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In the News Index

Source: Phialdelphia Inquirer
Date: June 27, 2003
Byline: Frederick Cusick


City decks fountains for the Fourth of July

Inspired by an act of vandalism, Mayor Street announced yesterday that he was dyeing the water in the fountain in front of the LOVE sculpture for the Fourth of July holiday.

Accompanied by Managing Director Philip R. Goldsmith, Street led a countdown at JFK Plaza that ended with the fountain erupting in a pillar of light-blue water. "This is kind of a fun thing," the mayor said.

Goldsmith said the blue dye — actually an anti-algae agent that won't stain the fountain — would also be used to color the water in the fountain in Dilworth Plaza.

And red, white, and blue lights will be used to color the water in the fountain at Logan Square, he said. The coloring will continue through the July Fourth holiday weekend and will cost about $500.

The dyeing was inspired by some vandals who tossed a reddish dye into the LOVE Park fountain last month, turning the water neon pink. Rather than being outraged, city officials liked the idea and began looking for a dye that would color the water but not stain.

Street, who is running for reelection, has been battling the perception that he is a killjoy ever since he kicked the local skateboarding community out of its beloved LOVE Park hangout last summer. The dispute has become an issue in the mayor's contest.

Last month, GOP candidate Sam Katz said skateboarders should be let back in the park: "I believe we can restore LOVE Park and liberate LOVE Park and again make it the skateboard capital of the world."

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