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Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: Events for Seattle-Area Families

Join a rally, learn about Dr. King, volunteer and get inspired around Seattle, the Eastside and South Sound

Published on: January 08, 2018

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Among many inspiring and pointed speeches and quotes from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., here's one to ponder. Dr. King said this: "Life’s most persistent and urgent question is 'What are you doing for others?'"

Honor his legacy of justice, non-violence and service with your kids in the coming days by participating in an inspiring MLK Day event around the Sound, from the annual rally at Seattle’s Garfield High School to the Northwest African American Museum’s celebration. Or give back to your community by volunteering in the spirit of service at one of several family-friendly opportunities. All events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted.

Here are top events through Monday, Jan. 15, 2018:

Wednesday, Jan. 10:

Join a discussion with community leaders talking over the importance of Dr. King's ideas today and how they relate to life on the Eastside (Bellevue, noon).

Thursday, Jan. 11:

Join Ilyasah Shabazz, daughter of Malcolm X, Mayor Jenny Durkan and others talking about unity and taking inspiration from Dr. King to work to change society for the better today (Seattle, 7 p.m.).

Friday, Jan. 12:

Keynote speaker Ijeoma Oluo talks about Dr. King's legacy of non-violence in a violent world and DaNell Daymon and Greater Works play inspiring gospel music in this 45th annual community celebration (Seattle, noon).

Saturday, Jan. 13:

Clover Park Technical College hosts a free community celebration honoring the life and work of Dr. King which includes special exhibits by the Buffalo Soldiers Museum and Philippine Scouts, plus live music and a keynote address (Lakewood, 10 a.m.).

Celebrate local young people working to make a difference and join a youth-led community march to honor Dr. King with 2018's theme: "End poverty! Build equity!" (Seattle, 11 a.m.).

Get a glimpse into the human side of Dr. King in the play "The Mountaintop" by L.A. Theaterworks (Tacoma, 7:30 p.m., tickets $19–$69).

Sunday, Jan. 14:

A free workshop by Kids4Peace invites youth in grades 6–12 to learn about taking action against bigotry and discrimination; preregister (Seattle, 2 p.m.).

Monday, Jan. 15:

Help spruce up parks around Tacoma with your community during Martin Luther King Day of Caring volunteer events (Tacoma, 9 a.m.).

Remove weeds and invasive plants and improve a walking trail and wildlife habitat around Lake Sammamish State Park in an all-ages work party; ages 13 and under must have an adult with them; preregister (Issaquah, 10 a.m.).

A special MLK Monday edition of the Mountains to Sound Greenway's volunteer tree-potting party welcomes all ages (under 14 with an adult) and keeps our wild areas beautiful; be sure to preregister (Issaquah, 10 a.m.).

Rally and march for Dr. King, equality and justice; rally at Garfield High School at 11 a.m., march at 12:30 p.m. and rally again downtown at 1:30 p.m.; more events online (Seattle, 11 a.m.).

Celebrate Dr. King's birthday with the community as a distinguished professor receives an award, and hear from award-winning Tacoma teacher Nate Gibbs-Bowling (Tacoma, 11 a.m.).

The Northwest African American Museum hosts an all-day celebration of Dr. King and the civil rights movement with films, Dr. King's speeches and art activities (Seattle, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.; admission by donation).

Stop by Crossroads Bellevue for its annual Martin Luther King, Jr. celebration which includes live music, guest speakers and a health fair (Bellevue, 11 a.m.–3 p.m.).

The Washington State History Museum hosts a performance of "11 Days in the Life of Dr. King," an entertaining, family-friendly show with song and dance; the museum is free all day in honor of Dr. King (Tacoma, 2 p.m.).

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