Columbia, SC (WLTX) -- For many attending the rally, it is not just a holiday or day off work, but a day for action.
"I have been coming ever since we started the march I have not missed one," said Henretta Geter. "It's very important for us to remember Dr. King cause there have been great, great changes since him, not enough, but it has brought us from the darkness, I would say, to the light."
Hundreds of people marched to the state house to remember Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, his life, his work, and to keep his legacy alive.
"We're still fighting for rights today, there's still things in education that we need to do, there's still things in our communities that we need to do," said Derrick Hearn, a Benedict College Student.
People at the NAACP's annual King Day at the Dome called attention to voting rights, healthcare, mental health issues and gay rights, but for some it is about teaching the next generation working for change.
"They'll continue to march once we're older and we can't march, they'll march in our place," said Pearline Carter, who attended the event with her granddaughter.
The rally had a twist this year, organizers showed President Obama's swearing in and inaugural speech since the holiday and inauguration took place on the same day. For many, that made the King holiday even more special.
"It's more like a historical event to me, with President Barack Obama, who is also black and honoring Dr. King at the same time," said Marshall Morant.
Still for many, recognizing Dr. King's life is a way to reflect on history and head into a better future.
"We must remember our past in order to move forward," said Geter.