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MLK Day inspires many to serve as community volunteers

By Jennifer Joas, Reporter, JJoas@wfmz.com
Published On: Jan 20 2014 04:35:38 PM CST
Updated On: Jan 21 2014 05:14:25 AM CST

Hundreds of students across Berks County gave back to their communities in celebration of Dr. King.

LOWER ALSACE TWP., Pa. -

Hundreds of students in the region gave back to their communities in celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

"We try to keep the dream alive," said New Hanover United Methodist Pastor David Lewis.

Hundreds of people gathered at the New Hanover United Methodist Church in New Hanover Twp., Montgomery Co., Monday evening to remember and pay tribute to Martin Luther King Jr.

"We have been doing this for 10 years ever since the Klan demonstrated downtown in Boyertown which does not represent Boyertown at all. But this was our way to speak against that to have a worship serve and remember King," said Lewis.

The Boyertown Area High School choir performed as well as the Pine Forge Academy Choir. But it wasn't all about MLK. They also tied in Nelson Mandela and made the theme "Fighting the Same Dream in Two Different Continents."

"By keeping this dream alive we are protecting ourselves from repeating the mistakes of the past," said Lewis.

They were not the only ones taking time out of their day to remember Martin Luther King, Jr.

Students at Alvernia University met at the William Penn Memorial Fire Tower in Lower Alsace Township Monday morning to volunteer to clean up.

"Alvernia takes pride in having a day on versus a day off. This is something that instead of sitting around watching movies, we are all together celebrating and just giving back to our community," said Alvernia grad student Alisha Dockery.

"We have been picking up trash, walking around the trails and sweeping up the place. We got to learn a lot about the history as well," said Alvernia senior Katie Manganello.

Other students from Fleetwood Middle School entertained the elderly at Keystone Villa in Maidencreek Township.

"It is part of our program to instill good character and good moral values for our students," said Fleetwood Middle School Counselor Jessica Cammauf.