Jan. 16 MLK events feature music, potluck, and workshops

Gorge residents are invited to celebrate the life, work and dreams of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Monday, Jan. 16 at Riverside Community Church, Fourth and State streets in downtown Hood River.

Jan. 16 is a federal holiday, meaning schools, banks, the post office, and most public offices will be closed.

The theme of this year’s celebration, sponsored by Gorge Ecumenical Ministries, is “The Dreams of Martin Luther King Jr. Live On: Building a Community with Justice for All.” This year’s event will include:

3-4 p.m. — Interactive workshops: “Raising Racially Just Children” with Megan Winn, and “Immigration 101: Myths and Realities” with attorney MariRuth Petzing.

4:15-5:15 p.m. — Workshops: “The Legacy and Lessons of Internment” led by Maija and Niko Yasui and Kendra Wilkins, “Know Your Rights,” an update on immigration issues (in Spanish) by Petzing, and “Climate Action in Times of Political Distress,” presented by members of the Columbia Gorge Climate Action Network.

5:15 p.m. — Potluck dinner

6:30 p.m. — Celebration of Martin Luther King, featuring music by members of Grupo Antifaz and a community-wide gospel choir directed by local musician Tim Mayer. Anyone interested in being a part of the choir is invited to contact Paul Thompson at paul@copperwest.com.

“On the MLK holiday, we will gather to reflect upon and celebrate the spirit-filled, justice-oriented work of King,” explained GEM chairperson and Riverside pastor Rev. Vicky Stifter. “In these troubled times, we will also lift up the injustice and unfulfilled dreams that exist in the lives of many in our own communities.”

The celebration is free of charge and open to the public. Donations will be accepted to support GEM’s social and environmental justice work in the Gorge. For further information call 541-386-1412.

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