Philadelphia throws parade for return of LOVE sculpture

PHILADELPHIA -- "LOVE" is back in Philadelphia, just in time for Valentine's Day.

The famous 1976 Robert Indiana sculpture returned to its namesake park Tuesday after making a number of stops in a parade around Philadelphia before the reinstallation.

School children cheered and those gathered spontaneously sang the fight song for the Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles as a forklift placed the sculpture atop a pedestal.

Corey Newkirk of Fishtown said, "I saw all the people hanging out here. It's nice you can see how it brings people together."

Margot Berg, of the Office of Art Culture and Creative Economy said, "They miss it. They want to meet at the love statue. People make marriage proposals at the love statue."

The sculpture was temporarily installed at nearby City Hall in 2016 while Love Park was going through a renovation.

It was taken out of view a year ago for repairs ahead of the park's reopening.

The perennial tourist attraction looks a bit different. It's been repainted to the original colors of red, green and purple that the artist originally used. At some point over the decades, the purple had been repainted blue.

David Levan of Fairmount says, "I was anxious to see the new paint job they did a beautiful job really nice finish on it."

Berg says, "That involves stripping off all of the old paint, repairing any of the issues that we found with the metal underneath it's made out of aluminum so there's some rusting, some cracks. We learned that the colors were intended to be red green and purple, not red green and blue."
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