Sixth District Councilman Dee Andrews, Long Beach Department of Parks, Recreation & Marine, the Residents of Long Beach, and What’s Next Now.Org are pleased to announce that the 26th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Peace & Unity Parade Celebration will take place on Saturday, January 18, 2014 from 10:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., in the City of Long Beach. This year’s theme is “50 Years Strong and the Dream Lives On”.
This year, more than any other, there is reason to celebrate and a reason to reaffirm hope for the future. The 2014 celebration theme, “50 Years Strong and the Dream Lives On”, is in honor of the 50th Year Anniversary of Dr. King’s famous speech, “I Have a Dream” and the March on Washington. Supporters came by planes, buses, and trains, and on August 28, 1963, a crowd of perhaps 300,000 marched from the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial in the largest demonstration in U.S. history. The event is what Dr. King called “the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation”. That day, and that speech, would of course help change a nation — providing a coming together battle cry for unity and brotherhood, freedom, equality and justice.
“As I reflect on this year’s theme, I recall the shift in thought that the March created for all individuals at that time and throughout history. It was more than just a March. It was a congregation that was answering a call”, said Councilman Dee Andrews. “Today, Dr. King’s dream lives on in all; Black, White, Latino, Asian, man, woman, disabled, poor, or gay… Equality is a human right and I am proud to honor that right”.
On Saturday morning, January 18th, the parade will begin on Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue intersecting Anaheim Street, and is followed by a multi-cultural celebration at King Park located at 1950 Lemon Avenue. The celebration will be filled with music and dance performances; a children and teen area filled with carnival rides and give-a-ways. There will be lots of food, general merchandise vending booths, and community services information, as well as a Health Pavilion that will provide a number of free health tests.
Last year, the celebration attracted over 25,000 people that participated in the parade and visited the park. This year, the weeklong celebration will attract cultures from all over Long Beach to continue the legacy and teachings of a great leader, Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.