Penns Valley

Millheim event to focus on sexual violence

Millheim is getting ready to air some dirty laundry.

It isn’t gossip. It’s actually the kind of thing that no one wants to hear.

It’s about sexual violence.

From 6-8 p.m. Wednesday, on Main Street, the community will be “Lining Up for Sexual Assault Awareness.”

It isn’t about standing in line. It’s about what’s hanging from it: T-shirts that tell stories or give information about sexual violence, how it happens and how to stop it.

“Forty years later, I still experience intense shame and sadness,” said one shirt posted to the event’s website on Facebook.

“Don’t teach me what not to wear,” said another. “Teach not to rape.”

The event is part of The Clothesline Project, started in 1990 in Cape Cod to bring stories of sexual assault out of the darkness.

Pat Wolfe says the point is to show that these stories happen everywhere.

“It’s a very serious concern we have in the area about rape and sexual assault,” she said.

Wolfe said her community is “a good town,” and people are proud of the work they have done to keep it that way, but that doesn’t mean that they don’t have to be vigilant about the same kind of sexual violence issues that affect college towns and big cities.

The Millheim event is just the latest of several that have taken place in Centre County for weeks as various communities and organizations observed Sexual Assault Awareness Month throughout April.

Lori Falce: 814-235-3910, @LoriFalce