Martin Luther King Jr. Day Events in Metro Detroit and Ann Arbor

In honor of this African-American activist, Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne counties offer these virtual and in-person Martin Luther King Jr. Day events.

On Monday, Jan. 18, 2021, our nation honors perhaps the greatest civil rights activist: Martin Luther King Jr.

In southeast Michigan, local spots do their part by offering plenty of family-friendly Martin Luther King Jr. Day events in celebration of this man and all he accomplished.

Here, you will find a list of inspiring speeches, craft activities, exhibits and more in Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne counties, and beyond to commemorate Dr. King.

Search the list and find the right way to teach your kids about the Civil Rights movement, and bring up conversations about race, this MLK Day.

Note: Due to COVID-19, social distancing and face masks are required at in-person options. Make sure you contact your chosen event for details if you choose to head out to one.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service

Jan. 11-22, 2021

  • Address: Your home
  • Time: At your convenience
  • Cost: Free

Pick up a volunteer packet Jan. 11-12 and do some service from in your own community and return them Jan. 21-22. Registration required.

MLK Day at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit

Jan. 18, 2021

  • Address: 315 E. Warren Ave., Detroit
  • Time: 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • Cost: Free with museum admission: $10/ages 13-61, $7/ages 3-12 and 62-plus, free/under 3

Enjoy a virtual keynote speaker and White House correspondent, Yamiche Alcindor, and other presentations or visit the museum for other fun activities.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day at the Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation

Jan. 18, 2021

Celebrate MLK’s life with free admission to the museum, historical presentations, artifacts and hands-on fun. Advance tickets required. Note: This event is sold out for 2021.

MLK Peace Walk Celebration in Southfield

Jan. 18, 2021

This year’s event features a peace walk starting at Hope United Methodist Church, food giveaway and virtual programming.

MLK Day Eye on Detroit by the University of Michigan Detroit Center

Jan. 18, 2021

  • Address: Virtual
  • Time: 1-2:30 p.m.
  • Cost: Free

This annual MLK Day symposium is one of the largest local celebrations of Dr. King’s life and is full of keynote speakers, panel discussions and more. This year’s event is virtual and discusses how uncertainty in the world makes it harder for young people to have hope for the future.

MLK Streets: More Than a Name by the Detroit Historical Museum

Jan. 18, 2021

  • Address: Virtual
  • Time: 1-3 p.m.
  • Cost: Free

This Zoom event features panel speakers including Early Hardy, Dr. Derek Alderman ad Hamon Jordan. Plus, a special viewing of the short, King Blvd.

MLK Family Day at Painting with a Twist in Ferndale

Jan. 18, 2021

Create your own MLK Day masterpiece at this Ferndale spot. Good for ages 7-plus. Registration required.

MLK Day of Service at Barton Nature Area in Ann Arbor

Jan. 18, 2021

Do as Dr. King would do and your day off to do some good in the local community. Head out to the nature center to help clean it up. Warm clothes and closed-toed shoes required and so is pre-registration.

Looking for another way to celebrate MLK Day this year? Check out our list of at-home day of service ideas for more.

This post was originally published in 2016 and is updated regularly.


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