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RALEIGH, NC (AP) — North Carolina state workers will begin the Rev. Martin Luther King holiday weekend with the annual observance of the civil rights leader’s accomplishments and how public employees are living out a legacy of improving race and human relations.

A program observing King’s birthday was set for midday Friday at the predominantly white First Baptist Church in downtown Raleigh. The event alternates with the predominantly black First Baptist on the opposite corner of Capitol Square.

Featured guests include Gov. Beverly Perdue and James Joseph, a former U.S. ambassador to South Africa and professor emeritus at Duke University.

Members of the state’s King Commission will ring a replica Liberty Bell in Raleigh just before the event and urged other communities to hold similar bell tributes at noon Friday.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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