Friday, October 25, 2013

2014 Itinerary

To sign up for the trip email January Boten at

Civil Rights Pilgrimage Schedule 2014
*This is the schedule as of 2/11/14—subject to changes

Friday 3/21
Noon Leave Champaign/Urbana
4:30pm stop in Dayton Ohio for Dinner at the Dayton Mall 2700 Miamisburg Centerville Rd., Dayton, OH 45459
5:30 head back on the road to Greensboro North Carolina
1:30am (extra hour due to time change) Arrive in Greensboro North Carolina at Howard Johnson 2004 Veasley St. Greensboro, NC

Saturday 3/22
Breakfast at the hotel
Start Day in Greensboro, NC at noon
Lunch in Downtown Greensboro near Elm Street
2pm International Civil Rights Center and Museum
4pm Meet with Wesley Morris Youth Coordinator and Community Organizer Beloved Community Center
417 Arlington Street Greensboro, NC 27406
5pm Leave Greensboro
7pm Stop in Charlotte, NC for dinner at Northlake Mall in Charlotte, NC
8pm Leave for Atlanta
Midnight arrive at the Hampton 440 Technology Parkway NW, Norcross, Georgia

Sunday 3/23
In Atlanta all day
Breakfast at the hotel
11am Church Service at Ebenezer Baptist Church
1-3pm King Center/ MLK Birth home
3:30pm Gladys Knight Chicken and Waffles
6pm Dr. Bernard La Fayette at Emory Candler School of Theology
1531 Dickey Drive,Atlanta Georgia
8pm Discussion time
Sleep in Atlanta

Monday 3/24
7am Breakfast in the hotel
8am leave Atlanta for Tuskegee
9am (really 2 hour drive but time change makes it seem like one hour) arrive in Tuskegee
9:30 AM – 11:30 AM: Tuskegee Human and Civil Rights Multicultural Center
11:45 AM – 12:45 PM: Lunch at Tuskegee University Dining Hall
1:15 PM – 2:45 PM: Tuskegee Institute Museum
3:30 PM – 5:30 PM: lecture @ Tuskegee University with Dean Walter Hill
5:45 PM: Leave for Montgomery
6:45 pm Eat at Eastdale mall
8pm Discussion time
Sleep at Ramada Inn 1185 Eastern Blvd. Montgomery AL

Tuesday 3/25
8am Breakfast at the hotel
9 AM – 10:30 AM: Rosa Parks Museum
11:00am-12:15pm MLK Parsonage
12:30 PM – 1:45 PM: Lunch @ The Plaza Grill (First floor of RSA Tower 201 Monroe St, 334/264-0829)Rev. Robert and Mrs. Jean Graetz will be joining us.
2 PM – 3:00pm: Alabama State Capital
3:30pm-5pm Southern Poverty Law Center
6pm Dinner at Mr. Gus’s Ristorante
Sleep in Montgomery

Wednesday 3/26
7am Breakfast in the hotel
8am leave Montgomery for Selma
9am arrive in Selma
9am Footprints to Freedom tour
12:30 Lunch at Golden Ranch BBQ and Grill
2:45 Lowndes Interpretive Center 7002 U.S. Hwy. 80 West, in White Hall, Alabama
4:15 leave for Birmingham
6:15 Dinner at Five Points in Birmingham
Sleep at Holiday Inn Express Pelham, Alabama

Thursday 3/27
8am Breakfast at the hotel
9am Kelly Ingram Park and 16th Street Baptist Church
10am Birmingham Civil Rights Institute
Noon lunch at Five Points in Birmingham
1:30pm tour at Carver Theater
3pm leave Birmingham for Little Rock Arkansas
Dinner (stop along the way)
9pm arrive in Little Rock
Discussion Time
Sleep in at Best Western 1600 John Harden Dr. Jacksonville, AR

Friday 3/28
8am Breakfast in the hotel
9am Little Rock Central High Tour
11am Lunch at Your Mamma’s Good Food
12:30pm leave for Memphis
3pm Visit the Mason Temple
5pm Dinner on Beale St.
Sleep in Memphis at Hampton in at 3579 Hacks Cross Road Memphis TN

Saturday 3/29
Breakfast at the hotel
10 AM – 11:30 AM: Take photos at Lorraine Motel
11:45 AM – 12:30 PM: Lunch (Fast Food)
1:15 PM – 3:15 PM: Stax Museum
3:30 PM – 4:30pm Lynette Davis, Local citizen and educator at Booker T. Washington High School Ernest Withers Museum and Collection
333 Beale Street, Memphis
5 PM-6:30pm Bowling
Sleep in Memphis

Sunday 3/30
Leave Memphis for Champaign at 5am
Noon Arrive in Champaign

Monday, September 16, 2013

The Civil Rights Pilgrimage 2013

Hey! My name is Alex Horton, and I'm a junior this year at UIUC - although this is only my second year here. (Transfer student and proud!) I'm double majoring in African American Studies and Sociology. Last semester, I found out about the Civil Rights Pilgrimage at about the same time I was starting to plan for how I was going to spend my Spring Break, and it immediately interested me. Because, not only could I go on a trip across the American Southeast in order to learn about and see first-hand many of the monuments erected to this marvelous moment in American history, I would be able to listen to touching personal accounts from those who were on the front lines of this seminal struggle for justice. That's where the meat of this trip was, to me, and such experiences are priceless. All I had to do was pay a nominal fee of $275, plus food. For me, there was never a question of whether I would sign up. I jumped on this opportunity! I recommend anybody interested in American/African American history or social justice look into this trip.

The most poignant aspect of this trip for me was - without a doubt - visiting Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Memorial Parsonage, which was his home while he was the reverend of the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church. One would think that visiting Dr. King's home would be monumental enough, but what really set it off was the woman curating this exhibit: Miss Cherry. Her unbridled passion evoked  powerful emotions from the group and really nailed how awesome a human being Dr. King was. I also enjoyed the garden in the back that serves as a place of reflection for those who were given the tour of the parsonage. That is when it hit me that this trip is an immense privilege, and I am extremely fortunate to have been a part of it.

I hope everyone who goes on it this year has a great trip. (I'll be planning it, so I'm confident you will be.) If you have any questions, feel free to contact me:

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Civil Rights Pilgrimage 2k13: Overall Experience

Since I don't want to spoil the trip for any future Civil Rights pilgrims I'll just give a brief overview of the trip. It was great! So inspiring, motivating and most of all enlightening. Although civil rights will always be an important part of American history, it seems that as time moves forward, more and more we forget just how significant those acts and people were. Jimmy Carter, Rosa Parks, MLK Jr., the Little Rock Nine  all played huge roles in bringing about justice but all the people we were able to meet on the trip also contributed greatly to the society we now live in: Bernard Lafayette, Ms. Shirley Cherry, and all of our passionate tour guides. The trip was definitely A LOT of information to take in in a week so its essential to have an open and ready mind. Learning about these movements from a class or from merely reading a book is incomparable to actually visiting the sites and putting yourself in the exact spot where legendary acts took place. No matter how close we think we're getting to a society of equality and peace, its so important for us to go back and see where we came from. Its so important for us to not be complacent with how things are; to study people like MLK and Rosa Parks who did their part in changing the world we live in for the better. The trip was a great experience. I'm so happy that I went!

BTW: My name is Lindsay, I'm a Junior, studying advertising. So this trip wasn't related to my major or anything, I didn't even live in housing this past year. This trip is for any and everybody who is smart enough to take advantage of such a great opportunity!

Civil Rights 2k13: Dr. Bernard Lafayette Jr.

Although I'm very late posting this, I wanted to take the time out to reflect on the Civil Rights Pilgrimage spring break trip. From the trip, I have gained a new perspective that has become very useful in many of my courses in discussing things like race and gender inequalities.

The Civil Rights Pilgrimage consisted of about forty students traveling by bus to and through six southern cites over the course of nine days learning about historical figures and events that help shape the society we live in today. Our first stop was in Atlanta, GA where we were able to meet Bernard Lafayette Jr. What an amazing start to the pilgrimage. I can't describe how inspiration his story is! I don't want to say too much because anyone reading this will hopefully get to experience everything that I did but in short,  as a young teen he worked directly with MLK during the civil rights movement and continued to be a prominent leader after MLK Jr. tragic assassination. Here are my favorite things learned from Mr. Lafayette about how to address current issues and how to grow as leaders:

Focus on mistakes
What did we do that perhaps we should have done?
Examine very closely what has happened already

Analyze with a goal in mind

A lot of research is about what happened and not what could have happened

**If possible, try to manage your time.

Plan to use your time wisely.

Set goals high: don't just try to get by. You never know when they too score will help.

You can study and learn all you need without degrees  but degrees will get you there faster. It's necessary.

Do what you do SO well! Tear it up.

You must feel worthwhile. Never feel that you aren't worthwhile. Your worth. Not your wealth. You value to life.

Discover as soon as possible what you can develop that can make your life worthwhile. Something that you can give. Because if you can do that then death is a myth.

"They they took MLK's life. He had already given his life. It was already too late. They missed. "

Your life: DO IT. GIVE IT.

Avoid negative inspiration

Stay in control of yourself.
Dont let someone rub you the wrong way. Try to understand why someone doesn't like you.

Violence is the language of the inarticulate.

Oppression is a system. With three parts.
1. Someone willing to be an oppressor
- Willing oppressors think they are doing the right thing. They believe that others are not human beings. Beings but not human.
2. People that accept the fact that its nothing they can do. "Stay in your place".
3. A majority of people who support actively or SILENTLY the oppression.

It's not what people say or do to you, it's how you respond. Character.

Can you learn to love others to where they are transformed?

"You can do this. If you make up your mind."

I didn't plan to dedicate this entire post to just things from the Dr. Lafayette talk but he was just that GOOD! These are quotes from the man himself! Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Saturday, March 16, 2013

"Never let violence deter a non-violence movement"-Dr. Bernard Lafayette, Emory University in Atlanta with our amazing students.

Friday, March 15, 2013

I am so excited! I thought that last year would be my last year going on this trip, but a last minute illness of one of the other advisors has allowed for me to go on this trip for the third time with U of I students and fifth time overall. I could not be more excited!! I love every single one of the places we are going and I cannot wait (and we leave in less than 3 hours so there is not much waiting) to experience this trip with the students that have chosen to go this year. Of those of you I know, I know you are going to love it as much as I do. For those of you I don't know, I can't wait to learn about you and your journey and what has motivated you to come along on this trip.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

I am beyond excited to be participating and advising this trip. Above all I am pleased to be in the company of the amazing students who have decided to participate on this trip. I am certain, they will all fall in love with the history of America and develop a new found love for activism, social change and civil rights! We leave in exactly 24hrs!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Welcome new bloggers! I am so excited for you to go on this journey. I will be following along from home--feel free to tell your friends and family to do the same. For now, please take a minute to write about why you decided to go on this trip and please try to log on and write as much as you can from the road! I can't wait to hear about all that you learn.