Student Artwork Displayed At Turtle Park, Montview Presbyterian
Seven years ago, the Greater Park Hill News published a story marking an important anniversary – an event that had been forgotten by many over time: In 1964, Martin Luther King, Jr. made an historic visit to Park Hill. From the steps of Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church, at 1980 Dahlia, the civil rights leader shared his message of equality and justice to an overflow crowd.
The year after the news story appeared, and each year after that, local educators have organized what has become its own Park Hill tradition: An annual students’ MLK marade. Hundreds of kindergartners and first grade students from Hallett, Smith, Stedman and Park Hill elementary schools gather at Turtle Park, at 23rd Avenue and Dahlia Street. Hand-in-hand, waving homemade signs, they march to the church, two blocks away. Gathering on the steps, where King stood many years before, they sing “We Shall Overcome.”
This year, due to the ongoing pandemic, the students couldn’t do that. So the teachers improvised. Students instead created artwork to honor King on his birthday. The posters were laminated and hung along the fence at the park and displayed at the church.
“Hopefully, it is only the beginning of unifying our schools and neighborhood, and instilling the themes of equity, peace, and love for the lifetime of these students,” said organizer Erika Neale. “This year, it feels especially meaningful.”
Photos by Tommy Kubitsky, except where otherwise indicated.
— Cara DeGette`