Some King commemorations have been shuffled around to accommodate the inauguration, though others are going on as planned.
King's younger daughter, Bernice King, plans to attend the observance of her father's memory at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, where he preached, and said she doesn't fear the inauguration will overshadow the celebration.
"I think it enhances the observance, actually, because it heightens people's awareness about the King holiday," she said. "I also think it gives some sort of validation to the significant work that my father made to this country, to this world, in fact."
The only other time a presidential inauguration has fallen on the King holiday was in 1997 at the start of President Bill Clinton's second term. Clinton invoked King's memory in his inaugural address.
"Thirty-four years ago, the man whose life we celebrate today spoke to us down there at the other end of this Mall in words that moved the conscience of a nation. Like a prophet of old, he told of his dream that one day America would rise up and treat all its citizens as equals before the law and in the heart," Clinton said in his address. "Martin Luther King's dream was the American dream."
Obama plans to incorporate the legacy of the civil rights movement into his inauguration. Myrlie Evers-Williams, the widow of slain civil rights activist Medgar Evers, is slated to deliver the invocation.
The president also plans to take the oath of office for his second term with his hand on two Bibles, one owned by King and one by Abraham Lincoln. As he takes the oath, he will be facing the Lincoln Memorial, where King delivered his "I Have a Dream" speech 50 years ago this August.
Having the president call for her father's Bible was a special moment, Bernice King said. "What a significant honor," she said. "It's like another elevation for my father."
Obama also plans to ask Americans to volunteer in their communities Saturday to honor the civil right leader's legacy of service. Inaugural planners say there will be a float honoring King in the parade to the White House after the swearing-in ceremony.
In Washington and Baltimore, however, Martin Luther King Jr. Day parades have been moved to avoid conflicting with the inauguration. The Baltimore parade was held Saturday. The parade along Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue in Washington has been moved to April 20, the 50-year anniversary of King's release from a Birmingham, Ala., jail.
In Montgomery, Ala., where King did some of his early civil rights work while pastor at the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church, the parade and rally at the Capitol are to be held as normal Monday, though some prominent black politicians will be at the inauguration.
At Ebenezer Baptist Church, the annual celebration will include watching the inauguration on a big screen after the service.
"Everybody can't go to the inauguration," said Bernice King. "It's just going to be a great day."