Bakersfield performs community service to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Local News

Kern County honored slain civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Junior on Monday by participating in community service.

It’s been nearly 60 years since Dr. King delivered his historic “I have a dream” speech during the great march on Washington.

The annual MLK Day march in Bakersfield pays homage to that day, where Dr. King called for an end to racism.

The march this year brought out dozens, including Mayor Karen Goh and Bakersfield Police Chief Lyle Martin.

The crowd walked from Belle Terrace Park to the People’s Missionary Baptist Church in South Bakersfield.

The day started off with the annual Community Awards Breakfast, where hundreds showed up.

“I believe that Dr. King’s legacy was based on promoting the people as one, every color, everyone,” said MLK Committee member Naadirah Crawford.

In the afternoon, the MLK committee served a free lunch, where Americorps gave away clothes and blankets.

“The dream is for all of us to feel like we belong and we all have the rights of basic human needs,” said Americorps mentor Darr Lilly. “We want to stop history from repeating itself. Racism, of course, is a thing that’s ongoing.”

Pastor Steven Watkin added, “We can accomplish more together regardless of your social status, your education status. If we all come together, maybe we can’t change everybody, but maybe we can change one person.”

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