Events are planned throughout the Indianapolis area this weekend and Monday to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The civil rights leader’s life, legacy and ongoing fight for equality are the topics of various exhibits and museum speeches. Performances and artistic activities will also spread the message.
Before visitors head out, there are a few things to keep in mind. Admission to the following events and museums is free, but many require or encourage advance registration. Those heading to White River State Park are invited to donate money to the Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana through Dip Jars at the locations.
‘The Tribute Exhibition’
Noon-3 pm and 6 pm-8 pm Friday and Saturday. Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and from 4:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Entrance pavilion at Gainbridge Fieldhouse, 125 S. Pennsylvania St. ganapuentecampocasa.com
A traveling exhibit dedicated to black history artifacts will be on display, featuring original historical documents, art, photos, letters, and more from icons such as Booker T. Washington, Shirley Chisholm, and Frederick Douglass. they are part of “Tribute Exhibition” spanning the time from slavery to the election of former President Barack Obama, according to the website.
41st MLK Celebration Day
Monday noon. Madam Walker Legacy Center, 617 Indiana Ave. madamwalkerlegacycenter.com. Free.
Tamika D. Mallory, a social justice leader and movement strategist from New York, will speak at the Madam Walker Legacy Center. she is known for giving a speech about what she called a state of emergency for blacks that went viral in the aftermath of the murder of George Floyd. Mallory has also been named among Time’s 100 Most Influential People as co-chair of the 2017 Women’s March on Washington.
Indiana State Museum
Monday off. 650 West Washington Street indianamuseum.org
Activities include watching videos of King’s speeches; the opportunity to make a community quilt; education about black makers, scientists and engineers; creation of protest posters and buttons; and a performance by Meraki Dance Co.
Monday off. 500 West Washington Street eiteljorg.org
Visitors can join a community art project, learn about King’s famous quotes, and write their dreams in a note on the comment wall. Find at-home activities, including instructions on how to make a lantern and how to stream “Freedom Riders” for free, on the Eiteljorg website.
What to see:Here’s a look inside Eiteljorg’s renovated Native American galleries
NCAA Hall of Champions
Monday off. 700 West Washington Streetncaahallofchampions.org
On display will be the “Title IX at 50” exhibit that explores the impact of the legislation on women’s sports and what is required of NCAA student-athletes. Activities include games, a retro 1930s gym, and a ski simulator.
Monday off. 1200 West Washington Streetindianapoliszoo.com
Cold-weather animals, including arctic fox, sea lions, walrus, tigers, and grizzly bears, will be outside, and visitors can also enjoy indoor exhibits with the Dolphin Dome, Deserts Dome, and more.
The Children’s Museum
Monday off. 3000 N Meridian St.museodelosniños.org
Note: Tickets for the museum on Martin Luther King Jr. Day are sold out. The next free day is February 20 and tickets will be available starting February 10.
The museum will feature performances by the Griot Drum Ensemble, stories about children during the Civil Rights Movement, and the opportunity to create artwork with visiting artist Ashley Nora.
Monday off. 13400 Allisonville Road in Fishers.connerprairie.org
Visitors can learn about activism symbols and create their own in the Teen Room; listen to drums, dance and sing; watch a film about brave community members and the Birmingham Children’s March; and record audio with hosts of “This is Problematic!” podcasts, among other activities.
Tickets are available at the box office on Monday.
Indiana Historical Society
Monday off. 450 West Ohio Streetindianahistory.org
Storytelling, service activities and music performed by Keisha Ballinger and the University United Methodist Church Worship Team are part of the museum’s celebration. Visitors can also bring new children’s clothing, books, or cash donations for Charity Cares Early Academy.
Michigan Highway 4000.discovernewfields.org
The museum and campus are closed on Mondays, but will celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day over the weekend. On Saturday, activities are included with admission. Admission is free on Sunday and visitors can experience Storytime with Black Worldschoolers; art creation; and performances by the Kenyetta Dance Company, pianist Joshua Thompson, and spoken word artist Manon Voice, among others.
Carmel MLK Day Commemoration
18:30 Monday. Tarkington Theater at the Center for the Performing Arts, 3 Carter Green in Carmel. carmel.in.gov. Free.
Music, dance and spoken word performances on the theme “On Being a Good Neighbor” will celebrate the day with the City of Carmel. The event will include the Mayor’s Advisory Commission on Human Relations, the Carmel Ebenezer Church Worship Team, the 4Mation dance troupe and the Carmel Interfaith Alliance.
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Contact IndyStar Reporter Domenica Bongiovanni at 317-444-7339 or [email protected] Follow her on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter: @domenicareports.