Local MLK Day Programs Offer Chance to Honor Vision of Dr. King

Santa Rosa’s “A Day On, Not a Day Off” focuses on community service, dialogue and celebration.

he Martin Luther King Jr Memorial located on the National Mall on the Tidal Basin in Washington DC on February 23, 2013. (Joseph Sohm)

Today is a federal holiday, for many an opportunity for leisure and shopping. Local people who honor the visions of Martin Luther King Jr. suggest that humanity and justice might benefit more from other pursuits.

Santa Rosa’s “A Day On, Not a Day Off” focuses on community service, vitality, dialogue and celebration. It starts at 10 a.m. today at the co-hosting Community Baptist Church and concludes with a march down Sonoma Avenue at 4 p.m.

Participants will have several options to choose from.

There are service projects at the church and Bayer Farms in southwest Santa Rosa, at Martin Luther King Park on Hendley Street and at The Living Room, the day center for women and children on Cleveland Avenue.

A 2 p.m. speakers panel at Community Baptist Church will feature the church’s pastor, H. Lee Turner, retired member of Congress Lynn Woolsey, County Supervisor Shirlee Zane, Santa Rosa Police Chief Hank Schreeder, Akilah Bonner of the Integrated Voter Engagement Team, Davin Cardenas of the North Bay Organizing Project, Vince Harper of Community Action Partnership, Jerry Threet of the Independent Office of Law Enforcement Review and Outreach, Catherine Ybarra of the event’s management team and Letitia Hanke of the North Bay Black Chamber of Commerce.

There will be blood pressure checks, a firetruck to explore, lunch, information tables, dance, a black history showcase and programs for children. The Hubbub Club band will accompany the afternoon march for the ideals championed by King.