The recently finished Martin Luther King Jr Memorial, located in West Potomac Park at the intersection of West Basin Drive and Independence Avenue, SW, is officially open to the public, as of 11 am today.
The Memorial is the work of design-build team McKissack & McKissack, Turner Construction, Gilford Corporation, and Tompkins Builders Inc.
This week will play host to a number of events in advance of the official dedication on Sunday, August 28th, at 11 am. The dedication ceremony will be free and open to the public - preceded by music at 8:30 am and followed by a free concert, at 2 pm.
Entrance to the memorial begins at one of its principal symbols - the "mountains of despair," a reference in King's "I Have a Dream" speech. The twin granite slabs frame the entry, a pair of 30-foot stones 12 feet apart, appearing to have been sliced and parted, with inscriptions from the 1963 speech. Emulating the civil rights struggle, despair will lead to a path beyond, and having passed through it emerges the view of a single stone, the "stone of hope," appearing as if cleaved from - but beyond - the struggle.
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