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It was 60 years ago this summer that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. spoke his most famous lines, delivering his iconic “I Have a Dream Speech” to more than 200,000 people gathered on the National Mall in Washington D.C. In honor of this dream, several local organizations and institutions have planned events to honor King’s birthday.

Toiletries collection for Beverly Bootstraps, Beverly Library | Jan. 14

The North Shore chapter of the NAACP will be collecting unused and unopened toiletries to pass on to families in need. Drop off your contributions between 9 a.m. and 11:30 a.m., then stick around to help package the donations for delivery and discuss service and antiracist work with chapter members. More details available online.

North Shore Black Women’s Association luncheon | Jan. 14

A tradition in Malden for nearly 30 years is back after a two-year coronavirus hiatus. This beloved annual luncheon features remarks by a keynote speaker – this year Chief Lester Baker of the Framingham Police Department – awards honoring people and organizations that carry on King’s legacy, and moments of reflection and celebration. Advance tickets are required and available online.

Art-making, storytelling, music, and more at the Peabody Essex Museum | Jan. 16

The museum will honor Dr. King’s legacy with a day of creativity and community, including a children’s story time, a performance of hip-hop and soul music by artists Jazzmyn RED and SeeFour, painting instruction with local artist Rahim Gray, and a workshop led by Jazzmyn RED looking at the intersection of social justice movements and music.

Presentation by cartoonist, activist and author Keith Knight in Gloucester | Jan. 16

The Gloucester Meetinghouse Foundation celebrates the holiday by hosting a free event with Keith Knight, a cartoonist, rapper, social activist, author, and educator (and Salem State alum) who uses his creative work to explore topics of race, racism, and identity. After his presentation, Knight will answer questions from the audience.

Salem State University MLK Celebration and Awards | Jan. 22-23

This two-day event will focus on honoring the 60th anniversary of Dr. King’s I Have a Dream speech with programming intended to advanced his legacy in equity and justice. The schedule includes a keynote address by civil rights activist and educator Dr. Mary Frances Berry, a candlelight vigil and freedom walk, and the presentation of awards for leadership and racial justice writing.