A few weeks ago, the running community of Syracuse along with folks in the Strathmore neighborhood, celebrated the installation of the Mountain Goat Run monument at the roundtop in Upper Onondaga Park, overlooking the city. The statue, a goat, was sculpted by local artist, Sharon BuMann, and pays tribute to the individuals who have participated or enhanced the oldest and most historic foot race in the area.
Today, BuMann was back at the park, cleaning paintballs off the statue.
This was the second time the goat has been vandalized in the last few days. Strathmore resident and local columnist, Sean Kirst, first heard it has been hit after seeing a post on Facebook and immediately got to work scrubbing the monument that has quickly become a beloved feature in the area.
Kirst wonders if more people knew the story behind the structure, would that discourage such disregard? “If you understand and appreciate the idea behind a monument, you’re less likely to vandalize or desecrate it,” he said.
BuMann is hopeful that the symbol she created won’t be neglected like other monuments in the area, including The Rock of the Marne, highlighted by Kirst earlier this week.
Tony Martin, a member of the Strathmore Neighborhood Association and a key volunteer of the Mountain Goat Run, says this statue will most definitely be preserved.
Martin, who spotted the second act of vandalism yesterday, joined BuMann to clean the statue today. Martin plans to meet with local law enforcement to begin an investigation and is hopeful that one of the unused paintballs found nearby could offer them a clue about the perpetrators.
Martin states he will be keeping an eye on the goat until further precaution has been implemented. “Additional signs and cameras will be installed to protect the monument in the near future,” he said.
Also at the park today, Ed Griffin, President of Mountain Goat Run Foundation who helped spearhead the project. Griffin has no doubt that the statue belongs there.
Griffin noted the recognition the statue has received throughout social media and by those who attended the race in early May, further strengthening a sense of community.
That same strength could be found in the work of the good samaritans at the park this afternoon, an unwavering attitude and an appreciation for our stories.