Celebrations planned for Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Tuesday, January 10, 2012 | 6:20 p.m. CST; updated 8:41 p.m. CST, Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Several events are scheduled to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day in Columbia.

Columbia Values Diversity Celebration — "One Community, Many Stories"

  • The 19th annual event will be held from 7 to 8:30 a.m. Thursday at the Holiday Inn Select Expo Center, 2200 Interstate 70 Drive S.W.
  • The recipient of the 15th annual Columbia Values Diversity Awards will be announced, and a multimedia program — including video of interviews, dialogue and musical performance directed by Dan Schultz of Stephens College — will be presented.
  • Tickets, which were sold through Jan. 6, are required.
  • The celebration will be rebroadcast on a few local channels (Mediacom Channel 80, Charter Communications Channel 2 and CenturyLink 601) on Jan. 15 through Jan. 16 and Jan. 20 through Jan. 22 at 6 a.m., 10 a.m., 6 p.m. and 10 p.m.; and Jan. 17 through Jan. 19 at 6 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Poor People's Breakfast

  • The annual breakfast will be held from 7:30 a.m. to noon Monday at St. Luke United Methodist Church, 204 E. Ash St.
  • The event is free, but donations are welcome.
  • For more information or to make contributions, contact Almeta Crayton at 825-5263.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial — "Reaffirming a Legacy of Hope"

  • The Columbia NAACP will host the annual event at 11 a.m. Monday at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, 800 W. Stadium Blvd.
  • After a brief ceremony, a motorcade from the memorial to Second Baptist Church will be held. The motorcade will depart at 11:15 a.m.; participating vehicles are asked to be on site by 11 a.m.
  • A celebration will follow at Second Baptist Church, 407 E. Broadway, where parking and seating will be available for participants.
  • A free lunch will be served after the celebration.
  • Community service awards will be announced. 
  • For more information, contact Mary Ratliff at 445-3231 or by email at

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Annual Candlelight Walk and Celebration

  • Participants will gather by 6 p.m. at the Douglass High School gym, 310 N. Providence Road. The walk, which begins at 6:30 p.m., will conclude at St. Paul AME Church, 501 Park Ave. A service will be held there at 7 p.m.
  • The event will include community diversity awards.
  • For more information, contact Bill Thompson at 874-6379.

MU Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Lecture

  • The MU Chancellor's Diversity Initiative will host a reception and presentation at 6 p.m. Jan. 25 at Missouri Theatre Center for the Arts, 203 S. Ninth St.
  • Larry Wilmore, comedian, writer and producer, will present "Share the Dream, Live the Reality" at 7 p.m.
  • This event is free and open to the public.
  • For more information, contact the Chancellor's Diversity Initiative at 882-5838 or More information is also available online.

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