Martin Luther King Parade Shows His Lasting Impact on Houston

With 2019 being the 41st anniversary of its creation, the Martin Luther King parade heads to Houston streets again this year on January 21st. While many cities celebrate Martin Luther King’s birthday, this parade was the very first in the nation and is something that shows MLK’s lasting effect on the city of Houston.

While Houston once had its share of contention during the civil rights movement, going so far as to put smoke bombs in the air vents of the Coliseum when MLK joined Aretha Franklin and Harry Belafonte in concert. While that particular visit was seen as a great failure for racial equality, the effect of Martin Luther King overall was deeply felt by the community. The city would later feel the same deep sting as the rest of the United States felt when he passed away. However, while Martin Luther King’s life ended, his great dream of change and equality became his indomitable legacy.

Like any good parade, the Martin Luther King Birthday parade will feature marching bands, floats, ROTC groups, dance teams, and county officials from throughout the city. Any and all local organizations have been welcomed to march as a way to promote the harmony and equality that Martin Luther King would have wished during his life. As always, the parade overall is presented by Houston’s Black Heritage Society.

The parade will begin at 10 AM on Texas and Crawford in front of Minute Maid Park heading west before disbanding on Congress at Hamilton to Bastrop. Admission to the parade is free of charge and is an excellent way to ring in the new year in Houston and honor a great man while doing it. Expect a large crowd, but it is also a great chance to enjoy some of Houston’s local shops and restaurants in the area, though if you want to avoid a line, you may want to move away from the parade route.