Carmella Playground, at 2100 Wakeling Street (Torresdale and Wakeling), is easy to miss as you drive up Wakeling on your way from Aramingo Avenue. It’s that big plot on the left as you pass Worth Street with the skate park on the Torresdale Avenue end. Yet, if you take a walk inside you find a place brimming with activity.
The property is large enough, at a little over 11 acres, to support a shuffleboard court, a skate park, a sports field, two basketball courts and four ball fields. Indoor activities include Dance Domination, Girl Scouts, Building Bridges, Kids Zumba, an after school program, Movie Night, Arts and Crafts, Game night and Bingo. There are plans to start Girls volleyball in the Spring, T-ball, and possibly soccer.
The Community/Advisory Council is very active in support of the playground and raises funds targeted at improving and enhancing the facilities.
Poverty and crime are major issues in Frankford but Kristin Wisniewski, Recreation Leader, says she wants Carmella to be a part of the solution to those problems. Working toward that goal, Carmella hosted a stop the violence day back in July with “The Block Gives Back” group who organized a stop the violence flag football tournament with live entertainment, vendors, and food. It turned a hundreds of neighborhood folks to join in the activities.
Coming up this Saturday, there will be a free Concert at Carmella featuring Jah People, a local band, where they will be collecting canned goods for Preston and Steve’s Camp out for hunger. There will be plenty of food trucks, informational tables, a skateboard clinic and a prize for best Halloween costume.
Carmella is a good example of how a city facility can make a difference in the lives of children and the direction of the community. It takes leadership, commitment and participation of everyone to make it work.
All are invited to come out on Saturday, October 28th, to see what’s happening.