Archive | October, 2012

Barre Focus Fitness opening Thursday; free classes through Sunday

October 31, 2012

The new large, second-floor space at 4145 Chestnut Street already hosts Bikram Yoga and this week another fitness studio is opening there. Focus Fitness Studios, which is headquartered on the Main Line, is branching out to West Philly and inviting everyone to a Grand Opening of Barre Focus Fitness this Thursday (Nov. 1). The Grand Opening celebration includes a complimentary class beginning at 6 p.m. and all classes through Sunday, Nov. 4 are free!

“We are thrilled to be opening in this thriving West Philadelphia neighborhood,” said co-owner Amy Feeney. “We are looking forward to sharing the barre workout with the colleges in the area and the community as a whole. Our classes are designed to be challenging for all fitness levels and abilities, from the collegiate athlete to the beginner.”

Barre Focus Fitness is also committed to supporting local communities through such programs as donation-based classes, book clubs, and nutrition and health seminars.

The studio’s signature offering, the BFF class, combines the most effective bodyweight exercises into one 60 minute power-packed workout using a traditional ballet barre. Most classes at the studio are accompanied by custom tracks spun by a local DJ. The studio can accommodate up to 25 students, and the adjacent lounge offers a peaceful place to change and prepare for class. Barre Focus Fitness carries snacks and water and also jewelry, accessories, and fitness apparel by local designers.

For more information, visit Barre Focus Fitness online at, on Facebook at, and on Twitter at @BarreUniversityCity.

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Spruce Hill Annual Halloween Parade is still on

October 30, 2012


Get ready to show off your Halloween finest. The Annual Halloween Parade will take place in the Spruce Hill area as planned on Wednesday, Oct. 31, according to the Spruce Hill Community Association website.

Kids and parents are invited to assemble on 45th St. between Baltimore and Larchwood at 4 p.m. The parade begins at 4:30 as the crowd proceeds East on Larchwood to 43rd Street, North on 43rd to Osage, and then East to the 4200 block of Osage for treats and drinks.

To get you in the mood, check our video from last year’s parade here.

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Some isolated Sandy damage, but all in all West Philly faring well (UPDATE: City offices, courts, schools to reopen Wednesday)

October 30, 2012

The intersection of Melville St and Baltimore Ave.

All in all it appears that most of West Philly fared pretty well during Hurricane Sandy. There have been reports of pockets of power outages due mostly to downed trees. For example, a fallen tree near the intersection of Melville Street and Baltimore Avenue has left about half-dozen residents there without power.

Most businesses are going back to their regular hours and SEPTA was scheduled to reopen subway, El, trolley and 80 percent of city bus routes and 60 percent of suburban bus routes at Noon on Tuesday. However, there will be no regional rail routes. Check for specific bus route info.

Flights are expected to resume at the Philadelphia International Airport this afternoon.

Schools, city offices and courts remained closed Tuesday, but will reopen on Wednesday, Oct. 31.

A large branch dropped near the corner of 46th and Pine last night.

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Pumpkin Carving Contest entry deadline extended until Wednesday

October 29, 2012

Here’s some good news for those who were planning to participate in our Pumpkin Carving Contest but had to postpone their pumpkin shopping because of the weather. We have extended the contest entry deadline for two more days! Please feel free to email your pumpkin photos to: until 3 p.m. on Wednesday, October 31.

To read more about the contest and its rules, click here.

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The latest Sandy related information (updated)

October 29, 2012


In parts of West Philly we have big old trees with lots of dropped leaves. They are already clogging street gutters.

UPDATE (2:45 p.m.): Philadelphia public schools will be closed tomorrow, Superintendent William Hite announced. Also, SEPTA will reinspect tracks and routes after the storm. Service is canceled for Tuesday morning.

As of 2 p.m., there haven’t been any power outages reported in West Philly. Please check the PECO Power Outage map for updates. What appears to be a problem already is leaf-clogged street gutters. If you have one near your home, you might want to take a minute to clear it.

We included some storm prep tips in a post yesterday. You can find that here. At the end of this post we have some important phone numbers and an embedded #sandyinphilly Twitter feed, which many local media outlets are using to keep people updated.

Here are some other closures for Tuesday:

Public schools are closed, Superintendent William Hite announced.

• No SEPTA service Tuesday morning.

City offices closed.

Courts closed.

City trash pickup scheduled for Tuesday has been canceled. If Tuesday is your day, hold off until next Tuesday.

• Most Amtrak routes in the Northeast have been cancelled. They have good info on their Facebook page here.

If you need some last-minute supplies, here are some businesses that are open as of about 2 p.m.:

Mariposa Food Coop is open and just got in a big produce and bread delivery from Four Worlds Bakery. (Update: Mariposa is closing at 5 p.m.)

Milk and Honey Market is open at 45th and Baltimore.

Supremo Shop n’ Bag on Walnut Street between 43rd and 44th plans to stay open until 3 p.m.

• For halal supplies, Makkah Market at 4249 Walnut St. is open.

CVS at 43rd and Locust will be open indefinitely. The manager there said they will be open until the electricity goes out.

SandyGreen Line Cafe and Earth Cup are open. (Update: Earth Cup has reportedly closed)

The Gold Standard will be serving their weekend brunch today and tomorrow.

Fu-Wah Market is open at 810 S. 47th St.

The Dollar Store on 48th between Spruce and Pine is open and they have a pretty good selection of candles remaining and a bunch of flashlights.

If you know of some businesses that should be on the list, leave a comment below, tweet us at @westphillylocal or drop us an e-mail at:

If you see animals in need or find pets during/after Hurricane Sandy, please immediately contact:

[tel: 215-238-9901/]

[tel: (215) 426-6300/]

[tel: (267) 385-3800/]
Some important numbers:

PECO Energy Customer Service: 1-800-494-400
PECO Energy Emergency Hotline: 1-800-841-4141
Philadelphia Water Department (PWD): 215-685-6300
Philadelphia Gas Works (PGW): 215-235-1212

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Prep list, phone numbers and news briefs as Sandy nears

October 28, 2012


The tables and chairs in Clark Park have been lashed down in preparation for Sandy.

As Hurricane Sandy approaches, we will keep up with closures and changes in city services. Also, West Philly has lots of big, old trees so power outages are typical during big storms. After the news briefs we have a hurricane prep list and emergency phone numbers. If you have any news to report or any additional safety tips, leave a comment below, let us know on Twitter at @westphillylocal or drop us an e-mail at Stay safe everyone.

Here are some Sandy-related news briefs.

• The Streets Department writes on their Facebook page:
“Due to high winds and severe rainfall that is expected, there will be no trash and recycling collections on Monday, October 29. Residents whose trash day is on Monday are urged to keep their collections indoors to prevent loose items from blowing throughout the streets. Monday collections will resume on Monday, November 5.” Continue Reading

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