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Statue of Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day: How to Celebrate in San Diego

He had a dream, and it continues to live on in the hearts of many Americans.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was one of the most influential African-American leaders and civil rights activists in history, playing a prominent role in the Civil Rights Movement and the end of legal segregation. He grew up in Atlanta, Georgia, received a Ph.D. in Systematic Theology and became a Baptist minister in the south.

In December 1955, after Rosa Park was arrested, King lead the Montgomery Bus Boycott and became a leader in the civil rights movement. He gradually shot to fame with his charismatic, energizing speeches and nonviolent protest tactics. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964. Toward the last years of his life, his focuses included fighting poverty and opposition to the Vietnam War. He was assassinated in 1968 when he was only 39. His birthday, January 15th, became an official U.S. federal holiday in 1986.

Honor this great man’s memory and ideals by celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend with one of the following no-cost events:


San Diego Multi-Cultural Festival

When: Saturday, January 13, 2018 at 11 a.m. until 5 p.m.
Where: Ruocco Park
What to expect: This event provides an entire day of family-friendly, multi-cultural performances and crafts. There will be live music, entertainment performances, a drum circle, traditional heritage music and dancing, face painting, children’s games, storytellers, as well as vendors for shopping and food.

38th Annual Martin Luther King Day Parade

When: Sunday, January 14, 2018 at 2:00 PM until 5 p.m.
Where: Harbor Drive
What to expect: One of the largest MLK parades in the country, this parade will include beautiful floats and a wide variety of participants, including members from youth, high school, college, religious and peace groups.

Day of Interfaith Service

When: Monday, January 15, 2018 at 8:15 a.m. until 12:00 p.m.
Where: Balboa Park, at the corner of Quince Street and Balboa Drive
What to expect: This diverse community service event will bring local San Diegans of different ages, religions and cultural backgrounds together to clean Balboa Park.

27th Annual Martin Luther King Day Celebration

When: Monday, January 15, 2018 at 12:00 p.m. until 8 p.m.
Where: WorldBeat Cultural Center in Balboa Park
What to expect: Celebrate Dr. King’s life by visiting the WorldBeat Cultural Center to experience various musical artists, outdoor cultural crafts, different vendors and vegetarian food.

The 30th All Peoples Celebration

When: Monday, January 15, 2018 at 10 a.m. until 11:30 a.m.
Where: Balboa Activity Center in Balboa Park
What to expect: More than 1,000 business, political, religious and community leaders are expected to attend this annual event to honor Dr. King’s work. There will be musicians, multimedia presentations, inspirational speakers and a San Diego non-profit community space.

Keep your family healthy while at a MLK Day event:

  • Eat a well-balanced breakfast or lunch before
  • Bring plenty of water and snacks (Granola bars, snack mixes, fruit, etc)
  • Wear sunscreen to prevent damage from the sun’s rays
  • Wear comfortable clothes and shoes
  • Stay together as a group

Celebrating inspirational Americans like Martin Luther King Jr. teaches your children the importance of equality, the effectiveness of free speech and the history of our country’s Civil Rights Movement. For more fun or educational San Diego events, check out Scripps Affiliated Medical Groups’ articles.

CATEGORIES: Active LifestyleParentingSan DiegoSeniors


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