CSU, Fort Collins and Loveland Communities Celebrate MLK Day with ‘Inspiring Voices’ Jan. 18

Note to Reporters: This year’s Martin Luther King Jr. celebration will include events throughout the week of Jan. 18. As new event details become available, they will be listed at www.mlkfortcollins.org.

The Colorado State University, Fort Collins and Loveland communities will celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day with several events on Monday, Jan. 18. The theme of this year’s celebration is "Inspiring Voices."

The route for the traditional one-mile community march, which starts at 11 a.m., will begin in Old Town Square, Fort Collins, and continue down College Avenue to Laurel Street. The march will proceed through the center of the Oval on Colorado State’s campus, then continue west on Isotope Drive to end at CSU’s Lory Student Center. Participants will be encouraged to sing as they march.

Traffic will be restricted during the march. Those restrictions will include delays along portions of College Avenue and Mountain, Oak, Olive, Magnolia, Mulberry, Myrtle, Laurel, Mason and Howes streets. Parking in city garages – located at Remington and Mountain and at Mason and Laporte – will be free on Jan. 18. Two-hour parking restrictions in Old Town will not apply.

The march will conclude with an address by guest speaker Bruce Smith at 11:45 a.m. in the Main Ballroom of the Lory Student Center. Smith is director of the Black/African American Cultural Center in Student Diversity Programs and Services at CSU. He has served in this position since July and is helping students build community as well as academic and social empowerment. Prior to his position at CSU, Smith worked in a similar position at the University of Arizona. He has a doctorate degree in Language, Literacy Culture, and Society from the University of California, Berkeley.

Before the march, the community is invited to a 9:30 a.m. poetry and essay reading at the CSU Bookstore in the Lory Student Center on campus. Readers will include Poudre School District students whose winning poems and essays were selected through the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. essay and poetry contest.

Along with this year’s celebration, CSU students, faculty, staff as well as community members will be working on service projects throughout the week following Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. More information about service projects will be listed at www.mlkfortcollins.org.

Loveland’s 20th annual Martin Luther King Jr. celebration will be held at 7 p.m. Monday, Jan. 18, at Thompson Valley High School, 1669 Eagle Drive. For more information, contact bretteppichbeal@yahoo.com.