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Reading Avenue Share Bear - Walking

Artist Arline Christ’s “Spirit” tries to capture symbols of friendship and a teacher’s gift—sometimes a glimpse of the “spirits” of young people as they come and go in our lives. Red and black colors capture the spirit of Boyertown’s bears.
Dave Brown, sponsor of “Abe,” the Lincoln Bear, scrutinizes bears at BASH’s 2005 Arts Expo; “Spirit,” Reading Avenue’s Share Bear, and artist Arline Christ, stand “in ready” behind him, watching.
Arline Christ, artist for “Spirit,” Reading Avenue’s Share Bear, chats with Christy Pierce, student treasurer for Bear Fever, at the May 7, 2005, Arts Expo in front of “The Bear-ister, ”Barrister (Lawyer) Bear.


  • Arline Christ
    1082 Mitch Road
    Pottstown, PA 19465

    Arline is a former Boyertown Junior High West art teacher. She serves currently as the Art Director for the Carousel at Pottstown public art project.

    “Spirit Bear,” will feature Boyertown’s colors of red and black with images in silver and gold foil. The theme being promoted is friendship--our need to value our new friends and our old friends—the silver and gold of our lives.


  • Wren and Company
    Joan Miller
    32 South Reading Avenue
    Boyertown, PA 19512
    FAX 610-369-0409

  • Affirmative Funding
    William J.Hunter, Broker/Owner
    34 Warwick Street
    Boyertown, PA 19512
    FAX 610-473-0515

  • Mario’s Pizza
    159 South Reading Avenue
    Boyertown, PA 19512

  • Schaeffer’s Family Restaurant
    Terri and Brian Schaeffer
    45 South Reading Avenue
    Boyertown, PA 19512

  • Media Fusion Technologies
    151 South Reading Avenue
    Boyertown, PA 19512
    FAX 610-369-7795

  • Boyertown Publishing Company
    Scott Gabel, Executive Vice President
    48 South Reading Avenue
    Boyertown, PA 19512
    FAX 610-367-7093

  • Gerhart, Hartman and Ritner Insurance Agency
    138 South Reading Avenue
    Boyertown, PA 19512

  • Boyertown Vision Center
    Keith Reitnauer
    135 North Reading Avenue
    Boyertown, PA 19512
    FAX 473-7452

  • Dr .Edward Furman, optometrist
    135 North Reading Avenue
    Boyertown, PA 19512

  • Dr. David Donahue, optometrist
    14 South Reading Avenue
    Boyertown, PA 19512
    FAX 610-367-1658

Journal Entry
by Aishah McNeil

At first glimpse he is stunning red bear who commands the attention of his audience. The attractive and decorative design along his bodice grasps the interest of its viewer. As the Reading Avenue Share Bear it is not only a beautiful creation, but also holds a special meaning in the heart of its artist, Arline C. Christ.

The Mind behind the Design
Mrs. Arline Christ is a former art teacher at Boyertown Junior High West. As a former student, I can attest to her exceptional teaching skills. She is definitely a woman who has a passion for what she does. Although she no longer teaches, she is currently the Director of Art for the Pottstown Carousel Project.

In her spare time, she enjoys painting real wood animals. Over the past few months, she has been diligently working on this bear for Bear Fever. Her personal goal for this project is to show people the wonderful ideas and talents that Boyertown has to offer. She stated that, “Other areas showcase their artists, now it's time for us, and there are so many.”

More Than Meets the Eye
This bear transcends the physical, serving as Mrs. Christ’s “shining memorial to the spirit of the best of Boyertown.” While visiting the Ukraine she heard a saying that reminded her of the students that show up in her life. Believed to be an old Boy Scout saying it reads, “Make new friends, But keep the old, some are silver, some are gold.”

Mrs. Christ has participated in the Boyertown Mural and the Sister City Exchange. She has realized that there are so many things about Boyertown that are great, especially the kids.

Supporting the Spirit
The creation of this Share Bear was sponsored by several businesses and professional offices on Reading Avenue in Boyertown. These businesses include Wren and Company; Affirmative Funding; Mario’s Pizza, Media Fusion Technologies; Boyertown Publishing Company; Gerhart, Hartman, and Ritner Insurance Agency; David Donahue, Optometrist; and Ed Furman and Keith Reitnauer of the Vision Center.

I had the opportunity to speak with several of the sponsors.
When speaking with William J. Hunter of Affirmative Funding, he stated that he chose to sponsor a bear because, “My sister-in-law is involved. The bears are nice looking and good for business.”

Joe from Mario’s, when asked the same question, stated that he was convinced to sponsor the bear when Judy Hunter spoke to him because, “I’ve known her for twenty years, and it’s just a good thing.”

After interviewing Gerhart, Hartman, and Ritner about how they felt the project would affect the community, they stated that, “It will improve Boyertown and will be pleasant to look at. It’s like decorating a house.”

When asked what their sponsorship will do for their business, Wren and Company stated that “It’s a good opportunity for networking.”