King Day ceremonies Monday at Playhouse

Ridgefield’s celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day will be highlighted by music — from Broadway performers Daniel C. Levine, Katie Diamond and Bryan Perri to rock-jazz fusion band Project Grand Slam to the Ridgefield Chorale — as well as readings and thoughts on the legacy of the slain civil rights leader. The event is Monday, Jan. 15, from 3 to 4:30 at the Ridgefield Playhouse. It’s free to all.

“The King holiday serves as a focal point for establishing and maintaining community service involving millions of Americans throughout the year to address critical social problems of this nation and to help improve the quality of life for humankind,” said Mark Robinson, who has been organizing the town’s ceremony for 20 years and is a former member of the state’s Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Commission.

At this year’s ceremonies, the town’s Spirit of Dr. King Community Service Award will be given to Lori Berisford, SPHERE’s president and board chairwoman and a volunteer at numerous other charitable organizations. 

Begun in 1997 by Robinson — and with the support and participation of First Selectman Rudy Marconi since he took office in 1999, the King Day observances have become a community tradition, drawing audiences as large as 200 since being relocated to the Ridgefield Playhouse four years ago.