16 Ways To Honor Martin Luther King Jr. Day in NJ 2024


The upcoming long weekend is a time to remember and appreciate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s contributions to our country, so while your kids may be jockeying to watch their favorite movies or play video games, why not look for ways to observe this important holiday? Your family can give back in the spirit of Dr. King with a “Day of Service” activity, take part in an MLK Jr. donation drive, honor his legacy at a celebration, or do a little bit of all three. Make use of your kids’ day off by making Monday a day on—and teach them the valuable lessons of kindness and service at the same time. (featured photo credit: iStock.com/Sean Pavone)

(Note: It’s always best to check ahead for in-person events)

Martin Luther King Jr. Day Events

Martin Luther King Day of Service at Rutgers–Camden
January 13 at 9 AM
Rutgers–Camden will partner with the city of Camden and the Office of the Mayor for a Health and Wellness Fair, offering volunteer opportunities, a blood drive, a coat drive, and wellness screenings. 
Cost: Free
Cramer Hill Community Center, 1035 Reeves Ave Camden, NJ 08105

Winter Clean-Up: MLK Day of Service
January 13 at 9 AM
This is a wonderful opportunity to honor the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by picking up litter and removing invasive shrubs and plants in the woods. They will provide work gloves, hand warmers, and tools. Please dress for the weather and pack a snack and a drink.
Cost: Free
250 MacArthur Boulevard, Haddon Township, NJ 08033

MLK Day of Service
January 13 at 10 AM

Spend the day giving back to the community through a service project and activities. Lunch will be provided, and attendees aged 11 and up are invited.
Cost: Free
Hopeloft, 40 E. Commerce Street, Bridgeton, NJ 08302

MLK Day of Service/Hot Lunch for SHIP Guests
January 15 at 10:30 AM
In honor of MLK and his commitment to community, the UUCSH Social Action Committee will host a hot lunch for guests of SHIP. They are asking for volunteers to donate and make food, help set up before, serve guests during, and clean up after.
Cost: Free
Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Somerset Hills, 123 E. Cliff Street, Somerville, NJ 08876

Jersey Cares’ Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service
January 15, various times
Your whole family can help out at this event virtually or in person. You can draw an electronic card, take a virtual Chopped challenge, or partake in a virtual understanding homelessness workshop. There are in-person project opportunities like coat sorting, an “I Have A Dream Walk” in Millburn, kit assemblies in East Orange, Rahway, and Jersey City, clean up in Branch Brook Park in Newark, and revitalization projects in Jersey City, Rahway, and East Orange. 
Cost: Free
In-person locations in Hudson, Essex, Morris, and Union counties.

Community Day: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Newark Museum of Art
January 15 at 12 PM
Start your MLK Jr. Day with dynamic performances, hands-on activities, and opportunities to help others. This will be a celebration of  Dr King’s legacy, his teachings of social justice, and his service to the community. Please bring a non-perishable food item.
Cost: Free; registration is required
The Newark Museum of Art, 49 Washington Street, Newark, NJ 07102

National Day of Service at Reeves-Reed Arboretum
January 15 at 9 AM
Families can stop by the Arboretum (on the patio outside the Stackhouse Education Center) to create Valentine cards delivered to the Essential Workers in the community. They will supply paper, ribbon, yarn, and other recycled and saved materials to use for your thoughtful card.
Cost: Free
Reeves-Reed Arboretum –
165 Hobart Ave, Summit, NJ 07901

Scotch Plains Fanwood MLK Day of Service
January 15, times vary per activity
Adults and families can join the Scotch Plains/Fanwood community to learn, remember, and volunteer. Opportunities to volunteer include a winter hat and glove collection, a food collection, and creating health kits, and there will also be a story time and art project.
Cost: Free
Locations vary

The Visual Arts Center of New Jersey
January 15 at 12:30 PM
Drop in to make thank you cards to local hospital workers. There will be materials on-site and volunteers helping with ideas. The finished cards will be mailed to hospital workers in New Jersey.
Cost: Free
The Visual Arts Center of New Jersey- 68 Elm Street, Summit, NJ 07901

A Day of Service In Nature
January 15 at 10 AM or 1 PM
Friends of Princeton Open Space, a nonprofit dedicated to land preservation, is hosting a Day of Service in Nature in honor of Dr. King at the Billy Johnson Mountain Lakes Nature Preserve in Princeton. Have the whole family join (a parent must accompany kids under 16) to help restore native habitat for birds and other wildlife and make space for future native plantings.
Cost: Free; complete a waiver form
Mountain Lake House Parking lot, 57 Mountain Ave, Princeton, NJ 08540; walk to the project site as a group.

West Windsor Arts Council’s MLK Jr. Day of Service 2024
January 15 at 10 AM
Bring donations and help organize basic necessity kits for babies, moms in need, kids, and homeless shelters. 
Cost: Free
West Windsor Arts Center – 952 Alexander Road, Princeton Junction, NJ 08550

Gloucester Township’s Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service
January 15 at 8:30 AM
Be a part of fun and worthwhile service projects that will impact the entire community. Activities to create kits for the homeless, help animals, volunteer with seniors, and more will take place on-site and at various locations around Gloucester Township. 
Cost: Free
Charles W. Lewis Middle School, 875 Erial Road, Blackwood, NJ 08012

Ocean City’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Ceremony
January 15 at 12 PM
This event brings the community together to remember Dr. King through words, songs, and dance. The City of Ocean City annually honors residents of Ocean City with the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Service Awards. There will also be a buffet luncheon.
Cost: Free
Ocean City Music Pier – 825 Boardwalk, Ocean City, NJ 08226

Volunteer Center of Burlington County’s 18th Annual MLK Day Challenge
January 15 at 10 AM
Burlington County residents can join hundreds of thousands of Americans nationwide in remembering and memorializing Dr. King by participating in activities such as food collection for the Oaks Integrated Food Pantry, animal supplies collection for Burlington County Animal Shelter, and more.
Cost: Free
Burlington County Library, 5 Pioneer Boulevard, Westampton, NJ 08036

MLK Day Poster-Making Workshop
January 15 at 1 PM
Join the Arts Council of Princeton as they celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr with a free poster-making workshop. This is open to all ages, and they will provide the materials to create a poster highlighting civil justice. Please bring a non-perishable food item to benefit Princeton Nursery School.
Cost: Free
Solley Theater – Arts Council of Princeton, 102 Witherspoon Street, Princeton, NJ 08542

Stockton University MLK Day of Service
January 15 at 8:30 AM
This event brings together over 500 students and community members, encompassing around 15 projects on and off campus in Galloway, Hammonton, Atlantic City, and Woodbine. Events include clean-ups, food donations, card making, assembling crafts for nursing homes and hospitals, and more. 
Cost: Free
Various locations in Atlantic County

Become an NJMOM Insider! For all the best things to do with your family around New Jersey, sign up for our weekly newsletter delivered right to your inbox each week, and don’t forget to tag your photos #NJMOM and @njmom for a chance to be featured on our social media.


About Author