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DFW Events Celebrating MLK Anniversary

Martin Luther King Jr.
U.S. civil rights leader Martin Luther KIng Jr. waves to supporters from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on August 28, 1963 in Washington, D.C. (credit: AFP/Getty Images)

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - It was August 28, 1963 -- 50 years ago -- when an iconic man gave an iconic message. Martin Luther King Jr. spoke in Washington, D.C. and told of his dream for America. On Wednesday, at the same location in the nation's capital, dignitaries from all races and creeds will be on hand to commemorate that special day. President Barack Obama, along with former Presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, are expected to be in attendance.

There are several ways to celebrate the day in North Texas as well.

SMU will host a debate with Wiley College on whether America is moving forward on King's dream. That begins at 7:00 p.m. in the Umphrey Lee Center. Also, for $20, you can attend a lecture on the legacy of the civil rights movement. That starts at 9:00 a.m. in Karcher Auditorium.

Rep. Eddie Bernie Johnson is partnering with Thanks-Giving Square to host a "Let Freedom Ring" ceremony on Wednesday. It will include a reading of King's speech with different faith leaders and remarks from Texas NAACP President Gary Bledsoe. That event begins at 1:00 p.m. in the Thanks-Giving Square chapel in Dallas.

Students at Paul Quinn College have planned several community events on Wednesday. There will be a procession at 9:00 a.m. with scenes remembering civil rights struggles. It ends with a celebration featuring music and poetry readings.

Also, at 5:45 p.m. at Friendship-West Baptist Church in Dallas, community and faith leaders will be hosting workshops about jobs and voter education. That will be followed by a special celebration at 7:00 p.m. by Dr. Jamal Harrison Bryant from Empowerment Temple AME Church in Baltimore, Maryland.

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