SWEDESBORO — Swedesboro is hosting the area’s best programs to celebrate Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on Monday, Jan. 20 at 11:30 a.m. at the Margaret Clifford Elementary School, Auburn Ave. The events include an entertaining program, Community Service Projects, Minority Business Fair, and Art Showcase.
The main event will be a memorial program featuring the award-winning Creative Arts Morgan Village Academy Jazz Band and Gospel Choir, recitations of Dr. King’s speeches, local youth performers, community service awards, refreshments, and much more. CAMVA Jazz Band has been the number one Jazz Band in the state for many years and number two internationally.
The CAMVA Gospel choir members have performed internationally and won Gold awards in several countries. New this year is the Pass More Studio dancers. The memorial program will begin at 1 p.m.
“We chose to hold the program at the Margaret Clifford School because of the school’s historical location,” states Rev. Sherry Hall, program chair. The Clifford School is on the site of the last colored-only school established in New Jersey, The Auburn Ave. School.
“The committee felt that celebrating the accomplishments of Dr. King on a previously segregated location was only fitting,” she said. After the celebration, there will be free tours of the Richardson Ave. School, the only segregated school building still standing in New Jersey. The Richardson Avenue School is adjacent to the Clifford School parking lot.
MLK Day is also a day of service for many people. Local businesses, boy scout troupes, and community members will begin the day with a community service project at Richardson Avenue School. Community groups are invited to come and help preserve this historical site.
The MLK Art Showcase will display entries from the annual art and essay contest. Children were charged with making art the displayed Dr. King’s dream of “Unity Among All People.”
The Essay Contest (grades 3-12) Winners will receive ribbons and prizes. Additionally, Community Service Awards will be given to individuals and youth who have made outstanding contributions to the community. All awardees will be announced at the Memorial Program.
These events are sponsored by the Historical and Educational Lodge-Hall Preservatory, Inc., a 501 (c) 3 organization, Swedesboro-Woolwich Parks and Recreation, local businesses, churches, and civic organizations. “Funding has been made possible in part by the New Jersey Historical Commission / Department of State, and the Gloucester County Cultural & Heritage Commission of Rowan College at Gloucester County”
More information is at www.helpinc.org and on Facebook: MLK Day Celebration.