Malcolm X Day — more than a day off?

Like any parent of Berkeley schoolchildren, my son is off school today for Malcolm X Day. Berkeley has celebrated the birthday of black nationalist Malcolm X since 1979. Schools, public offices and libraries are closed.

Malcolm X was born 85 years ago this Wednesday.

As far as I can tell, no other city in the US celebrates the holiday (although the first known celebration — but not public holiday — for Malcolm X Day took place in Washington, DC, in 1971). More strange to me is that the holiday is taken in Berkeley but I can’t find a single commemoration or event to mark the occasion. It just seems a day off.

Is there something happening in Berkeley to commemorate Malcolm X today?

Photo by Marion S. Trikosko donated to the public domain