DFW area residents participating in a local community clean up event

Where to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day in DFW

People will honor Dr. King’s legacy throughout North Texas.

Each year, on the third Monday in January, the nation celebrates one of the most famous civil rights activists, Martin Luther King Jr., whose contributions to the Civil Rights Movement and enduring legacy continue to shape American society. Across the Metroplex on Jan. 15, there are opportunities to celebrate and honor the principles of Dr. King as communities gather for rallies, events, parades, and more. The day is also federally recognized as the National Day of Service, and local groups offer plenty of ways to give back. Read below to find out how you can mark this momentous day.

Dallas

2024 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Week

Dallasites can participate in a week of events that honor Dr. King’s life and raise visibility about today’s important issues. The main event is the MLK Day Parade, hosted by H.E.L.P. and the City of Dallas, which begins at 10 a.m. on Jan. 15. The procession starts at the Fair Park intersection of Robert B. Cullum Blvd. and Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. and ends back at Fair Park. More than 250 groups have entered and will celebrate via floats, drill teams, and bands. Other events in this week-long commemoration include a prayer breakfast, job fair, youth summit, candle lighting ceremony, community clean-up day, black-tie scholarship awards gala, and more. See the full calendar of events to see how you can participate. 

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Dallas residents at a candle lighting ceremony held in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Arlington

Advancing the Dream Celebration

Arlington’s annual multi-day event is packed with opportunities to serve, celebrate, and see performances from local groups. On Jan. 15, there are three ways to join in: 

  • The Zeb Strong Jr. MLK Day of Service (9 a.m. to 12 p.m.), where hundreds of volunteers gather at Mission Arlington and embark on projects to help the local community.
  • The Day of Service Festival (10 a.m. to 12 p.m.) features story time, step teams, “I Have a Dream” readings, dance performances, and the Army Band of the Southwest. 
  • The MLK Youth Extravaganza (6 p.m. to 7 p.m.) is held at the Fielder Church Metro Center. 

You can enjoy poetry, jazz, step shows, talent showcases, historical exhibits, and more throughout the week. See the full list of events to plan.

Fort Worth

Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Parade and Rally 2024

The Greater Fort Worth Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Committee is hosting a parade and rally at 11 a.m. in downtown Fort Worth. There will be floats, classic cars, performances, and more on the route, which concludes at Sundance Square and Plaza. Stay at the Plaza for a community rally, which organizers say “will highlight community unity, the living hope of Dr. King’s dream, and a commitment to justice for all humankind.” 

Grand Prairie

Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade and Celebration

Head down to Grand Prairie City Hall at 10 a.m. on Jan. 15 to see the annual parade, which stretches from downtown Grand Prairie to David Daniels Elementary School. At 11 a.m., there will also be a celebration at the Dalworth Recreation Center. If you can’t make it to either, purchase tickets for the MLK Gala on Jan. 12 or visit the MLK Expo on Jan. 13, which focuses on health, entrepreneurship, and STEM. 

Denton

MLK Jr. Day Celebration

Join the Denton Park and Recreation Department’s full day of events on Jan. 15, starting at 11 a.m. with a flag football game at Fred Moore Park, followed by a march ending at the MLK Recreation Center, where attendees can enjoy refreshments and community. 

Mesquite

Martin Luther King Jr. Parade and Community Celebration

The NAACP is hosting a parade starting at 10 a.m. in Downtown Mesquite, followed by a celebration at 1 p.m. at the Mesquite Arts Center, featuring Eddie Tealer, Ph.D., the President of Dallas College – Eastfield. Want to find more ways to get involved with the community?

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Dog and owner sitting at an outdoor table

8 most dog-friendly patios in Phoenix

There’s no need for your four-legged BFF to stay home alone.

Phoenix is known for being a dog-friendly town — it’s normal to see pups on leashes milling around Biltmore Fashion Park, Scottsdale Quarter, Kierland Commons, and at a slew of local resorts. But there are even more places you can bring your dog besides these shopping centers, hotel properties, and various dog parks: restaurants with awesome patios.

Some of the most popular restaurants in the Valley with dog-friendly patios include:

O.H.S.O. Brewery

Spent grain from the restaurant’s craft brewing process at the Arcadia location is used to make homemade biscuits, so you and your dog can nibble on the same treat while you kick back on the perfect patio. The locations in Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Paradise Valley all welcome your canines as you enjoy craft brews and great happy hour deals. 

The Sicilian Butcher

This neighborhood restaurant (with locations in Phoenix, Peoria, and Chandler) developed by celebrity chef Joey Maggiore is centered on a build-your-own meatball meal experience with hand-rolled meatballs made daily (what dog can resist?), made-from-scratch pasta, and Sicilian-style charcuterie boards. 

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Birdcall

Birdcall in Phoenix has a great dog-friendly patio where you can enjoy a chicken sandwich or tenders and offers whipped cream pup cups served with a bone-shaped baked peanut butter dog treat. The spacious outdoor patio has misters to keep you cool even during the dog days of summer and a vibrant Instagram-worthy mural. 

Eat Up Drive In

Feel at home while dining at this quaint restaurant, relaxing on its shaded patio with picnic tables large enough to fit the whole family. You can indulge in prime dip sandwiches, braised BBQ short ribs, and mac and cheese; your four-legged friend will drool over their special dog menu of wood-grilled beef patties, chicken breast, steak, and Good Boi Treats from local vendors. 

FEZ

This restaurant and bar exudes contemporary, mid century-modern décor while serving American fare with Moroccan flare. It’s known for award-winning cuisine, and the strongest and biggest martinis downtown, and its location on Central is just steps from Roosevelt Row. 

Postino WineCafé 

There’s no better deal in town than Postino’s early week special: Monday or Tuesday after 8 p.m., get any house bottle of wine plus a board of bruschetta for around $20. And for your pooch, there are endless water bowl refills and plenty of affection. There are five dog-friendly locations throughout the Greater Phoenix region, all occupying trendily restored neighborhood buildings. 

Cibo Pizzeria

Want to pretend you’re in Italy for a few hours? The Neapolitan-style pizza at Cibo will definitely transport your taste buds — and the lush patio experience under the trees and globe lights will make your dog happy, too. Between the ambiance and wine options, you’ll both want to stay a while in this slice of urban respite.  

The Farm Kitchen at The Farm at South Mountain

Soak up some sunny weather on a delicious picnic you don’t have to pack yourself. The Farm Kitchen provides a fresh basket of food, picnic tables, and beautiful scenery for your pup to frolic in. Leashed dogs are welcome to sit with you in the farm’s pecan grove (save room for dessert, as the pecan pie is made from scratch). 

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Woman Strolling Through an Art Gallery

Just 7 interesting facts that show ATL has always been a cultural juggernaut

The South has always had something to say.

Atlanta was recently ranked the most creative city in the U.S., which is no surprise to those who have immersed themselves in the music festivals, art galleries, and creative spaces that dot the city. Yet for all of Atlanta’s recent recognition, there have always been creative firsts and momentous arts moments in the city, spanning decades and genres. We look at a few fun facts that reflect just a portion of the deep arts foundation that helped make Atlanta the cultural juggernaut it is today.

Atlanta had its own Woodstock moments.

On July Fourth weekend in 1969, just two months before Woodstock, the Atlanta International Pop Festival brought iconic performers like Led Zeppelin, Sweetwater, The Staple Singers, Janis Joplin, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Booker T. and the M.G.’s, and more. Unlike the breakdowns that occurred at Woodstock, the event went off without a hitch. According to the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, The Atlanta Journal Constitution’s headline from the event was “Music Fans Stay Orderly Despite Heat, Wine, Drugs.” The following year, the event returned, and Jimi Hendrix even played a version of his iconic “The Star-Spangled Banner” while fireworks illuminated the performance. 

Large Crowd of People Passionately Singing Along at an Outdoor Music Festival

Atlanta is more punk than you might think. 

While Atlanta is perhaps best known for southern rock and hip-hop, other genres have always percolated in the creative scene, though not always to the same fanfare. Sure, the Sex Pistols played their first U.S. show right here in Atlanta in 1978, which is a notable first but hardly the only one. Other local groups — including RuPaul’s entry into the entertainment world via an early ‘80s Atlanta-based punk band — helped shape the cultural scene. Clubs like 688 Spring Street Club ignited a love for the punk spirit, which is carried through with popular Atlanta originals like The Coathangers and The Black Lips. 

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Atlanta’s worked hard to earn rap respect.

NPR recently hailed Atlanta as “the center of the rap universe,” but the city wasn’t always given due respect. After all, Andre 3000 of the homegrown duo Outkast first introduced the world to the famous words, “The South’s got something to say” at the 1995 Source Awards, in the midst of the East Coast/West Coast battles when middle America was largely ignored. According to NPR, “In retrospect, the moment is a clear turning point, for the South and for Atlanta in particular … “ 

The Atlanta visual arts scene is led by young people.

Like most big cities, Atlanta boasts a formidable slate of art museums, from clusters of up-and-coming galleries to independent artists-in-residency to long-running institutions like the High Museum of Art. What makes the city different? The High director told ArtNet that over half of the museum’s visitors are under 35, and nearly three-quarters are under 55. The younger generation is helping to reenergize and modernize visual arts experiences throughout the city.

Atlanta doesn’t just create big movies — it puts up big numbers.

Due to a wide array of production infrastructure and film-friendly tax incentives in Georgia, it’s a cost-effective city for large-scale TV and film productions, and many of the most famous, like “Stranger Things” and numerous Marvel movies, are well known to citizens. Less known is the massive scope of the industry. In fact, in 2022 alone, 412 productions were shot in Georgia, bringing approximately $4.4 billion into the region. 

Spike Lee’s start has roots in Atlanta.

Speaking of big things in the movie world, Spike Lee made his first film, “Last Hustle in Brooklyn,” while at Morehouse College, where it was screened at the Atlanta Film Festival. It won a prize of $25. The win encouraged Lee to pursue a career as a filmmaker, and he has since won an Oscar and multiple prestigious awards. How’s that for inspiration to make it big in the city of Atlanta?

One of the hippest art scenes has roots in Prohibition.

Underground Atlanta — originally used for materials storage during the Civil War, reconstruction became a series of speakeasies and juke joints during Prohibition, an entertainment district in the ’60s, a shopping mall from the ‘80s through the 2000s, and is now being reimagined as an indie arts center, showing that Atlanta will always find creative uses for all of its spaces.

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