King County and its employees will host its annual celebration honoring the life of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and celebrating his vision of an America offering opportunity for all on Thursday, Jan. 16, from noon to 1 p.m.

The historic Paramount Theater (911 Pine St.) will be the backdrop for the celebration. The public is invited to join King County employees for the free event.

King County Councilmember Larry Gossett, one of King County’s human-rights icons, will deliver the celebration’s keynote address. Other speakers at the celebration will include King County Executive Dow Constantine. 

The celebration will include musical performances by King County’s MLK Singers and a performance by award-winning spoken-word artist Christa Bell. The event will also feature the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Student Essay Award ceremony, sponsored by the King County Civil Rights Commission.