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Martin Luther King Celebration

  • Date: 01/14/2018 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM
  • Location: Bell Cultural Arts Center
    2030 E. College Way
    Olathe, Kansas 66062
  • Introduction: Join Olathe’s Human Relations Commission to celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Olatheans and residents throughout the Greater Kansas City area are invited to join Olathe’s Human Relations Commission (OHRC) to celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., on Sunday, Jan. 14. The annual Martin Luther King (MLK) Celebration will be held from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. at Mid-America Nazarene University’s Bell Cultural Arts Center, located 2030 E College Way, Olathe, KS, 66062. It will feature live music by guitarist Lester Estelle, Sr., a dance performance by Leigh’s School of Dance, choral selections from the Prairie Trail Middle School Cantabile Choir, and the debut of OHRC’s MLK Celebration Choir, comprised of Olathe Public Schools high school students and community members. Student art contest winners will also be announced. The event is free and open to the public.

Olathe’s MLK Celebration has grown over the last 18 years to become one of Olathe’s most acclaimed events, celebrating and embracing diversity in our community and schools. The MLK Celebration encourages Olathe students of all ages to promote purpose-driven service, a society free of bullying, discrimination, and maltreatment of others based on race, gender, or religious beliefs. The goal of the Olathe Human Relations Commission’s annual celebration is to increase positive awareness, foster greater understanding and embrace the diverse populations that make up the fabric of our community.

This year’s MLK Celebration features essay, visual arts, and multi-media awards for local students. More than 4,324 students submitted entries, representing nine Olathe middle schools and five high schools. All contest winners will receive cash prizes. Select students will read personal essays exploring the event theme and the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. speech, “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop.” Entries will be on display for public viewing at the event, and will remain on display at the downtown Olathe Public Library following the celebration through the end of January.

Johnson County 10th District Judge Rhonda K Mason will deliver the keynote address. Judge Mason is an Olathe resident who was appointed to serve on the court by Governor Sam Brownback in December 2016. She is Johnson County’s first African-American judge.

OHRC’s Martin Luther King Celebration is sponsored by Olathe Communities that Care, Grantham University, and Bott Radio Network. Additional supporters include Harlan C. Parker and Jason S. Parker – State Farm and Olathe Ford, in partnership with the City of Olathe, Olathe Public Library, Mid-America Nazarene University and Olathe Public Schools.

For more information, contact Vanessa Vaughn West, City of Olathe community relations manager, at or 913-971-8827.
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