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MLK holiday celebrations on Long Island

The Martin Luther King Day federal holiday is Monday, Jan. 16 this year, and it will be marked in many ways by many organizations across Long Island. The following lists some of those observances.


Sag Harbor: Canio’s Bookstore (290 Main St.) will commemorate the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. by playing a video excerpt of his “Other America” speech. The Rev. Katrina Foster, of nearby St. Michael’s and Incarnation Lutheran churches, will lead a discussion on the ties between King’s speech in the ’60s and the current Occupy Wall Street economic revolt across America. The event begins at 5 p.m.

Hempstead: The historical play “A Whistle in Mississippi: the Lynching of Emmett Till” will be performed at 7:30 p.m. at the African American Museum, on 110 North Franklin St. The entrance fee is $5, but the play is free for senior citizens and students with ID, organizers said. Attendees can meet four Freedom Riders being honored over the weekend by The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Celebration Committee of Nassau County, Inc. — David Myers, Winnonah Beacher Myers, Jean Denton-Thompson and Lewis Zuchman.


Oyster Bay: Christ Church, the Episcopal Church in Oyster Bay, will host an ecumenical celebration of King’s birthday during its 10 a.m. Holy Eucharist service. Pastor Kenneth Nelson and the AME Zion Church choir will join Christ Church’s adult choir in celebrating with an eclectic mix of musical traditions. Prelude music will be provided by the Camino de Vida Spanish Church, which conducts Wednesday evening services in the Parish Hall. The customary celebratory luncheon offering a multicultural cuisine will follow, hosted by the Hispanic Cultural Center. Christ Church is located at 61 East Main St.

Riverhead: The East End Voters Coalition will observe Martin Luther King Jr. Day with a special program in the Riverhead Public Library from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Frances Brisbane, dean of the School of Social Welfare at Stony Brook University, will be guest speaker, and there will be a choir from the Living Temple Ministry of Center Moriches. Refreshments will be served at 5 p.m.

Westbury: Religious leaders will celebrate King’s birthday during a free interfaith service at 6 p.m. at St. Brigid’s Roman Catholic Church (75 Post Ave.). Freedom Rider Lewis Zuchman will be the guest speaker. Fellow Freedom Riders David Myers, Winnonah Beacher Myers and Jean Denton-Thompson also will be present.


Hauppauge: The First Baptist Church of Riverhead will host the 27th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Breakfast at 8 a.m. at the Hyatt Regency Wind Watch Hotel. During the breakfast, the organization’s 2012 MLK Jr. Meritorious Award will be presented.

Glen Cove: Glen Cove’s Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commemoration parade begins at 9 a.m. in front of the First Baptist Church on Continental Place. It will proceed down the newly dedicated Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Way, formerly Bridge Street, and head downtown, ending at the Wunsch Art Center.

Hempstead Village: The Village of Hempstead will hold a parade in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Monday at 9 a.m. Mayor Wayne J. Hall, Sr. and the village board of trustees will partner with the United People Organization, Inc. to sponsor the six-block parade. A crowd of more than 150 is expected to attend, officials said. The parade will begin at the Hempstead Town Hall parking lot, on Front and Greenwich streets, and end at the Faith Baptist Church Cathedral, on 145 N. Franklin St. in Hempstead. A brief ceremony will follow in the Cultural Arts Theater at 9:30 a.m. The parade will feature a number of civic leaders from the village and neighboring communities, along with local high schools and their marching bands, Vietnam veterans and the Hofstra Women's Basketball Team, the town said.

Long Beach: The Long Beach MLK Center, Inc. will hold its annual march starting at 11 a.m. at Laurelton Boulevard and Park Avenue. Participants will march to the MLK Center at 615 Riverside Blvd., led by Grand Marshal Julius Freeman, a Tuskegee Airman. The Center’s annual luncheon and fundraiser honoring King will follow with keynote speaker Bob Law, a radio personality and community activist from Hempstead. Teens from the MLK Center will perform a step dance.

Uniondale: The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Celebration Committee of Nassau County, Inc. will host its 27th annual awards and scholarship luncheon at noon at the Marriott Hotel and Conference Center. Awardees Rachel Blackburn, George Santiago and Terena Williams will be presented with a bust of Dr. King. Attendees can meet the four Freedom Riders being honored over the weekend — David Myers, Winnonah Beacher Myers, Jean Denton-Thompson and Lewis Zuchman.

Huntington: The NAACP Huntington Branch will celebrate its Jubilee Program commemorating King’s birthday at 7 p.m. at Bethel A.M.E. Church (291 Park Ave.). The keynote speaker will be Rev. Luonne Abram Rouse, pastor of the United Methodist Church of Huntington.

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