From top museums to university programs and volunteer projects there are lots of places to spend time off work or school on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Jan. 16, 2017.
MLK Day celebrates the birthday of the famed civil rights leader (Jan. 15, 1929-April 4, 1968) on the third Monday of January. It is a federal holiday so most schools and banks are closed and there won’t be any U. S. Postal deliveries.
However, Chicago’s museums are open and several are offering free general admission to Illinois residents. In addition, some of them have extended free general admission to other days the third week of January.
On the Museum Campus, that arm sticking out from Lake Shore Drive in Lake Michigan at 12th Street, look for the Adler Planetarium at the far eastern end at 1300 S. Lake Shore Dr.
The Art Institute of Chicago has free programs in its Ryan Learning Center from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.. They range from performances and stories to art projects. Check out the day’s schedule here. Visitors for these programs enter the Modern Wing entrance at 159 E. Monroe St. to go to the Learning Center. The museum is also free all day for Illinois Residents. Main entrance is at 111 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago.
The Museum of Science and Industry also has free general admission. MSI is in the Hyde Park neighborhood at 5700 S. Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60637
Several suburbs have volunteer projects taking place on MLK Day. Check your suburb.
On the North Shore, Highland Park has invited Illinois Secretary of State Jess White who was a student of Dr. King, and the Jesse White Tumblers to appear. In addition, the town has several service projects. The Recreation Center of Highland Park is the headquarters for the events. They run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. See HP for details.
The Village of Deerfield is collecting supplies for the homeless and has organized service projects. The Deerfield Village Hall is headquarters for a Day of Service from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. For details click Deerfield.
The university has programs at its Evanston and Chicago Campuses
A play by Allie Woodson about what it means to be young, gifted and black is performed Jan. 13 at 7:30pm and Jan. 14 at 2and 7:30 p.m. at Shanley Pavilion, 2031 Sheridan Rd.
“Social Movements for Racial Justice: From the Chicago Freedom Movement to Black Lives Matter” is Jan. 21, 10 a.m. in Fisk Hall 217, 1845 Sheridan Rd. The program is an intergenerational presentation and discussion about racial justice movements in Chicago over the last 50 years. Authors of the book The Chicago Freedom Movement: Martin Luther King and Civil Rights Activism in the North will share personal experiences marching with Dr. King..
NASA astronaut Mae Jamison, a member of the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine, gives a keynote address Jan. 23, at 6 p.m.p.m. in the Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, 50 Arts Circle Drive.
NASA astronaut Mae Jamison will speak Jan. at noon at the Hughes Auditorium, 303 E. Superior St.