County Events Honor Martin Luther King Jr.

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Martin Luther King Jr I Have a Dream Quote


On a late summer day in 1963, Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., stood on the National Mall before hundreds of thousands of demonstrators who had gathered to march for freedom, justice, and equality. On that day, King shared a dream that has continued to inspire a nation: to bring justice where there is injustice, freedom where there is oppression, peace where there is violence and opportunity where there is poverty.

To commemorate King’s legacy, below is a list of events that highlight the importance of community service, reflection and dialogue, musical performances, children’s activities and more.

Saturday, Jan. 14

Community Service Projects

  • 9 a.m. Cathy Hudgins Community Center at Southgate
  • 6 years and older – free
  • Join friends and neighbors in honoring King’s legacy by serving your community. As King said, “Everybody can be great...because anybody can serve.” The Reston Community Center is partnering with the Cathy Hudgins Community Center at Southgate, Reston Association, Cornerstones and The Closet on community service projects. Indoor projects include sorting and organizing items from The Closet and making bag lunches for the Embry Rucker Community Shelter. There will also be outdoor projects, such as cleaning up the natural areas, pathways and hardscapes, weather permitting.
  • To volunteer, contact Ha Brock, Volunteer Reston manager, at 703-435-7986 or

Reston Community Orchestra

  • 4 p.m., RCC Hunters Woods Community Room
  • All ages – Free
  • Annual Musical Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.: Words and Music as Diverse as the World of Which He Dreamed
  • With music and words specifically chosen for this occasion, the Reston Community Orchestra joins the Reston community in a weekend commemoration of the contributions made by this celebrated American, and his vision of a society free of prejudice and racial division. The program features Reston vocalist Beverly Cosham, students from Al Fatih Academy and other special guests. There will be songs and spirituals known and loved by King.
  • Tickets available through the RCC Box Office.

Learn more about the events at the Reston Community Center in this podcast with RCC Executive Director Leila Gordon.


Sunday, Jan. 15

Mark G. Meadows: Music and The Movement

  • 2 p.m. RCC Hunters Woods – the CenterStage
  • $15 Reston/$20 Non-Reston
  • Join Mark G. Meadows & The Movement as they pay tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Mark G. Meadows is a man on a mission to create a unifying sound that breaks through social barriers. There’s something for everyone in his music, which harmonizes jazz, gospel, R&B, hip-hop and rock. Meadows uses his artistry to send a positive message of love, joy and hope to his audiences.
  • Tickets sold through the RCC Box Office.

Monday, Jan. 16

Keynote Address by Heather McGhee followed by Community Lunch

  • 11 a.m. RCC Hunters Woods: The CenterStage and Community Room
  • $5 Reston/$20 Non-Reston
  • A renowned expert on the American economy, Heather McGhee is one of the most brilliant and influential thinkers exploring inequality today. Both her viral TED talk and her instant New York Times bestseller The Sum of Us reveal the devastating true cost of racism – not just for people of color, but for everyone. Deeply stirring, intelligent and compassionate, McGhee’s talks offer us an actionable roadmap during one of the most critical – and most troubled – periods in history. Following the keynote address, a family-style lunch will be provided in the RCC Community Room.  
  • Tickets sold through the RCC Box Office.

Especially for Youth

  • 10:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. RCC Hunters Woods
  • 6-12 years old – free.
  • You may register your school-age child (first to sixth grade) to participate in activities at RCC. Children must be registered in advance and no onsite registration will be available on the day of the event. Children will rotate through a series of activities, including an age-appropriate video and arts and crafts. All activities will be based on the history of King and the Civil Rights Movement. Lunch will be provided. 
  • Registration Required. Reg. #704750

Tuesday, January 17

  • American Red Cross Blood Drive
  • 1:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. RCC Hunters Woods
  • The Reston Community Center partners with the American Red Cross and Fairfax County NAACP to offer a blood drive. People with minority roots are especially encouraged to participate to increase the blood supply for vulnerable populations.
  • Make your appointment online.

Sunday, Jan. 22

“Black Music Excellence through the Ages” with Richelle Claiborne

  • 2-3:30 p.m. McLean Community Center
  • Charlotteville native Richelle Claiborne shares her joyous ride through the history of African American music through a theatrical performance that includes history lessons, testimonials and inspirational musical performances. 
  • Purchase tickets online.

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