Martin Luther King Jr. holiday and day of service, Jan. 16; activities and volunteer opportunities mark the weekend

Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday

All Bellingham Public Schools and the District Office will be closed Monday, Jan. 16 in observance of the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday and day of service.

Please note for planning purposes: The 2022-23 school year calendar and key dates for 2023-24 can be viewed on our calendars webpage.


Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend activities for staff and families

The Whatcom Human Rights Task Force invites you to the 25th Annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Human Rights Conference Jan. 12 to 14, 2023. Since its inception in 1999, thousands of community members have come together to renew their commitment to the ideals of peace, justice, and collective liberation that Dr. King held so dear. Dr. King was not alone in his fight for freedom, working with many other great leaders and community members, just as we must work together to build the beloved community he dreamed of.

Thanks to the continued support of individuals, organizations, and businesses in the community, the conference will be free and open to all, as it has been since its inception. The conference will be hybrid, with an in-person and live-streamed poetry night on Thursday evening Jan. 12, online and live-streamed keynote on Friday evening Jan. 13, and concurrent workshop sessions all day on Saturday, Jan. 14 on Zoom.

This year, Western Washington University, along with the City of Bellingham and other local partners, is hosting the MLK JR Day of Service breakfast and commemoration Now Is the Time  held 8 to 11:30 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 16. District students are featured as co-emcees and in the art showcase. All are welcome to join the hybrid event highlighting local community advocacy alongside LaTosha Brown, an award-winning organizer, philanthropic consultant, political strategist and jazz singer. Ms. Brown co-founded the Black Voters Matter Fund, is the principal of TruthSpeaks Consulting Inc., and the founding project director of Grantmakers for Southern Progress. This event will also include comments from Jason McGill, CEO of Northwest Youth Services and members of the Whatcom Racial Equity Commission.

If you would like to join the day of service, a list of local service opportunities can be online here or on the City of Bellingham’s website. One volunteer work party of note will be held 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 14 in Little Squalicum Park in conjunction with the Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association (NSEA.) More information at COB.