Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Observance, Volunteer Fair, & Luminary Lighting

Save the date and reach out if you’d like to get involved! The South Orange/Maplewood Community Coalition on Race will hold multiple events to celebrate the annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Observance on Monday, January 20, 2020. The official observance event will be at 2:00 pm, at Columbia High School, 17 Parker Ave, Maplewood, which is free and open to all. Hundreds of SOMA residents and friends from neighboring communities gather to honor Dr. King through music, a sharing of interfaith readings and an affirmation of Dr. King’s call to action and service. Afterward, there will be a Reception and Volunteer Fair at 3:30 pm in the cafeteria. Organizations interested in participating in the Fair should contact the Coalition office at 973-761-6116, X4 or email audrey.rowe@twotowns.org. Donations of food pantry items, knitting yarn, eyeglasses, children’s books (K-5th grade) and travel-sized toiletry donations are requested.

This year’s theme is The Power of One and will focus on youth voices. They will reflect—through spoken word, dance, and music—on the power of individuals to transform our community and our world by counteracting bigotry, hate, and violence in the face of white nationalism. Volunteer Fair & Luminary Lighting will follow the observance.

After the observance and fair, attendees and the entire community are invited to join the SOMA Luminary Project lighting! This is a great way to get everyone engaged in Dr. King’s vision of the Beloved Community. Save the date for the second annual luminary decorating party for children in early January. On the evening of January 20 beginning at 6 pm, we ask people to light up the outside of their home with Luminaries, white bags with votive candles inside that can be decorated with images of

Dr. King’s message of peace. In 2019, more than 1,300 homes and businesses shared the light of peace with luminaries. The Luminaries come four in a pack for a suggested donation of $10 and it is a fundraiser for the Coalition. Click here for more information on the luminary project. Luminary kits are available for a $10 donation at the following locations below. Many thanks to these community partners!

  • The Able Baker
  •  [Words] Bookstore
  • True Salvage Café
  • Fringe
  • General Store Cooperative
  • A Paper Hat
  • Oh! Canary
  • The Bread Stand
  • D&I Fitness
  • Sparkhouse Toys
  • Pet Wants
  • Elitist Cafe


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