PHILADELPHIA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Philadelphia Mummers today unveiled a newly redesigned and updated website, www.PhillyMummers.com, to give their fans and Mummers themselves a convenient, one-stop location to get information about Mummers history, what differentiates the various Mummers Divisions, education and training materials, updates on Mummers activities, news about their work in the community, and much more.
A key feature of the new website is the section on Educational Sessions. In the aftermath of last year’s New Year’s parade controversy, leaders from the five traditional Mummers Divisions issued an open letter decrying the insensitivity and bigotry displayed by a group of parade marchers and declaring that such demonstrations are at odds with the Mummers’ desire to provide safe, family-oriented entertainment that is inclusive and respects everyone regardless of culture, race or sexual identification.
As part of that commitment, Mummers leaders spent the better part of the year working with City officials, educators and other professionals to develop a series of live training sessions and videotaped presentations on cultural appropriation, the appropriate use of satire, and LGBT sensitivity. Videos of these training sessions are available for viewing on the PhillyMummers.com website.
For any groups planning to incorporate a specific cultural or ethnic theme, Mummers leaders at the beginning of the year established the requirement that Mummers include advisors from the particular cultural or ethnic group to assure that the planned entertainment program is respectful of its culture and traditions.
In addition, the Mummers agreed to submit details about their planned programs or skit themes, costumes and make-up in advance so that City officials can make recommendations on presentations that might be considered offensive. Any Mummers groups that do not comply with the information they submit will not be eligible to be judged.
“Those of us who have spent our lives promoting the traditions and family-oriented values that the Mummers represent were, frankly, quite embarrassed last New Year’s Day by the outrageous actions of a few out-of-control parade marchers,” said George J. Badey, III, an attorney who is also a lifetime Mummer and chairman of “Love the Mummers” committee.
“It was disheartening to see those incidents continuously rerun on television, in newspapers, and in social media channels – and to know that Mummers in general were being judged based on those graphic scenes,” he said.
“During the past year, we’ve worked diligently with City officials, members from various cultural and ethnic groups, and the LGBT community to raise awareness among our members and to make sure those kinds of ugly displays are not repeated.”
“We hope people will take the time to view the new PhillyMummers.com website so they can get a better idea of what Mummers are about, what we do to support other organizations and individuals in our communities, and what we’ve been doing to reach out and encourage diverse cultures and groups to become part of this great tradition,” Badey said.