History of Sojourners MLK Day Celebrations in Vinton County
2004 – 2009                                                               
Eight years ago, staff members of Sojourners recognized that Vinton County did not have a community celebration on MLK Day.  Because service and diversity is at the heart of our organization, we were excited to take the project on.  For six years Sojourners held a multi-faceted community celebration featuring a day-long day camp, free Diversity Deli open to the community, march and ceremony of reflection at the Vinton County Courthouse, and several community service projects.         

2005 March to the Courthouse

 Dream Camp

 The heart of our MLK Day celebrations was our Dream Camp, a free day of music, crafts and games for 80 elementary school children.  These fun activities promoted tolerance and diversity, with some Civil Rights history thrown in. Through video interviews we know that the lessons learned at the day camp helped to reinforce MLK Day information already being shared in the Vinton County elementary schools.       

Opening Ceremony of 2008 Dream Camp



After a year’s hiatus, Sojourners once again celebrated MLK Day in Vinton County, but in a new way designed to accommodate the fact that school was in session.  Our MLK Day 2011 School Assembly Program reached more students and provided school staff with an engaging and fun way to share the message of Dr. King.     

 The 30 minute assemblies were held in Central and South Elementary Schools on January 17.  The assemblies featured the MLK Express, a train comprised of an engine, coal tender, and two passenger cars and powered by drummers highlighting Dr. King’s beliefs—Learn, Love, Dream and Celebrate. Passengers on the train helped to tell the story of Dr. King’s life and accomplishments. The train was built by participants and staff of the Sojourners Youthbuild program and all of Sojourners’ staff and participants took part in the assemblies.   


Children Sing During Assembly


MLK Express