Martin Luther King Jr. Day is Monday, Jan. 16, this year. There are a variety of ways for kids and families to get involved, remember the Civil Rights leader and honor his work through service projects and events.
Here's what's happening ...
Dream Big Book Drive: Book Harvest, an amazing organization that works to put books in the hands of all kids, will host its big annual event from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., Jan. 16, at Durham Central Park, 501 Foster St., Durham. Bring your new and gently used children's books (and gather some from friends and neighbors too). Then deliver them at the event.
Birthday Party for Dr. King: For the seventh year, MomsRising.org and a variety of other parents' groups and nonprofit organizations will host a special event from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Jan. 16, at Northgate Mall in Durham. It's free and open to the public.
Best for preschoolers to middle school students, the celebration focuses on Durham and its famed Black Wall Street, including a Q&A with J&L Page and Sons Grocery family members, once an anchor in Durham's Hayti neighborhood.Kids can learn the history of local businesses and find out who’s making a difference and how they can too.
There also will be a Latin cardio demonstration, crafts and a storytime at noon featuring "Ruth and The Green Book," by Calvin Ramsey. Then, they'll sing "Happy Birthday" to King and share some birthday cake.
As part of the event, participants are asked to bring nonperishable food (especially muffin and biscuit mixes, healthy snacks, instant coffee/ tea, shelf stable milk-dry or packaged), gently used children’s winter clothing and coats, or new underwear/socks for local families in need served by Urban Ministries of Durham.
Community Heroes Day at Marbles: The downtown Raleigh museum will host special activities from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Jan. 16. Kids can meet real community heroes, including a paramedic, teacher and police officer. And they can be a hero by packing food for Backpack Buddies and make blankets for hospitals and shelters through Project Linus - Wake County Chapter.
MLK Day of Service: The United Way of the Greater Triangle has lined up dozens of projects that volunteers can take part in. Slots fill up, but there is still some availability and organizers work to ensure there are opportunities for all ages.
MLK Dreamfest: The town of Cary hosts a variety of events, including storytellers and Poetry Fest on Saturday; a viewing of "And Still I Rise," a documentary about poet Maya Angelou on Sunday; and a Day of Service on Monday, Jan. 16.