Miami-Dade County

Parades, concerts, breakfasts to honor Martin Luther King Jr.

Northwestern High School Marching Bull Dominique Hightower (center) enjoys herself while performing in the Annual MLK Parade along Northwest 54th Street in Miami on Monday, Jan. 16, 2017.
Northwestern High School Marching Bull Dominique Hightower (center) enjoys herself while performing in the Annual MLK Parade along Northwest 54th Street in Miami on Monday, Jan. 16, 2017. Miami Herald file photo

The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. would have been 89 on Monday, Jan. 15, the date of his national holiday.

The Baptist minister and Nobel Peace Prize winner who championed civil rights and justice through non-violent means was assassinated on April 4, 1968. He was 39.

To honor his legacy, many events are planned throughout South Florida, ranging from concerts to parades to community service projects. Here are some of the major events:


5000 Role Models of Excellence Project’s Scholarship Breakfast: Award-winning producer, director and actor Tyler Perry will be the keynote speaker at the 25th anniversary of the event. Other speakers include Rep. Frederica Wilson, founder of the boys’ mentoring program; Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Florida; Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida; Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen; and former Rep. Charlie Rangel; 8:30-10:30 a.m., DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Miami Airport & Convention Center, 711 NW 72nd Ave., Miami. 305-995-2451 or

Martin Luther King Jr. 5K Run & Fitness Walk: The event will begin at 8 a.m. at the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Metrorail Station, Northwest 62nd Street and 27th Avenue. The fee is $25 for those 15 and over and $15 for 14 and younger. Awards given to the top three finishers in various age groups.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day Parade: The 41st annual parade, which will begin at 11 a.m., will feature high school marching bands, athletes and cheerleaders, plus floats and Carnival dancers. The parade, which usually lasts around three hours, will take place along Northwest 54th Street, from Northwest 10th to 32nd avenues. Parade ends with a celebration at Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Park, 6000 NW 32nd Ct., Miami. Free. 305-633-2044.

Fort Lauderdale MLK Holiday Parade & Multicultural Festival: Parade begins at Lincoln Park, 600 NW 19th Ave., Fort Lauderdale. Parade heads onto Sistrunk Boulevard to Seventh Avenue then south to Southwest Second Street to Esplanade Park, 400 SW Second Street. 8 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Free. 954-828-3542 or, or

City Year MLK Day of Service: Register to help renovate the staff lounge; paint murals; landscape school grounds; 8 a.m.-1 p.m., Phillis Wheatley Elementary School, 1801 NW First Pl., Miami. Coffee, snacks and water are provided.

Branches Day of Service in South Miami and Florida City: AmeriCorps volunteers will beautify three homes in Florida City from 7:30 a.m.-2 p.m., and will clean up the neighborhood around Mount Olive Baptist Church, 6316 SW 59th Place, in South Miami, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information, visit

National Park Fee-Free Day: In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, all national parks will waive their admission fees on Monday. Take advantage of this opportunity to #FindYourPark. For more information about what you can see at Everglades and Biscayne national parks, please visit

Thursday, Jan. 18

Dawoud Bey — The Birmingham Project: Fifty years after the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala., which killed four young girls, artist Dawoud Bey created a project to commemorate the children who were killed or injured. Over the course of seven years, Bey developed a series of vibrant and poignant portraits of current residents who represent the ages of the victims when they died, as well as the ages they would have been if they were still alive; through March 18, at the Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum at FIU, 10975 SW 17th St., Miami. Free. 305-348-2890 or