Organizations throughout Northern Nevada were also commemorating the life of Martin Luther King Junior today.
Tonight's dinner at the Nugget in Sparks is the 17th annual birthday celebration thrown by the Northern Nevada Black Cultural Awareness Society.
Earlier today, the 2nd Baptist Church sponsored its annual caravan along a 7-mile stretch of 395, the highway dedicated to Dr. King.
"One day right there in Alabama, little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today."
On the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, Dr. Martin Luther King Junior delivered these memorable and poignant words to a crowd of thousands during the height of segregation in our country.
41 years later, his message still has the power to inspire.
"He's my hero," said Rev. Onie Cooper of the Second Baptist Church. " If it had not been for him, I don't know what we would have been doing by now. He set the stage when he and Rosa Parks went to Washington."
79-year old Reverend Onie Cooper led the brief memorial service for Dr. King at the Second Baptist Church in Reno.
He has lived in Northern Nevada for close to four decades. He clearly remembers a divided a community in the 1960s.
Reverend Cooper led the church's memorial caravan along Highway 395, the Martin Luther King Memorial Highway. It's the only street African-Americans in the Truckee Meadows could get named after the Doctor...and even still, they say it's lacking some of the recognition signage they had hoped for.
Nevertheless, Reverend Cooper hopes the legacy of Dr. King will resonate with people in this community.