HOUSTON — Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr's words are taking on even more meaning these days. But like so many things, the usual festivities honoring his legacy are very different this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The city of Houston's 43rd Original MLK Day Parade is happening virtually. It's a step organizers are taking to keep people safe amid the pandemic.
How to watch the MLK Parade
Since the parade is being held virtually, much like the most recent H-E-B Thanksgiving Day Parade, it means you won't be able to crowd around the streets to watch bands and floats.
The parade will start at 10 a.m. You can watch the entire parade on local TV at Comcast (Ch. 16), Phonoscope (Ch. 73 & 99), Suddenlink (Ch. 14), AT&T U-verse (Ch. 99).
You can also stream the parade online via your computer, phone or tablet.
The virtual event will have a mixture of clips from previous parades intertwined with clips of newly submitted performances.
This year's theme is “Truth, Love and Justice,” a nod to the history of the organization and the country's current reckoning with race and systemic oppression.
You will still be able to see floats and bands. The Grand Marshals this year will be Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo.
Simultaneously, organizers will be holding a "Parade of Giving." Some of that will pop up on your screen as you watch live.
What is the Parade of Giving
The "Parade of Giving" will be held at MacGregor Park from 10 a.m. to noon.
The park is being turned into a drive-thru donation drop-off site for two local nonprofits, the World Youth Foundation and St. John’s Downtown, to collect essentials for people hit hard by the COVID pandemic.
Click here to donate to the Parade of Giving
Items like blankets, water, baby diapers and more can be dropped off.
As Dr. King once said, "Life's most persistent and urgent question is 'What are you doing for others?'"
And in his spirit, for this year's celebration, it means even in tough times, still finding ways to serve the community.