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Art&Seek Jr: MLK Day Happenings
by Therese Powell 13 Jan 2015

Art&Seek Jr. is one mom‘s quest to find activities to end the seemingly endless chorus of the “I’m Bored Blues” while having fun herself.  Impossible you say? Check back on Tuesdays for kid-friendly events that are fun for adults, too.

Celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with one of these family-friendly activities going on around town this weekend.

Be inspired at the 23rd Annual Gardere MLK Jr. Oratory Competition. Photo: Dallas ISD

Be inspired at the Gardere MLK Jr. Oratory Competition. Photo: Dallas ISD

Start the weekend with a dose of inspiration at the 23rd Annual Gardere MLK Jr. Oratory Competition.  Hear elementary students from the Dallas ISD deliver original three-to-five minute speeches  answering the question, “If Dr. King were to win the Nobel Peace Prize today, what would he say in his acceptance speech?” The fourth and fifth grade finalists are on judged on delivery, stage presence and decorum, content interpretation and memorization. Watching these young people will make you feel good inside, and maybe motivate your own kids to try just a little bit harder on that book report they have to deliver in front of their class. The competition happens at the Majestic Theater Friday at 11 a.m. but if you can’t make it in person, you can watch it online via the Dallas ISD website.

Photo: AP

MLK address the crowd at the Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington, D.C. Aug. 28, 1963. Photo: AP

On Saturday head to the Perot Museum of Nature and Science at Victory Park for a Martin Luther King Celebration.  Musician Christopher Rollins will be there with his African Drums. He’ll tell the history behind African drumming and and then let the tinies try them out for themselves. Storyteller Selmore Haines will also be on hand to tell stories from African American history, and after the performances kids can make a MLK themed craft.

The City of Irving will hold its Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration on Sunday at the Irving Art Center. Dr. King will be remembered through music, drama and dance at this family-friendly event. All ages are welcome and admission is free. This event packed the house last year so be sure to get there early.

Youth groups from area churches and the Garland ISD will showcase their talents at the 2015 MLK Youth Extravaganza. Performances include praise dance and step routines and it all happens on Sunday afternoon in the Brownlee Auditorium of Granville Arts Center in Garland.

On Monday check out Frisco Public Library’s interactive exhibit, Celebrating the Life of Martin Luther King, Jr. Kids can learn more about this great American hero and his impact on the Civil Rights Movement.

There are also a number of parades honoring the life of Dr. King this weekend. Here are a few to check out with the kids.

    • Carrollton’s 18th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Parade happens on Saturday morning at 10 a.m. It will start on Jamestown Street, behind Carrollton City Hall, and will wind it’s way down Josey Lane, to Keller Springs road, and finally to Kelly Boulevard where it will end at Ted Polk Middle School.
    • The City of Dallas is hosting the 33rd Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Celebration March/Parade on Saturday morning at 10 a.m. The parade will begin at City Hall Plaza and move down MLK Blvd. to the Fair Park entrance. Participants include bands, floats and a live radio broadcast.
    • Garland has a full day of festivities planned for Saturday as well.  It all starts at 10 a.m. with the 26th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade which will begin on Dairy Road and Garden Drive near Embree Park and will end at the Granville Arts Center in Downtown Garland. After the parade, stick around for a performance by the MLK Communitywide Youth Choir.
    • The Grand Prairie NAACP Branch 6260 presents the 2015 MLK Parade in Grand Prairie Monday. The parade begins at 10 a.m. at the Liberty Bell at City Hall Plaza, 317 College. St., and concludes at David Daniels Elementary Academy, SW 19th St.
    • The 2015 Fort Worth MLK Parade happens on Monday at 11 a.m. It will begin at Ninth and Commerce streets and wrap around downtown before ending at Sundance Square Plaza.
    • Elite News will host their 29th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Parade and Festival on Monday. More than 250,000 spectators are expected to line the streets of Downtown Dallas so be sure to get there early. Highlights include marching bands, drills teams, floats, cars clubs, motorcycles, clowns. The parade begins 10 a.m. at the corner of Lamar and Martin Luther King Jr Blvd and will end at Fair Park. Be sure to stick around after the parade for the day long festival inside Fair Park featuring live entertainment, food, music, giveaways and more.