Bridesburg neighborhood regains Christmas joy after tree vandalism

"A couple people offered to pay the entire expense of getting it redone. That's the kind of community it is."

Corey Davis Image
Thursday, December 1, 2022
Bridesburg community rallies together after Christmas tree vandalism
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What happened after a Philly neighborhood's Christmas tree was vandalized? First, neighbors offered to pay the expense of getting it fixed. Then, the Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union 98 stepped in to replace the damaged lights.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Members of the Bridesburg community in Philadelphia are teaming up to help redecorate the neighborhood tree after it was vandalized over the weekend.

The Christmas tree was vandalized Sunday night, a day after the tree lighting ceremony outside the Bridesburg Rec Center on Richmond Street.

"Monday morning we got a call from the rec center saying our tree was vandalized. It was no longer lit and that lights were found with wires cut," said Kathy Enggasser, a member of the Bridesburg Civic Association.

The Bridesburg Civic Association has been installing the lights for nearly 10 years.

They decided to put up a Christmas tree this year, but then the vandalism happened.

"It's been a nuts couple of days. A couple people offered to pay the entire expense of getting it redone. That's the kind of community it is," said Jacqueline DeSanctis, also known as "Miss Jackie."

Miss Jackie knows the neighborhood well. The block is named after her.

She wasn't surprised by what happened next - The Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union 98 stepped in.

They took down the damaged lights and installed new ones for free.

As for who might be responsible for all of the damage, Engasser has her suspicions.

"We think it was teenagers," Enggasser said.

Police are investigating and will review video footage from cameras in the area.

"The tree brings so much hope and faith to everybody," Enggasser said. "We just want them to understand you did more than damage a tree. You tried to dampen the spirits of the community, which didn't go. Just rallied around."

The message now to the community is to be on lookout for the tree to be lit up once again on Thursday night.