Updated: Jan 29, 2022
Jan. 17: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
In his 1963 “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” Martin Luther King Jr. confronted the white church by sowing disappointment in its overwhelming need to uphold the status quo of our segregated society. King said, “… I felt that the white ministers, priests, and rabbis of the South would be some of our strongest allies. Instead, some few have been outright opponents, refusing to understand the freedom movement and misrepresenting its leaders; all too many others have been more cautious than courageous and have remained silent behind the anesthetizing security of stained-glass windows.” In Seattle, those glass windows went dark for him two years prior to the writing of his jailhouse sermon. In Nov. 1961, King made a trip north to Washington. An agreement had been made for a lecture to take place at First Presbyterian Church in Seattle. Weeks before his arrival, but after his lecture had been well advertised, First Presbyterian Church officials canceled their agreement to rent the sanctuary for King’s speech. Several excuses were given, but there’s little doubt about what the unspoken reason was: Racism. King went on to speak at other venues, including Garfield High School, but there’s little doubt that his experience in Seattle helped foment the disappointment he expressed in Birmingham. King's Seattle experience was more than 60 years ago. Apologies were made, of course, but the work of confronting racism continues all around the state where events are being held to honor Dr. King and his work. We’ve compiled a list of events held over the MLK Day weekend:
Seattle, Rally and March: Events at Garfield High School begin at 8:30 a.m. The rally is at 11 a.m. and the march is at 12:30 p.m.; Covid protocol requires social distancing and face masks at all activities; info: seattlemlkcoalition.org/
Tacoma: Celebrate the legacy of MLK at the Washington State History Museum, 1911 Pacific Ave. Tacoma; from noon to 4 p.m.; admission is free. Living Voices will perform “The Right to Dream” at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. in the museum auditorium; make art inspired by Kings visit to Washington with Valencia Carroll from noon to 4 p.m.; info: washingtonhistory.org/event/celebrate-mlk/
Bellingham: 24th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Human Rights Conference; Jan. 13-15; the 2022 Conference will take place online and will feature a range of presentation formats including performance art, films and caucuses, in addition to standard workshop fare. As always, the Conference will be free and open to all; info: whrtf.org/revdrking/2022-conference/
Everett: Greater Everett Community Celebration, March and Rally; Jan. 14, 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.; Snohomish County Court House, 3000 Rockefeller Ave.; Jan. 16, Nekya Johnson speaks at the First Presbyterian Church, 2936 Rockefeller Ave.; 3:30 to 5:30 p.m.; info: scbhcwa.org/
Wenatchee: Martin Luther King Jr. Multicultural Fest; Jan. 15, 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Wenatchee Valley Museum & Cultural Center, 127 S. Mission St., Wenatchee; the city of Wenatchee celebrates its many cultural and heritage groups through art, crafts, clothing and pictures. The annual Civil Rights and Social Justice Awards will be announced; info: stayhappening.com/e/martin-luther-king-jr-multicultural-fest-E2ISU5XVQHB
The Royal Treatment
Jan. 21 – Feb. 13: Disenchanted; Tacoma Musical Playhouse; 7116 6th Ave., Tacoma; check website for showtimes; tickets: $31 adult, $29 seniors/military/student, children under 12 are not recommended for the show; info: tmp.org/index.php/2021-2022-tmp-mainstage-single-tickets/
Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, Cinderella and a royalty of other princesses are led through a magic mirror of self-reflection, and into the land of stark reality where a kiss by a prince is no longer magic. Adding a dash of feminism and adult-themed analysis to their fairy-tale lives leaves them frustrated with how they’re portrayed in storybook lore. This isn’t Disney anymore so leave the kids at home while the princesses set the record straight.
Praise For Farm Workers
Jan. 29 – Oct. 16: All the Sacrifices You’ve Made/Todos los Sacrificious Que has Hecho; Washington State History Museum, 1911 Pacific Ave., Tacoma, 5th floor; info: washingtonhistory.org/exhibit/allthesacrificesyouvemade/
A collaboration between University of Washington students and the Borderland Collective of Texas form an exhibit that highlights the contributions and sacrifices made by farm working families from Eastern Washington’s agricultural regions of Yakima and Wenatchee. The students culled images from family albums, made new photos and recorded oral histories that will be added to the museum’s permanent collection when the exhibit ends.