The North Texas MLK Parade & Celebration is the vision of executive producer Winsor Barbee for Celebrating Our Heritage. She worked with Nada Ruddock of NBC 5 to develop the North Texas MLK Parade & Celebration into an event that would embrace the current MLK activities within the annual host city and create a new parade worthy of a live broadcast. The Dr. King holiday is the largest annual multicultural celebration in the world so why not take it to television. What began as an idea to have a 30 minute highlight show of a local MLK parade on NBC 5 in 2015, developed into a 1.5 hour live televised broadcast of the parade on NBC 5.
The first NBC 5 live televised broadcast of the MLK parade was held in Dallas on January 18, 2016 at 10AM. With over 1.75 million regional North Texas viewers and over 250,000 spectators on the parade route, the vision was credited as a success! North Texans loved seeing a great parade featuring high school marching bands and drill teams, community organizations and churches, elected officials, cool cars, performance groups and celebrities and entertainers.
In working to develop the parade into a more inclusive celebration that people from across the region could be engaged and participate. The goal was to develop a regional parade that would give North Texas cities that did not have a MLK parade or celebration a chance to march and come together. Now all cities across North Texas now have an opportunity to come together and have a parade and celebration.
For 2018, the first annual Toyota North Texas Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parade will unite over 5 counties for 1 regional celebration commemorating the life and legacy of Dr. King through acts of service and entertainment. The host city for the world’s largest celebration of the world’s most honored civil rights icon Dr. King is Arlington, Texas. Arlington is the intersection where all North Texas cities meet. What better place to have a regional parade in the Arlington Entertainment District, home of the Dallas Cowboys, Texas Rangers and Texas Live!
The 2018 Annual Toyota North Texas Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parade & Celebration promises to a birthday celebration fit for Dr. King! The celebration kicks off on January 11th in Dallas with the Legacy Awards Luncheon, followed by the MLK Dinner on January 12th with speaker Martin Luther King III, and then on Dr. King’s birthday, January 15th the MLK Breakfast with actor Laz Alonso as speaker and the big birthday parade celebration featuring gospel artist Fred Hammond, Coach D & the Dancing Dolls from the hit tv show Bring It!, Miss Black USA Daphne Lee, Chicago’s South Shore Drill Team and making their first appearance in North Texas Southern University’s “Human Jukebox” Marching Band! The 2018 Parade Grand Marshal will be The Honorable L. Clifford Davis, one of our country’s leading civil rights attorney and served for over two decades as the first African American district judge in Tarrant County.
It promised to be a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebration unlike any other North Texas has ever experienced!
MARTIN LUTHER KING, III
Martin Luther King, III, the second child of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Coretta Scott King, has motivated audiences around the world with his insightful message of hope and civility. He has taken up the torch of his parents and continued the quest for equality and justice for all people. He has traveled extensively around the globe spreading the message of nonviolence and its role in resolving global, international, and cross-cultural, conflicts.
A human rights advocate, social activist and political leader, Mr. King has been actively involved in significant policy initiatives to maintain the fair and equitable treatment of all peoples, at home and abroad. His missions have taken him to numerous nations throughout Africa, Europe, the Middle East and Asia. His messages and initiatives are all rooted within the tenets of nonviolent social change and conflict resolution.
His current work is through the Drum Major Institute, an organization originally co-founded by his father and recently reorganized by Mr. King and William Wachtel. In addition to public service as an elected commissioner of Fulton County Georgia, Mr. King has served as the president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, also co-founded by his father, and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social change, founded by his mother after the assassination of his father. He has himself co-founded several organizations including Realizing the Dream, a nonprofit non-governmental organization that fosters nonviolent peace and development strategies.
Mr. King graduated from his father’s alma mater, Morehouse College, where he eared the B.A. degree in political science. He is the husband of Arndrea Waters and together they have a daughter named Yolanda Renee King.