Jul 28, 2014
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Martin Luther King Jr. Day in Kent

Tell us what this holiday means to you and how you will celebrate?

Martin Luther King Jr. Day in Kent

Monday, Jan. 21 is Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

For some, the national holiday honoring the prominent  civil rights activist is a time to give back and serve the community, be it through removing graffiti or picking up litter in a local park.

For others, it’s an opportunity to educate themselves about  King and his life's work. And for others, it’s a time to just kick back and enjoy the prolonged weekend.

Here are some MLK events in Kent:

  • Kent State University's annual celebration is Thursday, Jan. 24, at 2 p.m. in the Kent Student Center Ballroom.

Add your MLK event to Kent Patch's events calendar.

So, tell us—What does Martin Luther King Jr. Day mean to you? What are you doing to commemorate King’s legacy?

The Holiday's History

Martin Luther King Jr. Day, now a U.S. holiday,  took 15 years to create.

Legislation was first proposed by Congressman John Conyers (D-Michigan) four days after King was assassinated in 1968.

The bill was stalled, but Conyers, along with Rep. Shirley Chisholm (D-New York), pushed for the holiday every legislative session until it was finally passed in 1983, following civil rights marches in Washington. 

Then-president Ronald Reagan signed it into law. Yet it was not until 2000 that every U.S. state celebrated Martin Luther King Jr. Day by its name. Before then, states like Utah referred to the holiday more broadly as Human Rights Day. 

Now, the Corporation for National and Community Service has declared it an official  U.S. Day of Service.

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