Clark Park Thursday Farmers’ Market to return June 4

Posted on 28 May 2015


As many of you noticed Clark Park Thursday Farmers’ Market hasn’t re-opened yet (it usually opens in May), but no worries. The Food Trust representative Katy Wich has informed us that the market will re-open at 43rd and Baltimore next week, on June 4.

This year’s vendor lineup will include:

– Homestead Garden (vegetables and fruit from Ephrata PA)
– Quaff Meadows (vegetables and fruit from Christiana PA)
– Frecon Farms (fruit, baked goods, and hard cider from Boyertown PA)
– Fifth of a Farm Creations (locally sourced preserves and jams produced in Philly)
– Naturally Sweet Baked Goods (vegan, locally sourced sweets and desserts produced in Philly)
– Southwest Child Rebel Gardeners (locally made energy bars)

In addition to the vendors, there will be cooking demos about once an hour. They will be held every week through August.

Also a reminder that on June 4 Tangle Movements Arts will present their new, free aerial show, Intersections, in the park near the market, starting at 6 p.m. Some of the performers will be disguised as market shoppers!

Clark Park Thursday Farmers’ Market is open every Thursday from 3 to 7 p.m. and runs through the end of November. Check out the Food Trust’s website for more information.

Comments (0)

The Porch 2.0 unveiled

Posted on 27 May 2015

The Porch, the lively public space near 30th Street Station, reopened today after being closed for a few weeks for renovations and upgrades, which include new landscaping design and seating. Also, some cool new features were introduced and a more permanent food concept, The Rotisserie, in addition to gourmet food trucks that have been offering food, drinks and desserts at The Porch since its inception in 2011.






Comments (0)

57-year-old man arrested during burglary on 4000 block of Spruce; plainclothes police officer injured

Posted on 27 May 2015

Plainclothes police officers arrested a 57-year-old male during a burglary on the 4000 block of Spruce Street on Tuesday. The buildings on this block are mainly used for off-campus student housing. The man was caught inside a three-story twin house shortly after 2 p.m. when he exited an apartment with a bag filled with stolen items, including a $1000 Mac Book laptop, according to police. A plainclothes police officer was injured during a struggle which ensued when he and another officer tried to detain the suspect. The injured officer was taken to the hospital and treated for a head injury and a broken hand.

Plainclothes police observed the suspect earlier that day when he was first sitting on the steps of one of the buildings and then was walking up and down the block, according to a police report. The officers matched the male’s appearance to an earlier crime alert in the area. When the man entered one of the buildings, the officers followed him and heard some banging noise coming from the second floor. When the officers went to investigate they noticed that the door of one of the apartments was damaged, and then they observed the suspect exiting the apartment with a bag in his hand. The suspect dropped the bag and ran a few feet down the hallway but then turned back and punched one of the officers, according to police. The suspect was arrested after a short struggle.

Police say that this man is also suspected in other burglaries in the area. On Tuesday, a police source said that burglaries were a concern right now.

Comments (0)

Chili Szechuan to bring its spice to a new location on 4200 block of Chestnut

Posted on 27 May 2015


Chili Szechuan is opening a new location at 4205 Chestnut St. (Photo West Philly Local)

The owners of popular Baltimore Avenue restaurant Chili Szechuan have announced that they will be opening a new location on the 4200 block of Chestnut Street within the next week or so.

We stopped at the restaurant for dinner over the weekend and got a chance to chat with the staff. “We found a bigger place and it’s close to campuses… the current location is doing well business-wise,” one of the restaurant workers said.

The new location is opening at 4205 Chestnut St, at the former Dana Mandi International Foods and Spices space. (Dana Mandi moved next door, to 4211 Chestnut St, last spring). This location is also next door to Kabobeesh restaurant. The new restaurant will have the same menu items as the current location but will feature some new items as well, according to Chili Szechuan owner Kangzhi Ma. Both locations will be open until the end of the calendar year, after which, the owners will make a decision whether to keep the Baltimore Ave location open or not.


Chili Szechuan’s original location at 4626 Baltimore Ave. (Archived photo)

The original Chili Szechuan location opened at 4626 Baltimore Ave in early 2013. We did a food review about the restaurant then and would like to report that it is still as delicious as we remember it to be.

By the way, during our latest visit to Chili Szechuan we stayed off the “Americanized menu” because we felt like there was something snarky about the title, so we went for the authentic stuff. The Dan Dan noodles were very flavorful and the flavor was robust. Next was the deep flash fried chili chicken, with a biting spice. (Be sure to keep the water and napkins coming). Another highlight was the Szechuan style chicken, simmered in sauce and cabbage. The portions were huge, so there were many leftovers.

Rana Fayez

Comments (2)

Tangle Movement Arts to present new aerial show this Thursday in Clark Park. Update: Postponed until June 4

Posted on 26 May 2015


UPDATE (5/27/2015): Due to rain in the forecast for this Thursday, the show has been postponed until next Thursday, June 4. 

Tangle Movement Arts, a West Philly-based acrobatics company known to many by their Tiny Circus performances at Go West! Craft Fest at The Woodlands and other venues, is bringing an all-new, free and family-friendly show, Intersections, to Clark Park this Thursday on Thursday, June 4.

TangleArts2Intersections celebrates the broad communities that gather in the park and the dynamics of daily life. The acrobats will be disguised as normal visitors to the Clark Park Farmers Market, from vegetable shoppers to playground-visiting children to commuters on their way home. The show also celebrates the chance meetings that happen in our public spaces.

Tangle Movement Arts is a circus arts company with an interdisciplinary focus; its work integrates traditional circus like aerial acrobatics with dance, theater, and live music, with an emphasis on queer and female experiences. Tangle has been thrilling audiences with dynamic circus-theater since its inception in 2011.

Intersections premieres at the park near 43rd and Baltimore on Thursday, May 28 June 4 at 6 p.m. The show is part of the City of Philadelphia’s Performances in Public Spaces program, managed by the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy.

(Photos courtesy of Tangle Movement Arts)

Comments (0)

Latest robbery reports; burglaries “definitely an issue,” say police

Posted on 26 May 2015

Police have released some details on a few robberies that took place in the area last week.

Two teenagers were arrested for an attempted mid-day robbery on May 20 on the 4200 block of Pine Street. The incident happened at around 2 p.m. when the suspects, 16 and 18 years old, walked by a 25-year-old man, then stopped and attempted to rob him. The man resisted and the suspects ran off, according to police. They were caught a few blocks away. No injuries were reported.

A gunpoint robbery took place on May 22 at around 11 p.m. on the 4900 block of Spruce Street. Police say a young man ran from behind a 26-year-old woman, who was on her way home from work, and cut her off. He then pointed a small black gun with two barrels at her and demanded her bag. He also took the woman’s phone from her pants pocket. After robbing the woman the man and another male who was on a bike fled north on 49th Street, according to police. The woman wasn’t injured.

Also on May 22, a 19-year-old male was arrested at 52nd and Kingsessing after robbing a 22-year-old woman. The robbery took place shortly after 10 p.m. on the 4600 block of Chester Avenue when the suspect approached the woman and robbed her of her pocketbook which contained several items. The man fled the scene on a bike. Police recovered the victim’s phone.

There have also been several burglaries in the area in the last two weeks, and a police source says that burglaries “are definitely an issue right now.” We’re trying to get more information. See the map below (source: for the reports of robberies and burglaries from May 12 to May 26, 2015.



Comments (1)

Memorial Day flags at The Woodlands

Posted on 25 May 2015


A good way to get down to what Memorial Day is really about is to take a quiet stroll through The Woodlands today. Over the weekend flags were placed at the dozens and dozens of soldiers’ gravestones, some of which date back to the Revolutionary War (Photo by West Philly Local).

Comments (0)

Vendor opportunities at West Philly arts festival, flea market

Posted on 22 May 2015

Here are a couple of nice opportunities for local artists and artisans, businesses and non-profit organizations. Vendors are sought for the upcoming West Philly Flea Market (May 30) and West Park Arts Festival (June 13).

Here is more information from the organizers:

flea markerPhiladelphia vendors are invited to sell at West Philly Flea Market, held outdoors in the parking lot of West Catholic Prep High School at 46th and Chestnut Streets on May 30, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Spaces may be rented for $15 for a single space (16.5’ x 14’) or $25 for a double space (33’ X 14’). Vendors must supply their own tables and displays. To reserve a space, go to Vendor registration deadline is May 27. Walk-ins taken as space allows.

westparkartsVendors are invited for West Park Arts Festival to be held on Saturday, June 13, 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. in Fairmount Park at 4021 Parkside Avenue (on the campus of the School of The Future). Arts & Craft vendor spaces are $40, direct sellers and non handmade items – $60.00, corporate vendors – $200 per space, food vendors – $100 per space (food spaces are limited). The festival organizers are looking for culturally diverse food (Chinese, Thai, Mexican, etc.), as well as vegetarian and sweets. For more information or to apply please visit If you need further assistance, feel free to email

Comments (0)

SRC approves new charter school for West Philly

Posted on 22 May 2015

The School Reform Commission last night approved the revised proposal for a K-4 KIPP charter school in West Philadelphia.

KIPP’s original application, which called for a K-12 school serving more than 1,300 students was rejected in February along with more than 30 other applications for new charters. Only five were approved. KIPP revised the application to change school governance structure, teacher qualifications, opening date and its location. Originally proposed for the Kingsessing neighborhood, the new school will be located in Parkside.

The SRC approved the revised application 3-1. Chairwoman Marjorie Neff voted against the proposal and Commissioner Farrah Jimenez recused herself from the vote because of a possible conflict of interest.  Continue Reading

Comments (0)

Residents, business owners vow to save historic Powelton Village block from demolition

Posted on 21 May 2015

It was standing room only last night as residents and business owners discussed the future of the 3600 block of Lancaster Avenue, one of the signature blocks in the Powelton Village neighborhood.

It was standing room only last night at the Community Education Center as residents and business owners discussed the future of the 3600 block of Lancaster Avenue, one of the signature blocks in the Powelton Village neighborhood (photo by West Philly Local).

Residents and business owners met in the Powelton Village neighborhood last night and vowed to take a stand against the possible demolition of the 3600 block of Lancaster Ave., a historic commercial block that stands in the shadows of glassy high rises encroaching on the neighborhood.

Known as the Lancaster Mews and built in the 1870s, the block of ground floor commercial and upstairs apartments on the south side of Lancaster Ave. is the latest neighborhood symbol of angst over rapidly increasing development in the neighborhood. The Powelton Village Civic Association (PVCA) has tried to stave off the rumored demolition of the block by having it added to the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places.

The PVCA filed the application after it became known that AP Construction, which owns the block, reportedly began interviewing demolition firms.

“The threat of demolition was imminent,” Powelton Village Civic Association zoning chair George Poulin told the standing-room-only crowd of more than 100 people gathered at the Community Education Center last night. “We feel really really threatened by what we are seeing in the neighborhood.”  Continue Reading

Comments (6)

After years on Penn’s campus, Neighborhood Bike Works to open new hub on Lancaster Avenue

Posted on 21 May 2015


Neighborhood Bike Works is moving! (Photo from NBW Facebook page).

Neighborhood Bike Works (NBW), a great neighborhood institution that has been providing bike education programs for youth and bike repair classes for adults for nearly two decades, has just announced its plans to open a new, larger hub and community shop in West Philly this Fall. The new site is located at two side-by-side storefront properties – at 3939 and 3943 Lancaster Avenue. It is one mile from NBW’s current headquarters in the basement of St. Mary’s Church on Locust Walk.

“By moving out of a basement space to a highly visible, street-level site, we hope more families will find us and get involved in our programs,” NBW Executive Director Erin DeCou said in a statement.

A larger space on Lancaster Ave will offer more flexibility and an opportunity for NBW to operate more than one class or event at a time. Located at the intersection of the Mantua, Belmont, and Powelton neighborhoods, the new headquarters will also allow NBW to be closer to more of the communities they serve.  Continue Reading

Comments (0)

Community meeting tonight about future of 3600 block of Lancaster Ave

Posted on 20 May 2015


Lancaster Mews (photo from

Neighbors and all interested parties are invited this evening to learn more about the proposed demolition of Lancaster Mews, the redbrick apartment buildings and storefronts on the 3600 block of Lancaster Avenue, and discuss the future development of the block. This is a great opportunity to share your concerns about the proposed development. The meeting is hosted by Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell and will take place starting at 6 p.m. at Community Education Center’s Meeting House Theatre (3500 Lancaster Ave).

In addition to apartments, Lancaster Mews also houses several businesses and a day care center. According to an article by The Philadelphia Inquirer published earlier this month, the block-long row of houses built in the late 1870’s may be demolished and replaced by apartment buildings aimed mostly at students.

Comments (22)

You lookin’ at me? Bartram’s Garden turkey challenges its reflection

Posted on 19 May 2015

This funny video of a male turkey challenging its reflection in a window was recently filmed at Bartram’s Garden. This is a great time of the year to spend more time at the garden, located at 54th St. and Lindbergh Blvd. (you can drive, bike or hop on the #36 Trolley) whether it is bird watching, nature walks or special events. Go to for more information.

Comments (0)

Election Day! Get out there and vote

Posted on 19 May 2015

vote-symbolThe polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. for today’s citywide primaries, the most important election of the year. Party nominations for Mayor, all 17 City Council and a bunch of judgeships seats are up for grabs.

All 17 City Council seats are on the ballot. Jannie Blackwell is running unopposed in District 3, which covers much of West and Southwest Philadelphia. Some 16 Democratic (including Spruce Hill resident Paul Steinke) and seven Republican candidates (including Spruce Hill resident Matt Wolfe) are running for at-large seats in today’s primary.

Other offices on the ballot include City Commissioner, Supreme Court, Superior Court, Commonwealth Court, Court of Common Pleas, Municipal CourtSheriff and Register of Wills.

Today’s ballot also includes four questions open to any registered voter regardless of party affiliation. One question, a non-binding referendum, asks whether the School Reform Commission should be abolished and local control of the city schools should be restored.

The Committee of 70 has tons of info on today’s election. Go here for a complete rundown on all of the candidates. Go here if you need to find your polling place.

Comments (0)

Ride of Silence honoring killed or injured bicyclists on Wednesday

Posted on 18 May 2015


Photo from

Philly bicyclists will get together this Wednesday (May 20) for the Ride of Silence, the annual international event that honors the cyclists killed or injured by motorists. The ride also raises awareness of cyclists’s right to share the road.

The 8-mile ride will start at 7 p.m. at the foot of the front steps of the Philadelphia Art Museum and will go through parts of West Philadelphia before returning to the starting point. A brief pre-ride dedication ceremony will begin at 6:45 p.m.

Last year about 175 bicyclists participated in the ride and this year the organizers are hoping to attract at least 400 riders.

Here are more details about the Ride of Silence route from the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia:

From the Philadelphia Art Museum the ride will proceed down the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, circle City Hall, continue to Independence Hall, and head over to West Philly via the Walnut St. Bridge. The ride will return to the front of the Art Museum over the Spring Garden Street Bridge.

Riders are asked to gather at 6:30 p.m. The duration of the ride is expected to be one hour. Helmets are required and bicycle lights are encouraged.

Comments (0)

Overcoming illness, breakdowns and lost bags in Ohio, Minor Threats chess team brings home some metal

Posted on 18 May 2015

Minor Threats Chess Club’s coach, Jason Bui, sent us an update on the latest achievements by his students, who recently returned from the Elementary National Championships in Nashville, Tenn. and also participated in other chess championships this spring. We wrote about the club and its fundraising efforts earlier this year. The Minor Threats Chess Club is based at Mitchell Elementary School and its members are West Philly schoolchildren in grades 3 through 8.

It has been a loooong month for the Minor Threats Chess Club. We spent a total of 16 out of 32 days on the road from April to May. We had three very long bus rides. We had our bags lost in Ohio (don’t worry, we got them back). We broke down along the side of the turnpike on the way back from Louisville (everyone got home safe and sound). We had sick kids and parents. The kids never complained.

Syair was sick on Sunday in Nashville. He threw up before his first round. He went in and won and then came out and still couldn’t eat, took a nap, went in and won the last round of the day. He won his first Nationals trophy that weekend.


Derrick Moore, a 4th grader at Mitchell Elementary School, with a trophy. (Photo courtesy of Minor Threats Chess Club)

Junior High Nationals was Derrick’s first Nationals. He won his first individual trophy there.

The Philadelphia Chess Society (our super group consisting of Paul Robeson Chess Club, Minor Threats Chess Club, and Enon Connected Pawns) won 7 trophies at Elementary Nationals. Not bad for only having 13 kids playing.

These trips are amazing opportunities for our kids. They learn so much about the world, chess, and themselves. They get to see that there is a whole big world out there. They get to see that if they are brave and they are willing to work hard that nothing can hold them back.

I would not be able to take these kids on these trips without the support of people like you. THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART!

Comments (2)

New car for Red Paw Relief Team presented near Windermere fire site

Posted on 15 May 2015

Red Paws 1

A Red Paw Emergency Relief Team volunteer and rescued dog posing near the donated car. (Photo by West Philly Local).

Here’s some great news for a great local organization that has helped save lives of hundreds of our little friends and companions since its inception in 2011. Red Paw Emergency Relief Team, a non-profit that responds to fires and other disasters in the city and helps displaced pets, has just received a new vehicle, which will allow them to continue their important work, since their old car started breaking down too often. The new car was donated by NRG Home.

red paw3The new vehicle was presented to Red Paw’s staff and volunteers, including the founder and former firefighter Jennifer Leary, this afternoon near the corner of 48th and Walnut Streets, across the street from the empty lot where the Windermere Court Apartments building once stood. Red Paw was created in the aftermath of the devastating fire at Windermere in January 2011. Many pets remained trapped inside the heavily damaged and structurally unstable building for weeks after the fire, which prompted rescue efforts by local pet rescue organizations.

Jennifer Leary was one of the firefighters responding to the Windermere fire. She founded Red Paw in July 2011.


Comments (2)

Clark and Cedar Parks will be lively this weekend

Posted on 14 May 2015

ClarkParkchairThere is something about eating a meal in the park. Food just seems to taste better outdoors, on a blanket. You can put that theory to test on Friday (May 15) at the third annual Picnic in Cedar Park. The picnicking proper runs from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. You can BYOP (Bring Your Own Picnic) or you can grab a picnic special at these businesses along Baltimore Avenue: The Gold Standard, Dock Street, Hibiscus, Little Baby’s, Mariposa, Penn Pizza or Taco Angeleno and Fresh Deli. Here is the Facebook page for the event.

The park a few blocks east on Baltimore will be jumping on Saturday (May 16). The annual Party in Clark Park runs from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and will feature live music, games for kids, food and a beer garden. The Four Prophet String Band and The Extraordinaires will provide the music and Dock Street will provide the beer. More details are available at The Friends of Clark Park website.


Comments (0)

Old paint, cleaning supplies, even light bulbs: Get rid of household hazardous waste this Saturday

Posted on 14 May 2015

hazardous_waste_caution_sign_2__58561If you have some unwanted toxic or hazardous items or materials in your house or garage, here’s a great chance to dispose of them safely. On Saturday, May 16, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Philadelphia Streets Department’s Sanitation Division will be holding a free household hazardous waste collection event at the 1st District Highway Yard, 4800 Parkside Avenue.

The following materials and items are considered hazardous and will be accepted at this event:

• Paint and paint related materials, including solvent-based paints and stains, paint thinner, varnish, pesticides, chemical fertilizers, swimming pool chemicals.

• Kitchen, bathroom products and cleaning solvents;

• Automotive products, including used motor oil, antifreeze, lead-acid batteries, brake fluid, degreasers;

• Flammable materials (kerosene, old gasoline);  Continue Reading

Comments (0)


Upcoming Events