On January 16, 2023, people around the country will come together in honor of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. In Montgomery County, there are celebrations and a variety of volunteer opportunities to pay tribute. Here are some of the ways to become a part of MLK Jr. WEEK of Service 2023:
To see our full listing of local and remote opportunities to join an MLK Day of Service event, click here!
Volunteer Center service: The Montgomery County Volunteer Center is hosting its annual MLK Day of Service from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. January 16th at the Bethesda North Marriott Hotel and Conference Center, 5701 Marinelli Road in North Bethesda. Activities include packing food for those in need, constructing fleece blankets for hospice patients, assembling “Snow Day” boxes for Meals on Wheels, Decorating an MLK mural, and Decorating reusable bags.
Welcome to MLK Week of Service 2023! We are excited to continue the tradition of honoring Dr. King through service.
A virtual option for service is available for those that are not able to join us at our in-person event. Below you will find a link to our main event at the Bethesda North Marriot, as well as some of our partner sites.
County Concert: Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich and the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commemorative Committee will host, “We Are Martin,” a tribute honoring the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in a FREE celebration event at 4 p.m. on Monday, January 16th, at the Music Center at Strathmore.
“We Are Martin” will highlight the many positive attributes of Dr. King. The program will focus on his determination, devotion, courage, compassion and perseverance—and how everyday people who possess the same attributes can have a positive impact in the community.
“MLK Day is not a ‘day off,’ but a ‘day on’ to volunteer, participate in community service, take action and dedicate yourself to bettering your community—just as Dr. King did,” said County Executive Elrich. “I was fortunate enough as a teenager to attend the 1963 March on Washington and listen to Dr. King’s “I have a Dream” speech in person. I didn’t realize at the time how significant that speech would be, but it certainly affected how I was thinking that day and I was aware that the thoughts he conveyed were important for how we look at America going forward. I am proud of the way so many in Montgomery County have embraced his ideals, commitment, compassion and commitment to justice. Please join us in celebrating Dr. King’s legacy next week.”
Adding to the celebration, the Montgomery County Office of Human Rights and the Volunteer Center are partnering with Interfaith Works in a special Day of Service with the theme of “Fill A Truck Initiative.” Organizers are asking community members and those who attend the commemorative program to bring for donation toiletry items for the County’s homeless shelters. Suggested items for donation include portable shower caddies (for carrying items), bars of soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste, floss, lotion, Chapstick, shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, new wash cloths and towels.
Gaithersburg week of service: The City of Gaithersburg celebrates and honors King’s legacy during a Week of Service, January 16th to January 23rd. An official proclamation recognizing King and encouraging participation in service projects that strengthen the community and foster a spirit of equality and inclusiveness was made by Mayor Jud Ashman at the Gaithersburg Mayor and City Council meeting on January 3rd, according to a news release from the city. Visit the city’s website to explore opportunities for the Week of Service.
The Metropolitan Ballet Theatre presents the world premiere of Day of Service, an original work honoring Martin Luther King Jr. and the National Day of Service program, January 16th at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Tickets are $12 in advance, $15 the day of and $8 for ages 10 and younger. Tickets can be purchased online.
The Gaithersburg Youth Club will host a Day of Service January 16th from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Participants will help create a mural for the club. Registration is $15 for club members and $20 for nonmembers. Participants can register online.
Rockville celebration and week of service: Rockville presents its 51st annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration January 16th from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Richard Montgomery High School Auditorium. There will also be service opportunities in Rockville throughout the week, including creating winter kits for unsheltered veterans, partnering with Project Linus to make blankets for sick children and a Weed Warriors invasive plant pull at a city park. For a full list of volunteer opportunities, visit the Rockville Reports.
Volunteer options: Soulfull Café and Main Street Connect, the inclusive community and café in downtown Rockville, is offering community members three ways to give back on January 16th. Participants can write cards to patients at Children’s National Medical Center, make dog toys for Lucky Dog Animal Rescue or prepare a meal for Stepping Stones Shelter.
Volunteers can write cards and make dog toys from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the cafe. Main Street Members will also prepare meals that afternoon in Main Street’s “Poppy Boy’s Kitchen” (the meal preparation is open to Main Street Members only). Participants can register on Main Street Connect’s website. (Main Street’s founder and executive director, Jillian Copeland, owns Bethesda Beat and Bethesda Magazine with her husband, Scott.)
The county will observe the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday Monday January 16, 2023. Offices and facilities status:
- County Offices — closed.
- MC 311 — closed.
- State offices and courts — closed.
- State Motor Vehicle Administration offices and Vehicle Emissions Inspection Program stations — closed.
- Libraries — closed.
- County Liquor Stores — open from noon to 6 p.m.
- Recreation Centers — closed Sunday, Jan. 15, and Monday, Jan. 16.
- Alcohol Beverage Services (ABS) — closed.
- County-operated COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Clinics — Clinics will operate on Saturday-Sunday, Jan. 14-15. They will be closed on Monday, Jan. 16.
- Department of Permitting Services — All offices, including customer service lobby, will be closed.
- Ride On, Ride On extRa, and Ride On Flex — Will operate a holiday schedule.
- Flash — Orange Line operates a holiday schedule. The Blue Line will not operate.
- Ride On—All holiday schedules can be found at: Special Holiday Schedules – Division of Transit Services – Montgomery County, Maryland (montgomerycountymd.gov)
- MARC Train—R schedule on all three lines. Only trains with an “R” under the train number in the Camden and Penn Line timetables and Brunswick Line trains listed in the special grid on the right side of the timetable will operate. Find schedules at Schedules | Maryland Transit Administration.
- TRiPS Silver Spring commuter store — Closed.
- TRiPS Mobile Commuter Store — Closed.
- Metrorail — See https://www.wmata.com/schedules/timetables/.
- Metrobus — See https://www.wmata.com/schedules/timetables.
- Parking at public garages, lots, curbside meters – free.
- County-provided trash and recycling collections are postponed on Monday. Collections will slide one day later than usual throughout the week, with last pickup on Saturday, Jan. 21.
- The Shady Grove Transfer Station and Recycling Center — entire facility closed.
- Aquatics Facilities — Will operate on normal hours on Monday.
- Community Recreation Centers — Closed.
- Senior Centers — Closed.
- Montgomery Parks — Visit its website for complete information.
- Additional schedule changes:
- The Open Parkways program will be extended during the MLK holiday weekend. During this time, parkways are open to pedestrians and bicyclists and closed to motor vehicles. Parkways impacted include Beach Drive between Connecticut and Knowles Avenue (2.9 miles): From 9 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 14, until 7 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 17. Sligo Creek Parkways between Old Carroll Avenue and Piney Branch Road and between Forest Glen Road and University Boulevard West: From 9 a.m. Friday, Jan. 13, until 7 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 17. Little Falls Parkway between Arlington Road and Dorset Avenue (0.4 miles): Open 24/7 for recreation and exercise.
- Montgomery Parks Headquarters and Permits Offices—Closed.
- Montgomery Parks Public Information and Customer Service Office—Closed.
- Brookside Gardens Visitor Center and Conservatory–Closed (Gardens remain open).
- MCPS Schools and Administrative Offices — closed.
City of Gaithersburg
Most city facilities and officers are closed on Monday, Jan. 16, with the exception of the Police Administrative Offices, Arts Barn, and the Aquatic Center.
Recycling — collection will take place as scheduled. Bulk pick up is unavailable.
Mayor & City Council session — rescheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 18 at 7:30 p.m.
City of Rockville
The city government and most city facilities will be closed in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday, Jan. 16. Offices and facilities status:
Rockville Swim and Fitness Center — open for regular hours
Recycling and trash — collection will occur one day later than usual throughout the week. More information is available at www.rockvillemd.gov/recycling-trash or call 240-314-8568.
Parking — free at city-owned meters.