Lowcountry to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Monday

Updated: Jan. 19, 2020 at 11:13 PM EST
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Celebrations across the Lowcountry and the state will join the list of tributes nationwide for civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on the federal holiday named in his honor.

A parade at 10 a.m. in downtown Charleston will begin at Burke High School on FIshburne Street, then head north to Sumter Street, then to King Street, to Marion Square and then onto Calhoun Street. Last year’s parade included 131 bands, marchers, floats and groups with an estimated audience of about 3,000 people. The lineup for the parade begins at 8 a.m.

Then at 5 p.m., the city of Charleston and the YWCA will host “Hold Fast to the Dream,” an MLK Day concert. The concert will be held at First Baptist Church of James Island, at 1110 Camp Rd.

The concert, which is free and open to the public, will feature Lowcountry Voices, a Charleston choral group known for their uplifting regional and international performances, under the direction of Nathan L. Nelson.

Charleston Mayor John Tecklenburg is expected to attend, along with the Rev. Charlie L. Murray Jr. of First Baptist Church of James Island; the Rev. Marshall Blalock of First Baptist Church of Charleston; and Pastor Alex Sands of Kingdom Life Church of Simpsonville; and South Carolina Baptist Convention President-Elect Dr. Kylon Middleton, Jr. of Mt. Zion AME Church.

Doors will open at 4 p.m.

Beaufort County, meanwhile, will mark the day with a parade and marches.

A parade begins at 10 a.m. on Rodgers Street in Beaufort. The parade route is Rodgers Street, Boundary Street, Carteret Street, Bay Street, Bladen Street and conclude at Rodgers Street. This route will be closed to motorists just prior to 10:00 a.m. until about 11:30 a.m., according to the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office.

It will begin and end in the Hilton Head Island High School parking lot, which could impact a portion of Wilborn Road.

Bluffton holds its 35th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day march on Monday afternoon. The march begins at 2:30 p.m. on Pritchard Street and concludes at Oyster Factory Park.

Officials ask drivers to be careful and use caution in these areas.

Six of the Democratic presidential nominees will be in Columbia for the 20th anniversary of King Day at the Dome.

A prayer service begins at 8:30 a.m. at Zion Baptist Church. The lineup for the march is at 9:30 a.m. on Washington Street, and the rally at the State House begins at 10 a.m.

Former Vice President Joe Biden, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, and Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard are expected to attend the day’s events.

On Sunday, Pete Buttigieg’s South Carolina campaign announced he would attend King Day at the Dome. Buttigieg originally planned to attend MLK events in his hometown, but campaign spokesperson Lauren Brown said Buttigieg changed his plans because “he also wants to make clear his commitment to earning the support and trust of every voter in South Carolina, including those of the African-American community who consistently serve as the base of our party.”

Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar is expected to attend the morning prayer service.

Vice President Mike Pence spoke at a church service Sunday in Tennessee in remembrance of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

At the Holy City Church of God in Memphis the day before the federal holiday named after the civil rights leader, Pence said King touched the hearts of millions of Americans and his words continue to inspire. Pence acknowledged the nation’s deep divide and says Americans must rededicate themselves to the ideals that King advanced.

Before the service, Pence toured the National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel, where King was fatally shot on April 4, 1968.

Copyright 2020 WCSC. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved.