ALACHUA COUNTY - The Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission of Florida, Inc., presents King Week 2007, January 9-18 in Gainesville and Alachua County. Established in 1985, the MLK Commission of Florida, Inc. has continued the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by advocating and promoting, nonviolently, the elimination of poverty and racism, and has worked to promote social and economic justice in Alachua County and the State of Florida.
Over the past two decades, the MLK Commission of Florida, Inc., has accomplished the following:
- Established weeklong activities in 1985, which commemorate the death and celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
- Completed the Martin Luther King, Jr., Memorial Gardens located in downtown Gainesville.
- In 1986, the Martin Luther King, Jr., Hall of Fame was created, which recognizes local citizens who have demonstrated and espoused those principles and deeds of Dr. King. To date, twenty-one individuals have been enshrined in the Hall of Fame.
- In 1988, highway 441 was re-named the Martin Luther King, Jr., memorial highway by the state legislature, reaching more than 30 miles through Alachua County from Columbia County to Marion County.
- To recognize the academic achievements, civic involvement, and leadership of high school seniors, the Edna M. Hart Keeper of the Dream Scholarship Award was established in 1989. Since then, over forty-two thousand dollars in scholarships have been awarded.
- The MLK Commission was instrumental in spearheading the naming of the new 1.5 million multipurpose center built by the City of Gainesville in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
- Sponsored workshops on culture diversity, education, and restoration of civil rights for ex-felons.
- Instrumental in the successful implementation of the charter officer for equal opportunity for the City of Gainesville.
- The Commission assisted other agencies with the transition of the Kennedy Homes residents throughout the community.
- Collaborated with the University of Florida Office of the President with the third annual "Helping Our Neighbors Holiday Program," that provided over 500 food baskets to needy families in smaller cities.
Pre-King Week Activities:
· January 7 – March 1, 2007
A. Quinn Jones Tribute Exhibit "All Negro Children Can Learn" will be held
at the University of Florida Smathers East Library
King Week 2007 Activities:
The celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., begins Tuesday, January 9, 2007 in Gainesville and Alachua County. Due to the number of events planned this year, King Week has been expanded an additional week. This year's theme is, "Empowerment for the Next Decade: Healthy Minds, Healthy Bodies."
The public is invited to attend the following King Week events:
· Monday, January 8 at 12 noon
2007 Press Conference will be held at the MLK, Jr. Gardens Downtown located in front of City Hall. Contact Rodney J. Long at (352) 376-2442 for additional information.
· Tuesday, January 9 at 6:30 p.m.
The King Week kickoff program begins at Faith Missionary Baptist Church, 2905 NE 21st Ave. The kickoff speaker is reverend Kevin Thorpe, Pastor of Faith Missionary Baptist Church. This event is free. Contact Reverend Kevin Thorpe at (352) 375-4850 or Marie Small at (352) 335-0572 for additional information.
· Wednesday, January 10 from 6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
The "Nonviolence" Leadership workshop will be held at the MLK Multi-Purpose Center, 1028 NE 14 St. The speaker is Joe Lipsey. Contact Larry McDaniel or Joe Lipsey at (352) 213-4792, or Chief (retired) Atkins W. Warren at (352) 335-0406 for additional information.
· Thursday, January 11 at 7:00 p.m.
The Second Annual Black History and Cultural Brain Bowl will be held at the MLK Multi-Purpose Center. This event is free. Contact Cynthia Mingo at (352) 466-3320 or (352) 222-9425 for additional information.
· Friday, January 12 from 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
The Dream of Homeownership workshop will he held at the MLK Multi-Purpose Center, 1028 NE 14 St. Contact Ashon Nesbitt at (352) 337-6784 or email@example.com.
· Saturday, January 13 at 10:00 a.m.
The Restoration of Civil Rights Forum and Workshop will be held at the MLK Multi-Purpose Center. Lunch will be provided to all ex-felons who attend and participate in the event. This event is free. Contact Meshon Rawls at (352) 273-0813 for additional information.
· Sunday, January 14 at 10:40 a.m.
Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. Nu Eta Lambda Chapter, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Observance Program will be held at Greater Bethel AME Church, 701 SE 43rd St. The speaker will be Reverend Karl B. Smith. Contact President Marvin Cohen at (386) 344-2233 for additional information.
· Sunday, January 14 at 11:00 a.m.
A Martin Luther King Celebration will be held at the Mount Olive Primitive Baptist Church at 510 NE 15th St. Contact Janie S. Williams at (352) 378-4586 for additional information.
· Sunday, January 14 from 4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
A television special "We Have a Dream" will be aired on WCJB TV20. Contact Karen Woolfstead at (352) 337-2020 for additional information.
· Sunday, January 14 at 6:00 p.m.
The Hall of Fame Banquet will be held at the Paramount Resort and Conference Center, featuring the honorable Dr. Cynthia Moore Chestnut, Director of Education & Community Outreach, UF Shands Eastside Community Practice, Alachua County Commissioner. The theme will be "Empowerment for the Next Decade, Healthy Minds, Healthy Bodies." Donations are $50.00 per person. Contact Jackie Hart-Williams at (352) 264-6956 or (352) 376-2442 for additional information.
National Holiday Activities
The 2007 National Holiday Press Conference begins at 11:30 a.m. at the MLK Jr. Gardens Downtown. Contact Rodney J. Long at (352) 376-2442 for additional information.
· Monday, January 15 at 12 noon
The national holiday kick-off program will begin at the Downtown Community Plaza. The speakers will be DeAdra Hilliard who is the Buchholz High School '07 Edna M. Hart Keeper of the Dream Award recipient. Contact Joel Buchanan at (352) 392-9075 for additional information.
The Annual Commemorative March will begin at 1:00 p.m. starting at the MLK Memorial Gardens (downtown) and end at the MLK Multi-Purpose Center, Waldo Road. Contact Diyonne McGraw at (352) 246-1739 for additional information.
The national holiday celebration and gospel program starts at 2:00 p.m. at the Martin Luther King, Jr., Multi-Purpose Center, 1028 NE 14 St. Contact Janice Nix-Johnson at (352) 380-9119 for additional information.
· Wednesday, January 17 at 6:00 p.m.
The Coretta Scott King observance program will be held at Mount Pleasant United Methodist Church, the keynote speaker is Reverend Geraldine McClellan, district superintendent, United Method Church. This event is free. Contact Marie Small at (352) 335-0572 or (352) 376-2442 for additional information.
· Thursday, January 18 at 6:00 p.m.
"Pampering the Brothers," a health forum for men, will be held at the Alachua County Health Department auditorium, located at 228 SE 24th St. This event is free. Contact Marie Small at (352) 335-0572 or (352) 376-2442.
· Thursday, January 18 at 6:30 p.m.
A "Salute to a Great Man" will be health at the Mount Olive AME Church at 721 SE 8th St. The speaker will be Kathie Amapnick "Sarachild." Contact Cynthia Mingo at (352) 466-3320 for additional information.
Post King Week Activities
· Sunday, January 21 at 11:00 a.m.
A Martin Luther King Commemorative Program will be held at the Mt. Zion AME Church in Hawthorne, Florida. Contact Tara McClendon at (352) 481-3863 for additional information
A reception for A. Quinn Jones' Tribute Exhibit: All Negro Children Can Learn
Place will be held at the University of Florida Smathers Library. For additional information contact Joel Buchanan at (352) 392-9075.
· Wednesday, January 24 at 8:00 p.m.
An Ebony Fashion Show will take place at Lincoln Middle School, 1001 SE 12th St. Tickets are $25.00 per person. Contact Verna Johnson at (352) 372-1001 for additional information.
· Saturday, January 27 from 9:00 a.m. - 12 noon
"Healthy Minds, Healthy Bodies" health fair will take place at the MLK Multi-purpose Center at 1028 NE 14 St. Contact Cynthia Moore Chestnut at (352) 338-7113 for additional information.
· Sunday, January 28 at 7:30 p.m.
The University of Florida Performing Arts presents "I Can't Stop Loving You--Music of Ray Charles" at the Curtis M. Phillips Center for Performing Arts, 315 Hull Road, Gainesville. For more information, visit www.performingarts.ufl.edu/perf.cantstoplove.asp.
· Wednesday, February 7 at 7:30 p.m.
The University of Florida Accent Speakers Bureau presents "Martin Luther King 111" at the Curtis M. Phillips Center for Performing Arts, 315 Hull Road, Gainesville, Florida.
· Friday, February 16 at 7:30 p.m.
University of Florida Performing Arts presents Dayton Contemporary Dance Company/Color-ography, inspired by paintings of Jacob Lawrence at the Curtis M. Phillips Center for Performing Arts. http://www.performingarts.ufl.edu/perf.dayton.asp
· Saturday, February 17 from 8:30 a.m.- 1:00 p.m.
Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Gainesville Alumnae Chapter presents the 2007 Annual Youth Seminar. Contact Patricia Lee at (352) 377-9669 for additional information.
· Sunday, February 25 at 3:00 p.m.
Ebony Appreciation Awards Banquet--Location TBA. Contact Bernadette Woody at (352) 337-0720 for additional information
· Saturday, March 17 at 9:00 a.m.
Breakfast for Madame will take place at the Hilton University of Florida Conference Center, 1714 SW 34 St.--Cost TBA. Contact Sarah Richardson at (352) 378-7928 for additional information. This event is sponsored by Alachua County Charmettes.