Kung Fu Hoagies cart to close next month

November 14, 2018

Kung Fu Hoagies cart (archived image).

After more than six years of operation in Clark Park, Kung Fu Hoagies, the vegetarian and vegan friendly food cart, will close next month, according to an announcement on their Facebook page.

The cart, a partnership between Paul Davis and Steve Renzi, was launched in 2010 and first rolled out in Clark Park in March 2012. It had been inspired by Davis’ love of Kung Fu (he’s a martial arts practitioner).

The reason for closing is “some life and business changes.”

“It’s a tough decision that we have to make, but can say that we have had an amazing 8 years serving the Philadelphia vegan and vegetarian community,” the Facebook message reads. “It’s been a really great experience sharing our food and passion for Kung Fu, and having such positive reception from amazing customers.”  Continue Reading

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uCity Square’s 14-story office tower & innovation hub opens at 3675 Market Street

November 12, 2018

Photos by Kyle Cassidy.

3675 Market Street is officially open. On Friday, Nov. 9th, building management threw an open-house party at the 14-story office tower, intended to be the new hub of the Science Center’s “uCity Square” planned community. Alongside the Science Center, several other building tenants including Cambridge Innovation Center (CIC), Biolabs, Backstage Capital, and Wexford Science + Technology opened their doors to the public. All six floors of the event were packed solid for most of the evening as building tenants, sponsors and community partners welcomed guests for tours, drinks, live music, performance art and even the occasional impromptu dance circle.  Continue Reading

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Board election, Penn Alexander Schoolyard re-design discussion at SHCA Annual meeting this Tuesday

November 12, 2018

The Spruce Hill Community Association (SHCA) will hold its annual meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 13, at 7:30 p.m., in the Penn Alexander School gymnasium (enter through cafeteria/blacktop entrance on 43rd street between Locust and Spruce). At its annual meeting, the community group elects new officers and board members and invites guest experts to talk about important community issues. The event is free and all community members are invited to attend, learn more about the organization, and get involved.

This year’s meeting will feature a presentation on a community-influenced, space-based initiative. Julie Bush, Landscape Architect, Principal at Ground Reconsidered, will be the featured speaker on “Penn Alexander School: Re-imagining the Schoolyard.”  Continue Reading

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Neighborhood Time Exchange seeking artists for 2019 residencies

November 7, 2018

Neighborhood Time Exchange, the West Philadelphia artist residency program located in West Powelton, is seeking artists for their 2019 residencies. Two residencies will be available next year: February-June 2019 and July-November 2019.

Artists in residency will get free studio space at 4017 Lancaster Avenue, a monthly stipend and basic tools and supplies. In return, Time Exchange will ask artists to give back to the community through working on civic projects suggested by residents and community-based organizations. Artists are also expected to organize open houses, exhibitions, and other events that will help establish a connection with the community.  Continue Reading

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Don’t forget to vote in midterm election on Tuesday, Nov. 6

November 5, 2018

Don’t forget to head to the polls this Tuesday, Nov. 6 to vote in the midterm elections. All registered voters in Pennsylvania can participate in the election and will be able to choose their candidates for Governor, Lt. Governor, U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives, State Senate (even-numbered districts), and the State House of Representatives.

Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Click here to find your polling place.

Here are races of interest for West Philly residents:  Continue Reading

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2018 Leaf Recycling program to begin Monday, Nov. 5

November 2, 2018

leavesThis fall, residents can again participate in the City’s Leaf Recycling program, which begins Monday, Nov. 5. The program is provided by the Streets Department and helps the City keep leaves out of the landfill. Here’s how you can participate in the program, which will run until Saturday, Dec. 15:

Bagged leaf drop-off will be offered city-wide on Saturdays (with the exception of Nov. 24) at 23 designated locations from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. for the duration of the program. Bagged leaves set out for pickup will be collected as trash. Leaf drop-off locations in West Philadelphia are the following:  Continue Reading

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Halloween Tot Parade back on Osage

November 1, 2018

A lot of little (and not-so-little) ghosts, ghouls and goblins paraded up Osage Avenue in the Spruce Hill section of West Philly yesterday for the annual Halloween Tot Parade.

As usual, the parade culminated with a party on Little Osage Avenue. Thanks to the folks on Little Osage for the hospitality. Check out more photos and a video below. Here are some photos from Tot Parades in years past.  Continue Reading

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School District seeking input on new academic calendar

October 29, 2018

The 2018-2019 school year for Philadelphia public schools began on August 27th, about a week earlier than in the previous several years. Do you think it was a good decision? Currently, the School District of Philadelphia is preparing the academic calendar for the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 school years and is asking for feedback from families and staff that will help guide the District’s decision making when finalizing the new calendar.

The short four-question survey asks readers to rank, in order of importance, the various factors that come into play when deciding when to start and end school, how religious holidays and professional development are accounted for, testing dates and other concerns for both students and educators.

The survey will be available to the public until November 6. Anyone interested in participating can find it here.

The new calendar is expected to be finalized be the end of December.

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Baklava Benefit Sale to support “A Book A Day” initiative

October 26, 2018

This Saturday, you can enjoy delicious baklava and support a local initiative that delivers books to two public school libraries.

Bindlestiff Books (4530 Baltimore Ave.) will hold a special fundraising event, Baklava Benefit Sale, on Oct. 27 from 10:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.. The event is organized by A Book A Day, an initiative co-funded by Penn Libraries, which donates newly published children’s books to two K-8 schools in West Philadelphia – Penn Alexander and Henry C. Lea.

Since the launch of the program in 2014 over 300 books have been donated to the school libraries. Eight new, quality hardcover books are delivered to each of the school libraries every month, giving kids access to intriguing books on music, art history, poetry, and street art.  Continue Reading

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Jezabel’s Studio expands on 45th Street

October 25, 2018

Photo courtesy of Jezabel’s Studio.

Jezabel’s Studio, the Argentinian cafe and tea house that opened last year in a cozy space on 45th near Walnut, has recently expanded into the space next door (it’s now at 206-208 S. 45th). The new space allowed the cafe to double its seating capacity, and now it will be able to accommodate more customers as well as private parties and special events.

Since its expansion last month, the cafe has also extended its weekend hours – now 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. – and began serving breakfast featuring traditional Argentinian dishes, like medialunas, Mafaldas (ham and cheese medialunas) and tortilla de patatasContinue Reading

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Strong support for ‘5050 Baltimore’ at Cedar Park zoning meeting on Tuesday

October 24, 2018

Developer Ryan Spak, left, discusses “5050 Baltimore” during a zoning meeting at the Calvary Center last night (Photo by West Philly Local).

A 12-unit residential building with ground-floor commercial that includes below-market units proposed for the corner of 51st and Baltimore drew overwhelming support during a Cedar Park Neighbors zoning meeting last night.

Proposed by West Philly-based developer Ryan Spak, “5050 Baltimore” would be a three-story building built on three oddly shaped lots at the triangular corner of 51st and Baltimore. The project needs zoning variances for an additional two residential units. Ten units is allowed by right. The project also needs a variance for a “group practitioner” – a mental health counseling non-profit – which is one of the tenants for the proposed commercial space.  Continue Reading

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Mixed-use development, including “inclusionary” units, proposed for 51st and Baltimore

October 22, 2018

Rendering of the proposed mixed-use development at 51st and Baltimore.

A three-story apartment building with commercial space on the ground floor is proposed at 51st and Baltimore. Community members are invited this Tuesday, Oct. 23 to a Cedar Park Community Zoning meeting, which will begin at 7 p.m. at the Calvary Center (48th and Baltimore).

Twelve residential units, including “inclusionary” units aimed at a variety of incomes, are proposed on the second and third floors of the building (six units are allowed by right). Passed earlier this month, the city’s inclusionary zoning bill includes sizing and height incentives for developers who include affordable housing in their residential projects. Continue Reading

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Several West Philly businesses wake up to smashed windows, burglary this morning (updated)

October 19, 2018

Photo from The Green Line Cafe Facebook page.

Storefront windows of several West Philly businesses were smashed overnight and some businesses were burglarized, prompting a burglary report from the 18th Police District (see below).

The Green Line Cafe posted the following message on their Facebook page this morning:

Not what we wanted to wake up to at Locust Street this morning… No one was hurt. We’ll be opening late today, though.”  Continue Reading

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Giant puppets to return for Peoplehood Parade, honoring Trans Lives

October 18, 2018

Want to see giant colorful puppets “marching” along West Philly streets? Come to the annual Peoplehood Parade this Saturday, Oct. 20, organized by West Philly’s Spiral Q puppet theater. The event will kick off outside the Paul Robeson House (4951 Walnut St) at 1 p.m. Nearly 500 people of all ages will be marching, dancing, and carrying puppets, flags, and drums to Clark Park (45th and Chester), where the parade will be followed by a small giant puppet pageant with participatory performances around 2:15 p.m.

Peoplehood is a parade that celebrates and energizes PEOPLE, particularly those living in and/or working at the forefront of anti-discrimination and anti-oppression work.  Continue Reading

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Details for annual Spruce Hill Halloween Parade

October 17, 2018

With Halloween just around the corner, the Spruce Hill Community Association has announced details for the 22nd annual Halloween Parade and Party.

West PhillyThe parade, where families with little tots (6 and under) are invited to show off their costumes, will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 31. It will begin at 4:30 p.m. at 45th and Larchwood (gathering will start at 4 p.m.). The parade will end on the 4200 block of Osage Ave., aka “Little Osage”, where neighbors throw their annual block party-style Halloween Party. Once the parade is over, the Tots and their families will be treated to cider and baked goods from neighbors and local businesses. There will also be plenty of trick-or-treating opportunities in the neighborhood. While walking around, make sure to stop by the Spruce Hill Center at 257 S. 45th St. for some goodie bags.  Continue Reading

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Beloved West Philly community member, Joe Clarke, 64, dies after long battle with cancer

October 15, 2018

Joe Clark volunteered for many years at the Walnut Street West Library Chess Club.

A well-known member of the community, Joe Clarke, 64, passed away on October 6th after a long courageous battle with cancer. Although he was struggling with cancer for years he was still out and about in the community until just a few weeks ago.

Joe was remarkable in his lifework of being a friend and mentor to many. He was on a spiritual journey that embodied religious and philosophical ideas always being spun through human relations and a great love of music and the arts. He was sometimes affectionately called “The Mayor of West Philadelphia.” This nickname came about because of how well known he was. A common complaint by his friends was that if you were sitting with him for a cup of coffee there would be constant interruptions as he seemed to know about every third person walking down the block.  Continue Reading

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Chestnut Street lane restrictions near 30th street to last six months

October 12, 2018

Chestnut Street between 30th Street and Schuylkill Avenue will be reduced to two travel lanes and a bicycle lane for approximately six months due to construction on the Schuylkill Avenue viaduct, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has announced.

Motorists have also been alerted about a new traffic pattern set up by PennDOT crews earlier this week. Under the traffic pattern, motorists turning left onto Schuylkill Avenue to access westbound Interstate 76, Interstate 676 or Market Street will use the left lane on Chestnut Street, potentially causing significant backups and delays on Chestnut Street.  Continue Reading

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Curio Theatre to kick off its 14th season with Arthur Miller’s ‘All My Sons’

October 9, 2018

From left to right: Chase Byrd, Nastassja Whitman, Trice Baldwin and Paul E Kuhn (Photo by Rebecca Gudelunas).

Curio Theatre Company is opening its 14th season this week with an American classic re-imagined. The West Philly-based theatre company will stage Arthur Miller’s “All My Sons” beginning Wednesday, Oct. 10.

In this 1947 play, Miller portrays a couple, Joe and Kate Keller, living a comfortable suburban life with their son Chris. Their other son, Larry, went missing in action a few years earlier and Chris becomes involved with Larry’s former fiancée, Kate, who must finally accepts that Larry is gone forever, and face the horrible truth about what caused his death.  Continue Reading

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Harrington Elementary School library reopening, seeking volunteers

October 9, 2018

One more public school in Philadelphia will have their library reopened soon thanks to the great work of the West Philadelphia Alliance for Children (WePAC). WePAC is opening its 14th library in the city – at West Philly’s Harrington Elementary School located at 53rd and Baltimore.

Parents, community members, and partners are invited to celebrate the reopening of the Harrington Elementary library on Tuesday, Oct. 16 from 8:45-10:45 a.m. at the school. Light refreshments will be provided (see the flier for more info).

WePAC is also looking for community volunteers for its new library program at Harrington. If interested, please contact for more information.  Continue Reading

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