Sights and Sounds From Strawberry Mansion Day 2016
Words and Photos by Kaitlyn Moore
Starting at 9AM on Saturday, September 10th, community members gathered to celebrate a day full of festivities at Strawberry Mansion Day 2016.
The event kicked off as runners took their marks for the fifth annual Boxers’ Trail 5K, a 3.1 mile run/walk through Fairmount Park starting at Mander Playground (2140 N 33rd St.).
According to Fairmount Park Conservancy, the path is named Boxers’ Trail because renowned pugilist and Philadelphia native Joe Frazier frequented the trail. Boxers-in-training still use it to this day.
Fred Jenkins Jr., a professional boxer out of Strawberry Mansion’s ABC Boxing Gym (1400 N. 26th St.), said he runs the trail every day. “As boxers, running teaches us endurance and pace,” he said.
Following an award ceremony for the Boxers’ Trail 5K winners, Strawberry Mansion’s ABC Boxing Gym showcased a boxing clinic featuring many of the gym’s young boxers.
“It means a lot to these kids and this community to be out here,” James Lyons, ABC Boxing Gym’s assistant coach, said. “Boxing helps this neighborhood a lot. It takes the kids out of the streets and gives them something to do. It’s a very disciplined sport.”
The festivities continued on to 8PM with free food and many community-based organizations set up to greet and provide information to the community. With temperatures reaching up to 95 degrees, the day proved to be a hot, but nonetheless enjoyable day for community members. A stage hosted singers and dancers that kept the crowd entertained throughout the day despite the heat.
Ernest and Ben, two attendees, commented, “It’s been a good time. And the food was really good. All in all a great day.”
“After today, we start planning again,” said Denise Clark, a member of the Strawberry Mansion Day planning committee. “It takes us an entire year to plan this. [Strawberry Mansion Day] brings a closeness here,” Clark added, “When we don’t come together, we are separate. But when we are together we can have fun and give back.”