WASHINGTON (WJLA) - Erlene Belton was just 20-years-old when she watched Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. tell the world about his dream of unity and equality for all.
"It's like nothing you can describe,” Belton says. “People coming together in a way this country was meant to be."
Fifty years later, the country and the city prepares for the anniversary of that moment.
In just hours, the area around the Lincoln Memorial will lock down. On Tuesday, crews moved in bullet proof glass and placed it around the area where President Barack Obama will speak on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.
The March for Jobs and Justice will kick off at 600 New Jersey Avenue NW. The 1.6 mile parade route then travels mostly along Constitution Avenue. It starts at 9 a.m. and ends at the Lincoln Memorial where the “Let Freedom Ring” commemoration runs from 11:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.
Important to know: All Metro stations will be open including those on or near the National Mall and the city is urging attendees to use Metro as there will be numerous road closures beginning overnight Tuesday.
Daphne Simmons of Barbados says her group was invited by Dr. King's daughter, Bernice, to attend. With Obama speaking in place of Dr. King and former presidents Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter also making comments, security will be tight.
Long fences surround a huge swath of the National Mall and the entrance for the general public without tickets will be at 17th Street.