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Friday, June 14, 2024

Gainesville celebrating MLK holiday all week

More than 15 events are happening in Gainesville this week in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Events celebrating his life began Sunday and will end Monday on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Gainesville residents can enjoy concerts, ceremonies and conferences, which will happen throughout the week. Akil Reynolds, the assistant treasurer for the Black Student Union, believes events like these, which honor the civil rights leader, are a wonderful way of promoting inclusion and diversity.

“One of his visions was for all people of ethnic or racial backgrounds to come together and form a better tomorrow,” the 19-year-old UF health science sophomore said.

He said he hopes the entire Gainesville community, not just African-Americans, get involved in the celebrations.

Shirley Watts, a pastor at the Community Praise Center, said the Praize Gospel Concert is being hosted by her church Saturday at Lincoln Middle School.

Singer Jekalyn Carr, who was nominated for a Grammy in Best Gospel Performance or Song, and goes by the name Sistar Cantaloupe as a comedian, will be performing.

It’s the third year the concert is being held, Watts said, adding she hopes the concert is motivating, captivating and entertaining. Watts said she enjoys being part of the celebration because it brings the Gainesville community together to promote peace and love.

She said it’s important to remember and honor King’s legacy and teach the next generation to be active in their community.

“We teach our children to go out and march,” she said.

Upcoming Events

  • Jan. 10 at 6:30 p.m.
    Upper Room Ministries, 3575 NE 15th St.                             “Remembering Martin and Coretta”

  • Jan. 11 at 6:30 p.m.
    MLK Multi-Purpose Center, 1028 NE 14th St.                            
    Town Hall Symposium: “Bias On the Bench—A Community Dialogue”

  • Jan. 12 at 6 p.m. 
    Institute of Black Culture 1510 W. University Ave.                                
    U of F MLK Opening March & Ceremony

  • Jan. 14 at 6 p.m.
    Lincoln Middle School, 1001 SE 10th Avenue Gainesville, Florida
    Praize Gospel Concert

  • Jan. 16 at 11 a.m.
    MLK Memorial Garden, 200 E. University Ave.                                
    Hall of Fame Award Enshrinement Program

  • Jan. 16 at noon
    Bo Diddley Downtown Community Plaza,
    111 E University Ave.   
    National Holiday Kick-Off Program

  • Jan. 16 at 1 p.m.
    Begins at MLK Memorial Gardens, 200 E. University Ave.               
    King Celebration Annual Commemorative March

  • Jan. 16 at 2 p.m.
    MLK Multi-Purpose Center 1028 NE 14th St.                            
    National Holiday Gospel Program  

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