Southland events, COVID-19 testing pop-ups mark MLK holiday
Los Angeles’ premier annual event to mark Martin Luther King Jr. Day — the Kingdom Day Parade in South L.A. — was canceled Monday due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but a variety of MLK holiday events were held to mark the federal holiday.
The Congress of Racial Equality (CORE-CA) Kingdom Day Parade Committee sponsored a free in-car COVID-19 rapid-testing event in lieu of hosting the annual parade, which was canceled for a second straight year. The committee administered 500 rapid tests, attracting a long line of cars throughout the morning.
The First AME Church of Los Angeles hosted “The Hope Clinic,” a special vaccine event to commemorate MLK Day and provide people an opportunity to receive doses of the Pfizer, Moderna and J&J COVID-19 vaccines and booster doses.
The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Westside Coalition held its 37th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration on a virtual basis. The celebration included music by the Linda Alvarez Trio and spoken word by Get Lit: Words Ignite, which was presented with a Community Light Award. Education awards were presented to students and a lifetime achievement award was presented to longtime community activist LaVerne Ross.
Big Sunday had planned to host its 10th annual MLK Day “New Clothing Collection and Community Breakfast,” but the event was postponed at the last minute due to rain. A new date wasn’t immediately set. The event was planned as a block party featuring the collection, assembly and donation of 2,022 new cold-weather clothing kits.
The Harriet Tubman Center for Social Justice and other groups hosted an MLK Day “Caravan for Social Justice” to “reflect the true spirit of Dr. King.” The Pasadena Martin Luther King Community Coalition held a virtual celebration streaming on its YouTube channel.
Among the other events held for the MLK holiday were a “Unity Skate and Walk” event at the Metro Rosa Parks Station, a COVID-19 vaccine and testing event at Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza and a commemoration by the California African American Museum.