A donor to match this week’s donations to The Minor Threats chess club

March 17, 2013


The Minor Threats with their State Championship trophies.

About a month and a half ago we wrote about a local chess club, The Minor Threats, comprised of 2nd-6th graders from four schools in West and Southwest Philly. The kids and their coach, Jason Bui, have been facing the challenge of  raising $5,000 this spring to travel to and compete at the state and national chess championships.

The club was able to raise enough money to make it to the state championships in Carlisle, Penn., in March and did great there! The team picked up a total of seven trophies (three team trophies and four individual ones). More donations are needed for the team’s expenses at the SuperNationals in Nashville, Tenn., next month (about $2,500), but, luckily, a potential donor has offered to match all of the donations that go to the club’s GoFundMe project this week up to $1,000. This is a great opportunity to help the young players and make their dream of competing at the national level come true.

To donate, please follow this link:

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Upcoming open houses at HMS School for Children with Cerebral Palsy, Spruce Hill Christian School

March 14, 2013

March is the month for open houses at many local schools. Recently, local public schools held Kindergarten open houses. Here’s some info on upcoming open houses at some local private schools.

Friday, March 15

HMS School for Children with Cerebral Palsy
4400 Baltimore Avenue 
from 9-11 a.m. or 1-3 p.m.

Learn more about the school program by visiting and talking with the administrative staff, faculty and students. The open house includes:

  • Touring the school’s state-of-the-art residence
  • Seeing some cutting-edge assistive technology in action
  • Speaking with current parents to learn from their firsthand experiences with HMS

Please RSVP to Annie Oberfield, 215.222.2566, ext 207, or

If you are not able to attend on this date, please feel free to set up another time to visit.


Thursday, March 21

SpruceHillChristianSchoolSpruce Hill Christian School/City Center Academy, Elementary and Middle School Campus
4115 Baltimore Avenue
9:30 a.m.

Spruce Hill/CCA offers a private k-12 education in the heart of Philadelphia. The school is committed to making a college-preparatory education accessible for all families. The generous financial aid policy welcomes families who may otherwise be unable to afford a private education. You’re invited to visit the school for an Open House to learn more about its mission.

For more information, call 215.382.7839 or visit the school website at

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Clark Park Soccer registration under way; volunteer coaches sought

March 6, 2013

soccer-2011-6Clark Park Youth Soccer, a recreational program for children ages 5 to 11 is returning this Spring and registration is now open. The season will start on March 23 and go on through May 18. More information about the program and registration forms are available on the Friends of Clark Park website.

The program is also seeking volunteer coaches. You don’t need serious soccer skills or coaching experience in order to apply. What’s important is some basic knowledge of the game and enthusiasm for working with kids. If you’d like to volunteer or have questions, please email

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CHOP opens new Pediatric Care Center at 48th and Market

February 7, 2013


The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia has recently opened a new, state-of-the-art pediatric care center (Karabots Primary Care Center) at the corner of 48th and Market. The center held its grand opening with a ribbon-cutting ceremony yesterday. The 52,000-square-foot center will offer pediatric care and community programs to West Philly children and families (the centers at 39th and Chestnut Sts. and 3550 Market St. are moving to the Karabots Center).

The Karabots Center was established with a $7.5 million gift from Nicholas and Athena Karabots and the Karabots Foundation of Fort Washington, Pa. The two-story building contains 56 child-friendly examination rooms, rooms for radiology, hearing and vision testing, and a lab. The facility also houses community programs offered by Children’s Hospital, such as Early Head Start, Community Asthma Prevention Program, domestic violence education, and the Homeless Health Initiative. The Center plans to accommodate over 64,000 outpatient visits annually.

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New children’s theatre programs & events

February 5, 2013

theatre-masks-hiThis is an exciting week for local kids, teens and adults who love theatre and are interested in acting, with a few new educational programs and events launching in the area. Here are the details:


New Drama/Acting Classes

The Community Arts program at the Woodland Presbyterian Church located at 401 S. 42nd Street is starting an eight-week (Feb. 7 – March 27) drama class on Thursday afternoons, 4:00-5:00 p.m. and children ages 5-14 are welcome to participate. Kids will play drama games, learn acting techniques and perform in a culminating production. A donation of $20/participant is suggested to help cover program costs. To register or for more details, please contact Carol Shih at

Theatre and Me, LLC (Facebook page), a new company providing training and development for kids, teens and adults in the performing and creative arts, i.e. theatre, dance, voice, etc., is holding an Open House/Information Session about their upcoming classes on Saturday, Feb. 9, 2:30-3:30 p.m., at Dreaming Tree Music (4721 Pine St.). For more information, contact Marcus Siler at


New Kids Show at Curio

Curio Theatre has prepared an exciting new show for kids: Hansel and Gretel, the beloved fairy-tale by The Grimm Brothers was adapted for the stage by Rosemary Fox and will run on Saturdays at 2 p.m. on Feb. 9, 16, 23 and March 2. Tickets ($10) are available here.



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Capture the Flag, a Clark Park tradition, suspended for now

February 5, 2013

Screen Shot 2013-02-05 at 1.43.20 PM

A screenshot from CaptnFog’s Youtube channel.

A highly entertaining Saturday tradition at Clark Park will be put on hold indefinitely. The weekly Capture the Flag game at the park, which has delighted and puzzled park visitors for a decade, has been suspended.

The company that runs the game and supplies foam swords, knives and bow and arrows –  Epic Adventurez – will host the game at other locations in the city. The company has used the Clark Park gathering to help recruit participants for its larger events, annual summer camps and to keep its community of players active in the fall and winter months. But participation has been declining and the company is losing money on the swords and other weapons it supplies to players for a $5 donation, said Epic Adventurez Robert Bedford in an e-mail.

The game drew as many as 80 people in its early years, but Bedford said the game hasn’t drawn that many players in “quite some time.”

Bedford said he hopes Capture the Flag (CTF) will return this spring. He writes: “We do not think this will be the end of Clark Park CTF, we hope we can reorganize, and eventually resupply in order to provide the equipment necessary to encourage the level of play we desire.”

For those in the neighborhood who can’t go a weekend without it, there will be Capture the Flag games at Allens Lane Art Center in Mt. Airy on Sundays from 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Bedford said he’s also looking to establish a game on Saturdays in Morris Park, near 66th and Sherwood, in the Overbrook neighborhood.


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