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Martin Luther King Jr program
January 15 at 7:00 pm
At 7 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 15, two area choral groups, two soloists and local speakers will explore the mission of Martin Luther King, Jr. at the Wellsboro High School Auditorium at 227 Nichols Street in Wellsboro. Donations �will be accepted at the door.
“Area citizens will share short insights of ways we can connect with others with kindness and respect,” Putnam said. They include newly elected Tioga County Commissioners Shane Nickerson, Sam VanLoon and Marc Rice; The Rev. Dr. A. Michele Somerville; Candice Chase; Lenore Hosier and Roger Wagner.
The Hamilton-Gibson Treble Choir will sing “Hold Fast to Dreams” with words by Langston Hughes and the spiritual “Over My Head.” Local a cappella group Pine Pitch will sing “Because All Men Are Brothers” and ‘Imagine.” Singers Logan Route and Molly Cary, both of Wellsboro, will perform solos. �
Dr. King was an American Baptist minister, a nonviolent activist and the most visible spokesperson and leader in the Civil Rights Movement from 1955 until his assassination in Memphis, Tennessee on April 4,1968. He led the fight against segregation to gain equal rights under United States law for � African Americans.�
Both houses of Congress passed the bill to establish Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in 1983 and President Reagan signed it into law on Nov. 20 of that year. This federal holiday has been observed to mark King’s birthday, his life and achievements on the third Monday of January each year since 1986. This year, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is Jan. 15. � �
“Sadly, intolerance of anyone different from ourselves seems to just be part of our human nature,” said Thomas Putnam, Hamilton-Gibson Productions artistic director. “Because Tioga County is isolated in many ways and homogenous in many others, we find that lack of exposure to other races and cultural traditions may further this intolerance of the ‘other.’
“Our goal is to generate dialogue between ourselves and others–especially those we disagree with–in order to become more open and hospitable, and to honor the dignity of every woman, man, and child we encounter. It all boils down to basic human kindness, and the universal intention of treating others as we would like to be treated,” said Putnam.