A Mummer’s Tale

Larry Cellucci has worked at Cima Network for four years, and is a key member of our fabrication team. His career in the sign industry has spanned more than three decades. He embodies Cima Network’s culture of collaboration and attention to detail. Every day, starting at 5 a.m., Larry can be found bending metal, building channel letters and engaged in other types of handcrafted signmaking.

Larry’s passions extend beyond the shop. He performs with the Mummers, a troupe that has marched through downtown Philadelphia to ring in New Year’s Day for more than a century. According to the phillymummers.com website, its roots trace back to ancient Egypt, Rome and France, where processions of ornately costumed performers marched to celebrate the new year’s arrival. Since the early 1800s, costumed ensembles have staged New Year’s Day performances in Philadelphia, and the first Mummers’ parade was officially sanctioned in 1901.

For 38 years, Larry has drummed with a String Band troupe, which currently includes 48 members. His wife, Inez, has also performed on her alto saxophone with the band for 16 years at the Mummers’ Parade. Remembering the early days of his time in the Mummers he said, “The parade route used to stretch on for miles and last for about 16 hours. It was crazy. Frank Rizzo, who was the mayor of Philadelphia when I started, was a huge fan of the Mummer’s Parade and made sure that the city supported it. There have been some challenges with funding in recent years, and the parade route isn’t as long as it used to be, but it’s still a tradition that many in the city love.”

Cima Network is in the process of expanding its operation, and recently signed a lease that will provide additional production capacity in an adjacent building. The plans and outfitting of the space are still in process, but Larry is likely to play a key role in managing the new location’s fabrication.

“I’ve learned a lot in my time in the sign business, and I’m happy to share what I know with younger guys who are learning the business,” he said.

“But, it’s important to me that I stay actively involved in building signs, not just managing. I can’t quite lift what I used to, but I love working with my hands. Technology has changed the sign business, but there will always be a need for quality components built by hand.”

Whether forming aluminum in the shop or hitting the skins in the Mummers’ Parade, Larry is clearly driven by his passions. We appreciate his contributions to Cima, and to helping preserve a Philadelphia cultural icon.