Where to Serve and Pay Tribute to Martin Luther King Jr. This Weekend

From commemorations to service projects, there are plenty of ways to honor the civil rights leader.
Elizabeth Villalta Acyfdwkmusc Unsplash

Dozens of nonprofits in the Arlington area are offering volunteer opportunities and other ways to pay tribute to Dr. King this weekend. (Photo by Elizabeth Villalta on Unsplash)

Over the long weekend for Martin Luther King Jr. Day, organizations throughout Arlington are providing numerous ways to honor the life of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., from commemorative programs to in-person and virtual volunteer opportunities. Here’s a rundown of ways you can get involved.

Arlington Tribute to Martin Luther King Jr.

For more than 50 years, Arlington County has honored the legacy of the slain civil rights leader through annual programs that weave together oratory, dance, music and the spoken word. This year, the virtual event will include performances from vocalist Kimberly Gordon, dancers Kamali Hill and Malachi Alexander, and poet Kim B. Miller. You can view the event on the Arlington Parks website or on Facebook. // Sunday, Jan. 16, 5 p.m.

Rally & Commemorative Program

As voting rights continue to be hotly debated on the national stage, The Tinner Hill Heritage Foundation is hosting a Martin Luther King Jr. Day program themed “Save Our Democracy: Vote.” Participants will gather at the Tinner Hill Civil Rights Monument to craft signs and engage in family activities. At 11:30 a.m., a selection of speakers—including U.S. Sen. Mark Warner, Tinner Hill Heritage Foundation founder and president Edwin B. Henderson II, and U.S. Rep. Don Beyer—will deliver remarks. Attendees are required to wear masks and remain as socially distant as possible. // Monday, Jan. 17, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m., 106 Tinner Hill Road, Falls Church

Volunteer Arlington MLK Day of Service

Volunteer Arlington, a program of Leadership Center for Excellence, has organized a day of service loaded with in-person and virtual volunteer opportunities throughout the county. Learn how you can support affordable housing initiatives in Arlington, or register to assemble DIY “cheer bundles” for Culpepper Garden residents. And at 9 a.m. on Jan. 17, the organization will announce the winners of its #ArlingtonCaresChallenge, a video competition in which participants submit the reasons why they serve and how a given local nonprofit promotes equity. Any other last-minute volunteer opportunities will appear on Volunteer Arlington’s site. // Monday, Jan. 17, Culpepper Garden, 4435 N. Pershing Drive, Arlington

Give Together 2022

Volunteer Fairfax is hosting a virtual weekend of service, organizing projects that address several areas of need—such as food insecurity and environmental woes—and can be completed at home. If you sign up, you’ll receive a digital guidebook to help you navigate the local options and figure out where you can best help. // Jan. 15-17

Invasive Removal on the Mount Vernon Trail

Grab some pruning tools and join community members in cleaning up a portion of the Mount Vernon Trail. Long sleeves and pants are recommended. // Monday, Jan. 17, 10 a.m.-noon. Starts south of Marina Towers, 501 Slaters Lane, Alexandria

Additional Environmental Opportunities

Arlington Regional Master Naturalists have gathered more than a dozen cleanup projects at parks in Arlington and the surrounding area. Check each listing for age requirements, clothing and supply suggestions, and Covid guidelines. // Jan. 15-17. Times and locations vary.

This post has been updated to reflect changes to the Save Our Democracy rally and commemorative program.

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