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State College To Host 1963 March On Washington Anniversary Celebration

State College will host a commemoration for the 58th Anniversary of the 1963 March of Washington for Jobs and Freedom from noon to 2 p.m. on Saturday, August 28. The celebration will have music, performances, and more.

The event will be located in Martin Luther King Jr. Plaza on South Fraser Street. There will also be an online stream available.

“We chose to meld a symbolic march into an online event to continue the tradition,” committee member Gary Abdullah said.

The in-person event will start off with a march from Sidney Friedman Parklet to the plaza. The march is meant to symbolize social justice issues regarding race, gender, and economic issues. The online portion will open up at the plaza while the State College band Canary leads the Black National Anthem.

Event participators should also expect to hear from different organizations and groups that want to support this tradition.

“As with the original march, we’re asking many distinct organizations — the NAACP, Community & Campus in Unity, Community Diversity Group, 3/20 Coalition, Penn State’s Forum on Black Affairs, student leaders, and others — to blend out different perspectives to advance our common causes of racial justice and equity,” Abdullah said.

Attendees will hear a welcome speech from Leslie Laing, a member of the State College NAACP, a brief history lesson about the first march that took place, and a “Tribute to John Lewis” by Penn State professors Charles Dumas and Jo Dumas.

The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom originated on August 28, 1963. Through it, thousands of participants protested to advocate for greater economic and civil rights for Black Americans. It’s also where Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous “I Have A Dream” speech.

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About the Author

Nicole Oronzio

Nicole is a sophmore majoring in journalism. She is from Aston, PA and loves hiking, watching movies, and trying new things. She has an obsession with her dog, Simba (aka. the love of her life). Just a fair warning: She will ramble on about literally any topic if given the chance. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @nicoleoronzio or email her at [email protected]


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