My earliest memories of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day are from junior high (yes, I realize I am totally dating myself here). Though Martin Luther King, Jr. Day was an official federal holiday, the State of Utah didn’t recognize it then.
About the same time, my friends and I had formed a group we called the Society for Political Awareness (yes, I realize I am letting you know what a total dork I am here) and decided it was our mission to share the message of this holiday with our fellow students via a “sit in” at our school.
This is where I let you know, I don’t actually remember if we really were “sharing a message,” or if we just wanted the day off school…Regardless, nothing much happened. We were threatened with phone calls home and eventually every single one of us caved and went to class.
Utah didn’t declare Martin Luther King, Jr. Day as an official holiday until 2000 and it is a working holiday for most people here, although the kids are out of school. So, as it turns out, there doesn’t seem to be much of a strong tradition surrounding this particular holiday among my friends and neighbors.
I know many consider it a national day of service. In years past, I have held coat or blanket drives to celebrate the spirit of the day. This year, I find myself prepared with absolutely nothing…
So I am wondering friends, do you do anything to celebrate the holiday? Are there strong traditions surrounding Martin Luther King, Jr. Day where you live?