MLK Day Lovett

Lovett students participate in the 2016 Martin Luther King Jr. Day March in downtown Atlanta.

Several local organizations and schools are hosting or participating in events to honor the legacy of civil rights icon the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.:

Sandy Springs

The city of Sandy Springs will conduct its annual tribute to King Jan. 15 at 10 a.m. at a new location this year, Heritage Sandy Springs.

Now in its 12th year, the event will celebrate King’s spirit and reflect the diversity of the community. This year, the tribute to King will acknowledge members of the community who make a difference in the lives of children every day. Those attending the event are encouraged to bring a children’s book (early reader to young adult), which will be donated to the Sandy Springs Mission.

Sandy Springs businessman Oz Hill returns as emcee while the Rev. Henry Bush of Sharon Community United Methodist Church will provide inspirational thoughts and the challenge for all to continue King’s essential work. Both men have been a part of the city’s MLK Day celebration since the event’s inception.

Information: 770-730-5600 or

King Center

The Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change is hosting a series of events for the 2018 commemoration of King’s birthday.

The Salute to Greatness Awards Dinner will take place Jan. 13 at 6 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Atlanta. Among the honorees will be the Hamdi Ulukaya, founder of Chobani LLC, and U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, D-New Jersey. Other honorees include James Clark, president of the Boys and Girls Club of America; Alana Simmons, founder of Hate Won’t Win; civil rights activist Robert L. Green, Ph.D.; and Carmen Yulin Cruz, mayor of San Juan, Puerto Rico. The observance includes a range of educational programs, activities and events. Other events include MLK Race for the Dream Marathon and half marathon and a 20-mile bike ride.

Information: 404-526-8900 or

Alliance Theatre

Students from the 16th annual Palefsky Collision Project will come together to reexamine their work from this summer as letters to King. This summer's catalytic text was District 5 U.S. Rep. John Lewis' graphic novel, “March.” The group will present a staged reading of their work Jan. 15 at both the Woodruff Arts Center in Midtown and the Center for Civil & Human Rights in downtown Atlanta.

Performances Jan. 14 at 3:30 p.m. and Jan. 15 at 2:30 p.m. in the Alliance’s Rich Theatre are free, and the special performance Jan. 15 at 11 a.m. at the National Center for Civil & Human Rights is free but does require admission to the museum. Also, the Woodruff Arts Center will host the free ArtsVibe MLK Poetry Slam Jan. 14 at 4:30 p.m. in the Teen Lounge, Center Space.

Information: (project) or (poetry slam)

Church service

The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Annual Commemorative Service will be held at Ebenezer Baptist Church, 101 Jackson St. in downtown Atlanta, Jan. 15 at 10 a.m. This church service is an ecumenical endeavor, engaging members of various religious traditions and state, national, and international governments.


Lovett march

On Jan. 15, Lovett will once again participate in the MLK March. This is a community-wide celebration of King’s vision. The march will start at Peachtree and Baker streets and end on John Wesley Dobbs Avenue. The assembly will begin at 1:15 p.m., and the march and rally will start at 1:45 p.m.

Hands On Atlanta

In partnership with the King Center, Hands on Atlanta will mobilize 1,500 volunteers at 25 projects throughout metro Atlanta to unite in service Jan. 15. There are diverse range of projects to participate in this year, including school and park beautification, meal kit packing and working in homeless shelters, putting together literacy kits, planting trees, spending time with seniors and more.  

Hands On Atlanta is partnering with other nonprofits to organize volunteer service projects at different locations throughout metro Atlanta in honor of MLK Day.

Atlanta History Center

The Atlanta History Center in Buckhead will present a thought-provoking day of programming Jan. 15. For the center’s 2018 Martin Luther King Day observance, the center will have free admission as well as free admission to its Margaret Mitchell House in Midtown.

The center will feature special programming that highlights the contributions of African-Americans in Atlanta. This year also will feature a special film screening, and conversation about the film, entitled “A Trek to the River’s Edge,” with the filmmaker and student leaders of the Atlanta Student Movement beginning at 1 p.m.

At 3 p.m., the center will organize a slate of free programs from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at both the center and at the Mitchell House. This program is intended to engage the growing MLK Day audience on subjects from Civil War slavery to Civil Rights Movement-sparked integration.

Center events will include featured speaker Frye Gaillard’s talk titled “Go South to Freedom,” the Museum Theatre Experience of “Walking Through the Valley,” Rosalyn Walton speaking on the center’s “Gatheround: Stories of Atlanta” exhibition and a Freedom Ride simulation

At the Mitchell House the featured speaker will be Calinda Lee, and her address is entitled “The Time is Always Right to Do the Right Thing: Lessons from Drum Majors for Justice.”


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