MLK observances abound throughout River Region

Published 12:00 am Saturday, January 14, 2012



LAPLACE – Residents of all three River Parishes have a variety of options when it comes to celebrating the lasting memory of civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Monday, with events on both sides of the Mississippi River.

In LaPlace, Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Church’s Victory Beyond the Wall Ministry and New Pilgrim Baptist Church will sponsor a march and rally. Organizers said the theme of this year’s event is “rediscovering the family.”

The march starts at 9 a.m. at East St. John Elementary School, 400 Ory Drive in LaPlace, and will proceed on Airline Highway to the Percy Hebert Building for a speech and rally. Those interested in participating in the march should arrive at the school for 8:30 a.m.

The rally will feature a speech from Harold Blood, principal at R.K. Smith Middle School in Luling. Blood is also a deacon and marriage facilitator at Bethlehem Baptist Church.

Also in LaPlace, Twin Oaks Nursing Home, located at 506 West Fifth St., will hold a program starting at 2 p.m. The ceremony will feature guest speaker Travis Ford, a leader for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

In Edgard, the West St. John Civic Association will conduct a march and memorial program starting at noon at the Roland Borne Sr. Memorial Library, 2979 Louisiana Highway 18.

The march will proceed east on Louisiana Highway 18 and wind up at the West Bank Community Center, 173 E. Third St. A memorial program on the community center’s lawn will begin at 1:30 p.m.

In St. James Parish, commemorative services in Lutcher will begin at 9 a.m. with a wreath-laying ceremony at the intersection of King Avenue and Fifth Street. A march will follow from Fifth Street to King David Baptist Church, 2329 North King Ave., where a ceremony will begin at 9:15 a.m. Guest speaker at the ceremony will be Ed Price, state representative for District 58.

On the west bank, the West St. James Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship Committee and the Highway Baptist Church are hosting a program and reception at St. James High School, 5158 Wildcat St., starting at noon. The theme of the program is “We Are Better Together,” and the guest speaker is a Daphne Octave, a 1981 co-valedictorian at St. James.

Finally in St. Charles Parish, the Dr. King Commemorative Organization will hold its annual celebration in Luling and Hahnville.

A pilgrimage march will begin at 10 a.m. at the foot of the Hale Boggs Bridge in Luling and wind up at the Eual J. Landry Gym on River Road in Hahnville, where a rally will begin at noon.