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Martin Luther King Jr. Day in Manchester

Tell us what this holiday means to you and how you will celebrate?

For some, the national holiday honoring the prominent civil rights activist is a time to give back and serve the community, be it through removing graffiti or picking up litter in a local park.

For others, it’s an opportunity to educate themselves about King and his life's work. And for others, it’s a time to just kick back and enjoy the prolonged weekend.

Manchester will actually hold its 28th Annual Martin Luther King event on Thursday, Jan. 17 2013 at 6 p.m. in the SBM Charitable Foundation Auditorium at Manchester Community College. The event, which is free and open to the public, will feature music from the Manchester High School Jazz Ensemble, a keynote address by Dr. Tiffany Russell from Atlanta, GA, and a performance by the Neighbors for Kids Afterschool Program. For questions, please contact the Manchester Youth Service Bureau at 860-647-5213.  

So, tell us—What does Martin Luther King Jr. Day mean to you? What are you doing to commemorate King’s legacy?

The Holiday's History

Martin Luther King Jr. Day, now a U.S. holiday, took 15 years to create.

Legislation was first proposed by Congressman John Conyers (D-Michigan) four days after King was assassinated in 1968.

The bill was stalled, but Conyers, along with Rep. Shirley Chisholm (D-New York), pushed for the holiday every legislative session until it was finally passed in 1983, following civil rights marches in Washington. 

Then-president Ronald Reagan signed it into law. Yet it was not until 2000 that every U.S. state celebrated Martin Luther King Jr. Day by its name. Before then, states like Utah referred to the holiday more broadly as Human Rights Day. 

Now, the Corporation for National and Community Service has declared it an official U.S. Day of Service.

TELL US: What does MLK Day mean to you? Tell us in the comments.

Susan G January 17, 2013 at 06:53 PM
In these recent weeks of hearing of so much violence, it's all the more important to celebrate a man of peace. Dr. King not only preached peace, but practiced it in his own life, even when facing danger. I will be watching the Inauguration of not only our first Black president, but a man who is there for the common people. Susan G.

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