A unique display of local children's art will mark Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and Black History Month at Virginia Tech.

“The Legacy of Dr. King through a Child’s Eyes” will be on display at the Perspective Gallery on the second floor of Squires Student Center Tuesday, Jan. 19 through Wednesday, Feb. 10. It features a selection of posters created by area elementary and middle school students. The exhibit is free and open to the public. Perspective Gallery hours are: Tuesday through Thursday, noon to 5 p.m.; Friday, noon to 7 p.m.; Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. The gallery is closed Sunday and Monday.

Mary Tartaro, Perspective Gallery director, and Ray Plaza, coordinator of special projects in Virginia Tech’s Academic Support Services, curated the exhibit. More than 500 entries in the annual Martin Luther King poster competition over a four year period were reviewed and a sample was selected to reflect different grade levels and themes.

“The poster competition asks students to think critically about the legacy of Dr. King according to the theme of that year’s competition,” said Plaza. Competition themes have included “Beloved Community,” “The Meaning of Freedom,” “Daring to Dream,” and “Celebrating Diversity.”

Plaza said the poster competition started with the first university-wide Martin Luther King celebration in fall 2005. Virginia Tech and the Montgomery County-Radford City-Floyd County Branch of the NAACP sponsor the annual competition, which is open to elementary and middle school students in Montgomery, Giles, Floyd, and Pulaski counties, and Radford city. Students submit their posters through the schools, and they are judged by the Virginia Tech Martin Luther King committee. The top winners in each grade level receive savings bonds and are recognized at the annual Martin Luther King community breakfast.

For more information on the Perspective Gallery, call gallery director Mary Tartaro at (540) 231-4053.

“The Legacy of Dr. King through a Child’s Eyes” is sponsored by Virginia Tech’s University Unions and Student Activities.

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