MOULTRIE, Ga. — Moultrie groups are planning their annual Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. birthday celebrations with an eye to the coronavirus pandemic.

The annual parade will not be held this year, and an awards celebration will be held online. The Colquitt County branch of the NAACP, however, plans three days of outreach to people in need.

The NAACP’s service projects will begin Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 16-17, with a canned food drive. Drop-off locations will be Piggly Wiggly and Save-A-Lot grocery stores, both on First Avenue Southeast.

On Monday, members of the local NAACP will distribute personal protective equipment items as well as information related to COVID-19, the organization said in a press release. The NAACP will also sponsor a free night of skating for youth in the community, and there will be a video tribute honoring King’s life and legacy. See the attached flyer for details of those events.

“The Martin Luther King Jr. holiday is the 26th anniversary of the day of service that celebrates the Civil Rights leader’s life and legacy,” the press release said. “It is the only federal holiday designated as a national day of service. In the midst of COVID-19 the organization wants the community to keep in mind that MLK weekend is ‘a day on, not a day off.’”  

On Monday, the Women’s Federated Club of Moultrie in partnership with Southwest Georgia Bank, a division of The First Bank, will present its 33rd Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Celebration and its first virtual program. 

In keeping with the theme, “Fulfilling the Dream — Uniting the Community,” organizers have chosen this year to highlight the contributions of several community servants who have worked tirelessly to make a difference in this community, the club said in a press release.

The Rev. John W. Greene Jr. is a lifelong resident of Colquitt County and a graduate of William Bryant High School and Albany State University. Greene’s career in education was spent in both Thomas County and Colquitt County. He also served as pastor of Live Oak Missionary Baptist Church, Bethlehem Schley Missionary Baptist Church and Pleasant Hill Missionary Baptist Church for 36 years. Green served several years as moderator of the Second District and also as president of the Colquitt County Interdenominational Christian Alliance (CCICA).  

“Rev. Greene has been one that the community calls upon for service and leadership and is well deserving of this recognition,” the club said.

The Kundi and Holton families were inspired over 20 years ago to reach out to individuals and families alone at Christmas. It became a tradition between the two families to serve dinner on Christmas Day and also have free clothes and shoes available. Initially the fellowship was held at the Ryce Center and later moved to Union Baptist Church.

“We salute the Kundi family, the Holton family and the late Hattie Lou Holton for their contributions to this community,” the club said.

The speaker for this occasion will be William C. Daniels of Valrico, Florida.

The 33rd Martin Luther King, Jr. program will begin showing virtually at 11 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 18. Please go to the websites of the City of Moultrie (moultriega.com/news/) or Colquitt County Commission (ccboc.com/gov) for the link to the program.

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