7 events to celebrate MLK Day in Birmingham

MLK day, Martin Luther king day
Celebrate MLK Day by supporting the Leftover Enegery Foundation while getting your steps in. (MLK Day 5K Drum Run)

MLK Day is right around the corner on Monday, January 16 and there are many ways to celebrate the leader of the civil rights movement. From service opportunities to fun events, here’s how you can remember Martin Luther King Jr. in The Magic City.

1. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemoration 

Martin Luther King Jr. during the Washington march. (Birmingham Civil Rights Institute / Facebook)

UAB Keynote Speaker Dr. Paulette Dilworth leads a commemoration to touch on the importance of MLK’s thoughts through the theme “Together we can be the dream”. There will also be a performance by the Miles College choir, a Historically Black College and University (HBCU). 

2. 7th Annual MLK Day 5K Drum Run

mlk drum run 7 events to celebrate MLK Day in Birmingham
Hear percussions from local Alabama schools. (MLK Day 5K Drum Run)

Start your MLK weekend by participating in the 5K Drum Run race. Proceeds go to the Leftover Energy Foundation, which supports communities specializing in music and art. Need some motivation while you run? There’s a playlist available to inspire you to get your best 5K time ever! 

3. Birmingham Civil Rights Institute’s King’s Day Festivities

Birmingham Civil Rights Institute Dome Rails 7 events to celebrate MLK Day in Birmingham
Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. (Bham Now)

The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute honors Martin Luther King Jr. with FREE engaging and educational activities on MLK Day. You can expect to see:

  • A live reenactment of the “Letter From Birmingham Jail” from inside the actual jail cell
  • Carlton Reese Memorial Unity Choir
  • Galleries Alive
  • Greetings from Birmingham Mayor, Randall Woodfin, BCRI Leadership + FedEx Partners
  • Scavenger hunts + quizzes

4. MLK Unity Breakfast

The annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Unity Breakfast is on Monday, January 16. This years Keynote Speaker is Attorney Corey Minor Smith. For more information reach out the contact below.

5. MLK Indoor Track Meet

mlk indoor track meet
The famous Olympic-style indoor track & field. (Birmingham Crossplex / Facebook)

The Birmingham Crossplex Track is known for being one of the fastest indoor tracks in the world. This MLK Day, watch as people from Alabama race around the track while trying to set new records.

6. MLK Meet a Mentor Day

nslm meet a mentor mlk day 7 events to celebrate MLK Day in Birmingham
2022 MLK Meet a Mentor Day. (Negro Southern Leauge Museum / Facebook)

Negro Southern League Museum leadership is thrilled to honor the legacy of MLK by hosting Meet a Mentor Day. The museum will be open for viewing alongside different booths from the community, a Q&A session and a chance to win Birmingham Squadron game tickets. The whole family is invited to take advantage of the valuable resources and opportunities from local mentoring organizations.

“When guests finish touring here, we want each of them to thrive in their own way. We also want them to return to their respective communities and share how the men and women of the Negro Leagues broke through racial barriers and limiting beliefs with both tenacity and talent during their baseball careers.”

 Alicia Johnson-Williams, Executive Director, NSLM

7. BPL MLK Day events

Looking for something more low-key and available all week? Multiple branches of the Birmingham Public Library are hosting MLK activities. The Springville Road Regional Branch will be showing a movie on Martin Luther King’s historic march from Selma to Montgomery. Won’t be able to catch the movie, there are many other fun activities such as:

  • Bingo
  • Crafts
  • Painting
  • Trivia
  • Word Search
  • When: All month
  • Where: Various BPL locations
  • Website

For more MLK events across Alabama check this article from Bama Buzz. For MLK Day in Huntsville, visit this article from Hville Blast.

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Emma Johnston
Emma Johnston
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