Baylor University and Waco Community Remember Martin Luther King Jr.

  • MLK
    File photo.
  • Student volunteers with Baylor's Campus Kitchens assemble box lunches for community garden volunteers on MLK Day of Service.
Jan. 16, 2015

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Media contact: Lori Fogleman, (254) 710-6275

WACO, Texas (Jan. 16, 2015) – He had a dream.

Even so many years later, Martin Luther King Jr.’s contagious vision of human rights and equality continues to inspire and uplift. In honor of Dr. King, Baylor University, along with local organizations, will be hosting a series of events to celebrate and memorialize his life and legacy.

An MLK Wreath Laying Ceremony at Martin Luther King Jr. Park took place on Friday, Jan. 16. The ceremony was sponsored by McLennan County Commissioner Lester Gibson of Precinct 2.

Baylor's Campus Kitchens will host an MLK Day Lunch Prep at Penland Crossroads from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 17, and Sunday, Jan. 18. Volunteers can sign up at hotugc.eventbrite.com.

“MLK Day at Campus Kitchens is really awesome because it’s a great day for people who are serving. MLK day for Campus Kitchens prepares food for the volunteers helping with the spring garden preps. All the meals are going to people serving. It’s a great way for people who want to avoid pollen or dirt to still serve,” said Devan Mayer, Baylor junior and Campus Kitchens volunteer.

Volunteers will arrange nonperishables, prepare fresh food, assemble meals and deliver them to hundreds of volunteers who will be working at eight community gardens and the World Hunger Relief Farm on MLK Day of Service Monday, Jan. 19.

"MLK Day of Service is not just about getting volunteers outside, but also to support Waco's green spaces and our local food sources" said Kathleen Lokey, M.S.W. '11, an Americorps VISTA serving with Baylor's Office of Community Service and Engagement. "Our focus this year is to raise awareness and support our local food movement through helping local food sources, such as community gardens, which provide access to healthy food for their communities."

For the national holiday on Monday, Jan. 19, there will be a variety of events:

• 9 a.m.: Campus Kitchens will host its final MLK Lunch Prep until 12:30 p.m. at Penland Crossroads, 1110 S. Fifth St. in Waco.

• 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.: The Annual March and Wreath Laying at the Suspension Bridge, sponsored by Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc. and McLennan County Chapter of the NAACP.

• 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.: The Urban Gardening Coalition MLK Day of Service in various gardens throughout the area. (Lunch will be provided. To sign up, go to hotugc.eventbrite.com.)

• 6 p.m.: The day will conclude with an MLK Candlelight Vigil in MLK Park, 100 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. in Waco, sponsored by Cocque Gibson. Participants are encouraged to bring their own candles. Seating will be available.

On Wednesday, Jan. 21, the Baylor Department of Multicultural Affairs will host an MLK Celebration Luncheon (RSVP only) at noon, as well as an evening celebration, at 6 p.m. on the fifth floor of the Cashion Academic Center, 1401 S. Fifth St. in Waco. The evening celebration is free and open to the public and features guest speaker Tyrone Smith.

Smith is a former Baylor cornerback and enjoyed a successful NFL career with the San Francisco 49ers. Tyrone is now president and co-founder of First and Goal Inc., a non-profit organization whose goal is to create an atmosphere that promotes educational challenges, moral development and proactive social behavior among youth, as well as the adults who serve them. It is through the organization’s slogan "A Game Plan for Life" that youth are encouraged to be active participants in achieving their dreams.

“The evening celebration is mainly because we wanted the students to have the opportunity to hear the speaker,” said Kelley Kimple, Baylor's associate director of multicultural affairs. “[The holiday and celebrations] are important because it is important for us to always to remember and recognize the history and our past. It’s important in order to understand how we’ve gotten to the places we are now due to all the hard work, sacrifices and dedication of our ancestors.”

by Sarah Czerwinski, student newswriter, (254) 710-6805

ABOUT BAYLOR UNIVERSITY

Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution, characterized as having “high research activity” by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The University provides a vibrant campus community for approximately 16,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions. Baylor sponsors 19 varsity athletic teams and is a founding member of the Big 12 Conference.

ABOUT CAMPUS KITCHENS AT BAYLOR

The Campus Kitchens Project at Baylor is one of 38 university-based Campus Kitchens in the United States and the first – and only – Campus Kitchen at a Texas university. The resourceful anti-hunger program allows Baylor students to recover quality unused food from university dining halls, turn these food donations into nourishing meals and then deliver those meals to the Family Abuse Center of Waco and Mission Waco. In addition, Campus Kitchens volunteers recover already cooked but unserved food from Baylor dining halls and deliver it daily to the Salvation Army in Waco. Campus Kitchen gives students an opportunity to keep food from going to waste, while allowing them to develop leadership skills, serve others and open pathways between the university and the community.

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