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Public Invited to Celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Jan. 8, 2014

For more information, please contact:
Craig Brenner, Special Projects Coordinator, City of Bloomington Department of Community and Family Resources, 349.3471, brennerc@bloomington.in.gov
Mary Tourner, Chair, City of Bloomington Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission, 327.7374

City Invites Public to Celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

Bloomington, Ind. - Mayor Mark Kruzan invites the community to attend the 2014 City of Bloomington Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Celebration. The event takes place at 7 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 20 in the Buskirk-Chumley Theater, 114 E. Kirkwood Ave. The Celebration will be preceded by a reception, also at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater, at 6 p.m.

The 7 p.m. event will include remarks by Kruzan and King Commission Chair Mary Tourner, among others.

The keynote speaker is Freedom Rider Hank Thomas, who will speak on "A Freedom Rider's Journey." Thomas and others made history as civil rights activists who rode interstate buses in the segregated southern United States in the early 1960s to challenge the non-enforcement of U.S. Supreme Court decisions which had ruled that segregated public buses were unconstitutional. When Southern states ignored the rulings and the federal government did nothing to enforce them, Freedom Riders confronted this status quo by riding in mixed racial groups to challenge local laws and customs which imposed segregation in seating.

Musical performers will include the Indiana University African American Choral Ensemble, directed by Dr. Raymond Wise, and the Bloomington Peace Choir, directed by Barb Qualls. Volunteers who participated in "A Day ON! Not A Day Off" will be recognized, and winners of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Legacy Award and of the commission's video contest will be announced. Attendees also will be offered the opportunity to take the "40 Days of Peace" pledge.

The reception at 6 p.m. will feature light refreshments provided by One World Catering & Events. The Buskirk-Chumley Theater program and reception are both free and open to the public.

Major event underwriters include the City of Bloomington, Ivy Tech Community College, Indiana University, Stephens Honda-Hyundai and WFIU. Event sponsors include First Christian Church, Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'i of Bloomington, Donald Griffin, Jr., the IU Credit Union and United Way of Monroe County.

For a list of Martin Luther King Day of Service volunteer opportunities and other activities, visit the website here or contact Special Projects Coordinator Craig Brenner at 349.3471 or brennerc@bloomington.in.gov.

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