Annual MLK, Jr. Celebration Jan. 12-19

TAMPA, Fla. (Dec. 17, 2008) –The University of South Florida presents the 22nd Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Celebration Jan. 12 – 19, 2009.  The USF MLK Celebration Committee kicks off the week of activities Jan. 12 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Marshall Student Center Ballroom on the Tampa campus.  There will be a musical prelude and interpretive tribute titled “Move the Dream, Move the Mountain” featuring USF students directed by School of Visual and Performing Arts Theatre and Dance Associate Professor Fanni Green.  Also performing will be Tampa Bay artists Maurice Jackson, Cheryl Kegler and the band, Grounded.


A highlight of this year’s program is a performance by acclaimed actors Danny Glover and Felix Justice in “An Evening with Martin and Langston,” at the USF Sun Dome, Jan. 15 at 7 p.m., part of USF’s University Lecture Series.  Justice portrays the slain civil rights hero through the words of his most memorable speeches and Glover brings the words and poetry of Langston Hughes to life in his readings of the great writer’s works. 


USF’s Stampede of Service, a volunteer project created in 2006 to commemorate Martin Luther King Day, has grown into a popular event both among students and the community organizations they help with their time and energy.  Organizers hope to attract 2500 students this year who will work with an estimated 60 organizations.


Members of the USF community will also participate in the Tampa Bay Black Heritage Festival Jan. 17 - 18, the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade (noon to 2 p.m.), as well as the Jan. 19 closing memorial service from 4:30 to 6 p.m. and feast from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Mt. Calvary Seventh Day Adventist Church, 4902 N. 40th Street, in Tampa.


“This celebration is an important tradition for USF and for the community,” said Samuel L. Wright, USF Ombudsman and MLK Celebration Committee chair.  “Our team of faculty, staff and students works hard to make sure it remains relevant and grounded in Dr. King’s central messages.  Those of us who saw and heard Dr. King in his lifetime and fought for this holiday especially want to make sure his significance is known and maintained.”


The full schedule:


Jan. 12 – Kick-off 11:30 to 1:30 – Marshall Student Center Ballroom


Jan. 13 – Candlelight Vigil sponsored by Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc.  USF MLK Plaza


Jan. 14 –Colloquium:  “Martin Luther King, Barack Obama and the Politics of Hope”  sponsored by USF’s Institute on Black Life and the USF Department of Africana Studies. 12 noon to 2 p.m. in the Marshall Student Center Room 4100.


Jan. 14 – United We Pray sponsored by USF’s religious organizations at 7 p.m. in Room 2708 of the Marshall Student Center.


Jan. 15 – University Lecture Series Reception/Lecture: “An Evening with Martin and Langston”  starring Danny Glover and Felix Justice; pre-show program 6:30 p.m., lecture 7 p.m.; Sun Dome Arena.  Tickets are now on sale at the Sun Dome ticket office located at Entry 3.  This event is free for USF students,  $5 for faculty and staff, $10 for all others. 


Jan. 17 – Stampede of Service – USF students donate a day of service to local community organizations, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.   


Jan. 17 – 18 Tampa Bay Black Heritage Festival 10 a.m. -6:00 p.m. Al Lopez Park 4810 N. Himes Ave.  Free and open to the public.


Jan. 19 – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday

•  MLK Parade City of Tampa & Hillsborough County (noon – 2 p.m.)

•  Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Ethnic Feast & Interfaith Memorial Service Mt. Calvary Seventh Day Adventist Church, 4902 N. 40th Street, in Tampa. Service: 4:30 – 6 p.m.; Feast: 6 -7:30 pm


For more information call (813) 974-1399. 


The University of South Florida is one of the nation's top 63 public research universities and one of 39 community-engaged, four-year public universities as designated by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. USF was awarded more than $360 million in research contracts and grants in FY 2007/2008. The university offers 219 degree programs at the undergraduate, graduate, specialist and doctoral levels, including the doctor of medicine. The university has a $1.8 billion annual budget, an annual economic impact of $3.2 billion, and serves more than 46,000 students on campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Sarasota-Manatee and Lakeland. USF is a member of the Big East Athletic Conference.

– USF –