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Medford Arts Group Launches Commonwealth Places Campaign to Support Musical Installation

$7,000 goal to win matching grant through MassDevelopment’s Commonwealth Places Initiative
June 11, 2018


Kelsey Abbruzzese, MassDevelopment, 617-330-2086 & 617-448-9077 (cell)

Jonathan Berk, Patronicity, 617-750-6008

Dan Joseph, 774-278-1347

MassDevelopment and the civic crowdfunding platform Patronicity have launched a new Commonwealth Places campaign with the Mystic River Watershed Association, Medford Arts Council and the Pickup Music Project (PuMP) to revitalize an underused park in Medford with a new interactive sound structure for children and adults of all ages to enjoy.

The “Mystic Musical Fence,” to be installed at Macdonald Park in Medford, will consist of two structures with aluminum chimes attached that create musical sound when touched. The installation is an ode to artist Paul Matisse’s popular sculpture, The Musical Fence, an interactive instrument that was first installed on the streets of Cambridge in the 1980s and is currently located in the Town of Lincoln. PuMP’s own team of musicians, engineers, programmers and craftsmen designed the two structures for Macdonald Park; they structures vary in height and are accessible to all park visitors who wish to make music.

“With the installation of the Mystic Musical Fence, park visitors of all ages and musical levels can unleash their creativity and enjoy the outdoor space,” said MassDevelopment President and CEO Lauren Liss. “MassDevelopment looks forward to supporting this community-led effort to reactivate Macdonald Park, using open space and recreation to spur economic development in greater Boston.”

If the campaign reaches its crowdfunding goal of $7,000 by June 30 at midnight, the project will win a matching grant with funds from MassDevelopment’s Commonwealth Places program. Learn more and donate at

"The Mystic Musical Fence combines all the elements that we have been looking for in outdoor public art—it is visually attractive, accessible to all ages and abilities, interactive and educational, and a wonderful complement to the other enhancements of this special Medford park,” said Gary Roberts, chair of the Medford Arts Council. “We're excited by this innovative project and hope that it will be the first in an ongoing community effort to bring more public art to our city,” added Roberts.

Commonwealth Places is a collaborative initiative from MassDevelopment and Patronicity that leverages public support for placemaking projects through crowdfunding and a matching grant from MassDevelopment. The program engages residents in the development of strategic projects in their towns and cities. In June 2017, MassDevelopment announced $1 million in funding for the second year of the program, which has supported successful campaigns across the Commonwealth, from Northampton to Hyannis. Communities, nonprofits, and other entities can learn more about these successful projects, donate to ongoing campaigns, and apply at

MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, financial institutions, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth. During FY2017, MassDevelopment financed or managed 377 projects generating investment of more than $4.3 billion in the Massachusetts economy. These projects are projected to create about 9,488 jobs and build or rehabilitate 1,863 residential units.