Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day

By: 
Rocío Lower

Every year on the third Monday in January, we celebrate the extraordinary life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. We join together to honor a life lived in service, a life dedicated to a cause bigger than any one person; we celebrate Dr. King’s pivotal role in mending a broken and segregated nation.

In the 31 years since January 20 was established as a day of observance, people have commemorated Dr. King’s legacy in numerous ways. Here are three ideas for paying tribute to his legacy:

  1. Explore your parks. Honor Dr. King’s life by visiting the places where history actually happened. African American Experience Fund sites such as the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site and the Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail honor and protect historic moments and places. In addition to all national parks offering free admission on January 20, some parks – such as the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial – are hosting special events! Check the National Park Service calendar to find an event near you.
  2. Engage online. Experience Dr. King’s legacy by exploring www.WeAreStillMarching.com. Not only can you read Dr. King’s historic “I Have a Dream” speech and record yourself reciting it, but you can also connect with the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. The interactive site transports you to August 28, 1963 and allows you to engage with the momentous march that epitomized the civil rights movement.
  3. Volunteer. Memorialize Dr. King’s teachings by dedicating the day to community service. In towns and cities throughout the country, citizens give their time to improving their communities, and in doing so, adhere to the MLK Day of Service’s motto: “a day on, not a day off.”  

Dr. King selflessly dedicated his life to a belief that we could be better – that we could do better. This Martin Luther King Jr. Day, take time to honor his legacy.