Hurricane Irene has come and gone, and the new date for the Martin Luther King Memorial event at National Mall has been set: October 16. The dedication had been planned as the culmination of a week’s worth of events on Aug. 28, the 48th anniversary of King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, reports NPR, but the threat of Hurricane Irene gained consensus amongst organizers to indefinitely postpone the celebration.
This new date holds significance for many Black Americans because it marks the 16th anniversary of The Million Man March at that exact location. Additionally, President Obama remains on board to speak at the rescheduled ceremony.
The deferment of the celebration came just as this historic moment was marred by the controversy behind Maya Angelou’s criticism of the Memorial inscription as well as concerns about the $800,000 pay out received by King’s family for use of use the civil rights leader’s words and images.