Marching for Martin

Today, all of the ChildrenFirst’s kids, Americorps and assorted sundry folks joined up to participate in the MLK Day celebratory march. First off, we gathered the kids together for a viewing of the animated film Our Friend Martin, about a modern day kid and his friends who go time-hopping through Martin Luther King, Jr’s life and learn all about the civil rights movement and how MLK changed the way America functioned as a mixed-race nation.

After the movie, we did a double-time march up a few blocks of Asheville hillside (it’s Asheville – it’s all uphill) to a park where some of the “unchilded” members of the team had set up donated pizza and sweet tea, upon which we descended like the proverbial (or would that be Exodusian) plague of locusts. And this wasn’t no two-bit pizza, either. Domino’s donated some, but the rest came from the Brew-N-View (otherwise known as Asheville Pizza Company) and Mellow Mushroom, two of the best regional pizza places in town. Tripps donated the sweet tea. Did I mention it was sweet? Yessiree. Sweet. Tea. But sweet, you see. Not just tea. Sweet.

After we filled up on sugar, bread and cheese, we headed over to the starting place of the main march to meet up with the rest of the marchers and then off we went, surrounded by Asheville’s finest civil rights celebrants, leaders and supporters. The kids had made signs, which we all held as we marched, and on the way they created their own little march mantra: I have a dream…let freedom ring! Which they repeated endlessly until we got to the end of the march, where we were treated to speakers and singers in alternating bands of auditory celebration. With any luck, some of our kids will be representin’ on the evening news.

A good time was had by all. Although the normal weather for this event is just this side of Alaskan, today it decided to be warm, sunny and just breezy enough to keep the crowd from steaming in their just-in-case heavy weather coats. In a word, nice.

So tomorrow it’s back to normal for me, albeit a 4-day work week (today barely counted in terms of actually feeling like work – and I managed to make it through the whole event with only one really bad coughing fit). I even managed to hand out some of my volunteer recruitment flyers to a group of UNCA students who showed up at the development to pick up trash, before we left. Booyah!

Hopefully the warm weather will hold up for my walks this week. Maybe this global warming thing won’t be too bad, after all. You know, until New York goes under, at least.

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