Archive | October, 2018

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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What to do if you find a starving cat. Here’s a story of ‘Gloria’

October 19, 2018

Editor’s Note: We’re resuming our posts about cats and kittens rescued by Project MEOW, the West Philly-based volunteer-run organization. This post is about “Gloria” who was found starving and near death. The post also provides information on how to treat a starving cat if someone finds one.

Gloria was starving and near death when she was found (Photo courtesy of Project MEOW).

When she was found by a contractor at a construction site at 45th and Market in August, Gloria was so skinny she could turn sideways and vanish. Barely three and a half pounds, this young calico cat came into her foster home with eye infections, a wobbly gait, and no appetite at all. Her caring and dedicated foster dad, realizing the dangers of overfeeding a starving cat, patiently fed her kitten formula and Urgent Care food through a syringe until she had gained several ounces and could eat regular cat food again.

Now healthier and mobile, Gloria still walked with a funky step. X-Rays at Philadelphia Animal Hospital showed a long-ago broken leg and dislocated kneecap, partially healed, and fixable only through extremely expensive orthopedic surgery. She can still move around fine, luckily, so right now her foster dad is trying to determine how much pain her injury is causing her. That will decide whether amputation might be the right path for this kitty. Once Project MEOW decides how best to handle her injuries and she is spayed, Gloria will be available for adoption. After all of her pain and suffering, we are hoping to find Gloria a safe home where she can continue recuperating and get all of the love she deserves.  Continue Reading

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