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Gary Pletsch

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On June 26, Gary Pletsch, a potter and avid gardener, invited the public to his Wilkinsburg home for Toll Road, an artistic stunt in which he protested the proposed Mon-Fayette Expressway project by building a sidewalk through his garden. Pletsch's buddies Tom Petrola (right) and Peter Kope immediately put shovel to dirt. As the morning wore on, they built wood frames for the cement. Kope, one of the prime diggers (and a partner in the Attack Theatre dance group), says he wasn't a big fan of Pletsch's idea at first: "I fought him tooth and nail," he said. After about 10 minutes of digging, Kope and Petrola leaned on their shovels. "Break time!" Kope announced.

"State workers, huh?" heckled partygoer Linnea Glick.

Pletsch, who began working on the dense, perennial-filled garden 13 years ago, seemed barely agitated by the destruction: "I thought it was going to be painful, but it wasn't. But don't talk to me at 6 a.m. tomorrow morning!"

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