• Mon. Jan 25th, 2021

Following the King Legacy Awards Breakfast at the Freedom Center each year, hundreds of marchers proceed to Fountain Square for an interfaith prayer service (as shown above) and then continue the march to Music Hall. This annual Commemorative Civil Rights march, which has been held in Cincinnati every year since Ohio declared MLK Day a state holiday in 1975, draws over a thousand people to reaffirm their commitment to Dr. King’s legacy and his tireless work for justice, equality and freedom. File photo

Buses, cars part of Commemorative March

Provided

King Legacy Breakfast

By Edna Keown

Chair, King Legacy Breakfast Committee

The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center announces the annual King Legacy Celebration will be held on January 18, 2021, at 9 a.m. in a virtual format. This is Cincinnati’s premier event honoring steadfast progress in Civil Rights. The life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. embodies the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center’s principles of courage, cooperation and perseverance. Although our annual celebration as an in-person experience has been interrupted due to COVID-19, out commitment to end oppression, racism and violence cannot waver.

Tickets and additional details are available at the King legacy Celebration Website. tickets are available at http://freedomcenter.org/voice/event/king-legacy-celebration-21/.

The Commemorative Civil Rights March and Motorcade

By Louise Lawarre

The Martin Luther King Jr. Coalition announces our 46th annual events in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on Monday, January 18, 2021. The MLK Coalition provides programing to honor Dr. King and amplify the voices of our community demanding justice and an end to racism. These voices carry the same messages that Dr. King called for: an end to police violence against People of Color; voting rights for all people; and economic and racial justice.

The coronavirus pandemic has challenged us to be creative and change how we safely bring our traditional march and program to the Cincinnati community.  This year, in addition to marchers on foot, the MLK Commemorative March will include a Motorcade and will begin at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center at 10:30 AM, with participants’ cars following marchers along a designated route in downtown Cincinnati. Metro’s Rosa Parks Buses will provide limited seating. After the March, our virtual 46th annual program, filmed at Music Hall, will premiere at 12:00 noon on the MLK Coalition website, www.mlkcoalition.org. Our 2021 keynote speaker, Rev. Nelson J. Pierce, Jr., will be joined by vocalists Lois Shegog, Steve Milloy, the Nouveau Chamber Players, and area student vocalists and spoken word artists.

The Martin Luther King, Jr. Coalition is dedicated to keeping Dr. King’s legacy vibrant in Cincinnati. In that spirit, the Coalition offers the following free public events:

  • 10:30 a.m. Commemorative March and Motorcade begins at the Freedom Center (All recommended COVID-19 protocols will be in place):
    • Participants planning to march should arrive at the Freedom Center by 10:15.
    • Participating via car
      • The MLK Motorcade will begin at 10:30 am promptly. To participate via car, people must register by going to Eventbrite at https://drivemlkday.eventbrite.com 
      • Print the registration form
      • Display the printed registration form on the dashboard.
      • Eventbrite will provide all the details for the Motorcade.
    • Participating via Rosa Parks Buses
      • Limited seating on the Rosa Parks Buses provided by Metro.
      • Register on Eventbrite at https://ridemlkday.eventbrite.com or by calling 513-491-3448
  • 12 p.m. MLK Commemorative Program premieres at www.mlkcoalition.org

Rev. Nelson Jerome Pierce, Jr. is the senior pastor of Beloved Community Church, and is the Faith and Race Program Director in the Center for Faith and Justice at Xavier University. In 2014, Rev. Pierce played a critical role in organizing clergy and young people in the aftermath of the killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, for which he is recognized in the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture in Washington DC.

MLK Day events begin at 9:00 AM with the virtual 2021 King Legacy Celebration sponsored by Freedom Center and the MLK Coalition. Tickets are available at https://freedomcenter.org/voice/event/king-legacy-celebration-21/.

All events are free and open to the public except the King Legacy Celebration. For more information visit www.mlkcoalition.org or contact Louise Lawarre at MLKCcoordinator@gmail.com.

Music Hall Virtual Commemorative Program

Contributed

Will there be an MLK Day Program this year? Yes, but it will be a virtual program. The MLK Commemorative Program premiers on MLK Day 2021 at noon on the MLK Coalition Website. The program will be available for viewing at a later time, as well. the 2021 MLK Day Keynote speaker, Rev. Nelson Pierce Jr., will address this year’s theme, “We Will Never Be Satisfied Until Justice Rolls Down Like Water.” Rev. Pierce is the senior pastor of Beloved Community Church, and is the Faith and Race Program Director in the Center for Faith and Justice at Xavier University.

Although the MLK Chorale is not singing together this year, the program will be filled with music. MLK Chorale Director Lois Shegog and former director Steve Milloy have several musical treasures to share. University students share their talents, and there will be a return of students who participate in WordPlay to share their spoken-word artisrtry.

The Cincinnati Library table in the Music hall lobby will not be there this year, but the 2021 Resource list is in the MLK Day 2021 Program Book, with many newly reviewed books and other media formats for all ages. In addition, the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County will be a recipient of a portion of the contributions made to the MLK Coalition, to add more resources about Dr. King and the Freedom Movement to their collections.

The Martin Luther King, Jr. Coalition is dedicated to keeping Dr. King’s legacy vibrant in Cincinnati. In that spirit, the Coalition offers the following free public events:

The Rev. Nelson Jerome Pierce Jr. is the senior pastor of Beloved Community Church, and is the Faith and Race Program Director in the Center for Faith and Justice at Xavier University. In 2014, Rev. Pierce played a critical role in organizing clergy and young people in the aftermath of the killing of Michael brown in Ferguson, Missouri, for which he is recognized in the Smithsonian National Museum if African American History & Culture in Washington DC.

All events are free and open to the public except the King Legacy Celebration. For more information visit www.mlkcoalition.org or contact Louise Lawarre at MLKCcoordinator@gmail.com.

Shares