Pittsburgh Celebrates Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Pittsburgh Celebrates Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Join the Pittsburgh community in celebration of the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., through a variety of events.

CommUnity Brunch and Life Celebration 

Park Place AME Ministries | Saturday, Jan. 14 at 10 a.m.
Honoring the lives of Dr. King and Dr. George Washington Carver, the morning program features guest speaker, William Trotter, Jr., Carnegie Mellon Professor and founder/director of CMU’s African American Urban Studies and the Economy group and Acting President of the Urban History Association.

Hosted at Park Place AME Church, a brunch and open conversation will follow the program, which includes spiritual music and architectural history including preserved 100-year-old work from the Pittsburgh Art & Glass Company. Proceeds from tickets will benefit Books 4 Kids, a project of Park Place Ministries.

Let Freedom Sing!

Rodman Street Baptist Church | Saturday, Jan. 14 at 7 p.m.
Celebrating its 16th annual concert at Rodman Street Baptist Church honoring the life of Dr. King, Let Freedom Sing! features appearances by KDKA reporter Mikey Hood and musical performances from Gospel Vocalist, Nikki Porter, The Rodman Street Baptist Church Choir and The MLK Festival Singers. The latter group features vocalists from The Pittsburgh Bach Choir, Point Park University, and The Renaissance City Choir, among others. 

In-person admission or live streaming is free, with donations encouraged for charitable food banks. 

Children's Museum of Pittsburgh 

Monday, Jan. 16 at 10 a.m.
A full day of inspirational activities is planned at the Children’s Museum on the North Side. In the Art Studio, children will paint self-portraits of their hopes for the future and create artwork that will be enjoyed by local community groups and care homes. A collaborative paint project with artists Morgan Overton and Trenita Finney will build from the core of Dr. King’s legacy. 

The Makeshop will provide materials to brainstorm and build a small-scale prototype of inclusive community spaces. At Saturday Light Brigade’s Youth Media Center, located in the museum, visitors will be able to hear, explore and talk about Dr. King’s work. Also featured is the collaborative I Have A Dream mural created by youth artists from Gwen’s Girls, Youth Places and Museum Lab’s Afterschool Program.

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Free Community Day

Pittsburgh Glass Center | Monday, Jan. 16 at 11 a.m.
Pittsburgh Glass Center will host a variety of free activities and demonstrations in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Guests can watch glassblowing and flameworking demonstrations by local glass artists, explore the gallery and contribute to a collaborative mural. 

Before you visit, be sure to bring a book (or two) to donate to their Free Community Little Library!

The Audacity to Believe 

Kelly Strayhorn Theater | Monday, Jan. 16 at noon
Kelly Strayhorn Theater hosts their annual MLK community event featuring family-friendly activities from Assemble, The Alloy School, The Bloomfield-Garfield Corporation, Latino Community Center and The Union Project. In addition to remembering the work of Dr. King, the event also honors activists from Pittsburgh’s history. 

After the hands-on activities, check out performances from Pittsburgh artists Hill Dance Academy Theatre, Alumni Theater Company, K-Theatre Dance Complex and Jacquea Mae.

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MLK Social Justice Week 

University of Pittsburgh | Jan. 16-20
This year’s theme From Surviving to Thriving: Culturally Relevant Emotional Wellness focuses on themes of inequity, resilience,and healing from an intersectional diversity lens. the week of events offers an opportunity to register for a traditional day of service to the community, as well as several film screenings, an evening with poet Nikki Giovanni, panel discussions with community leaders, an open mic night, and a celebration of Pitt faculty and staff making strides in diversity and inclusion on campus and throughout Pittsburgh. 

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Poetry Unplugged: Shock Value 

August Wilson African American Cultural Center | Friday, Jan. 20 at 8 p.m.
The August Wilson African American Cultural Center honors the public-speaking power of Dr. King with Poetry Unplugged: Shock Value. Featured on the mainstage, the poetry and spoken word event features performances from Malcolm-Jamal Warner of The Cosby Show, Danny Simmons (ft. Dwayne Dolphin), Rich Medina, Taalam Acey, Barbara Trawick, Just C.O.S. and more. 

An after party featuring the music of Medina will follow. Tickets are available for purchase to the adult-themed evening.

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Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.