Wissinoming paints ‘respect’ mural in neighborhood park

Local folks respond to vandalism at Jewish cemetery with community art project

SOURCE: WISSINOMING CIVIC ASSOCIATION

Dozens of artists and community volunteers had the perfect response for the recent vandalism at a Jewish cemetery in Wissinoming. They painted a mural titled “Cultivate Respect” on the walls of a nearby park building on June 28.

The Interfaith Center of Greater Philadelphia partnered with the city’s Mural Arts program and on the community paint day at Wissinoming Park. The event culminated several months of planning involving the Wissinoming Civic Association and the park’s friends group in the aftermath of the vandalism of Mount Carmel Cemetery.

The burial ground damage involved up to about 200 gravestones and was reported on Feb. 26.

The community groups decided to create a mural reflecting the history and “glorious natural surroundings” of the park, while delivering a message of respecting others. The images adorn two beige facades of the angular brick building that serves as the park’s office and meeting space. There are native flowers and plants, along with bigger-than-life butterflies.

Adult volunteers and children 10 and older were asked to help color the images, while younger kids took part in age-appropriate art activities.

After the two-hour painting session, some participants joined other members of the Wissinoming Civic Association for the group’s year-end community meeting at Grey Lodge Pub.

WCA member Sean Null invited folks to take part in a July 8 groundbreaking for the new community garden at St. Bartholomew Church. Local Boy Scouts have volunteered to help maintain the garden, but gardeners are needed. Eventually, gardeners will be able to plant perennial flowers and produce, although options are more limited this year due to the advanced stage of the growing season.

In addition, WCA members unanimously approved a zoning application for a new tattoo parlor on the 5800 block of Torresdale Avenue. ••

William Kenny can be reached at 215–354–3031 or wkenny@bsmphilly.com. Follow the Times on Twitter @NETimesOfficial.