportunities by the campus and nearby communities. Events include Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Lecture, Civil Rights Tour at the Center for Civil and Human Rights, Sunday Supper, and MLK Student Celebration. See the full calendar of events at events.accessatlanta.com/mlk-gatech.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Celebration Monday, Jan. 19, 2015. The Children’s Museum of Atlanta will host events celebrating Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday and National Holiday. Visitors can make their own crafts and enjoy an inspirational presentation of MLK’s “I have a Dream” speech. Events from 10:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. Details on events.accessatlanta.com/mlk-children.
Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Program Monday, Jan. 19, 2015. Ben Hill United is honoring the life and contributions of Dr. King. Former US Trade Representative from President Obama’s administration will give the keynote address. This year’s theme is “Keeping the Dream Alive” Economic Justice for All”. Event begins at 10 a.m. – 12 noon. For more details, visit www.benhill-umc.org/.
MLK Museum Day Monday, Jan. 19, 2015. Enjoy free admission to the Atlanta History Center, Centennial Olympic Games Museum and Margaret Mitchell House.
Alpha and Omega HIV/AIDS MLK Event
Monday, Jan. 19, 2015. Pastor and social activist, Dr. Richard Cobble will revisit Dr. King’s final speech, “I’ve been to the mountaintop.” Dr. Cobble will encourage people not to focus on the lifespan, but the quality and purpose of a person’s life. Alpha and Omega is an advocate and voice not only regarding HIV/AIDS but for all social tribulations which threaten to destroy our communities. The event is at the Omega Holiness Church, 621 Memorial Drive in Atlanta at 6:30 pm. For more information, call 770- 939- 2460.