Bridgewater College and the Town of Bridgewater to Host Annual MLK Day Celebration

white text on a crimson red background reads: M-L-K DAY Bridgewater College

Events related to MLK Day Celebration scheduled for Monday, Jan. 15 have been cancelled due to the inclement weather.

Members of the community are invited to celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with Bridgewater College during its annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration, “Celebrating the Dream, Continuing the Journey,” in partnership with the town of Bridgewater.

The celebration will begin at 11 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 15, at Oakdale Park in Bridgewater. The event kicks off with remarks from Bridgewater College President David Bushman, Bridgewater College Resident Advisor Jasmine Jones ’24 and Bridgewater Town Mayor Ted Flory. A march of event attendees from the park to Bridgewater College’s campus will follow. A shuttle will be available for those who would like to participate in the march but are unable to walk the entire route because of limited mobility. Those wishing to use the shuttle service should meet at the Kline Campus Center lot on Bridgewater College’s campus by 10:30 a.m. At the conclusion of the march, guests are invited to enjoy a reception in the Boitnott Room, located in Rebecca Hall on the College’s campus.

“The Town of Bridgewater is pleased and honored to partner once again with Bridgewater College in observance of the annual holiday in memory and celebration of the life and services of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. His leadership, mission and ministry live on, and he continues to impact our lives positively to this day,” said Mayor of the Town of Bridgewater Ted Flory.

Also part of Bridgewater College’s observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day is an endowed lecture on Wednesday, Jan. 17, sponsored by the W. Harold Row Symposium on Reconciliation. Writer, researcher and entrepreneur Margot Lee Shetterly will deliver the keynote address, “The Importance of Representation and Racial Progress.” The event will be a traditional lecture format beginning at 7:30 p.m. in Cole Hall; a book signing will follow. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., and the event will also be livestreamed at

“Embracing the spirit of Martin Luther King Jr. (MLK) Day allows us to pay homage to the extraordinary legacy of a dedicated civil rights leader and champion of social justice,” said Dr. Gauri Pitale, Associate Dean of Students for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Bridgewater College. “Beyond reflection, this commemoration serves as a resounding call to action. Let us harness the power of these celebrations to ignite positive transformation, foster inclusivity, and actively contribute to the continuous pursuit of social justice at Bridgewater College.”

Also on Monday, Jan. 15, Bridgewater College will show the 2016 film Hidden Figures—based on Shetterly’s book Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Who Helped Win the Space Race–at 7 p.m. in Cole Hall.

And in continued celebration of Dr. King’s legacy, Assistant Professor of English Dr. Vanessa Rouillon will lead a teach-in on campus on Monday, January 22. The teach-in session, which will be held at 7 p.m. in room 217 in the John Kenny Forrer Learning Commons, will be on “Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.: On Civil Disobedience, America’s Christian Heritage and the Art of Rhetoric.” King led a series of marches, sit-ins, boycotts and other demonstrations against African American segregation in early April of 1963. Choosing to disobey a city prohibition against such protests, King was arrested on April 12, 1963. During his nine-day incarceration, he wrote his “Letter from Birmingham Jail.” Along with reading passages from primary texts, Rouillon will discuss King’s rhetorical eloquence, his attention to ethos, audience and kairos, the dignity of his mugshot and jail photos in advancing the cause, and his moral and religious reasonings.

All the events are free and open to the public.

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Abbie Parkhurst
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