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MLK Day of Celebration - Expanded Program


Media Contact:  Fabina Colon

Director, Multicultural Resource Center

MRC Phone:  607-279-8157   607-592-6641

Backup Contact:  Elan Shapiro 607-592-8402

MLK Jr. Day Celebration - Expanded Program

Solidarity in Action

[Ithaca, NY, January 5, 2018] – Community members are invited to attend the free, newly expanded 2018 MLK Jr. Day of Celebration on Monday, January 15, 2018 at the Beverly J. Martin Elementary School gym.  The event is open to all community members and includes activities for youth and adults.

This year’s focus is Solidarity in Action, with learning-and-action-oriented circles and varied youth activities after the regular luncheon presentations and performances. We will also be highlighting the national Poor People’s Campaign, which MLK, Jr. started 50 years ago as a multiracial coalition to address economic injustice in America. The newly revived Campaign emphasizes the need for people from different constituencies to join joining forces to actively challenge systemic poverty, racism, militarism, and environmental destruction. The Poor People’s Campaign is being organized both nationally and in local communities across the US, including the greater Ithaca area

MLK Jr. Day Celebration Schedule:

  • 11:30 am – 12:30 pm   Lunch, presentations and performances at Beverly J. Martin Elementary (BJM) gym
  • 12:30 – 2:30 pm   Learning & Action Circles (BJM Classrooms)
  • 12:30 – 2:30 pm   Youth activities and childcare at (adjacent) Greater Ithaca Activities Center
  • 2:30 – 3:00 pm     Wrap-up and special desserts. (BJM Gym)

After lunch, attendees can choose from multiple “Learning & Action Circles”, which will focus on how we work across differences in dealing with important local issues such  as affordable housing , food justice, Black Lives Matter , immigrant rights, the new community LEAD diversion program, and youth organizing. The circles will engage facilitators and participants from different backgrounds and perspectives in  exploring ways to build community and solidarity. Each circle will be asked to identify action steps that can be built upon in the common months and linked to the Poor People’s Campaign.  

Youth are encouraged to participate in the Learning & Action Circles as appropriate, or can participate in other youth activities which will be held at the adjacent Greater Ithaca Activities Center, adjacent to Beverly J. Martin Elementary.  Youth activities include jump rope/double dutch, dance workshop, gym games, arts & craft activities, a movie/program related to MLK Jr’s life and work.and a reading corner with books related to the Civil Rights movement.

Attendees should enter the BJM gym through the Albany St entrance.  Handicap accessible entrance is located on the Buffalo Rd. side of the school.

To volunteer, collaborate or donate, contact Elan Shapiro at or leave a message at the Multicultural Resource Center at (607) 279-8157.

This day is organized in solidarity thanks to:  the Multicultural Resource Center, Greater Ithaca Activities Center, Center for Transformative Action, Cornell Public Service Center, GreenStar Cooperative Market, Ithaca College's Office of Multicultural Affairs, Campus Life at Cornell University, Ithaca College's Center for Student Leadership & Involvement, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tompkins County, & community volunteers.