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The King Center Announces The 38th Annual King Holiday Observance Schedule, Events

PRESS RELEASE: Paid content from Globe Newswire
Press release content from Globe Newswire. The AP news staff was not involved in its creation.
December 22, 2022 GMT

Atlanta, GA., Dec. 22, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Dr. Bernice A. King, CEO of The King Center, announces a schedule of programs and events in celebration of the 2023 King Holiday Observance. Beginning Monday, January 9th, 2023, and continuing through Monday, January 16, 2023, this year’s schedule includes a King Holiday Observance Kick-off Reception, Nonviolence365® Trainings, Beloved Community Global Summit, Beloved Community Teach-In, Beloved Community Youth Book Reading, Beloved Community Awards (formerly The Salute to Greatness Awards), King Day Community Service Projects, and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Beloved Community Commemorative Service. The observance commemorates what would have been Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s 94th birthday. 

“This year’s theme is It Starts with Me: Cultivating a Beloved Community Mindset to Transform Unjust Systems. Today, more than ever, there is a need for humanity to work towards creating a more just, humane, equitable, and peaceful world, where the Triple Evils of racism, poverty, and militarism cease to exist and love prevails. To create that world, we must first change our minds and ensure that our means align with our ends. Therefore, the charge is to start with ourselves, then connect with others, in “Cultivating a Beloved Community Mindset to Transform Unjust Systems,” said Dr. Bernice A. King.


King Holiday Observance Events
•    The Kick-Off Reception is the opening event for the 2023 King Holiday Observance and the public’s invitation to join us in celebrating and commemorating Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s life and work. The reception will be held on January 10th, 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM EST in The King Center’s Freedom Hall Atrium. 
•    Nonviolence365® virtual series, “Unconscious Bias” with Pragya Agarwal on January 9th and 10th, 6:30 PM – 8:30 PM EST. This two-day session focuses on using inclusive words, language, and action to create a sense of belonging that builds the Beloved Community. During the session, themes of compassion across differences, understanding multiple worldviews, and bridging divides will be explored. The series will also look at the role of nonviolence in uncovering and addressing unconscious biases.    
•    Beloved Community Youth Book Reading on Wednesday, January 11th from 10:00 AM-11:00 AM EST. The reading and puppet presentation will feature the book, “ The Little Bucket”, written and illustrated by Jeffrey Bates, with a puppetry presentation by Jimmica Collins and Meeka the Bunny from the Center for Puppetry Arts. The Little Bucket is a story to help children develop a sense of inner wonder and connect to their imagination.
•    The 3rd Annual Beloved Community Global Summit will be held virtually on January 12th and 13th.  Thursday’s January 12th general session is from Noon - 5:30 PM and a Youth Summit from 10:00 AM-Noon.  Friday’s general session is 10:00 AM-3:30 PM. The Virtual Beloved Community Global Summit focuses on the 2023 King Holiday Observance theme, “It Starts with Me: Cultivating a Beloved Community Mindset to Transform Unjust Systems.” The 2023 Summit will bring together worldwide social activists to begin the difficult task of exploring the mindset needed to transform our society’s unjust systems. 
•    Beloved Community Youth Global Summit, 9:30AM-Noon, January 12th, for high school students. The Youth Summit addresses the 2023 King Holiday theme and will engage participants in a relevant and interactive conversation about having the right vibe and mindset to demonstrate and influence positive behaviors, especially as it relates to school violence.  The summit will be available via Livestream on, YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter.
•    Beloved Community Teach-In K-12 on Friday, January 13th,   The King Center has invited educational institutions and organizations around the globe to educate students about Dr. and Mrs. King’s legacy and champion their unfinished work of creating the Beloved Community. The Teach-In will reinforce the knowledge, skills, and dispositions students need to be positive contributors to the creation of the Beloved Community and to succeed in college, careers, and civic life. We encourage teachers to utilize The King Center’s lesson plans on Friday, January 13th. Downloadable lesson plans and other resources for facilitating Teach-In discussions are available at
•    The Beloved Community Awards (formerly The Salute to Greatness Awards Gala) is back in-person and is one of the marquee events of The King Center’s week-long holiday experience. This year’s event, hosted by Malcolm Jamal Warner and Keisha Knight Pulliam, will feature musical performances by MAJOR., Deborah Cox, Goldford, and Angel Taylor.  This ticketed event will be held at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta on Saturday, January 14th, at 7:30 PM and will also stream on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and on, Monday, January 16th, at 7:00 PM. The ceremony recognizes national and international individuals and organizations that exemplify excellence in leadership, pursue social justice, and are committed to creating the Beloved Community. Afterglow will follow the awards featuring DJ Frank Ski and multi-award-winning artist, Stephanie Mills in concert.  For tickets visit 
•    The 2023 Martin Luther King, Jr. Beloved Community Commemorative Service will be in-person at Ebenezer Baptist Church and will broadcast live on FOX 5 Atlanta and stream live on Facebook, YouTube, and, on Monday, January 16th, 10:00 AM-1:00 PM. The 54th Annual Commemorative Service is the hallmark of the King Holiday Observance.  Reverend Natosha Reid Rice and Pastor Sam Collier will preside over the service. Rev. Dr. Bernice A. King, The King Center CEO, will give the Call to Commemoration.  This year’s Keynote Speaker is Bryan Stevenson, Lawyer, Social Justice Activist, Law Professor at New York University School of Law, and the founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI). U.S. Senator and Senior Pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church, Rev. Raphael G. Warnock, Ph.D. will give pastoral greetings. The service will feature musical performances by Yolanda Adams, Kierra Sheard, Justin Lee Schultz with Pastor Jentzen Franklin, Dr. Uzee Brown, Jr., Ashling Cole, and Bishop William Murphy.
•    The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday March and Rally is also Monday, January 16th   Participants will assemble at 1:30 PM on the corner of Baker & Peachtree Street in downtown Atlanta, GA. The march begins at 1:45 PM EST and ends on Auburn Avenue in front of The King Center, where there will be a rally. For more information visit the March Committee’s website,
•    The King Center, Georgia Coalition for the People’s Agenda, and Youth Service America will participate in a Voter Education and Voter Registration Initiative in honor of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday, on Monday, January 16th. This will also occur at The King Center’s Freedom Hall Plaza from 11:00 AM-3:00 PM.


The King Center will join the Atlanta Downtown Improvement District for this year’s King Day Community Service Projects to collect and distribute items to the homeless and unsheltered. Donations can be placed in receptacles located in The King Center’s Freedom Hall Plaza at 449 Auburn Avenue, NE Atlanta, GA 30312 from January 9th to January 16th . For the list of acceptable items, visit


“I appreciate all the participants, sponsors, partners, staff, and volunteers for their hard work and dedication in making this year’s King Holiday Observance a success. I am honored to continue the impactful work that my late mother, Mrs. Coretta Scott King, started. This King Holiday we are cultivating the way that we think by adopting a Beloved Community mindset to transform unjust systems.” said CEO, Dr. Bernice A. King. 


For the full schedule of events during the King Holiday Observance, event details, registration, and sponsorships visit



Our Partners 
Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park, Ebenezer Baptist Church, The Carter Center, The National Center for Civil and Human Rights, AmeriCorps. Atlanta Downtown Improvement District, State of Georgia Martin Luther King, Jr. Advisory Council, Hands on Atlanta, Georgia Coalition for the People’s Agenda, Youth Service America, Center for Puppetry Arts, and the Martin Luther King, Jr. March Committee. 

Beloved Summit Partners, The Carter Center, and The Center for Civil and Human Rights. 

Our Sponsors
Delta Air Lines, Mars North America, Wells Fargo & Company, Papa John’s International, JP Morgan Chase & Co, Starts With Us, McDonald’s, Chick-Fil-A, The Coca-Cola Company, FedEx, Ford Motor Company Fund, Lowe’s, Cox Enterprises, KeyBank Foundation, Southwire, UPS Foundation, Ulta Beauty, Patagonia, and Target Corporation. 

About The King Center 
The Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change (The King Center) is a 501(c) (3) organization established in 1968 by Mrs. Coretta Scott King. The King Center is the official living memorial and programmatic nonprofit organization committed to educating the world on the life, legacy, and teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The King Center serves to inspire new generations to carry forward his unfinished work, strengthen causes and empower change-makers who are continuing his efforts today. The King Center’s premiere educational initiative, Nonviolence365®, is based on Dr. King’s nonviolent philosophy and methodology. His teachings engage participants from various sectors of society, including emerging and next-generation leaders, in modules and exercises that enhance communication, leadership, interpersonal, and conflict reconciliation skills, as well as empower individuals to address injustice.

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Mina Bryant The Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change 404-437-1206