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What's Happening in:  East Passyunk Crossing :  Lower Moyamensing :  Passyunk Square 

Flavors on the Avenue street festival returns this weekend!

Over 100 vendors, 24 restaurants, live music, and free family fun to highlight event.

by CT Liotta

The East Passyunk Avenue Business Improvement District will hold their annual Flavors on the Avenue street festival this Sunday, April 29, 2018, from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The city’s first big restaurant festival of the season will feature five blocks of street food, seasonal sips, craft beer, live music, sidewalk sales and free family fun. The festival runs along East Passyunk Avenue from Broad to Dickinson streets.  

Pam Zenzola, Executive Director of the East Passyunk Avenue BID, is excited about the changes from years past. “We listened to comments from last year. This year, we are a pay-as-you-go event. No tickets needed. If one person wants a taste of sushi at Izumi, someone else wants something from Cantina and yet another something sweet, perhaps from Vanilya, they may stop along the way and buy whatever they want.”

Flavors will also offer free family-friendly activities including a kids art and activity zone by Lume Creative Learning Studios at the Singing Fountain, a typewriter station at Dickinson, moon bounce and giant inflatable slide at the East Passyunk Gateway, kids’ crafts with Frame Fatale, and outdoor games for kids and adults of all ages. In addition, many boutiques and businesses along East Passyunk will host workshops, activities and family fun inside their spaces.

For those twenty-one and older, Founders Brewing Co. will offer a new tasting tent with free samples at East Passyunk Ave. & Mifflin St. “Once you have a little taste, you will want to purchase a beer at many establishments on the Avenue,” added Zenzola. “A map will guide you to the locations with Founders on their drink menu.”

While East Passyunk has the top eats in the city–and a thriving makers’ scene–the Avenue also boasts some of the city’s hottest new retail and fashion boutiques. Look for sidewalk sales, spring fashions, gifts, greenery and more along the strip.

Flavors on the Avenue is inspired by the BID’s former Flavors fundraiser held under a tent each year. In 2017, the event went out from under the tent and into the street. “We had no idea expanding it to a 5 block festival would turn out so well. The guesstimate was it would go from 2,500 people to about 6,000. By the time the event was over, 11,000 people visited our avenue! To say we were happy is an understatement,” said Zenzola.

 

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What's Happening in:  All over South Philly :  Pennsport :  Point Breeze 

Growth and consequences

We missed covering a number of stories while we were on hiatus.  Here’s the first of several news round-ups in which we play catch-up.

The population of Philadelphia neighborhoods east of Broad Street have grown at a faster pace than neighborhoods west of Broad, including in South Philly, reports Curbed Philadelphia. South Philly’s 19146 zip code (generally Broad to the Schuylkill, Lombard to Tasker) increased by 9.8% from 2000 to 2017.  The 19147 zip code (generally Broad to the Delaware River, Lombard to Tasker) increased by 20.6% during that same period. Each zip code boasts around 40,000 people, with 39,917 in 19146 and 40,490 in 19147.  

Chart courtesy of JLL Philadelphia via Curbed Philly.

 

Some of the population growth west of Broad Street has resulted in the displacement of long-term residents. Point Breeze needs “development without replacement,” writes Claudia Sherrod, a Point Breeze resident and South Philadelphia H.O.M.E.S., Inc. director, in an op ed on whyy.org.  “Over the past decade, Philadelphia has lost a fifth of its housing units that rent to low-income families. I understand real estate is a business but I believe there is a way to conduct business while respecting people of this community.”

And speaking of growth, over in Pennsport there’s Southwark on Reed. The 95-townhouse project built on the site of the former Mt. Sinai Hospital is “…rapidly approaching the finish line,” reports Naked Philly and “the development is completely sold out.”  Demolition at the hospital began in February of 2016.

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What's Happening in:  East Passyunk Crossing 

For the love of gravy

By Joseph Myers

As Sunday’s 4th Annual East Passyunk Red Gravy Cook-off commenced at Ss. Neumann-Goretti High School, attendees heard the pleasant strains of Dean Martin’s “That’s Amore.” It was a fitting tune considering that a love for pasta’s pal – red gravy – had brought a crowd of 200 guests together.  The cook-off began with guests sampling 15 gravies, and ended with an unprecedented voting decision.

As the crowd grew, Samantha Gross, who organized the event for the East Passyunk Crossing Civic Association, kept busy trying to find more plates and cups to accommodate the throngs. “We experienced a problem that every event planner dreams of – we had a much bigger turn-out than last year – nearly 80 more. Luckily, we had amazing resources to pull everything off, and, in the end, everybody got sauced,” she said with a laugh.

“This event takes one of the many Italian-American traditions of the East Passyunk neighborhood – enjoying a pot of gravy with family – and blends it with the new neighborhood that’s developing around that culture,” said Darren Fava, who conceived the cook-off concept with fellow attendee John Raab. “We wanted to combine a food Italian-Americans love with the foodies who have come to love – and live in – our community.”  

Gross, who has lived in East Passyunk for a year, loved the mix of people the event attracted, “It’s great to see community and business leaders dining next to residents with their extended families. I’m very impressed at the outpouring of support from the community, especially the generous donations from our sponsors.” Continue Reading →

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South Philly’s ‘Secret’ Parks, Gardens & Green Spaces

Julian Abele Park, 22nd and Carpenter Streets. Photo by Friends of Julian Abele Park.

 

Now that Spring is finally here you might be looking for a quiet green space where you can enjoy the sunshine.  Curbed Philly posted a great list of 25 ‘secret’ parks and green spaces in the city.  South Philly was represented by eight sites from six neighborhoods:

We can think of a few ‘extra-secret’ South Philly spots missing from the list:

  • Ridgway Park tucked behind CAPA at 13th & Carpenter in Hawthorne, with its wonderful shade trees, a playground and a pool.
  • Mollbore Terrace – actually two separate green spaces located between Oregon Avenue and Johnston Street, 10th and 13th Streets.
  • Weinberg Park – a tiny green triangle on the border of Lower Moyamensing and Whitman.
  • Moyamensing Avenue medians – this linear green space divides Moyamensing Ave. from 15th to 20th.

Can you think of others?  Let us know in the comments below, and check out Curbed Philly’s piece here.

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What's Happening in:  All over South Philly :  Bella Vista 

Spring Wellness Day at The Healing Arts Collective & South Philadelphia Community Acupuncture

By CT Liotta for the Passyunk Post

The Healing Arts Collective and South Philadelphia Community Acupuncture will host Spring Wellness Day at 519 S. 9th Street in Philadelphia on Saturday, April 21 from 12 to 4 p.m. Registration is free at www.healingartscollective-pa.com.

The day will feature food and drinks, community acupuncture, massage and bodywork, sound healing, reiki, yoga, pilates, Gyrotonic and meditation. Guests can win free services and classes and receive discounts good for future visits.

Adrian King, a licensed massage therapist and certified yoga instructor, founded the collective to offer holistic medicine and wellness services in South Philadelphia. “The focus of the collective is CAM, or complementary alternative medicine,” said King. “It’s not meant to replace going to the doctor, but to be part of an overall wellness plan.”

Heidi Lengel, a certified counsellor specializing in maternal mental health, agrees. “Many of us specialize in issues across the perinatal spectrum, treating everything from fertility difficulties to postnatal obstacles. It’s wonderful to work with other doctors and practitioners, and cross-refer and collaborate. Mental tension leads to physical tension. Fostering wellness in the mind fosters wellness in the body. We have to look at the holistic picture.”

Since its early days, the number of practitioners in the Healing Arts Collective has grown. Each practitioner brings a different service. Often, those drawn in by pilates or massage discover Gyrotonics, Sound Journey, or meditation services less-known to Western customers.

South Philly Community Acupuncture

The Healing Arts Collective recently welcomed South Philly Community Acupuncture. Founded in 2007 by Lauren O’Brien Buckley, a licensed Acupuncturist, the group has been a part of South Philadelphia since 2007 when it opened offices on East Passyunk Ave. Buckley and her associates offer both private and community acupuncture sessions. “The private sessions are longer, but the community sessions make acupuncture affordable to people of all income levels – one goal of South Philly Community Acupuncture,” said Buckley. Continue Reading →

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What's Happening in:  All over South Philly 

Meet the Publisher

Joseph F. Marino, Passyunk Post Publisher

Joseph F. Marino is the new publisher of the Passyunk Post. We took a few minutes to speak with him about his role and hopes for the website and its associated social media. 

What prompted you to purchase the Post?

I always believed that there was a great value in the timely information provided by the Passyunk Post. However, I also wanted it to have a wider focus for all of South Philadelphia’s neighbors – old and new. When I learned it was for sale, I checked with my friends and professional advisers. Everyone felt I was the perfect person to move the Post in that direction.

What are your plans for the Post?

When the Post was conceived in 2012 its principal focus was the East Passyunk corridor and its adjacent neighborhoods. Gradually, the  coverage area expanded. Our focus is now all of South Philadelphia south of South Street, from river to river. Although my home is in East Passyunk, I’ve been fortunate to be active in the Whitman and Packer Park neighborhoods. Through my work organizing the civic associations of South Philadelphia I’ve come to know people from every corner of our wonderful neighborhoods. I hope to use these connections to create a rich source of information for all residents. I want the news we offer to increase people’s connectedness to the neighborhood and improve their quality of life.

What will your role be at the Post, and what do you bring to the website?

While I’ll be the public ‘face’ of Passyunk Post, the ‘voice’ of the website, and its social media, will be the editors, reporters, and contributors.

I see myself as a great connector. I want to leverage my relationships with business owners, clergy, civic, and political leaders to connect neighbors to information and events that will keep them well-informed.  

I also want to connect reporters to stories, and connect residents to some of the finest businesses, restaurants, individuals and nonprofits in the city…if not in the country! Continue Reading →

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