Four South Side Bethlehem parks get improved during one-day effort

Posted by admin - May 20, 2013 - 4 Blocks International, CADC_Bethlehem, Southside Vision 2014 - No Comments

Volunteers participate in South Bethlehem Greenway community festival

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(Gallery by Stephen Flood | The Express-Times)

Lynn Olanoff | The Express-Times By Lynn Olanoff | The Express-Times

The Express-Times on May 18, 2013 at  7:31 PM, updated May 18, 2013 at  9:09 PM  

Bethlehem resident Joey Ortiz goes to the South Bethlehem Greenway three times a day to walk his dog. Today, he discovered another reason to visit the park even more: a new playground that his girlfriend’s 3-year-old grandson quite enjoyed.

“I love it — I live right here,” the Evans Street resident said. “What they’ve been doing in Bethlehem the last couple of years is great.”

Ortiz’s neighborhood saw improvements to four local parks today. In addition to the new playground on the greenway at Buchanan Street, an entire pocket park on the 700 block of East Fourth Street was overhauled, almost 3,000 plants were put in the ground at the Greenway Amphitheater behind Touchstone Theatre and the Bethlehem Skateplaza got 25 new trees and a new mural.

The work was possible thanks to 100 volunteers and a $50,000 donation from Wells Fargo. Community improvement group Southside Vision 2014 donated another $25,000 to the effort.

The bank has done three similar community service projects in Allentown, Scranton and Reading, but today’s projects in Bethlehem — stretching almost a mile — is its biggest project yet, spokesman Jim Baum said. The bank also put on a free community fair today on the greenway.

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