Dozens of volunteers gathering to remove graffiti from James River Park

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Richmond’s James River Park system is dealing with spray-painted vandalism on its dry rocks and beyond. Now, the group tasked with taking care of the park is stepping up to remove the graffiti.

Josh Stutz, the executive director of Friends of the James River Park, said that vandalism on the dry rocks on and around Belle Isle have been popping up more and more recently.

“In the summer, it’s a lot higher. Right now, it’s been built up a little while on the dry rocks, so we’re going to try to focus on that area this weekend,” Stutz said.

Friends of the James River Park is set to host a graffiti removal event. Dozens of volunteers are going to paint over the vandalism, starting from the 22nd Street parking lot near Riverside Drive, from 9 a.m. 12 p.m. this Saturday.

“There are kids out here, and when people write rude words and offensive things or draw offensive things in different parts of the park, we think it’s our responsibility to cover it up,” Stutz said.

Stutz said the group has been organizing graffiti removal events about once a month. They get rid of the unwanted illustrations by painting over them, pressure washing and by using other techniques.

“There’s hundreds of pieces of graffiti,” he said. “It’s, I think, a defeatist attitude to say they’re just going to come back and do it again, but so will we. We’ll come back again. Paint over it again.”

Anyone interested in volunteering with Friends of James River Park can find out more on its website.

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