The Root’s Guide to March on Washington Celebrations

March on Washington at 50: All you need to know about what's going on in D.C. during the 50th-anniversary celebrations.

Folk singer Odetta performs during the 1963 March on Washington. (Paul Schutzer/Getty Images)

National Town Hall Meeting on Poverty & Economic Empowerment
Moving Together, Moving Forward: Jobs and Freedom
57th Annual SCLC International Convention
Race & Poverty Panel: 2-4 p.m.
Voting Rights Panel: 5-7 p.m.
Grand Hyatt
1000 H St. NW
Hosted by the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, SCLC Poverty Institute, Rainbow PUSH
Open to the public

Youth Mass Meeting and Premarch Rally
7:30-9:30 p.m.
Metropolitan AME Church (tentative)
1518 M St. NW
Hosted by the NCBCP Black Youth Vote, APRI, NAACP, NEA, Generational Alliance, NAN Youth Move
Open to the public

Poverty in America
Analyze the job crisis and explore solutions.
4-5:30 p.m.
Grand Hyatt Hotel
1000 H St.
Hosted by the Rainbow PUSH Coalition and SCLC Events

The Voting Rights Act
Discuss the effects of the recent Supreme Court decision on the VRA and how we can respond.
5:30-7 p.m.
Grand Hyatt Hotel
1000 H St.
Hosted by the Rainbow PUSH Coalition and SCLC Events

7-8:30 p.m.
Grand Hyatt Hotel
1000 H St.
Hosted by the Rainbow PUSH Coalition and SCLC Events

Saturday, Aug. 24:

50th Anniversary March on Washington National Action to Realize the Dream March and Rally
“Jobs, Justice & Freedom”
8 a.m.-4 p.m.
Lincoln Memorial
National conveners: Martin Luther King III and the Rev. Al Sharpton, NAN
Open to the public

Theater Walk: U Street and the Howard Theater
13th St. NW and U St. NW
Meet outside the U Street Metro station’s 13th Street exit
11 a.m.-1 p.m.
Explore the neighborhood that was shared by African-American intellectuals, business leaders and families of all economic levels. The businesses they owned and the houses they lived in are featured on this walk. U Street was dubbed “Black Broadway” for the numerous movie theaters, nightclubs and ballrooms frequented by jazz musicians like Cab Calloway, Pearl Bailey, Jelly Roll Morton and Duke Ellington. You’ll see a theater and club where these performances took place.

March on Washington 50th Anniversary Family Day at the National Portrait Gallery
Smithsonian Institution, National Portrait Gallery
The Kogod Courtyard
Eighth and F Sts. NW
11:30 a.m.-3 p.m.
Join the Portrait Gallery and the National Museum of African American History and Culture to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. Tour the exhibition “One Life: Martin Luther King Jr.” to learn more about the civil rights leader and his “I Have a Dream” speech. Enjoy vocal performances by Kim and Reggie Harris, hands-on activities and fun for the whole family. This program is sponsored in part by the Reinsch Family Education Endowment.

Global Freedom Festival
2-7 p.m.
The National Mall
Seventh and 14th Sts. NW
Hosted by the King Center and National Park Service
Open to the public

Celebrating the Legacy of A. Philip Randolph and Bayard Rustin
44th Annual A. Philip Randolph Institute National Conference

8 a.m.-6 p.m.
Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill
400 New Jersey Ave. NW
To register go to

Sunday, Aug. 25:

Southern Christian Leadership Conference Worship Service
11 a.m.-1 p.m.
Howard University
Washington Convention Center
Hosted by SCLC
Open to the public