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Counting Down the Top 40 Foundation Grants of All Time #21: Martin Luther King Day Activities

photo of Bright Star Theatre actor

These days, there’s no school on Martin Luther King Day for East Grand Rapids Public Schools. Back in 2011, though, that wasn’t the case. So East Grand Rapids Middle School teachers Bill Behrendt and Steve Brinks applied for a grant from the Foundation to fund Martin Luther King Day activities for students. 

The result? Middle school students made more than 300 blankets for families in need, while learning about the meaning of the day and the historical significance of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 

The Foundation has funded several Martin Luther King Day activities since then, including Service Learning grants in 2013 and 2014 and Bright Star Theatre’s MLK Celebrations (pictured above) for elementary students in 2019.

Thank you, Foundation donors, for making this possible. You can help support our mission of investing in educational enhancements for all our students on our Donate page.


  • Ray and Kristin Abraham
    Ray and Kristin Abraham
  • The Adamy Family
  • Sue and Marty Allen
  • The Bissell/Kruer Family
    The Bissell/Kruer Family
  • Dennis and Jennifer Bruce
    Dennis and Jennifer Bruce
  • Jason and Elizabeth Christopherson
  • Pat Connor
    Pat Connor
  • Nancy Cook
  • Damian and Sara deGoa
    Damian and Sara deGoa
  • Rick and Carol Godfrey
  • John and Deanna Green
  • The Iakiri Family
    The Iakiri Family
  • KV and Jena Lacks
  • Steve and Jenny McMahon
  • Dave Mehney
    Dave Mehney
  • Matthew Richenthal
    Matthew Richenthal
  • Elaine Rongey
  • Beth Wells Skaggs
    Beth Wells Skaggs
  • Abby and Rich Sorota
  • Nick Thole and Amy Turner-Thole
    Nick Thole and Amy Turner-Thole
  • Charley and Janine Thompson
    Charley and Janine Thompson