Annual Martin Luther King grand parade takes place in Fort Pierce

At the annual Martin Luther King grand parade in Fort Pierce, there were several "kings", high school seniors wearing crowns waving from the back of convertibles. "We can do it, yes we can," shouts a young man in suit and tie standing behind a lectern.

The sounds of future leaders echoed down Martin Luther King Boulevard.

Williemae Crenshaw remembers the days before Dr. King helped change the course of history... and changed where she can now go in her hometown.

"Like restaurants and buses and different things.  Things we couldn't participate in that we can participate in now," recalled Crenshaw.

Melisa Franklin brought her two young daughters so they could get a brief history lesson.

"To like see where they came from," said Franklin.

"It gives me pride because we're now a community that comes together to celebrate," said Shirley Hagwood as she watched the parade passed.

The highlight, as it is each year, is seeing the different floats made by students and staff at St. Lucie County Schools.  Teacher Katina Barriner described the Forest Grove Middle entry.

"In the front, we have the past.. the firsts in St. Lucie County and what they did and then we have our future on the back like what our kids might become," said Barriner.

Perhaps the clearest message of what Dr. King stood for could be found in first grader James Phillips' hairstyle.  It was shaved on both sides. One side read "Dr. King.' The other side, 'Peace'.  A self-described mix of "chocolate and vanilla", this 7 year-old, knows the importance of Dr. King.

"He did a lot of good things so we can go to the same schools together and drink out of the same water fountains and play at the same park," said Phillips.

So even the younger generations are still dreaming.

Print this article Back to Top