Mural Arts’ walking tours resume this weekend in Center City

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — With COVID-19 safety precautions in place, Mural Arts Philadelphia’s popular walking tour returns to Center City this weekend.

Tour guide Ellen Soloff will lead a maximum of 10 people on the Center City Mural Mile Walking Tour, during which everyone must wear a face covering for the entire 90-minute adventure.

“People are trying to get out and about,” said Soloff, adding that the walking tour is a great summertime activity for families to enjoy together outdoors — especially after being cooped up for months.

“We think that there will be a lot of family units coming together,” she continued. “Even if there are 10 people, we think there will be two or three family units, so I think people will have the ability to be able to social distance. We will go onto streets that are a little less busy, so people will be safe.”

There are 40 murals in Center City, and participants will visit and learn about the inspiration for 12 on the tour.

“We can keep our distance from other people and still be able to see a great variety of art,” Soloff added.

The murals are created in 5-foot sections at a time, then placed on walls across the city, like the “Water Gives Life” mural on the side of a building near 12th and Arch streets. The mural, created by artists Eurhi Jones and David McShane, shows various images of water, colorful plants, flowers and pollinators.

“It’s a real call for us as citizens to think, how is it we want to live?” Jones explained.

“People on multiple passings can notice things they haven’t noticed before and take away their own meaning they can read into it,” added McShane. “Clearly, water is an important part of this mural, it’s pretty present in there.”

Tours will be available on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays at 10 a.m. Tickets are $24 per person and must be purchased online.