By Cody Mello-Klein | [email protected]
On this year’s particularly frigid Martin Luther King Jr. Day, city officials, members of the Alexandria Society for the Preservation of Black Heritage, Inc. and representatives of the Alexandria Black History Museum spoke to children at city hall. The ceremony was a part of Alexandria’s annual Martin Luther King Jr. poster exhibition, which for almost 30 years has highlighted the artwork of Alexandria City Public Schools students.
The posters on display this year were united under the common theme “Stand Up and Fight.” The theme references the brave actions of more than 4,000 black children in 1963, the monumental year in civil rights in which King gave his “I have a dream” speech. The student posters illustrate issues that each artist found important, from bullying and racism to global warming and the Americans with Disabilities Act.
“We don’t want you just telling us about history; we want you making history,” Mayor Justin Wilson said to the young artists. “That’s why it’s so important that we continue to learn these lessons but also tell the story and apply them to issues that we’re working on today.”
The posters will remain on display through the end of February in honor of Black History Month.