PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A birthday block party took place Thursday in North Philadelphia for a hometown hero and one of the funniest guys on the big and small screen.
Kevin Hart Day is a celebration, an honor for a man who has done so much for the city.
The comedian embraced the rain and showers of applause during a ceremony where a mural of the entertainer was unveiled at Max’s Cheesesteaks, just around the corner from Hart’s childhood home.
“There was a point in my life where I needed people to buy cheesesteaks for me at Max’s,” Hart told the crowd. “And now when I go to Max’s, my face is on the side of the building. It’s unbelievable.”
For a man who has broken stand up comedy records, box office records and he’s also a renowned entertainment mogul, Hart said the day meant something more.
“I think that this is honestly the biggest honor that I have gotten in my career to date,” he said.
“I’m trying to be a representation of the positivity that can come through Philadelphia,” Hart explained. “You hear a lot about the negative but not enough about the positive.”
And it’s his positive outlook on his humble beginnings that will truly make him the “Hart” of the city for a long time to come.
“He identifies himself as a Philly guy and a North Philly guy,” Councilman David Oh, who introduced the City Council resolution declaring July 6 to be Kevin Hart Day in the City of Philadelphia, said. “And a lot of his stories are about Philadelphia and from Philly and then he has gone on from comedy to writing books and doing movies. But he remembers our city and he remembers the people.
Charles Hall, a Kevin Hart fan, said, “He means a lot to Philadelphia. He helped with the computers, a lot of schools…the kids–it’s really nice.”
Hart also received a Liberty Bell and a Phillies jersey as his son joined him on stage and his wife, daughter and other family members were in the crowd.
“I eat, breathe and sleep this city, man, through the good and the bad,” Hart said.
But it’s the good that Philadelphia celebrated today. A man. A mural. And a lasting legacy.