Community

Choirs and keynote to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Well known Greater Rochester Area musician, attorney and social activist, Danielle Ponder will deliver the keynote talk at Wayne County’s thirty-first consecutive observance of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on January 15, 2018 at Park Presbyterian Church, 110 Maple Court, Newark.  The day has been celebrated in Wayne County since its national inception in 1987 as a result of the leadership of Wayne Action for Racial Equality (WARE).  Joined by numerous community partners, community leaders from John Joyce and Rev. Ivory Simmons to Rev. Vera Alford, Pastor Earl Greene, Elva Robinson and Pat Hall have organized the day to embrace Dr. King’s dream of building social bridges that create community and recognize the need to enhance the lives of Wayne County’s residents by overcoming the tragedy of discrimination and racism.

The 2018 event is divided into three segments.  First, from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m., there will be a youth leadership workshop for area middle and high school students led by the student group Justice Organization for youth (JOY).  The thrust of the workshop will be how to transform personal experiences of discrimination and bias into foundational leadership using youth theater as a vehicle. JOY will follow the workshop with a performance of their original play during the main MLK Program in the afternoon.

Next, outside the church at noon, a traditional, uplifting Commemorative March will walk through Newark streets to symbolize Dr. King’s message of action to resist racism and social injustice.  At the same time, inside the church a dozen area organizations will use table displays and professionals to share concrete services to tackle social challenges in support of community.

Finally, from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m., the main community event, the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration Program, will take place.  Keynote speaker, Danielle Ponder, will be joined by gospel choirs and performers to celebrate Dr. King’s legacy.  Immediately following the celebration a dinner will be served to all attending the celebration. Members of Newark Rotary Club and Park Presbyterian Church will be assisting with and supporting the day’s celebration. 

Please join WARE at some part or all of this year’s Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day annual celebration which renews our commitment to battling social injustice in Wayne County and beyond.