Permian Basin to honor Dr. King with celebrations and action
For MLK Day 2023, people of the Permian Basin will come together as they do every year to both celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and to give back to their communities in his honor.
The following is a list of events happening around the Permian Basin from Friday, Jan. 13 through MLK Day on Monday, Jan. 16.
The City of Hobbs will pay tribute to Dr. King with a Day of Giving on Saturday, Jan. 14.
Following a ceremony featuring several community speakers from 11 a.m. to noon, community members will begin distributing 500 hot meals to local families in need, along with 250 food boxes, from Your Safe Space (YSS) at 1124 E. Humble St.
The 3rd Annual Food Drive will continue until all food boxes are gone. Meals are provided by Pacific Rim.
The following day, Sunday, Jan 15, Sunday Worship Service will be held at Pleasant Green Baptist Church, 912 S. McKinley St., at 11 a.m.
And then Monday, Jan. 16, there will be the MLK Day of Celebration at MLK Park, starting with a gathering at 11:30 a.m. followed by a march beginning from the MLK Soccer Plex and ending at Booker T. Washington School. A program will begin shortly thereafter.
The full weekend of MLK Day events is presented by a community-wide collaborative involving the Hobbs Branch NAACP, United Way, Chevron and the City of Hobbs.
A march and festival are marquee events for MLK Day in Carlsbad. But celebrations hosted by the Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship Committee will actually start a few days earlier.
On Friday, Jan. 13, at 6 p.m., an MLK Banquet will take place at the Pecos River Village Carousel, located at 711 Muscatel in Carlsbad. Dinner is $35 per person and $280 for a table of eight.
Then on Sunday, Jan. 15, at 2:30 p.m., MLK Day will be observed at First Baptist Church of Carlsbad, 112 N. Alameda St. The program will include a community choir, other guest churches and friends from the community, according to the Scholarship Committee.
At 10 a.m. Monday, a Freedom March is planned from the Eddy County Courthouse to Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Park, 203 Plaza St., followed by a daylong Kuumba Festival at the park featuring food, vendors, a bounce house, activities, entertainment and free culturally relevant lessons in drum, dance and acrobatics/tumbling. The festival will kick off with a ceremony at 11:30 a.m. No pre-registration is required to join the classes.
Donations made during these MLK celebrations will go to support the MLK Jr. Scholarship Effort.
For more information, visit the Carlsbad Community Foundation’s website here.
The Black Cultural Council of Odessa works to carry forward Dr. King’s dream yearround through events, activities and scholarships for African American students. And the organization’s celebration of MLK Day isn’t limited to only one day.
The BCC of Odessa is inviting community members to three days of events starting with the 4th Annual MLK Showcase Basketball Tournament on Friday and Saturday, Jan. 13-14, and culminating with a Gospel Celebration Sunday, Jan. 15 and a King Brunch and Freedom March on Monday, Jan. 16.
The basketball tournament takes place at the Woodson Boys & Girls Club in Odessa at 7 p.m. both days. Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for children, and free for 5-and-under.
Sunday’s Gospel Celebration will take place at Odessa First Church, 415 N. Lee St., at 5 p.m. Reverend Reginald G. Reid, pastor at Pleasant Hill Baptist Church in Shreveport, LA., will serve as the speaker. The Combined City Choir will provide music.
Then on MLK Day, former Odessa City Councilwoman Mari Willis will speak at a free King Brunch event at the Woodson Community Center from 10 a.m. to noon.
At 1 p.m., a Freedom March will set off from the Southside Senior Citizens Center North on Dixie Boulevard to Murphy Street, finishing at Woodson Community Center on Woodson Street.
Immediately after the parade, the Odessa Alamnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. will host a Candlelight Vigil at the Woodson Community Center.