The Beloved Community Begins Here

2015 Theme

Developing a World Perspective: Building Global Communities

art making

2015 Calendar of Events

Print a copy of the 2015 MLK calendar!



Friday, January 16


14th Annual Countywide MLK, Jr. Celebration

4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Hilton Garden Inn
1501 S. Neil Street, Champaign

This annual Countywide celebration commemorates Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s legacy. It brings together community members from Champaign County to celebrate the mission, teachings, and legacy of Dr. King. This year, Kenneth B. Morris, Jr, the great, great, great grandson of Frederick Douglas and great great grandson of Booker T. Washington, will be the keynote speaker.

Contact: Tracy Kleparski (



Sunday, January 18


30th Anniversary Event - Advocacy for Justice
Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Celebration

5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Foellinger Great Hall
Krannert Center for the Performing Arts
500 South Goodwin, Urbana

Since 1988, the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Advocacy for Justice Committee has awarded over 200 scholarships to students attending the University of Illinois, as well as a number of Historically Black Colleges and Universities. This year we honor the memory of Dr. King with Rev. Claude E. Shelby, Sr. as the keynote speaker.

Contact: Tracy Kleparski (



Monday, January 19


30th Annual Unity Breakfast

8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.
The Vineyard Church
1500 North Lincoln, Urbana

The 2015 Martin Luther King, Jr. Advocacy for Justice Committee is proud to host the 30th annual Unity Breakfast, held at The Vineyard Church. The MLK, Jr. Advocacy for Justice Committee, along with The Vineyard Church, welcomes community members to join in celebrating the birthday of American’s preeminent advocate of nonviolence and one of the greatest nonviolent leaders in world history.

Contact: Tracy Kleparski (




MLK YOUTH Commemoration and Afternoon of Service

10:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Urbana Civic Center
108 E. Water Street, Urbana

Join high school youth for a celebration of the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Includes performances, guided discussion and afternoon on-site volunteer activities. Registration forms and permission slips available through teachers.

Contacts: Libby Tyler ( or Alicia Robinson (



MLK Day of Service

1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Illini Union I-Rooms A & B
1401 West Green Street, Urbana

For University Students
Complete a hands-on service project in celebration of Martin Luther King Jr Day. Projects will include making fleece tie-blankets for Ronald McDonald House, designing valentines and letters for servicemen and women and senior citizens, and distributing safety promotional materials throughout campus.

*Pre-register at
Walk-ins welcome.

Contact: Megan Puzey, ( or John Race (



Wednesday, January 21


Realizing the Dream

7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
2025 Student Dining and Residential Programs Building (SDRP)
301 East Gregory Drive, Champaign

University of Illinois students who have participated in the spring break Civil Rights Pilgrimage will share with you their experiences on the trip as well as what they believe it taught them about current race relations in the US. The Civil Rights Pilgrimage is a 9 day trip to the South to learn about the Civil Rights Movement in the places history was made. The students will also talk about what the trip has inspired them to do to become change makers.

The Vice Chancellor for Institutional Advancement is sponsoring this event.

Contact: January Boten (



Thursday, January 22


Krannert "Uncorked"

5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Krannert Center for the Performing Arts
500 South Goodwin, Urbana

This week, Krannert Uncorked partners with the University of Illinois Office of Diversity, Equity, and Access and Inclusive Illinois for a special event in recognition of Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy. A 10-piece jazz ensemble will present a program designed by University of Illinois doctoral student Reginald Chapman that combines jazz from the end of the Civil Rights Movement with other works to depict a story about what was taking place in music during this time.

Contact: Tracy Kleparski (



FRIday, January 23


Poverty Simulation

1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
School of Social Work
1010 West Nevada Street, Urbana

Of all Dr. King’s messages, one of his most prominent was the issue of poverty. The School of Social Work at U of I will be hosting a poverty simulation to help local community members and students to better understand the issues, hurdles, and roadblocks those living in poverty face. The simulation will allow for an opportunity for participants to debrief their experiences and how they can begin to tackle the challenge of poverty in Champaign County.

Please register to participate by Friday, January 16.

Contact: Christie Avgar, ( or Dementro Powell , (



Saturday, January 24


MLK, Jr. Community Celebration

10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Krannert Center for the Performing Arts
500 South Goodwin, Urbana

This event marks the culmination of the week of events surround Dr. King’s legacy. The program will include a children’s theatre performance by Dr. Asantewa Sunni-Ali along with a number of other presentations throughout the event. Dr. Ilesanmi Adesida, the Provost of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, will provide the opening remarks. The winners and honorable mention recipients of the MLK Creative Expressions Contest will also be presented. The event will have entertainment for those of all ages and is free of charge.

Contact: Krystal Andrews (, Jarijion Minnett (, Beverly Smith (

MLK Creative Expressions Contest Contacts: David Requa, ( or John Race (