The Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site will observe the 50th Anniversary of Dr. King’s assassination with special programming, during Remembrance Week, April 4 – 9.

The park will host its Remembrance Day commemorative program at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 4, in the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, held on the actual day that King  was assassinated at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis. The program culminates at 6:01 p.m. with the laying of a wreath on the exterior of Ebenezer Baptist Church. In addition, a continuous silent open house Birth Home Tour will take place on April 4. Tours are free. To tour the home, visitors must meet at the front steps of the Birth Home where a ranger will begin the tour. “We encourage the visitor to silently walk through the Birth Home of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and explore the community and family life that guided and nurtured this future Civil Rights leader,” stated Judy Forte, Park Superintendent.

Other April 4 observances will include day-long screenings of the 15-minute short film “The Last Days of King”  from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and a special exhibition called “From Memphis to Atlanta: 50 Forward” both in the Visitors Center.

On April 9 at 10:30 a.m.the park will host MLK50 Forward: “Together We Win With Love for Humanity” Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Service at Ebenezer Baptist Church, Heritage Sanctuary. The theme for the service is the “Drum Major Instinct”.  Seating for the program is invitation only; however the program will be live streamed and available for viewing inside the Park Visitor Center and at the Horizon Ebenezer Baptist Church.

There will also be a commemorative march on April 9 at noon. “The March for Humanity” will start in front of the Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church and end at Morehouse College. Following the March, there will be a Love for Humanity program featuring information and entertainment.

To register for the walk and find out more information about observance events, visit mlk50forward.org or facebook.com/MartinLutherKingJrNPS.

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.