Green celebration

Greensgrow marks 20 years of operation with mural dedication ceremony.

Inspired art: Portside Arts Center students and members of St. Anne’s Senior Center collaborated on a mural for Greensgrow that was unveiled at the 20th anniversary.

By Matthew Haubenstein

Residents and community groups gathered at the corner of Almond and Cumberland in Fishtown last Saturday to celebrate two major accomplishments: the dedication of a new mural on St. Anne’s Senior Center and the 20th anniversary of Greensgrow Farms.

The mural was created through a partnership with the senior center, the farm and Portside Arts Center. Seniors from St. Anne’s and children from Portside were the artists behind the creation.

Sarah Daminao, an art teacher at Portside who helped the children create the mural, talked about the benefits that can come from generations working together for the benefit of the community.

“I think it’s really important for children to connect with their community,” she said. “The opportunity for the children to work with the seniors and the seniors to work with a different generation was really rewarding.”

The mural commemorates the 20 years Greensgrow has been open and serving the community, and also pays homage to the late co-founder of the farm, Mary Seton Corboy, who passed away in August.

Children and seniors who worked on the mural pulled down the curtains, revealing one of the four-part mural that adorns the side of the senior center. The part revealed in the ceremony showed the three organizations’ names, various plant and wildlife, and a quote from Corboy that reads, “It’s been about creating a community space… an oasis in a world of concrete.”

Along with the mural, the farm entrance on Cumberland Street will be dedicated to Corboy.

Stuart Anmuth, chair of the board for Greensgrow Farms, read a citation from Mayor Jim Kenney’s office, which praised Corboy for her work and contributions to the community. Anmuth, who was a longtime friend of Corboy, also spoke about Corboy and why she deserved this recognition.

“Mary was a character. Mary was probably the most passionate and caring person I knew,” he said. “Mary is watching [the farm] and she would be proud.”

After the unveiling, the crowd was invited into Greensgrow to celebrate the anniversary. The celebrations continued Sunday at the Greensgrow Farm in West Philadelphia.