Take this day off to tune into Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s legacy of diversity, awareness, service and love. If you’re not sure how to introduce your young ones to this incredible, yet sensitive, part of history there are lots of opportunities all over Los Angeles to get your family started. These are our top ten ways to honor the man and celebrate his life this weekend.

drking.jpg.exportingphoto: LeTania Kirkland

1. Head over to the California African American Museum for their Community Celebration on Monday, January 16 from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. There be family art activities, like making a button or poster that extol MLK and making crowns for the King in you. There will also be organizations on hand to help teach ways that your family can help others in LA as well as sermons, speeches and readings of the works of Dr. King. Plus music and food and lots more.

2. Children’s Book World will be hosting a special story time in honor of King Day on Saturday, January 14 at 10:30 a.m. Join celebrated storyteller Michael D. McCarty as he presents stories of African-American culture that that will offer awareness and fun all in the same program.

kingparadephoto: LeTania Kirkland

3. Bring your young activists in training out to witness the annual Kingdom Day Parade—the largest parade in the country celebrating Dr. King. The parade route runs along Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd. and Western to Crenshaw and Vernon in Leimert Park. The celebration will include marching bands, drill teams, local organizations, and lots of floats. The theme this year is “Now More Than Ever, We Must All Work Together.” We couldn’t agree more.

4. In honor of Martin Luther King, Jr., grab a curbside seat for display of floats, marching bands and more in Long Beach on Saturday, January 14.  The Peace & Unity Parade kicks off at 10:30 a.m. at Anaheim St. & Martin Luther King, Jr. Ave. Free parking and shuttles are available to get you to and from the parade.

5. LACMA will be hosting a free day on Monday, January 16, so you can celebrate dreams and diversity through art. The museum will be offering bilingual tours, a family sketching activity and live flamenco music, plus all the usual kid faves, like Chris Burden’s Metropolis II, the Egyptian Art (mummies!) and the Levitated Mass.

6. The Pasadena MLK Community Coalition will be hosting a series of events that include poetry readings, essay and art presentations, a day of service and a church service followed by their annual MLK Day Celebration on January 16. The culminating festival in Altadena will include guest speakers, food, arts & crafts and helpful, wholesome fun.

muralpaintingphoto: LeTania Kirkland

7. King Day is also known as a day of service. If you really want to get the family into that spirit, White Point Nature Preserve provides a great opportunity with their annual Day of Service event on MLK Day. Help out in the garden by removing invasive weeds, watering native plants, grooming trails and more.

8. Join the celebration at Kidspace Children’s Museum for Unity Days, taking place all weekend and Monday, too. Celebrate the message of Martin Luther King, Jr. as a community, by spending the day working together. Kids can build multi-cultural sculptures, add handprints to a giant peace mural, share hopes for the world on “dream boards” and other activities that are all about working together.

9. Use your day off to take a drive to a Pretend City. In fact, to the museum Pretend City in Irvine, where the whole family can participate in an open discussion about equality that is geared towards young kids.

THURSDAYS FROM 1:00PM-3:00PM LOCATED ON THE 2ND LEVEL NEAR THE CHILDREN'S PLAY AREA FREE ACTIVITIES AND ENTERTAINMENT FOR CHILDREN 10 AND YOUNGER Visit GlendaleGalleria.com for a listing of the Kids' Club events. For more information on the Zimmer Children's Museum visit www.zimmermuseum.org Upcoming Events: April 2: Eggs , Eggs, Eggs - egg painting, egg hunt, make some egg shakers and whip up some Green Eggs and Ham!! It’ll be Egg-tremely fun! April 9: Sing-A-long - sing along with Zimmer’s Resident Rock Star Luis! Wiggle and bounce to classic children songs and make your own maraca shakers with recycled materials. April 16: From head to Shoe - as part of the Week of the Young Child, we celebrate our bodies. We will make paper plate hats, trace our hands and toes, sew with shoe laces and have a stompin’ awesome bubble wrap party! April 23: Theater Day - experience the Zimmer’s Childrens Theater group as they bring educational skits to life! Learn about props, and create your own to join in on the fun! April 30: LEGO my building - we’re building high towards the sky! With a variety of building blocks and Legos, we’ll engineer all sorts of super tall and unique structures!photo: Zimmer Children’s Museum

10. On Sunday, January 15 from 2-4 p.m., the Zimmer Children’s Museum is hosting an afternoon of dreams. Dr. King shared his dream for a better world; on this day, kids at the Zimmer will have the opportunity to share their own dreams for a better world.

What will your family do on MLK Day? We’d love to hear your plans in the comment section!

—LeTania Kirkland