Ways to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day virtually

The California African American Museum will have a fully virtual celebration of Dr. King that includes a reading of his 1967 “Christmas Sermon on Peace” speech, along with a performance by the Inner City Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles, considered the largest majority-Black orchestra in the country. The event begins at 2pm ET and registration is free.

 The African American Museum in Philadelphia has a comprehensive slate of virtual activities and presentations over the course of the holiday weekend, including a virtual transcribe-a-thon on Sunday of material from the Philadelphia Congregations Early Records that shed light on the church’s role in African American communities as well as the role Philadelphia played during the Civil War. Monday’s events include a dialogue on “Art + Activism: Then and Now” with iconic Philly artist and activist Richard J. Watson, whose murals can be found all over the city, and LaTreice V. Branson, whose background in community activism, education, and music led her to found the Drum Like a Lady nonprofit.

Those looking to lend a hand and celebrate Dr. King’s life through acts of service can do so virtually as well. Websites like Volunteer Match offer digital opportunities that coincide with MLK Day, including assisting in virtual book drives, helping make museums more accessible by creating captions describing digital offerings, and researching instruments to create a curriculum for underserved youth. The nonprofit Points of Light also offers virtual volunteer opportunities, many of which include educational opportunities such as read-ins and tutoring. As Dr. King himself wrote, “We must remember that intelligence is not enough. Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education. The complete education gives one not only power of concentration, but worthy objectives upon which to concentrate.”

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