Every third Monday in January is set aside to honor the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Civil Rights leader, activist, and Baptist minister, Dr. King devoted his life to advancing Civil Rights through non-violence and peaceful protests. As parents, we have an opportunity to use this day to teach our kiddos about his legacy and celebrate his life.
Though most of us look back on Dr. King’s life with respect and admiration, it is imperative to remember that not only was Dr. King assassinated for his activism, but he was also imprisoned over 30 times.
His life wasn’t cut short by one hateful criminal, but he also faced relentless opposition from all sides, throughout his life. I hope to teach my children the progress we’ve made as a country since Dr. King’s death, while also acknowledging how much work is left to be done.
Here are 5 Family-Friendly Ways to Celebrate Martin Luther King Day in OKC this year:
- MLK, Jr. Day Opening Ceremony and Silent March – Beginning at 9:00 am today, there will be a Silent March from the Freedom Center to the Oklahoma History Center. This will be held in the style of early Civil Rights marches. At 11 am, there will be a ceremonial bell-ringing at the Oklahoma History Center.
- MLK, Jr. Day Parade – Did you know that OKC has the third-largest Martin Luther King Day parade in the United States?! Beginning at 2 pm, in Downtown OKC, follow the parade route to honor Dr. King. The parade ends around the intersection of Walker and Reno. This year’s theme? “Resilient and Relentless”. May we all be both.
- MLK, Jr. Celebration Day at the Gardens – From 10 am to 1 pm, Myriad Gardens is hosting a celebration of Dr. King’s life with live performances and crafts with local Black artists and speakers.
- Stuck at home for one reason or another? Fun crafts for littles can be found here, or you can watch I am MLK, Jr. on Amazon Prime. You can also watch Dr. King’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech on YouTube here, or read the full transcript to your kiddos here. Discuss as a family:
- What do YOU think would make our world a better place?
- What do you think Dr. King would be proud to see today? Disappointed to see?
- How can our family help carry on Dr. King’s work?
- And one more activity to add to your calendar another day: The National Civil Rights Museum is only 6-7 hours from OKC in Memphis, TN! Our family has added this to our Bucket List – at the Lorraine Motel, site of Dr. King’s assassination, the National Civil Rights Museum tells the story of slavery, segregation, and the Civil Rights Movement in America.
How will your family honor this occasion? Tell us in the comments!