South Philadelphia: Catharine Park Meets Matching Grant Challenge

Maria Pfister enjoyed the park on a Tuesday afternoon

Catharine Park met its goal of raising $2,500 from local residents over the weekend.

The challenge, sponsored by The David G. Orphanides & Associates, P.C. Attorneys at Law, was to have residents raise $2,500 by March 31, and Orphanides & Associates, P.C. would match it for a total of $5,000 as a donation to the park.

Catherine Park, located on Catharine and 22nd streets, will enter its first full season of being open. It is a rather small park with a playground for children. However, the raised money will help pay for the new bricks and benches which were installed. The money will also help pay for the lighting installations around the park as well as shrubbery and the repaving of the sidewalks.

“I’m overwhelmed with the generosity and support from our friends and businesses,” said Andrew Dalzell, program coordinator of the South of South Street Neighborhood Association.

Maria Pfister enjoyed the park on a Tuesday afternoon
Resident Maria Pfister enjoyed a visit to Catherine Park with her daughter.

Residents are excited they have a place to walk and for some to play with their little kids. “There aren’t that many parks around here, so it’s good that money was raised to help make something out of nothing,” said local resident Maria Pfister.

The park was once an area for local crime and illegal activities. It became so bad that the city decided to close it down and lock the lot up to prevent public use.

“I remember when the lot was for trouble makers, and I remember when the lot was locked up. It’s nice for it to be a place where families can come out to,” Pfister said.

Fortunately the park and its recent donation will give the neighborhood the green space it has been lacking for years. Individuals who donated over $150 will receive an engraved brick with their name which will be laid at the park by the end of April.

For more information about the park or how to donate, visit its website or SOSNA’s twitter page.

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