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Martin Luther King Day: How to celebrate in a pandemic and after a summer of civil unrest

It is more crucial than ever to spend time reflecting on the lessons of the past and absorbing MLK's influence on the modern civil rights movement.

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere; The time is always right to do what is right; A riot is the language of the unheard."

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is one of the most quoted men in history, yet many of the lessons the former civil rights leader hoped to bestow upon future generations have yet to truly hit the target. 

2020 was a historic and significant year as the Black Lives Matter movement developed into one of the largest civil rights movement in U.S. history. BLM extended to all 50 states and abroad following the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and others.

It is more crucial than ever to spend time reflecting on the lessons of the past and absorbing MLK's influence on the modern civil rights movement. Just at MLK is recognized every year for his everlasting influence on American culture, last summer will be researched for decades to come.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day is Monday, Jan. 18, 2021. 

Here are some ways you can celebrate virtually: 

Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center in Rock Island: The center is hosting their 38th annual memorial service and awards virtually - for the first time ever due to the pandemic - on Jan. 18, 2021 from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. The event's theme is "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." Rev. Earlye Julien from Living Water Christian Center in Moline will be the keynote speaker. 

The King Center based in Atlanta, GA: The organization established in 1968 has had programming a week in advance of MLK day. The center is still hosting several virtual events throughout Monday. The theme and call to action, for the 2021 Observance is 'The Urgency of Creating the Beloved Community,'" the center's website said. 

National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, TN: 'King Day' is a virtual celebration Monday at noon and 6 p.m. The event will feature Dr. King's work and acknowledge how the national holiday started. Several local Memphis musicians will also be featured.