'Doughboy' Is Neon Green, And While Some Love It, The Powers That Be Do Not

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Is it gaudy green or the new rave?

An historic New York City park has been repainted and some are stunned by the break with tradition, CBS 2’s Jennifer McLogan reported Tuesday.

The bronzed and wounded American infantryman, known as a “Doughboy,” can now be spotted from blocks away.

Still covered in paint splatters, Edgar Cartegena was bursting with pride. Historic Doughboy Park in Woodside, Queens is refurbished and sparkling, in his eyes.

“It looks so beautiful. This color, I choose it, because I want to match it with the flag that’s up there, the Parks Department flag,” said Cartagena, a volunteer painter.

Cartegena personally doled out $33 on lime green paint. The graffiti disappeared. Neighborhood children — and many veterans – were whitewashing and trimming walls with the new bright, breaking from the darker green custom.

“They left it up to us, but they cooperated,” war veteran and Woodside resident Ed Bergendahl said, when asked if the Parks Department approved of the color.

But veteran and volunteers later learned the Parks Department may no longer be so cooperative.

Doughboy Park was recently painted by a group of local veterans and other neighborhood volunteers.

While we appreciate their stewardship, the park will be repainted to its original color in consultation with our art and antiquities conservators,” the department said in a statement.

“I don’t pretend to be an expert on colors, but I don’t think we should be so finicky,” City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer said.

When told that some people have called the color, tacky, resident Bridget Knapp said, “Oh I am sure, but it is not tacky but it is absolutely gorgeous. It is life.”

Community volunteers said they will be heartbroken, even humiliated, if the neon lime color they chose is painted over by the Parks Department in a traditional hunter green.

The residents are praying the park will remain glowing green for the 90th Doughboy anniversary next week.

Bright or dark green aside, Doughboy Park will celebrate veterans on May 23, and volunteers said everyone’s invited.

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