Martin Luther King Jr. Day Activities in Northeast Ohio

Martin Luther King Jr. Day Activities in Northeast Ohio

Schools are closed on Monday, January 21 in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Use this as an opportunity to spend some extra family time honoring King, visiting a local museum or taking in some indoor or outdoor fun.

Check the list below for some ideas to get you started!

The following museums and attractions are offering free or discounted admission on MLK Day; some will hold special events honoring King’s memory.

Akron Art Museum
Free family day
Celebrate King’s vision by recharging your imagination with hands-on art activities, games and storytelling paired with artists from the museum’s contemporary collection.

Akron Zoo
Free admission

Cleveland History Center
Free admission
The Cleveland History Center )normally closed Mondays) will be open from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Check out the brand new exhibit in the Crawford Auto-Aviation Museum, RADWood: Cleveland Goes Rad; and join for the opening of brand new exhibit, Rev. E. Theophilus Caviness: Church, Community, Cleveland.

Cleveland Museum of Art

Free admission
Celebrate King’s legacy through themes of peace and collective action. The day includes dance, music, theater, and spoken-word performances by several area schools and institutions.

Cleveland Museum of Natural History
Free admission and Discovery Day
Talk with curators outside of their labs and see specimens that are not usually on display. Watch mini Shafran Planetarium shows for $1/person and participate in amazing demonstrations with scientists and students from Case Western Reserve University and University of Chicago. Meet Cleveland’s neighborhood wildlife in special live animal presentations, and more.

Cleveland Orchestra
Free community open house in Severance Hall honoring the life, leadership, and vision of Dr. King. Performances and family activities take place throughout the day.

Cleveland Public Library, Martin Luther King, Jr. Branch
Free 34st Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. commemorative program at 1 p.m. Commemorate King’s life and honor his legacy through music, performance and inspirational events.

Great Lakes Science Center
Free admission

Greater Cleveland Aquarium
Donate $1 or more to the United Black Fund of Greater Cleveland and receive a discounted, same-day $10 admission ticket to the aquarium. New this year, GCA will highlightinfluential African Americans in the fields of marine science and scuba diving throughout its galleries. Guests can learn more about these leaders by participating in an MLK Day “Search for Greatness” Scavenger Hunt for a chance to win an annual family pass.

Free January Fun Day Monday at Lake Metroparks

Visit Penitentiary Glen Nature Center for free indoor and outdoor activities at interactive stations. Enjoy scavenger hunts, a nature craft, s’mores, X-Plorer packs filled with seasonal hands-on activities, animal encounters from the Kevin P. Clinton Wildlife Center and much more.

Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage
Free admission
See how iconic civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. and everyday citizens fought against discrimination by celebrating the everyday hero in all of us. Tour the Maltz Museum’s core and special exhibitions while enjoying hands-on crafts and activities on this family-friendly day. Music performances and a panel discussion take place throughout the day.

Free Ice Fest at North Coast Harbor

More than a dozen ice displays will be set up on the walkway between the Science Center and Rock Hall.

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame
Free admission

Free MLK Jr. Day Activities Fair at the University of Akron

Community and UA student organizations will provide activities and information that encourage nonviolence, civic responsibility, respect for differences and the importance of education.


Plan an outdoor winter play date by trying out one of the many fun, season activities offered in Northeast Ohio.
Click here to view our complete Wintertime Fun Guide.




Burn off some energy indoors at one of the area’s indoor play places. Or, take an educational outing by visiting one of the many museums in Northeast Ohio



Staying home for the day?
Northeast Ohio Parent’s Pinterest boards are all you need for some cozy, indoor activities, recipes and crafts.

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