by Christopher Paslay
Today, my wife and I made Philadelphia great again.
September 21st was a glorious day in Philadelphia: Sunny, 83 degrees, no humidity. To celebrate, my lovely wife and I hung out in Center City, visiting the Art Museum and then making our way down the Benjamin Franklin Parkway to Logan Circle, stopping off in Love Park and finally ending up in Old City, home to Independence Mall and America’s most historic mile. We did so as unofficial ambassadors of President Trump, breaking out our red Keep America Great hats for pictures along the way. Below is a photo journal of our wonderful day in the beautiful city we call home.
Stop #1: The Philadelphia Museum of Art
Here we posed for a selfie, in front of the place that Rocky Balboa made famous. Some useless trivia about Silvester Stallone: he attended high school in the same neighborhood where I currently teach (Northeast Philadelphia).
Stop #2: Logan Circle
When William Penn named his city Philadelphia (Greek for the “city of brotherly love”), he envisioned what he called a “greene country towne,” structuring it on a grid with four parks equally spaced throughout. One of these parks is Logan Circle, located at the base of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway (which was modeled after the Champs-Élysées in Paris). Here I paused for a picture by the Swann Memorial Fountain.
Stop #3: The LOVE Statue
For the bicentennial celebration in 1976, Robert Indiana lent Philadelphia a large aluminum sculpture of his “love” image. After failing to secure a sale with the city, Indiana’s gallery in New York took the statue back, causing an uproar. F. Eugene Dixon, a local businessman and then chairman of the Philadelphia Art Commission, purchased the work and donated it to the city, and soon it was reinstalled in the Plaza, now affectionately referred to as LOVE Park.
Here we stopped for a picture with the iconic image, waiting in the crowded line like two tourists. After taking a picture for the family in front of us (a couple and their teenage daughter), we asked them to reciprocate. The couple acknowledged our Trump hats and said, “We’re down with that,” and my wife handed her iPhone to the daughter, who proceeded to snap a dozen pics while a rather large, culturally diverse crowd gathered in the line behind us, watching us pose and spread our MAGA love. The father than shook my hand, cracked a huge smile, and said, “The Phillies are having a tough year, especially Harper. Good luck.” I thanked him and we went on our way.
Stop #4: “I Love Philly” in LOVE Park
We walked over from the iconic LOVE statue to the very touristy life size “I Love Philly” sign. Here we did a repeat of the last picture: we took a photo for a family in front of us, who appeared to be visiting foreigners, and then asked if they could return the favor. A young Arab man nodded, and snapped a series of pics with Deb’s iPhone, as a long line backed up and people watched and waited.
Stop #5: Independence Hall
Yes, the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution were both signed here. We’re talking some big names between the two of them, folks like Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin, John Adams, Samuel Adams, James Madison, and George Washington. God Bless these wise and courageous men.
Stop #6: Old City Souvenir
Deb wanted to buy a souvenir for a relative from California, so we stopped in Old City Souvenir at 3rd and Market while we were in the neighborhood. We walked in the front door and immediately Deb pointed out the Trump 2020 hats, which were above the Rocky T-shirt I was looking at. But the Trump swag didn’t stop there. Behind the counter were Trump bucket hats, key chains, and bobble heads, amazingly enough. Who knew Old City Philadelphia was so into spreading MAGA love?