Martin Luther
King, Jr. Way Renaming, Harrisonburg Virginia

People's Day, 1/19/2015: Creating Beloved Community

The year since the dedication of Martin Luther King, Jr. Way has seen successful popular efforts including a Ban the Box campaign, a groundswell in favor of building better communities, not more jails, the recognition of Historic Newtown Cemetery and more, and the election to City Council of the African American leader of the effort to make Martin Luther King, Jr. Day a holiday on the JMU campus.

At Noon, January 19, 2015, there will be a celebration at S. Main and Martin Luther King, Jr. Way with a march and program at Emanuel Episcopal Church in which participants and representatives from organizations will speak and then gather over a multicultural meal to carry forward efforts into the coming year in the spirit of Dr. King.

Lift your voice today:

Name: e-mail:
Optional food for potluck:
Promote on facebook: . Promote with fliers.

Parking available across from the church. Food can be stored at the church. Bring a serving utensil if you can.

Words from supporters:

Fri Jan 23 16:13:04 2015
Name comment food (optional)
8 Maria E. Pea Yummy Rice
7 Vaunda Brown Thai chicken with pepper and thai basil
6 Bill and Ramona Sanders We'll be there. Mac and cheese
5 Heather Banks What a year it's been! Chili or stew in crockpot.
4 John Fairfield dal (curried lentils)
3 secretary baozi (Chinese dumplings)
2 Gambill Caldwell Having grown up in Harrisonburg during the 1950's and early 1960's, this is a very long time comin. NA
1 Robert Flory

Other events taking place for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day:

Calendar at Eastern Mennonite University. Calendar at James Madison University .

Vision Statement:

The Martin Luther King, Jr. Way Coalition believes in inclusive community in which every person is loved and valued, regardless of any differences, and is empowered to participate, have a voice and effect positive change in her or his community. We will work tirelessly to create a sustainable democracy that is led and owned by the people, one in which the people have timely access to the information and expertise needed for governance. We will advocate for this vision and challenge, if necessary, those individuals and systems of power that stand in the way of building this beloved community in Harrisonburg.

The Renaming:

On February 12, 2013 Harrisonburg resident Stan Maclin asked city council to name a street for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. On April 9th, a task force was appointed by the city to select a street to be named. On August 13, 2013, in agreement with an overwhelming show of support, City Council voted to rename Cantrell Avenue.

Logo, King Memorial in Washington DC:

The monument's design reflects a quote from Dr. King:

"Out of the mountain of despair, a stone of hope."

The bright stone profile of Dr. King in the center of the picture sheds the light of hope that forms the background of the web site. The monument's opening gave hope to one individual, Stan Maclin, to seek our street renaming. He went through the despair of near death illness before being brought back to see his dream realized.

Throughout its history, the African American community of Harrisonburg has been strong with individuals who were a stone of hope as the community overcame the despair of slavery, Jim Crow and segregation, and urban renewal. Now that history shines as a stone of hope to a diverse community in these times of economic uncertainty and eroding justice when Dr. King's vision gives energy for the future.

History of the Coalition:

In September of 2013, a coalition of groups came together to plan the dedication of Martin Luther King, Jr. Way. Groups and individuals continue to come forward with support in terms of services and material and with endorsements and participation to carry forward the message of that historic renaming.