Here’s how to celebrate MLK Day despite pandemic

MLK Day celebrations to go on as organizers workaround pandemic

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Martin Luther King Jr. Day will be observed Monday with some adjustments for the coronavirus pandemic.

Even if you aren’t comfortable leaving your home organizers have made sure there is something for everyone.

Dr. King would have turned 92 years old on Jan. 15, 2021.

His dream and legacy live on even though he is gone.

Every year, hundreds gather outside of the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in downtown Cincinnati and march through the streets to honor Dr. King’s legacy.

The march will go on this year, but it will be a little different.

“The first thing we did was we added a motorcade, not in a parade kind of way, but as a way for people to be part of honoring Dr. King from the most safe place, which is in their own cars,” says MLK Coalition Program Coordinator Louise Lawarre.

The motorcade will follow the Rosa Parks buses, which have limited seating.

People will still be able to march, but they will be socially distanced and will have to wear a mask.

The Freedom Center is also holding a virtual program through Zoom.

“I think the challenge for us was being able to sell an experience to people remotely from their home, and I would say the good thing is our program for that day does speak to the essence of what an in-person experience would be like, but now it will be accessible to more people via the virtual platform,” explains Freedom Center Director of Development Ashley Jordan.

Here is a list of additional events for MLK Day in the Tri-State:

  • “Martin’s Dream” is streaming online via Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati and Broadway On Demand. Register here.
  • MLK Day of Service, 9 a.m.-noon, MLK Park, Avondale. Park beautification and maintenance. Pick up litter, remove honeysuckle, and clear brush.
  • MLK Day of Service, 9 a.m.-noon, Sawyer Point Park, Downtown. Horticulture assistance.
  • MLK Day of Service, 9 a.m.-noon, Inwood Park, Mount Auburn. Volunteers will remove trash and invasive species in select areas of park. Work will include removal of honeysuckle with loppers and handsaws, dragging brush, and using litter sticks
  • MLK Day of Service, 9 a.m.-noon, McEvoy Park, College Hill. Volunteers will help restore the natural habitat and improve overall safety of park by clearing out boulders, litter pick-up, and honeysuckle removal.
  • MLK Day of Service, 1-4 p.m., Walnut Woods, Evanston. Volunteers will help reclaim and renovate acres of neglected land along Victoria Parkway, in front of Walnut Hills High School. Work includes removing English Ivy and Euonymus, rerouting and mulching trails, and more.
  • MLK Day of Service, 9 a.m.-noon, Washington Park, Over-the-Rhine.
  • MLK Day of Service, 1-4 p.m., California Woods, Anderson Township. Volunteers will restore native forest for wildflower restoration. Work includes removing honeysuckle and Japanese Chaff flower with loppers and handsaws, as well as piling brush and possibly mulching trails.

The Cincinnati Public Library is also offering a virtual performance - registration is required.

Click here for a list of more MLK Jr. Day events in Cincinnati.

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