News Release Header
For Immediate Release:
January 11, 2011

Media Contact:
Laura Phillips

Miami-Dade Parks and the Parks Foundation host an MLK Day of Service January 15

Volunteers to help rejuvenate public spaces at Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Park, The African Heritage Cultural Arts Center and Arcola Lakes Park

(Miami-Dade County, FL) -- 
In celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.(MLK) and his legacy of service, the Miami-Dade Park and Recreation Department (MDPR) and the Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade have teamed up with Miami-Dade County's District 3 Commissioner/Commission Vice Chair Audrey Edmonson; District 2 Commissioner  Jean Monestime; AARP, the Service for Peace Miami Chapter, and the African Heritage Cultural Arts Center (AHCAC) Coalition-Board of Directors to enlist local citizens to help rejuvenate public spaces at County parks in the Model City area and participate in a food drive for Feeding South Florida, during their annual MLK Day of Service volunteer workday, from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, January 15, 2011.

Model City area workday sites for the MLK Day of Service will include Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Park, 6101 N.W. 32nd Ct., the AHCAC, 6161 NW 22nd Ave., and Arcola Lakes Park, 1301 NW 83rd St.  Volunteers will check-in at these sites at 8:00 a.m. and participate in park beautification activities from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. that will include such projects as painting walls, planting trees, pulling weeds and re-sanding playgrounds and picnic areas. The event concludes with a luncheon for registered volunteers at the AHCAC, from noon-1:00 p.m., featuring performances by the Voices of Heritage Ensemble and Rhythm City Heritage Drum Line.

 "In these tough economic times, it is even more evident that service is essential in helping to build a better future for our children," Vice Chairwoman Edmonson said. "It is initiatives such as the MLK Day of Service that allow us to see how communities can be improved when people come together to volunteer their time, talent and skills to help make it happen."

The annual event attracts more than 400 volunteers, of all ages who support their Miami-Dade County community by enhancing its surrounding parks. The sponsoring organizations furnish all of the supplies needed to accomplish these projects.

Individuals or businesses interested in participating as a volunteer or sponsor for the MLK Day of Service, or  future workday efforts at MDPR parks across the County, can contact MDPR Volunteer Coordinator Angie Gomez at 305-961-2781 or e-mail

Those who may not be able to participate in the workday activities, are encouraged to stop by one of the Workday sites and drop off a canned food donation in one of the collection boxes set up by Feeding South Florida, an organization that helps feed our community's needy.

About Service for Peace, Miami Chapter
The Miami Chapter of Service for Peace is a nonprofit organization that engages Miami's diverse population in service learning opportunities by connecting people to peace through service and creating communities of peace.

About AARP
AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan membership organization that helps people age 50+ have independence, choice and control in ways that are beneficial and affordable to them and society as a whole. AARP publications include: AARP Magazine, the definitive voice for age 50+ Americans and the world's largest-circulation magazine with over 34.5 million readers; AARP Bulletin, the go-to news source for AARP's 40 million members; and AARP Segunda Juventud, the only bilingual U.S. publication dedicated exclusively to the age 50+ Hispanic community. The AARP Foundation, an affiliated charity, provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. AARP has staffed offices throughout the U.S., the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. For more information about AARP visit their web site:

About the African Heritage Cultural and Arts Center (AHCAC) Coalition-Board of Directors
Founded by Dr. Carlton G. Fisher, the AHCAC Coalition-Board of Directors 's mission is to ensure that the AHCAC remains a viable force within our community and surrounding areas, providing both children and adults with the best in the arts and pertinent information about their cultural heritage, so that they can share this legacy with future generations.

About the Miami-Dade Park and Recreation Department (MDPR)
Nationally accredited, a three-time winner of the National Gold Medal Award, 2009 Florida Governor's Sterling Award winner for excellence in management and operations, MDPR is the third largest county park system in the United States, consisting of 263 parks and more than 12,848 acres of land. It is one of the most unique park and recreation systems in the world. Made up of more than just playgrounds and athletic fields, it also comprises out-of-school, sports-development, and summer-camp programs; programs for seniors and people with disabilities; educational nature centers and nature preserves; environmental restoration efforts; arts and culture programs and events; the renowned Zoo Miami and the Deering Estate at Cutler; the Crandon Tennis Center, home of the Sony Ericsson Open; golf courses; beaches; marinas; campgrounds; pools; and more. For information about MDPR the public can call 3-1-1, or visit

About the Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade
The Parks Foundation supports MDPR programs and Projects to build a world-class parks system for residents and visitors alike. Funds are used for recreation, scholarships, cultural initiatives, parks and facilities improvements, land acquisition and for preserving parks and green space among other initiatives. The leadership of MDPR in conjunction with prominent community leaders recognized the need to establish funding sources independent of the government in order to try to keep pace with the growing needs of our community. Through combined public-private leadership, the Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade was founded in 2004 as a separate, independent, 501(c) 3 non-profit corporation. The Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade is governed by a Board of Directors that is independent of MDPR and is comprised community leaders, business professionals, selected Park and Recreation management personnel and individuals who contribute special skills to this great community effort. For general information the public can call 305 755-7804 and e-mail:


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