30th annual KingFest activities announced

The Interested Citizens for Voter Registration Inc. KingFest executive committee has announced the 30th annual KingFest Celebration for Pine Bluff and Jefferson County, January 14-20, 2014, in honor of slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.

Mayor Debe Hollingsworth and Arkansas State Rep.e Tracy L. Steele, founder of The Stand Foundation and former executive director of the Arkansas Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission are keynote speakers.

Hollingsworth will kick off the KingFest celebration at a joint meeting of the Downtown Pine Bluff and West Pine Bluff Rotary Clubs at noon on Tuesday, Jan. 14. The public is invited to attend.

Steele serves as keynote speaker for Justice Sunday, a National Alliance of Faith and Justice Pen or Pencil national recruitment initiative. The Day of Service includes free meals for the needy through a collaboration between ICVR and the Southeast District United Methodist Churches, for a “Day On not a Day Off.” The Stone Soup Kitchen will be open at First United Methodist Church, 200 West Sixth Ave., and free meals for the needy will be available from 11:30 a.m.until 1 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 20.

“During the Justice Sunday church program ICVR will recognize mentors and volunteers who serve beyond one day to make a difference in the lives of Pine Bluff and Jefferson County youth. These are individuals who serve without fanfare and media attention and we are committed to honoring them on this Sunday.” said the Rev. Jesse C. Turner, ICVR executive director.

KingFest provides a week of activities for Pine Bluff and Jefferson County. The event’s goal is to promote interracial cooperation and community service leading up to the Martin Luther King Jr. federal holiday.

The official schedule for KingFest is:

Tuesday, Jan. 14

Noon: Kickoff with Downtown and West Pine Bluff Rotary Clubs at Pine Bluff Country Club, 46th Avenue at Cherry Street. Speaker: Pine Bluff Mayor Debe Hollingsworth

Wednesday, Jan. 15

11 a.m.: Pen or Pencil Youth Pledge against Gun Violence, Belair Middle School

Thursday, Jan. 16

9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.: “Nonviolence to No Violence” student rally, Jack Roby Junior High School

Friday, Jan. 17

7 p.m.: KingFest Youth Gospel Extravaganza, Highland Missionary Baptist Church, 3600 West 14th Ave.

Saturday, Jan. 18

11 a.m. to 1 p.m.: Pine Bluff CARES mentor recruitment at The Pines mall

Sunday, Jan. 19

3 p.m.: Justice Sunday. St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church, 1404 South Georgia Street Speaker: Arkansas State Rep. Tracy L. Steele

Monday, Jan. 20

11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.: KingFest collaborates with United Methodist Churches for Day of Service by providing free meals at First United Methodist Church, 200 West Sixth Avenue 11:30 AM to 1 PM.

2 p.m.: 30th Annual ICVR KingFest Marade. downtown Pine Bluff. Lineup time is 1 p.m. at the Jefferson County Courthouse