MLK 50th Anniversary Commemoration



April 4, 2018 – A Day of Remembrance

In Museum Courtyard at the Balcony of the Lorraine Motel

Courtyard Program is Free and Open to the Public
Regular Museum Admission 8:00am-7:00pm


On April 4, 2018, all eyes will turn to Memphis, Tennessee to remember the tragic event that occurred 50 years prior.  Our nation’s greatest peacemaker was snatched from us by a sniper’s bullet.  It occurred at the Lorraine Motel, 450 Mulberry Street in Memphis, Tennessee, now, the location of the National Civil Rights Museum.  That shot would reverberate throughout the world, and on April 4, 2018, the world remembers the event that occurred at approximately 6:01 p.m. CT.  The National Civil Rights Museum wants to help the world reflect, but not linger on the past, but instead use that horrific event to propel us forward.

MLK50:  Where Do We Go From Here? Is the theme for the year-long commemoration of Dr. King’s assassination.  This was the title of Dr. King’s final book as well as the title of the speech he delivered August 16, 1967 at the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.  In 2018, our desire is not simply to reflect and recount the history, but to connect the history to contemporary issues, this forward looking theme is most appropriate for this commemoration.  The sub-themes for the events will be poverty/economic equity, education, justice and nonviolence.

There will be:

10:00 AM Daylong Tributes from the MLK50 Main Stage in the Museum Courtyard – Musical, dance and spoken word performances and reflections from civil rights leaders in salute to Dr. King. Free to the public.

3:30 PM The 6:01 50th Anniversary Ceremony from the Balcony of the Lorraine Motel – The Beloved Community will gather for the official ceremony with the laying of the wreath, ecumenical liturgy, musical and spoken word tributes, and remarks from civil rights icons. Free to the public.

6:01 PM Bell Toll – Bells ring at places of worship, college campuses or institutions 39 times across the nation to honor the number of years Dr. King dwelled on this earth and to pay homage to his legacy. To register your institution to participate in the nationwide bell toll, click below.

 Participate in Nationwide Bell Tolling

6:15 PM Evening of Storytelling – Civil Rights Icons and New Movement Makers in dialogue about “the Movement” then and now. This is a ticketed event at Crosstown Concourse. Get tickets below.

Purchase Tickets (SOLD OUT)

Host Live Streaming Watch Party on April 4 – By hosting live streaming at your place of assembly, we can make it possible for others who cannot physically be at the National Civil Rights Museum to experience this historic moment virtually. Click to complete the participation form, and we will contact you with live streaming information to watch at your venue with the best vantage point of onstage program and audience perspective.

Host Streaming Party 


Apr 04 2018


All Day



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National Civil Rights Museum
Memphis, TN, USA
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