Effort underway to save Mulberry Street bridge murals

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An effort is underway to save the murals that line part of the Mulberry Street Bridge in Harrisburg, which is being repaired by PennDOT.

The Danzante Center for Urban Arts presented a night of music, dancing and poetry at the Civic Club of Harrisburg to raise money to save the murals.

PennDOT has agreed to remove them and preserve them for free, but a new home must be found and a foundation will have to be built to accommodate the 86 murals, which weigh about 300 pounds each.

“They really represent a gift of South Allison Hill to the rest of the city because it was built with the input of folks who live in South Allison Hill,” said Chris Fegley, president of Danzante. “The kids in our city after-school program have actually painted those.”

Harrisburg Poet Laureate Rick Kearns says the murals tell part of the story of the Latino community and the greater South Allison Hill community “in a way that doesn’t exist anywhere else.”

“You’re not going to find these stories in history books,” Kearns said. “This is our way of telling our story.”

Dance instructor Dileiby Saez-Rivera remembers working on the murals.

“It was a lot of work with the after-school program, the children,” she said. “They put a lot of work and a lot of effort and to see it come down and have nowhere to put it, it really hurts.”

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