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Martin Luther King events in the coming days

These events are scheduled to honor slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.

TODAY

Stockton: Interfaith clergy procession from Martin Luther King Jr.'s statue near Stockton Memorial Civic Auditorium to the auditorium for the 6 p.m. service, "Celebrate the Man, Live the Message." Catholic Stockton Diocese Bishop Stephen Blaire will give the invocation. Free. 5:30 p.m.

SUNDAY

Sonora: The city's 13th annual Martin Luther King Jr. birthday observance will highlight the late civil rights leader's efforts on behalf of poor people of all races, organizers said. The event will be in the auditorium at Sonora High School, 430 N. Washington St. The program will include a talk by housing advocate Beetle Barbour, video interviews of homeless people by student Hallie Bateman, a poetry recitation by Sierra Conservation Center inmates, music by Dennis Brown and the awarding of prizes in essay and art contests. The event is free. Afterward, a reception with refreshments will be held in the high school library. 2 p.m.

MONDAY

Modesto: Christian Love Baptist Church will host its 23rd annual Martin Luther King Jr. celebration at 202 H St. Keynote speaker will be Arturo Flores, superintendent of Modesto City Schools. 10 a.m.

Merced: LeRoy Gillead, 89, who was one of the "Tuskegee Airmen," and John Collins, 85, who was one of the last "Buffalo Soldiers," will recount the stories of their historic military units at the 12th annual Martin Luther King Jr. celebration at the Merced County Fairgrounds. The speeches begin at noon. Other activities scheduled for the celebration include performances by the Praise Dancers, Danzantes de Merced, the Tenaya Middle School Band, and a tribute by students and teachers from John Muir Elementary School. There also will be several selections sung by the MLK Dream Choir. The activities begin with a march down Martin Luther King Jr. Way, from the Amtrak depot to the Merced County Fairgrounds, 900 Martin Luther King Way. The march will begin at 11 a.m.

FEB. 2

Modesto: Listen to Mahatma Gandhi's grandson, Arun Gandhi, speak as part of Modesto Junior College's 14th annual Martin Luther King Jr. commemoration at the Mary Stuart Rogers Student Learning Center on the west campus of Modesto Junior College. 7 p.m.

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