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Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Annual Community Parade


Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. - Video Tribute Cover Image

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Parade was canceled. In lieu of the parade, a video tribute was created and, the special premiere took place on Saturday, January 16th.


Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Video Tribute 

Download your copy of the MLK Video Tribute on our Vimeo channel.


  • Viewing Times

    Join us at any one of our multiple viewing times:

    10:00 a.m. 10:30 a.m. 11:00 a.m. 11:30 a.m. 12:00 p.m. 12:30 p.m.
  • Contact Info

    Parade Contact:
    John Williams, Brenda Tillman, James Axson
    MLKParade@LakelandGov.net
    Office: 863.834.2577
    Office: 863.834.3350

  • COVID-19 Precautions

    All visitors to City Buildings are asked to wear a mask. Temperature checks will be completed as attendees enter the building.

    There will be limited capacity for each viewing time based on the room size.

  • Parade History

    Lakeland’s Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Community Parade began as the dream of civic leader, scoutmaster, and retired school crossing guard Christina Simmons. In 1978, ten years after King’s death, Simmons organized a small parade in honor of the slain Civil Rights leader. Those first years the parade was primarily composed of Simmons own Boy Scouts from Troop 762.

    Over the years, Lakeland’s parade has grown into a large-scale event for the community featuring marching bands, floats from local clubs, churches, and businesses from across Central Florida. The City of Lakeland, in cooperation with a parade committee of community members, has officially coordinated the event since 2006.

    With the help of the Education and Enrichment Group (E.E.G), the parade has become a weekend of activities, including concerts, a prayer breakfast, and an oratorical contest for youth.