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Hate Incident Prompts 'Free to be Tree' Art Installation

May 09, 2024 11:17PM ● By Jeanne Fratello
A recent incident of racist and hate vandalism on a tree in Sand Dune Park inspired one Girl Scout troop to create a "Free to be Tree" temporary art installation promoting positivity.

Members of Manhattan Beach Girl Scout Troop 4825 began by decorating a tree at Sand Dune Park on Thursday; the troop now invites all community members to participate by adding handmade crafts that "represent positivity and love."

 

The tree is located at the southeast stairs of Sand Dune Park closest to the cul-de-sac at 29th and Blanche. "Help us show that everyone is Free to Be in Manhattan Beach," reads a sign at the base of the tree.

The tree that the troop is decorating is not the same tree in which racist vandalism was discovered three weeks ago; that vandalized tree was in a more secluded and off-the-beaten path location.

"We chose a location that will be easy for people of all abilities to get to and participate, as well as being in a prominent spot with more traffic and visibility," said troop leader Samantha Maynard. 

The community is invited to view or add to the decorations on the tree from now until June 19th, or Juneteenth, said Maynard. The scouts will tend to and monitor the installation during that time period.

 



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