City readies new focal point for Mummers’ performances

The Mummers are racing to finish their final rehearsals and preparations for their annual parade.  The city has temporarily closed some streets near City Hall today as its prepares for the New Year’s Day tradition.

Workers came out early on a city holiday, the day after Christmas, to do the painting of “The Box,” the performance space for the Mummers in Center City.

Assistant Parade Director Jim Marino says planners took advantage of the light traffic on the legal holiday to make sure the performance dimensions were right on the money.

“We have the dimensions that the string bands and the fancy brigades and everybody uses for their performance areas,” Marino said. “This is what they have been rehearsing on all year long: 70 feet wide by 100 feet deep.  Those are the lines that we are painting here.  We’re making sure they have the same performance area that they have been practicing on all year long.”

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Marino said, as the week progresses, more signs of the annual parade will come into place on JFK Boulevard, including judges’ stands and bleachers.

He says the new judging location on JFK between 15th and 16th streets provides an excellent space for performances.  Construction on Dilworth Plaza next to City Hall the change in locations.

“We’re going to be able to put bleachers on both sides of the street and have all the seating area that we used to do, if not more,” Marino said.

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