If you're lucky enough to have the day off today, you might want to pay that good fortune forward by joining thousands of Americans commemorating Dr. Martin Luther King Jr's legacy by jumping aboard one of the many volunteer projects in the area -- an initiative encouraged by President-Elect Barack Obama.
As those spearheading this initiative suggest, this should be ''a day on, not a day off.''
Join the American Red Cross in canvassing neighborhoods to talk about fire safety, donate fabric scraps to make quilts for a Chicago warming center, or help package food for delivery to the homeless. Check out the USAService.org web site for other volunteer opportunities in and around the city. And don't forget to stop by the DuSable Museum for the Martinmas Day Celebration today and the Inauguration Day activities tomorrow.