Category Archives: Uncategorized

Donate to the Park!

Cianfrani Park is a park under the Philadelphia Parks and Recreation Department.

Volunteers in the neighborhood maintain it.  All of the gardens you see around you are planted, weeded and pruned by your neighbors. Please respect their hard work and keep out of the fenced garden areas.

There are many ways to support your neighborhood park. Volunteer to help with gardening or by planning events.  We are hoping to have a festival in September to celebrate our 50th anniversary and our recent completion of park renovations.

Our first planning meeting for this event will be June 17 at Palumbo Recreation Center at 7 PM. To volunteer come to the meeting or write to

Support the Park financially by:
1. Contributing to the donation jar at concerts (Next year our concert event money may be cut in half. If you would like to see these continue, please contribute.)

2. Write a check to “Friends of Cianfrani Park” and send it or drop it off to 721 Pemberton St., Philadelphia, PA 19147

3. Make a single or regular donation through PayPal by clicking on the donate button on this page or on our Facebook page: , or go to PayPal and use our donation address which is

4. Donate by ordering through Amazon Smile. When ordering an eligible purchase on Amazon, go to and mention Cianfrani Park, and the Amazon Smile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the price of your purchase to Friends of Cianfrani Park.


Spring Update on the Cianfrani Park Project

The capital improvements project in Cianfrani Park has resumed and is progressing.  In October, after some paving was done on the east and west ends of the park, and some of the beautiful new benches installed, the project was delayed due to the contractor being pulled off and assigned to other jobs. It resumed again in April with work on the center square.

Four large Kentucky Coffee trees were planted on April 11, after the root balls were surrounded with biochar and Mycorrhizae, special fertilizing materials purchased by Friends of Cianfrani Park to assist in drought tolerance, and create an ideal garden soil structure that drains, breaths, and retains optimum moisture levels.

The Kentucky Coffee tree itself is drought-resistant, tolerant of pollution, and adaptable to a variety of soils. With its reputation as a tough species, the Kentucky Coffeetree is known as an excellent choice for parks, golf courses and other large areas. It is also widely used as an ornamental tree.  The tree’s picturesque profile stands out in all seasons and can be attributed to a unique growth habit of coarse, ascending branches that often form a narrow crown. Each tree will be surrounded by iron fencing that will help to keep them alive, so they can grow to provide a wonderful shaded area.

Pavers have been laid in the center square that not only provide beauty, but also will help with allowing the trees to receive plenty of rainwater. While they establish themselves, the trees will need be cared for by daily watering and volunteers are needed.  If you are willing help with this, contact us at

The City Seal Statue will be installed on the east end when certain electrical issues have been resolved. However, we are assuming that there will be other delays due to the fact that it is too late in the season to plant the five remaining trees and repair the turf which has been badly compacted. For these reasons, we expect some work to be postponed until the fall.

However, we do expect the park to be ready for our Fridays in June Concert Series.

Cianfrani Park Gardens

Many of you have commented on the dramatic improvement to the grass in Cianfrani Park. This is due in large part to a continuing experiment to see what might happen if we kept one third of the park on the east end roped off as a “people zone” that would be clean and safe for the children who use the east end extensively.

We would also like boast about out the improvements of our park’s volunteer gardeners.

We would like to thank Chris Desilvis and Karen McCormick for all of their efforts in the planters throughout the park. The bulletin board tells about some of the additions they have made this year. We also thank Dennis McGlade who year after year beautifies the front planter that presents our park to the city. Elaine Ulmer, who is the stalwart motivator that keeps our park moving forward, will soon have some news about the statue project for the triangle garden, which she has been working toward for the last two years.

The Friends of Cianfrani Park are very fortunate to have such dedicated volunteers.

June Concerts!

The Cianfrani Park June Concert Series is the unofficial start of summer. Woohoo!
The series kicks off on Friday, June 6 with a special kids’ concert by The Paisley Pickles. Show start at 6 p.m. and will finish by 7:30 p.m. 

Information about the other Friday concerts is forthcoming.

Also, June 3 is the next monthly meeting of Friends of Cianfrani Park. The topic on the agenda is the next step in our successful turf project.

Feb. 2014 meeting presentation

Here is the slide presentation from our February 2014 meeting.

To view this presentation along with notes explaining each slide, click HERE. (As you go, click on the green flags as you look through the presentation to read notes.)

We welcome your thoughts on the proposed sculpture project and other possible changes to the park. Share your ideas by commenting on this post. (Click “Leave a Comment” above.)

Opportunity knocks: February 4 meeting about sculpture project and park upgrades

City Seal - salvaged 2012

Friends of Cianfrani Park have an exciting opportunity to repurpose a piece of neighborhood history and make some overdue park upgrades and we invite you to participate in the conversation at a public meeting on February 4.

During the demolition of the old Fante-Leone public pool on Montrose Street, US Construction salvaged the 100+ year old architectural sculpture of the City of Philadelphia’s seal and donated it to the Friends of Cianfrani Park. Since then Friends of Cianfrani Park has worked to develop a plan for reusing the beautiful sculpture as a piece of public art in the park. Since 2012 we have consulted with conservators, the Department of Parks and Recreation, Councilman Mark Squilla, and others about the possibility of installing the sculpture. Now we’d like you to weigh in too.

Come to a public meeting on at 7pm on Tuesday, February 4 at Palumbo Rec Center (10th/Fitzwater) for a brief presentation and discussion about the project ahead.

In addition to adding this beautiful sculpture to the park, the project presents other opportunities for upgrades including: new lighting and electrical improvements; removal of 3 dying trees and planting new ones in their place; new pavement and walkways; and new benches.

View a draft version of the plan below and come discuss these possible changes to the park  on February 4. We also invite you to share your thoughts here through the month of February. (Just click “Leave a Comment” above)

(click to enlarge plan)

(click to enlarge plan)

Concert Schedule Change!

There’s been a change for this week’s show. Dr. Ketchup’s drummer has another engagement. So Slowey & The Boats are going to rock Cianfrani Park with some sweet lap steel guitar! Check it out: Slowey & The Boats.

7 p.m. start time.  Fingers crossed for clear skies.