Looking for something to do on the upcoming long weekend that includes a day off from school to honor a civil rights leader?
Spartanburg kids and (some) parents have a long weekend coming up, giving families time to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. If you are looking for ways to honor his legacy, we have found several family-friendly options. We’ve also included some added special events that can make the long weekend fun for everyone!
Things to Do to Honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
A free showing of the civil rights movie “Selma”, provided by the City of Newberry. The event is on January 17th, and parking at 901 Friend Street, Newberry begins at 5 pm, with the movie starting at 6 pm.
The City of Spartanburg and The United Way will celebrate the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for a week in 2021 with different live-streamed, virtual events and volunteer opportunities. Activities include creating care packages, donating blood, cleaning up parks, and more.
The entire list of activities planned can be found on the United Way Website.
In 1961, 10 College students staged a sit-in at the local McCrory’s Lunch Counter to protest segregation. The men were arrested, and 9 of them refused to pay the fine for these charges, choosing instead to sit in jail for 30 days. The McCrory’s is still there, and you can see the original lunch counter and stools from 1961. The Friendship Nine and their story is an important part of the civil rights movement.
In 1980, The Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park was established to preserve the places where Martin Luther King, Jr. was born, lived, worked, worshiped, and buried. Each year the 38-acre park hosts nearly a quarter-million guests while sharing the significance of one of the most influential Americans in modern history. Entrance to the park is always free.
Buildings are Temporarily Closed due to COVID-19 – Self Guided tours are available.
This long weekend provides parents with an opportunity to have meaningful discussions with their children about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Civil Rights Movement. Our local libraries provide tons of free resources for children to teach the importance of King and why we honor him this weekend.
Here are a few books to add to your reading list, for the next trip to the library!
- All Are Welcome, by Alexandra Penfold
- Last Stop On Market Street, by Matt De La Pena
- March: Book One, Book Two, Book Three, by John Lewis
We also found a couple of excellent book lists to get you started from “What Do We Do All Day?”
- Books About Peace
- Civil Rights Picture Books for Kids
- Books to Inspire Kids to Change the World
- Books that Teach Kids to Combat Racism
- Children’s Books about Protests & Civil Disobedience
Note: Be sure to visit the library and stock up on reading material before Monday! All Spartanburg County Public Libraries will be closed on Monday, January 18, 2021.
Other Things to Do Over the Weekend
Head Outdoors For The Day
There are lots of different winter activities you can enjoy with your family over the weekend!
The National Parks offer FREE entrance days four times a year – and one of those times is MLK Day! Load up the car and visit nearby National Parks such as Cowpens Battlefield, Kings Mountain, or the Carl Sandburg Home.
January 18th is the last day for ice skating in Downtown Spartanburg at Skating on the Square. If you haven’t gone yet this year, don’t miss your last chance!
Make Something Together
Hearts of Clay will be open on Monday 18th, from 11 am to 5 pm, and stocked full of cool things to create! You can “adopt a penguin” or build a snowman!
Check out a kit from the Spark Space Maker Space at the Headquarters Library. They have all kinds of fun kits you can check out to learn to do something new over the weekend!
What’s on your agenda for MLK weekend? Check out the Kidding Around Instagram Highlight for more Martin Luther King, Jr. info.