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'Festival of Service' brings all ages out for MLK Day

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BATON ROUGE - A classic battle of the bands kicked off a day of celebration and commemoration for reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

McKinley and Scotlandville High were drumming up not just school pride, but community pride.

"I think it's a very special thing that we're all coming together and celebrating this special person in our life," 12-year-old Jaley Terry said.

Just before the battle, city-parish celebrations started at the Shiloh Missionary Baptist church, honoring Dr. King's life and legacy. The crowd then marched to the BREC Expressway Park downtown.

"We don't want the message, we don't want the movement of Dr. King to be limited to one day. We want his messages, we want his spirit to be permeated out into the Baton Rouge community in every walk of life," Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome said.

Those who came out enjoyed food, music and browsed a variety of vendors all while honoring Dr. King.

"He's a special person that gave justice in my life," Terry said.

One of the best parts of the event, Mayor Broome said, was that there were people of all ages there.

"It's great any time the community comes together. We're honoring the legacy of reverend Dr. Martin Luther King and all he did for this country. To listen to the stories, to be part of the program, listening to our youth and just to see the community come together. This is what it's really about," BRPD Chief Murphy Paul said.

Though a winner wasn't announced, both the McKinley and Scotlandville bands were given $800 to go toward their programs.

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