Killion tours Kennett

State Sen. Tom Killion, R-9, took a guided tour through the streets of Kennett Square with Borough Council President Dan Maffei as his guide.

Also along for Thursday’s walking tour were Council Vice President Geoff Bosley and Borough Manager Joe Scalise.

The tour had nothing to do with the upcoming election in November, Killion said, rather it was to get acquainted with the borough and learn what state resources he can bring to Kennett to satisfy its needs.

Killion became a state senator in April.

After walking along State Street and stopping into a few places — Kennett Library and The Mushroom Cap — Killion said he was impressed with the borough.

“It’s an amazing place,” he said. “It has a small hometown feel, a lot like Media Borough near where I live, and West Chester. It has restaurants and places for art. It’s a walkable community, and that’s really the future.”

What he hopes to do, he said, is to help the borough get some assistance for various projects.

“This council is doing a great job. They have a lot of ideas, and I want to help,” he said. “There’s lots of programs in the commonwealth, and I want to bring some of those tax dollars home to this community. And I’m looking forward to the Mushroom Festival.”

That help would come in the form of getting the borough some grants.

Maffei told Killion the borough would like assistance in getting money to expand the parking garage behind the Genesis Building and for the library’s eventual move.

For Maffei, Killion’s visit was significant.

“We can’t do everything by ourselves. We can’t live in a vacuum. We need help from others. We can’t do all the things we want to do without some other people pulling for us in other places,” he said.

Maffei said it would be helpful having someone like Killion facilitate communication with state agencies as well as getting grant money.

He also gave Killion a brief history of how Kennett Square came to be known as the mushroom capital of the world. Maffei explained that people used to grow carnations, but noticed that mushrooms would grow under the carnation benches. At first, the growers cultivated and sold both, but soon learned that mushrooms brought in more money.

“They said, ‘The heck with the carnations,’” Maffei told him.

Killion was elected in a special election in April and must run again this fall. He will face Democrat Marty Molloy, the same person he beat in the spring.

The special election was necessitated after former state Sen. Dominic F. Pileggi became a Common Pleas judge in Delaware County.

About Rich Schwartzman

Rich Schwartzman has been reporting on events in the greater Chadds Ford area since September 2001 when he became the founding editor of The Chadds Ford Post. In April 2009 he became managing editor of ChaddsFordLive. He is also an award-winning photographer.

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