Community murals will honor Martin Luther King Jr. | SierraSun.com

Community murals will honor Martin Luther King Jr.

Jean Eick
Sierra Sun

Jean EickFrom Left: Megan Farka, Julia Berberan and Allie Beham all AmeriCorps members work Friday morning on a section of the mural that will be displayed as part of the Martin Luther King, Jr. program Friday, Feb. 22 at the Incline Village Library.

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. and#8212; Celebrations all around the country are held each year in January to honor Martin Luther King Jr. African American civil rights leader assassinated in 1968. Many memorial services and events are held on his actual birth date, Jan. 15. but the third Monday in January is the official day designated as Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Schools are closed along with government offices, banks, mail service and many businesses for this day to honor the leader.

In 1994 the official MLK holiday was designated as a national day of community service. Opportunities to participate in community service events are available at many cities around the country. In Philadelphia it is expected that 70,000 will turn out to participate in more than 1,000 different community projects.

In Northern Nevada, Reno is offering opportunities for MLK community celebrations and the Food Bank of Northern Nevada is providing Reno/Tahoe residents a chance to volunteer. A Memorial Caravan will take place along Highway 395 at 10:30 a.m. Monday, Jan. 18. To participate meet at the Second Baptist Church of Reno at 1265 Monticello St. A memorial church service will also be held at 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 17, at the Second Baptist Church of Reno and a celebration dinner organized by the Northern Nevada Black Cultural Awareness Center is at 7 p.m. at the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino.

Even though Incline Village does not have an organized community service event scheduled for the Jan. 18 holiday, there is an opportunity to participate in a community-wide service project. The Parasol Tahoe Community Foundation AmeriCorps Team has organized a community mural project. Several organizations are already involved in making murals that will be displayed at a celebration and reception Friday, Jan. 22. The 14 AmeriCorps team members started planning the mural and event in early December.

and#8220;It is always a challenge to start working on this project during the holidays,and#8221; said Allison Becker, AmeriCorps program director for Parasol Tahoe Community Foundation. and#8220;Everyone is always so busy and so many residents are away that it is hard.and#8221;

Becker said each AmeriCorps member has taken responsibility for organizing the project this year. AmeriCorps members Julia Emery, Adam Stater and Tim Nelson have been working on publicity for the event.

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and#8220;I am involved in marketing for this event, creating awards for the murals and providing food at the reception,and#8221; said Jaime Olive, AmeriCorps member and Collaboration coordinator for the Parasol Community Collaboration.

The mural idea was selected because the team felt it would be a fun and creative way to involve members of the community in celebrating the life and teachings of Martin Luther King, Jr. as well as promote involvement in the arts said Olive. Community groups are creating murals with the common themes of freedom and equality. AmeriCorps team member Jamie Springer has been responsible for contacting community groups to participate in the project.

Organizations creating murals with the AmeriCorps team include the Tahoe Children’s Foundation, The Boys and Girls Club, the IVGID Kids Club, a girl scout troop, Alison Lee’s second grade class at The Lake Tahoe School, the YES group and the Tahoe Women’s Services children’s program.

and#8220;All of the groups are creating murals on their own time,and#8221; said Springer. and#8220;AmeriCorps provided the canvas and paints (if desired).and#8221;

The murals will be displayed from 4 to 6 p.m. Friday, Jan. 22 at the Incline Village Library. The event will feature an opportunity to view the murals, vote for a favorite mural, learn more about the life and teachings of Dr. King and refreshments. The display will continue at the library through Feb. 26.