Local groups honor King's contributions
Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream - as he so famously proclaimed in a 1963 speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. - that his four children "will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."
King, a civil rights leader who dedicated his life to eliminating the injustices of racial segregation, was assassinated in Memphis, Tenn., in 1968. He was 37 years old.
But the man is remembered - and his dream lives on - not least through an American national holiday proclaimed to recur on or near his Jan. 15 birthday.
Although the third Monday of each January - Jan. 20 this year - is the official holiday, local commemorative events celebrating his life and civil rights accomplishments are scheduled throughout the weekend, including:
1 p.m. today: "A Day On, Not a Day Off," celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day in the auditorium at the University of New Mexico's Valencia Campus in Los Lunas, featuring gospel choirs and other musical entertainment and guest speaker Richard Toliver, a UNM Regent and retired Air Force colonel.
3 p.m. Sunday: The annual Martin Luther King Jr. March for Freedom, beginning at the corner of University Boulevard and Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue Northeast. The march, sponsored by the Albuquerque chapter of the NAACP, will conclude with speeches at the Civic Plaza.
5 p.m. Sunday: The Labor Party of New Mexico Martin Luther King Jr. celebration and dinner at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Union, Local 611, 4921 Alexander Boulevard N.E. Tickets, $5, can be reserved by calling 271-9274. Musical entertainment and speakers Danny Rivera, executive director of the New Mexico Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO, and Sherri Burr, a University of New Mexico law professor and columnist for The Tribune.
7 p.m. Sunday: A Martin Luther King Jr. celebration, sponsored by Bahai of Albuquerque, at the University of New Mexico's Rodey Theater.
Noon Monday: The Santa Fe chapter of the NAACP sponsors a Martin Luther King Jr. commemoration ceremony at the State Capitol Rotunda in Santa Fe.
1 p.m. Monday: A commemoration program and scholarship award presentation by the Martin Luther King Multicultural Council, at Congregation Albert, 3800 Louisiana Blvd. N.E.
6 p.m. Monday: a candlelight vigil at Anna Becker Park in Belen, sponsored by the Belen Martin Luther King Multicultural Commission.
Some businesses and institutions have changed their schedules for the Martin Luther King Jr. birthday holiday, Monday.
Albuquerque Museum: Closed.
Albuquerque Public Schools: Closed.
City offices: Closed.
County offices: Closed.
State offices: Closed.
Federal offices: Closed.
Garbage pickup: Regular schedule. (892-1200)
Golf courses: Open.
Libraries: Closed Monday. Only main library, 501 Copper St. N.W.; Wyoming branch, 8205 Apache St. N.E.; and Alamosa branch, 6900 Gonzales N.W. open Tuesday.
Mail service: None.
Maxwell Museum: Closed.
Museum of Natural History: Open.
Rio Grande Zoo: Closed.
Rio Grande Nature Center: Open.
Rio Rancho Public Schools: Closed.
Senior-citizen centers: Closed.
SunTran: No Service.
Swimming pools: Open.
The Tribune: Two editions.
University of New Mexico: Closed.
©Copyright 2003, The Albuquerque Tribune
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