Here are some metro-east events planned to celebrate the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday:
LINDENWOOD-BELLEVILLE: Civil rights attorney John Gilbert will be the keynote speaker at the third annual MLK Day of Observance and Conversation Cafe from 10 a.m. to noon Monday in the main auditorium of Lindenwood University, 2600 W. Main St. in Belleville.
The theme is "Civil Rights: Rhetoric or Reality." Activities will include a panel discussion with nine students, white and black, ages 15 to 20. The event is sponsored by the 17th Street Corridor Neighborhood Association, Lindenwood University-Belleville, Belleville school districts 118 and 201 and Belleville Americorps.
SOUTHWESTERN ILLINOIS COLLEGE: A Martin Luther King Jr. program starts at 11 a.m. Thursday at the Southwestern Illinois College Belleville Campus Main Complex Theater at 2500 Carlyle Ave.
The featured speakers are SWIC student Pacia Anderson, SWIC Success Specialist Dale Zink and AmeriCorps Field Coordinator Earnestine Gilbert. All three will share stories and experiences that reflect on King's life and legacy.
Other activities at the event include musical performances by retired Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Bob Ellison, a chant by the Central Elementary fourth grade class, a video highlighting the 50th anniversary of the "I have a dream" speech and the presentation of the Martin Luther King Jr. Building Bridges awards.
Collinsville Area Ministerial Alliance and the MLK Event Committee will sponsor Collinsville's annual Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Celebration at 6:30 p.m. Monday at Wilkerson Chapel AME Church, 317 Summit Ave. The theme is "A Call to Serve." Activities will include music by a community choir. For more information, call 618-345-4224, ext. 100, or 618-344-8740.
St. Louis TV and radio personality Carol Daniel will be the keynote speaker at Edwardsville's Martin Luther King Jr. birthday celebration at 10 a.m. Monday at Mount Joy Missionary Baptist Church, 327 Olive St. Activities will include music and other tributes from Edwardsville and Glen Carbon residents. For more information, call 618-565-7219 or 618-980-8461.
Christ Church will host its annual Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration at 3 p.m. Sunday with keynote speaker Bishop Jonathon Keaton. The church is at 339 Frank Scott Parkway. For more information, call 618-277-4659 or visit mychristchurch.com.
Lebanon Area Ministerial Council of Church's will hold a community worship service to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day at 7 p.m. Monday at First United Methodist Church, 603 W. St. Louis St. Deacon Charles Brown of Mount Olive Baptist Church in Lebanon will speak. For more information, call 618-537-6622.
The City of O'Fallon, Mayor Gary L. Graham, O'Fallon Council of Ministers, United Congregations of the Metro East and the NAACP's O'Fallon branch will present the fourth annual Metro East Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast Celebration from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. Monday at New Life in Christ Church, 689 Scott Troy Road. Bishop Gregory Wells Sr. of O'Fallon Apostolic Assembly Church will speak. The cost is $8 plus two cans of food for O'Fallon Food Pantry. For more information, call 618-624-4500, ext. 9-1112.
New Shining Light Church will hold its 16th annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Observance and awards ceremony at 4 p.m. Sunday at 740 Broadway in Venice. The guest speaker will be the Rev. Freddie J. Clark, pastor of Shalom City of Peace Church in Florissant, Mo. For more information, call 618-530-2864 or 618-530-2347.