People of the Park


People of the Park is a project that celebrates the stories of individuals who currently have an on-going, personal connection with Tacony Creek Park in Philadelphia.

Tacony Creek Park is an under-appreciated green space within the Philadelphia Parks and Recreation system. It receives considerably less public attention and notice than other parks within the system that are more well-known, such as Fairmount Park and Pennypack Park.

Part of what makes Tacony Creek Park so special and unique is its connection to the larger Tookany/Tacony-Frankford Watershed, which winds through several working class and lower-income neighborhoods in the city of Philadelphia. Demographically, the neighborhoods and communities surrounding TTF are extremely diverse. It is an ethnically, linguistically, economically and culturally rich landscape.

People of the Park reflects not only the rich backgrounds and heritages of the individuals featured, but also their special relationships with the park itself, and the many ways in which they spend time inside this beautifully biodiverse, urban green space.

What is common among each person featured in this project is their passion and love of Tacony Creek Park.

Through images, words, voices and sound, we hope that those who encounter People of the Park will be inspired by the physical “portrait signs” along the park trails and the accompanying online project webpage. What you encounter, see, and hear is a true reflection of the interactions, investment and reciprocity these featured individuals have generously shared with us. Their stories and personal expressions are as alive and growing as the park itself.

Our mutual call to action is an opportunity for all who visit the park to join TTF, Olney Culture Lab, and these featured “People of the Park” to act as strong advocates for preserving and protecting the unique environmental and cultural asset that is Tacony Creek Park.

If you would like to contribute towards the Tacony Creek Park People of the Park project in honor of Julie Slavet's Retirement, please donate here. 

Find the Signs

Olney Culture Lab Project Team: 

  • Ambrose Liu and Varissa McMickens Blair (project managers)
  • Paola Nogueras (photographer)
  • Carolina Gomez (graphic design)
  • June Lopez (sound design)

Portrait Signs fabricated and installed by MS Signs.

Additional project support provided by:

  • Indochinese American Council
  • Korean Cultural Center
  • Samuel Dupre
  • Cambodian Association of Greater Philadelphia
  • St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church
  • New Life Church
  • Maria Moise