Singer Patti LaBelle to speak and perform at 25th Annual MLK Celebration

Wednesday, September 7, 2016, 4:50 A.M.

Singer Patti LaBelle to speak and perform at 25th Annual MLK Celebration

Singer Patti LaBelle to speak and perform at 25th Annual MLK Celebration


Peoria, IL – Singer Patti LaBelle will be the featured speaker at the 2017 Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration Luncheon on Jan. 16 at the Peoria Civic Center. The 25th Annual luncheon will be followed by a concert by LaBelle in the Peoria Civic Center Arena.

“Patti LaBelle is truly an icon in the music industry,” said Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis. “We’re excited to welcome her to Peoria to help us celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.”


This is the first year the event, sponsored by Public Employees for Community Concerns, will feature both a luncheon and concert. Doors will open for the luncheon at 9:30 a.m. and the luncheon will begin at 10:45 a.m. LaBelle will be the featured speaker at the event, sharing how King impacted her life and career, followed immediately by her concert from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.


Event chairman Alma Brown said, “I can't think of a better way to celebrate our 25th annual luncheon than an appearance by the legendary Patti LaBelle.”


Tickets for the luncheon and concert are $50 per person or 10 for $500 and are available for purchase:

  • Online at
  • At Peoria City Hall, Room 403
  • By mail: Make checks payable to Public Employees for Community Concerns and send to P.O. Box 1312, Peoria, IL 61654-1312.


Tickets for the concert only will be available starting Friday, September 9th at 11:00am at the Toyota Box Office at the Peoria Civic Center, or by phone at 1-800-745-3000. Concert only tickets are for upper bowl assigned seating only. The concert is scheduled to begin approximately at 12:30pm and last until 1:30pm. Doors for anyone attending the concert only will open at 11:30pm.


About Patti LaBelle
Beautiful, simply does not describe the incomparable force known to the world as Patti LaBelle. As time continues to evolve, the soulful songbird’s name has become synonymous with grace, style, elegance and class.  Belting out classic rhythm and blues renditions, pop standards and spiritual sonnets have created the unique platform of versatility that Ms. Patti is known and revered for.


It’s a small wonder that Patti has time for anything else in between recording and touring, but she makes time and the world is oh so happy that she does!  Patti has written five best-selling books, Don’t Block the Blessings, LaBelle Cuisine: Recipes to Sing About, Patti’s Pearls, Patti LaBelle’s Lite Cuisine and Recipes for the Good Life. More recently, she introduced Patti’s Good Life, a successful line of food products that features a variety of sauces, sweet potato pie and cakes and has starred in her own highly rated cooking specials on the Cooking Channel and Food Network.


In addition to her amazing career as an entertainer and entrepreneurial success, Ms. LaBelle’s work as a humanitarian is just as legendary. She remains an advocate for adoption, foster care, Big Sisters and the United Negro College Fund, among many other initiatives.  While Ms. LaBelle's celebrated 50-plus year career is respected world-wide, she has also endured and survived personal strife. Within a 10-year period, she lost her mother, three sisters and best friend to diabetes and cancer. In 1994, LaBelle was diagnosed with diabetes and shortly thereafter became a spokesperson for the American Diabetes Association. 

The same motivation that had Patricia Louise Holte blossom from a choir member to lead vocalist for Patti LaBelle & The Bluebelles and later Labelle, to a solo artist is the same energy that keeps her fire burning at seventy-one years young. “Each year I grow, and that’s a blessing from God.  I do what I can do.  I do what I feel God has given me the energy to do, so I just go out there and I do it…It’s not about making money because I don’t need money, but I need to sing.  With a voice or without, I’ve got to get on that stage.”  And the world is thankful that Ms. Patti’s voice sounds so good to our ears.


About Martin Luther King, Jr.
King was an American Baptist minister and activist who was a leader in the African-American Civil Rights Movement. King helped to organize the 1963 March on Washington, where he delivered his famous "I Have a Dream" speech. He received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964 for his advancement of civil rights using nonviolent civil disobedience.


In 1968, King was planning a national occupation of Washington, D.C., to be called the Poor People's Campaign, when he was assassinated on April 4 in Memphis, Tennessee. Martin Luther King Jr. Day was established as a U.S. federal holiday in 1986.


About the Peoria Civic Center

The Peoria Civic Center, an SMG managed facility, is an entertainment and convention venue that contributes significantly to the economic impact on the downtown Peoria area.  For the most up-to-date event information, please check us out on the web at

About SMG

Founded in 1977, SMG provides management services to more than 230 public assembly facilities including convention and exhibition centers, arenas, stadiums, theaters, performing arts centers, equestrian facilities, science centers and a variety of other venues. With facilities across the globe, SMG manages more than 15 million square feet of exhibition space and more than 1.5 million sports and entertainment seats.  As the recognized global industry leader, SMG provides venue management, sales, marketing, event booking and programming, construction and design consulting, and pre opening services for such landmark facilities as McCormick Place & Solider Field in Chicago, Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, Houston’s NRG Park and the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans.  SMG also offers food and beverage operations through its concessions and catering company SAVOR, currently serving more than 130 accounts worldwide.



SAVOR is the food and beverage division of SMG, the global leader in public facilities and special event venue management.  Since its inception in 1983, SAVOR has specialized in creating menus that showcase local cuisine expertly prepared and presented to ensure a seamless dining and entertainment experience. SAVOR currently provides catering, concessions and special event services, to more than 130 facilities worldwide.

The company is also an industry leader in introducing green standards and programs to public facilities.  SAVOR’s commitment to farm to table freshness and food quality features locally grown products for their venue clients whenever possible.  SAVOR staff prides themselves on being on the cutting edge of the latest food and beverage trends in addition to searching out the most innovative food technologies available on the market.  To learn more, visit

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