The Asheville-Buncombe County Martin Luther King Jr. Association’s observation of Dr. King’s 80th birthday culminates today, on MLK Day, with two free public events: a peace walk and rally and a candlelight service.
The peace walk and rally begins at noon at Nazareth First Baptist Church, located at the corner of Martin Luther King Boulevard and Pine Street near downtown Asheville. From the church, walkers will head to MLK Jr. Park for a program of speeches and music. Afterwards, everyone is invited to a fish-fry sandwich lunch at St. James AME Church. Participants are encouraged to bring nonperishable food items to be donated to MANNA FoodBank.
The candlelight service begins at 6 p.m. at St. Matthias Episcopal Church. The ceremony will be in remembrance of those less fortunate and will also serve as a reminder of the continued need to combat injustice. Twelve local nonprofit organizations will be honored, and the 2009 Martin Luther King Jr. Award will be presented to a Buncombe County resident. The Reynolds-Miller Chorale, directed by Trevor Chavis, will perform.
— Mannie Dalton, calendar editor