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Meet our 2012 Blue Sapphire Award Winners

VOLUME 17 ISSUE 27 2012 October/November/December 2012 WWW.GOhomePHILLY.COM

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✱ Pat Ciarrocchi ✱ Doug Collins ✱ Sal Dupree ✱ James Kenney

Photo by Phil Kramer

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VOLUME _17 ISSUE 27_ 2012

Insidethis issue 14_ LIFE The Road to Recovery by Bob Wagner

20_POLITICS Workers Stand for America by Maria Merlino

22_ A Recap of the Political Conventions By Larry Kane

26_ THE MENU Ice Box Cake anyone? by Maria Merlino

28_ SALUTE TO SERVICE PRH Announces its 2012 Blue Sapphire Award Winners Pat Ciarrocchi - Doug Collins Sal Dupree - Councilman James Kenney photos by Phil Kramer

32_MUSIC & THE ARTS PRH presents its 2012 WishRock Award to 3 Young Artists sponsored by Standing Ovation

35_Local musician inducted into R&R Hall of Fame Dan Cedrone honored with Bill Haley & the Comets for his iconic guitar solo by Dan Vanore

56_ FASHION Sexy in the City – Behind the Scenes at Nicole Miller by Alicia DeLeo & Phyllis Palermo photos courtesy of Nicole Miller

67_ FILM South Philly Heads to the Big Screen by Jennifer Tini photo by Phil Kramer

75_ HEALTH Don’t let the holiday season weigh you down by Dr. Richard Dittrich

His Home Is His Castle by Maria Merlino photos courtesy of Frank LaMacchia

80_ SPORTS The Making of the Golden Girls by Mark Casasanto photos by Phil Kramer

87_ THE SCHOOLYARD Top Toys of the last 100 Years by Dorette Rota Jackson

91_ROWHOME REMEMBERS WWII Vet. This is my Story by Frank Tavella


22 Politics


on the waterfront

The Power of Purpose by Sara Canuso

42_ ON THE WATERFRONT Then & Now. PRH Salutes our nation’s first naval base: The Philadelphia Navy Yard photos courtesy of the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation

55_ BRIDES GUIDE Through Antonio’s Eyes by Pat Ciarrocchi

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October/November/December 2012

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VOLUME _17 ISSUE 27_ 2012



RowHome Gets Ready for AN AFFAIR TO REMEMBER VI Photo by Phil Kramer

Will you pay a Medicare Tax when you sell your home? By David Spitzberg, CPA


66_ON THE CORNER with Mark Casasanto

RowHome Readers love your ADS!

12_NEIGHBORHOOD NOIR 16_HANGIN’ OUT Best Trends Forever By Joseph Volpe, Cescaphe Event Group





October/November/December 2012

EAST COAST UPDATE by Sharon Pinkenson WEST COAST UPDATE by Leo Rossi



96_PRESSED By Dorette Rota Jackson

Off the Wall: PRH Salutes our City of Murals By Mark Cassasanto


tip from the pros Doug Collins

Coach, Philadelphia 76ers Harry Kalas Memorial Sports Award

on the cover

66 on the corner


photo by Phil Kramer

AS PART OF ITS ANNUAL SALUTE TO SERVICE PROGRAM Philadelphia RowHome Magazine recently named the recipients of its 2012 Blue Sapphire Award - presented annually to individuals whose “selfless dedication to the City of Philadelphia has left an indelible mark on the culture and traditions of our neighborhoods for future generations to enjoy.” The 2012 Blue Sapphire Award is presented during Philadelphia RowHome Magazine’s Annual Black Tie Business Networking Event - An Affair to Remember - sponsored by Cescaphe Event Group.

Sal Dupree

James Kenney

Philadelphia City Councilman-at-Large Service to Community Award

hair by The Cutting Point makeup by Bella Angel


Singer, Performer, Vocal Coach Entertainment Award

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Pat Ciarrocchi

News Anchor, CBS 3 Media Award

IBEW Local Union 98 Salutes Philadelphia RowHome Magazine’s 2012 Blue Sapphire Award Recipients:

Pat Ciarrocchi News Anchor, CBS 3 Media Award

Doug Collins Coach, Philadelphia 76ers Harry Kalas Memorial Sports Award

Sal Dupree Singer & Vocal Coach Entertainment Award

James Kenney Philadelphia City Councilman-at-Large Service to Community Award

pree g Sal Du Per formin e re p u D tudio Arts S

Phila Doug delp Collin hia s 76e rs

fromthe publishers VOLUME _17 ISSUE 27 2012

Dorette & Dawn

photo by Phil Kramer Makeup by Bella Angel Hair by The Cutting Point

Philadelphia RowHome Magazine & Cescaphe Event Group congratulate the

2012 Blue Sapphire Award Winners e Volp ent eph he Ev s o J p sca Ce p u o r G

Pat C CBS iarroc c 3


ney s Ken Jame hia City lp e cil Philad Coun

VOLUME 17 ISSUE 27 October/November/December 2012 GOHOMEPHILLY.COM President | Publisher Dorette Rota Jackson

Vice President | Publisher Dawn Rhoades

Editor Dorette Rota Jackson

Vice President Marketing & Promotions Dawn Rhoades

There are two certainties in life. Only one comes with options.

Creative Director | production Omar Rubio

Contributors Jennifer Barkowitz Mark Casasanto David Cava Sara Canuso Pat Ciarrocchi Alicia DeLeo Clark DeLeon Frank DePasquale Jr., Esq Dr. Richard Dittrich Liz Emory Larry Gallone Brett Jackson Larry Kane

Anthony McBride Maria Merlino Dr. James Moylan Daniel Olivieri, III Phyllis Palermo Sharon Pinkenson Michael Rhoades Leo Rossi Jade Rota Tony Santini David Spitzberg, CPA Bob Wagner


Green space Editor Kerri-Lee Mayland


Marketing Communications Coordinator Carol Vassallo

Photographers Phil Kramer John McMullen

Account Manager Theresa Palestino

David M. Spitzberg 1505 South Broad Street Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 P: 215.952.8800 F: 215.952.0800 8

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Published by:

Philadelphia RowHome Inc. P.O. Box 54786 Philadelphia, PA 19148 Phone – 215.462.9777 | Fax – 215.462.9770 |

Philadelphia RowHome (PRH) Magazine and its contents are copyrighted. Content printed in the magazine may not be reproduced or reprinted, in whole or in part, by any other party without the expressed written consent of Philadelphia RowHome Magazine. 2012 Philadelphia RowHome Inc. All Rights Reserved. Printed in the USA. Published by Philadelphia RowHome Inc.

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Dear Dorette & Dawn: Great issue as always! RowHome has a bit of everything for all and it is a very good read.  I always start with the humorous last page! Next is the articles, and last, but certainly not least, is the ads.  I like that  a lot of them are  individualized and not just a picture and copy.  These  special ads  tell more about the businesses, so they have more of a pull to shop there or use their services. This is very different from the other magazines and that contributes to the uniqueness and personality of RowHome. And I do believe that Will Smith will  definitely read RowHome and answer the call to become a Blue Sapphire award recipient in the not-too-distant future.  Whatever these publishing sisters set their minds  to, it happens. They thought of RowHome, didn’t they? Donna Fanticola, Sewell NJ A loyal subscriber to PRH from the first issue

Dear RowHome: I live in Atlantic City after more than 50 years in South Philadelphia. I was in my room at Harrah’s for a weekend getaway with my friends when I saw your Magazine on the table. I couldn’t believe my eyes! Someone named a magazine

RowHome and inside were all of the pictures and advertisements of people and places I grew up with! I was so happy tears rolled fast! I even skipped breakfast with my friends so I could read it cover to cover. The next week, I talked my girlfriend Joyce into driving me to Philly so I could shop at some of the stores. I bought sausage, pizza, lunchmeat, rolls and the best lemon meringue pie in the world from Isgro’s. I even bought a dress for my newborn niece at Little Beth Boutique and stopped in Pastificio for meatballs to go! Thank you for reminding me of my childhood. Your magazine is a gift! God bless you for the memories. Lola DeSantis

Dear PRH: A note of congratulations! We are proud to be a part of the ongoing history of the Philadelphia Naval Yard and in the forefront of the efforts to preserve, improve and promote this important and amazing landmark. It is an honor and privilege to maintain an office in an area once occupied by U.S. Navy Officers and their families. James J. McHugh, Jr., Esq Lopez McHugh LLP (Editor’s Note: Please see our Salute to the Navy Yard on page 42 of this issue)

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rowhome magazine | 13



There is Always Hope

by Bob Wagner

Who is Jamie Alessandrine? He describes himself as “the typical South Philly kid.” Jamie Alessandrine grew up in a small rowhome on the 2700 block of South Hutchinson Street. He hung out with his friends at “1P1” (11th & Porter). And graduated from Saint John Neumann High School before landing his first full-time job. One day, for no apparent reason, he went down the wrong path. Ended up addicted to drugs and spiraling out of control as the days of his life quickly turned into years of self-abuse. Then one day, for no apparent reason, Jamie had enough. Determined to reclaim a few of the years that his addiction stole from him, he said he knew it was time to face his demons. Time to embark on the greatest journey of his life - survival. With the support of family, friends and a strong network of recovering addicts, Jamie took another path. This one put him on the road to recovery. Almost seven years to the day he hit rock bottom, Jamie Alessandrine is reaching out to help others struggling with addiction. His message to them is simple. “There is always hope.” Currently a consultant with American Treatment Centers, Alessandrine makes sure individuals seeking recovery have access to necessary services. Whether they are dealing with substance abuse, dual-diagnosis issues or eating disorders, he says he can help them find the best options available.

Jamie recently sat down with PRH to discuss his life and his mission of hope: PRH | The magazine recently received a very touching letter from the Mother of an individual that you and your organization helped. Tell us about your background. JA |Well, I’m a South Philly guy. I grew up on a small street and had the same type of upbringing as your readers. But I headed down the wrong path and wound up struggling with chemical dependency for a number of years. I finally reached my rock bottom in 2006 and sought help.


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PRH | How did you became involved with the company you now work with?

PRH | Have your personal experiences given you more credibility with patients?

JA |After addressing my issues, I knew I wanted to help others. In 2007, I landed an entry-level  job with a company called Treatment Solutions, which recently merged into American Treatment Centers. At first, I was a Chemical Dependency Technician. This consisted of basically babysitting patients and getting them to meetings. But I saw that my experiences were helpful to them. I knew first-hand the challenges they faced. Over the past few years, I’ve gone back to school while working my way up in the company as a Call Center Supervisor. Today, I am a Treatment Consultant.

JA |Yes. Not only with the patients, but their families, as well. Chemical dependency affects the entire family. Many times, addicts hold their families emotionally hostage. We help families decide if their loved one is ready for treatment. Then guide them through the process. We help alleviate some of the stress by setting up interventions, designing treatment strategies, arranging aftercare programs.

PRH | Where can our readers get more information if they or a loved one needs help? JA |“We want people to know that help is available and we can help you access it easier and faster,” Alessandrine said. He said he started a Facebook group called “There is Always Hope” to connect with other people in recovery or professionals in the field, share experiences and provide support. Make the call. There is always hope.

Armando Rey Jewelry 818 South 9th St., Philadelphia 215.928.9664 •

Regular Hours: Mon–Sat 10–6 Wed & Fri 10–8 Christmas Hours: Nov. 23 –Dec. 24 Mon–Sat 10-8 Sun 11–5


VOLUME _17 ISSUE 27_ 2012


October |November |December 2012

1_  Grand Master Joe Piscopo, Councilwoman Anna Verna and Mayor Michael Nutter lead the last Columbus Day parade. Photo by Maria Merlino 2_  Tony Santini with Ferko String Band Members Johnny Jordan and Bobby Stango at the Mummers Museum Summertime Concert. 3_  Neumann Alums hang out: Attorney Dave Conroy, Councilman Mark Squilla, Constituent Service Representative Steve Lauer, Family Court Judge Kevin Dougherty, Fran Simmski and political consultant Ken Adams. Photo by Maria Merlino


4_  Judge Annette Rizzo, Register of Wills Ron Donatucci, State Rep. Maria Donatucci and St. Monica’s Father Kelly enjoy a day on Broad Street. Photo by Maria Merlino 5_  Congratulations to RowHome reader and friend Umberto Delli-Gatti on your American citizenship! 6_  Councilman James Kenney and Congressman Bob Brady meet up at the last Columbus Day Parade. Photo by Maria Merlino 7_  Gabriella D’Alonzo and GAMP Principal Dr. Jack Carr at the school’s Ring Day Ceremony. 8_  RowHome writer Tony Santini and Ferko String Band Captain Anthony Celenza at the Mummers Museum Summertime Concert.


9_  Sara Canuso, CEO of A Suitable Solution, meets up with Philly-born actor Richard Gere. 10_ Audrey Mazza graduated summa cum laude from Philadelphia’s University of the Sciences. She received awards for the highest GPA in biology and for her minor in forensics.


11_ Retired Action News reporter Cathy Gandolfo celebrates with her Goretti alums at an All Class reunion in Wildwood: Mary D’Armi, Fran Incmikoski, Jeanette Finocchiaro. Photo by Ken Adams 12_ Michael, Dawn, Victoria & Angelina Perre take part in the annual Gary Papa Run. 13_ Friends Denise Borger, Julia Santini, Chris Pettinelli and Andrea Nicolucci at Chickie’s & Pete’s Summer Kick-Off Party.

4 16

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14_ City Councilman Kenyatta Johnson and Councilman Mark Squilla meet up on Broad Street. Photo by Maria Merlino

6 5








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Judge Kevin Dougherty and family at the Pinnacle Award Presentation. (L to R) Patriarch John Dougherty, sister Maureen Fiocca, daughter Katie, brother John J. Dougherty, son Sean and Nicolette Gadler. The Pinnacle Award, presented annually by SS Neumann-Goretti Millay Club, honors Alumni for career achievement and public service.

Family Court Judge is a Benchmark for Service

“Best of Philly” 2010/2012 Dr. Cohen and Staff are dedicated to addressing all of your orthodontic needs. We are committed to staying current with the latest technology and advances in orthodontics. Everyone in our office understands that each patient presents with different needs and expectations and we do our best to address them in a professional and compassionate manner. Since the beauty of your smile is a direct reflection on the doctor, in our office the doctor himself performs all of the “wire bending” and cementing of appliances. We feel strongly that this delivers the highest quality of orthodontic care possible. You will appreciate our level of commitment to achieve the finest result possible.

Diplomate American Board of Orthodontics Voted one of the best Orthodontists by Philadelphia Magazine 2010


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by Maria Merlino n 1962, when John and Mary Dougherty brought their newborn son Kevin home from St. Agnes Hospital to their Howard Street residence in Pennsport, he officially became a “Second Streeter.”

As the boy grew up, enveloped by a circle of love that was heaped on him by family, friends, neighbors and teachers, his mind was impressed with examples of doing the right thing. Today, Court of Common Pleas Judge Kevin Dougherty is giving back to his community. “My formal education was received early by the dedicated Sisters of Mercy at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Elementary School,” Judge Dougherty shares. “To me, my childhood was simple and fun. I remember the milestone of being able to finally venture from Howard Street to the Rev. Burke playground (“The Park”) after the first street light was placed on the corner of Second and Jackson.” Whether it was “play streets” or block parties, Dougherty said he grew to understand the concept of work ethic, pride in self and community. Sitting on a SEPTA Route 79 Bus enroute to his first day of high school at St. John Neumann, the young teenager had an epiphany.

“I discovered the ‘world’,” he laughs. “Imagine my surprise when it was brought to my attention that St. Patrick’s Day was not a national holiday!” “As a result of this experience and the many new South Philadelphians I encountered, I proceeded to obtain a law degree, get married and raise a family,” he continues. “I had the good fortune of being elected a Common Pleas Court judge. In my capacity as Judge, I have been assigned to the Philadelphia Family Court, and now I am humbled by the ability to lead this court and those who enter our system.” Dougherty says he tries to impart the valuable lessons he learned growing up in the City to his own children. On the bench, he also shares those values with hundreds of vulnerable, “at-risk” youngsters who walk through the doors of Family Court every day. “Each night, every night, I thank God for the opportunity to live the American Dream and thank God that I am a Son of South Philly.” prh





hen International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) President Ed Hill envisioned Workers Stand for America, he wanted to refocus national attention on jobs, economic opportunities and restoring the American Dream.

Workers Stand for

America by Maria Merlino


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“In this current climate, the vast majority of us are fighting just to stay lower-middle class,” says John Dougherty, Business Manager for IBEW Local 98. “That is simply unacceptable in a nation that was built on generations of labor.” Philadelphia hosted the “Workers Stand for America” Rally on August 11th, preceding the Republican and Democratic Conventions. It was here that the words “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” changed the world, Dougherty added. The message, he said, is clear. “Enough is enough.” More than 40,000 workers - both Union and Non-Union employees - packed Eakins Oval on the City’s Parkway to let their voices be heard. “It was in Philadelphia that the Bill of Rights, the most practical enumeration of fundamental human values was adopted,” Dougherty said. Workers Stand for America invited individuals from across the nation, from every walk of life, to sign a second Bill of Rights calling for the Right to Full Employment and a Living Wage; the Right to Full Participation in the Electoral Process; the Right to a Voice at Work; The Right to a Quality Education and the Right to a Secure, Healthy Future. With four generations of family members in one union, Michael Barnes, Second Vice President of the IATSE Executive Board, Local 8, the stagehands union, has a family tradition of joining the local.”My grandfather came home from WWI and joined in 1917. My father came home from the Second World War and joined in 1947. I joined in 1987 and now my son and daughter are in it, “ he said. “When the middle class is effectively destroyed, there will only be two economic classes: the rich and the poor.” “The message will be delivered to working families throughout America and will put public officials on notice that working people are tired of being ignored,” Dougherty said. n

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Un-Conventional moments


by Larry Kane

’ve had the great opportunity to cover 23 political conventions from 1968 through the most recent, the Republican conclave in Tampa, followed by a few days later at the Democratic Convention in Charlotte.

My first two conventions came in the height of one of the worst political years ever, 1968. The Miami Republican convention, which nominated Richard Nixon, and the Chicago Convention, which selected Hubert Humphrey, followed an ugly period. In the spring, Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy were murdered. The Vietnam War and racial conflicts were dividing the nation. Miami was fairly peaceful; there were a few riots across the bay, but it was a year of urban conflict, a rage against the establishment. Chicago became a terrifying scenario, when violent protestors clashed with police forces that broke ranks. It was the second time I was struck in the head in the 22

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line of duty, when riots broke out on Chicago’s Michigan Avenue. It was ugly. Stink bombs were being set off in delegates’ hotels. Including the Ambassador where the Pa. Delegation stayed. Eventually, President Johnson sent troops in. The troops were never really needed but the imagery of American troops patrolling the streets of an American city at a political convention was devastating. Just two months earlier, I had watched French troops tear gas and beat demonstrators in the Paris student riots. I couldn’t believe LBJ called the army out in Chicago. The other conventions all had high and low lights. Ronald Reagan tried to beat Gerald Ford at the 1976 convention in Kansas

City. Reagan lost, but had his day in 1980. Historians forget, but it was Ted Kennedy who challenged Jimmy Carter right through the 1976 convention, and doomed Carter’s chances against Reagan. So much for party loyalty. The best conventions of the modern era were the Democrats in 1992. I remember sitting with Pa. Governor Bob Casey as the Clintons barred him from making a pro-life speech. The Governor was very upset. The convention, though, was the most significant ever. It catapulted Clinton to the Presidency. 2008 was a very big year. The Obama Convention was historic. But, truthfully, most of us in the reporting corps thought John McCain might win, especially after picking Sarah Palin at the Minnesota convention. That changed after Palin started doing unscripted interviews. What are conventions like? Well, the food at these arenas is bad.

The Fried Chicken in Tampa’s Forum had cholesterol written all over it. The soft drinks were being sold at $7 a pop. The hours are long for journalists, and the security, although needed, makes a TSA line at the airport look very soft, and you know how tough that can be. Are the conventions necessary? Absolutely. It gives people a real chance to size up candidates and the way they operate. What is not necessary is all the money spent. Congress, which funds part of the conventions and pays a fortune for security, should mandate that both parties hold their conventions at the same location in the same city a few weeks apart. All the parties would have to do is change the floor plan. My choice for 2016 is the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. The parties, the media, the security folks, would save a fortune. The best run convention that I’ve ever seen was the GOP in 2000 in Philadelphia. Let’s do it again with double the fun.  prh




Greenworks Philadelphia hits its mark According to the Mayor’s Office and the Office of Sustainability, of the 167 initiatives presented in Greenworks, 38 are complete and 110 are currently underway. Summer of 2012 marked the midway point in the plan’s goal for Philadelphia to be the greenest city in America by 2015. Notable achievements include the city’s target to divert 70 percent of solid waste from landfills. The City exceeded that goal and is now aiming higher. Another target was to provide Park and Recreation resources within 10 minutes of 75 percent of residents. The City reached that goal and now is aiming to provide walkable access to Park and Recreation Resources for all residents. Other highlights include: ❱❱ A 5% reduction of municipal energy use ❱❱ A more-than-tripled rate for curbside residential recycling ❱❱ Increased access to healthy, affordable food for more than 200,000 Philadelphians ❱❱ the completion of 428 miles of bike lanes “I am proud to say that Philadelphia has made significant progress in our goal to become America’s greenest city. I hope that other cities can learn from our experiences and build off of them,” Mayor Michael Nutter said. “Philadelphia would not be where it is now without the many partners in the public and private sectors who want to see a cleaner, greener and healthier city. Katherine Gajewski and the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability have demonstrated strong leadership on this issue.”

transform many of Philadelphia’s paved, non-porous surfaces to green areas to better manage potentially harmful rainwater runoff pollution. This unique federal-city partnership aims to ensure the success of the Green City, Clean Waters Plan and to present the plan as a national model for cities embracing green storm water infrastructure. “Green City Clean Waters Plan is our proposal to revitalize our rivers and streams by managing storm water in a way that provides multiple benefits. It will result in clean and beautiful waterways, a healthier environment and increased community value. The assistance of our public partners makes it the most cost effective investment of its kind in the country,” Mayor Nutter said. “Where other cities are challenged by very expensive commitments for tunnels, tanks and other gray infrastructure, we have worked with the state and the EPA to take this greener, more fiscally prudent approach that will realize multiple benefits.” 2012 Youth Arts Enrichment Grants “The Youth Arts Enrichment Grants go to the heart of what’s needed across our city and region – the opportunity to provide exposure and knowledge of arts and culture to those who will benefit most – our youth,” said Mayor Michael Nutter. “ The grants, sponsored by the Philadelphia Cultural Fund (PFC) total $100,000 ($25,000 each) and will support youth-focused programs at four cultural organizations: Centro Nueva Creación, Settlement Music School, Village of Arts & Humanities and the Wagner Free Institute. The Philadelphia Cultural Fund (PCF) is a non-profit corporation established by Philadelphia’s Mayor and City Council in 1991 to support and enhance the cultural life and vitality of the City of Philadelphia and its residents. The PCF has distributed more than $33,700,000 in city funding to arts and culture organizations throughout our region.

Green Clean

Hawthorne Park dedicated The city recently cut the ribbon on the newest of four parks opening in local neighborhoods – Hawthorne Park at 12th & Catherine. The (3/4)-acre, $2.1 million green space features a world-class landscape, cutting-edge sustainable features and new public art honoring the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Streets Department Formerly the site of the Martin Luther has BigBelly King Jr. Plaza Homes towers, the locaby Larry Gallone The City of Philadelphia Streets tion was previously a vacant gravel lot, Department has been recognized for containing urban fill. Hawthorne Park “innovative community and governrepresents a green keystone in the ment initiatives” by the Corbett Administration for using BigBelly Solar Philadelphia Housing Authority’s dramatic revitalization of the neighborcompacting litter baskets and recycling containers. The baskets saved hood that started in the late 1990s. According to the Mayor’s office, the City $1 million in annual costs by reducing the trash collection rate from concept to completion, Hawthorne Park was a collaboration among per trash can from an average 17 times per week to 2.5 times per neighbors, funders, state and local government and non-profits including week. The award was part of the 16th Annual Governor’s Awards for the PA Dept. of Conservation & Natural Resources, the City of Phila., PA Local Government Excellence. Dept. of Community & Economic Development, Pew Charitable Trusts Beginning in April of 2009, the Streets Department replaced litter and William Penn Foundation through the PA Horticultural Society. baskets with nearly 900 BigBelly solar-powered compacting litter baskets and more than 400 public recycling containers. The new techMayor Nutter, EPA Administrator Jackson Sign nology has resulted in a dramatic increase in collection efficiency. The Landmark Partnership Agreement recycling containers mark the first time that Philadelphia has on-street City and federal officials recently signed an agreement that represents public recycling, keeping approximately 23.5 tons per month of recya $2 billion investment in Philadelphia green infrastructure. Over the clable materials out of the trash stream.  next 25 years, the Green City, Clean Waters partnership agreement will n

& Serene

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 PRH the menu


Party Flavors photos by Phil Kramer

veryone knows that the perfect party begins with dessert. If you want to wow your guests with a true taste of the season, think whipped cream, decadent chocolate, flakey crust and fruitfilled fantasies. Think 109 years of family recipes baked with the same ingredients today as Mario Isgro used when he opened the doors to his now famous pasticceria back in 1904. Cream Puffs. Cannoli. Rum Cake. Carrot Cake. Strawberry Torts. Chocolate Mousse Tarts. Sfogliatella. Tira Misu. Having a hard time choosing? Let Gus (Isgro) Sarno and his family create the perfect Party Tray for you, complete with a variety of miniature pastries that will leave your guests with a lasting impression. These bite-sized morsels of magnificence are easy to handle in a party setting. Guests can mix and match for the ultimate joy of the season.

Top Picks on the Pastry Tray Wish List Cannoli Cream Puffs Fall Harvest Cake Carrot Cake Red Velvet Cake Homemade Brownies Sfogliatella Rum Cake Squares Strawberry Torte Fresh Fruit Torte Chocolate Mousse Tart Tira Misu German Chocolate Cake Miniatures Cheesecake Miniatures Chocolate Ganache Tart Chocolate Raspberry Ganache Cake ✒

To place your order, please visit or call ISGRO PASTICCERIA 1009 Christian Street Philadelphia, PA 19147 215.923.3092 Hours: Sun / 8 am - 4 pm Mon - Thur / 8 am - 6 pm Fri - Sat / 8 am - 8 pm


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Brought to you by Lombardi’s Prime Meats

Wild Mushroom Stuffed Veal Roast INGREDIENTS ➜1  boneless Veal Shoulder Roast (2 ½ - 3 lbs) ➜ tsp salt INGREDIENTS FOR STUFFING: ➜1  tbs butter ➜4  oz assorted wild mushrooms ( such as shiitake, oyster and cremini), coarsely chopped ¼➜ c  up minced shallots ➜2  cloves garlic, minced ➜2  tbs chopped fresh herbs (such as rosemary, sage & thyme) ➜1  tsp coarse ground black pepper INGREDIENTS FOR SAUCE: ➜c  up dry white wine ➜2  tsp cornstarch dissolved in 1 tbs water ➜1  /3 cup heavy cream ➜ tsp salt Directions: Heat oven to 325 degrees. For stuffing, heat butter in medium nonstick skillet over medium heat until melted. Add mushrooms, shallots and garlic. Cook 2-3 minutes or until just tender, stirring occasionally. Combine herbs and pepper in small bowl. Add half of herb mixture to mushroom mixture, stirring to combine. Unroll Veal Roast. Season with ½ tsp salt. Spread evenly with mushroom mixture. Roll up Veal jelly-roll fashion. Tie with string. Press remaining herb mixture into surface of roast. Place Roast, fat side up, on rack in shallow roasting pan. Insert ovenproof meat thermometer so tip is centered in thickest part of veal, not resting in fat or stuffing. Do not add water or cover. Roast in 325 degree oven to desired doneness – approximately 35 minutes per pound for medium doneness. Do not overcook. Remove roast when meat thermometer registers 155 degrees for medium doneness. For Sauce, add enough water to pan drippings to measure ¼ cup, return mixture to roasting pan. Stir in wine. Cook and stir over medium heat until browned bits attached to the pan are dissolved. Continue cooking for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Lombardi’s Prime Meats is a member of the RowHome Magazine Business Network 26

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Maria Merlino

GRAHAM CRACKERS AND BANANAS Ice Box Cake Ingredients: ➜ 1 3.4 oz. box Vanilla Jell-o pudding, Cook & Serve version (not Instant!) ➜ 1 3.4 oz. box Chocolate Jell-o pudding, Cook & Serve version ➜ 4 cups milk ➜ 1 box Graham Crackers ➜ 4 bananas, sliced ½ inch thick Directions: Line a 9x5 inch loaf pan with plastic wrap. Let a few inches of the plastic wrap over hang. Prepare each flavor of pudding using 2 cups of milk per box. Cake is made by layering and alternating ingredients. On the bottom of the pan arrange a layer of graham crackers. You may have to cut the crackers to fit. Top with cup of chocolate pudding and a layer of sliced bananas. Layer another level of graham crackers, top with ½ cup vanilla pudding and a layer of bananas. Continue layering pudding, bananas and graham crackers until you reach the top of the pan, ending with graham crackers. Fold plastic wrap over the cake and refrigerate for 24 hours. Unmold on platter. Slice to serve. Top with whipped cream if desired or eat plain.

Maria Merlino

Hidden Gem Lanci Bakery With its original 90-year-old coal-fired brick oven, Larry Lanci of Lanci Bakery hand rolls his artisanal Italian bread with love in the old-world style. The dense and crusty loaf, either round or long, holds up in any soups, sauces or gravies. The original recipe of flour, water, yeast and salt came from Abruzzi 6 generations ago and has never changed. Once you sink your teeth into this delicious product, you’ll realize how much bread you get for your dough. Lanci Bakery 1716 Jackson Street Philadelphia, PA 19145 215-463-0169

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Check us out on the web at rowhome magazine

| 27

As part of its annual “Salute to Service” Program, Philadelphia RowHome Magazine (PRH) recently announced the recipients of its 2012 Blue Sapphire Award. The honor is presented annually to individuals whose “selfless dedication to the City of Philadelphia has left an indelible mark on the culture and traditions of our neighborhoods for future generations to enjoy.” The following honorees have been named Philadelphia RowHome Magazine’s 2012 Blue Sapphire Award recipients ❱❱ Pat Ciarrocchi, News Anchor, CBS 3, Media Award ❱❱ Doug Collins, Coach, Philadelphia 76ers, Harry Kalas Memorial Sports Award ❱❱ Sal Dupree, Singer & Vocal Coach, Entertainment Award ❱❱ James Kenney, Philadelphia City Councilman-at-Large, Service to Community Award The Blue Sapphire Award is presented during RowHome Magazine’s annual Affair To Remember - a Black Tie Business Networking Gala sponsored by Cescaphe Event Group. The Event convenes more than 350 guests including members of the

RowHome Magazine Business Network of advertisers, celebrities and media personalities. “It is a celebration of our business community - the heirs and the entrepreneurs - who are the economic backbone of our city of neighborhoods,” say sister Publishers Dorette Rota Jackson and Dawn Rhoades. Guests will meet on the Red Carpet for an elaborate cocktail reception followed by a 5-course dinner prepared by Cescaphe chef/owner Joseph Volpe. For the 7th consecutive year, several Philadelphia Eagles will walk the runway in support of the local business community in fashions by Pasquale Scioli, a member of the PRH Business Network and “tailor to the Eagles.” An Affair to Remember VII & 2012 Blue Sapphire Award Ceremony will be held on Thursday, November 8th, at Vie, 600 N. Broad Street. Entertainment will be provided by guest band City Rhythm Orchestra & Brandywine Valley Entertainment. A portion of the evening’s proceeds will benefit the Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society (PAWS). For tickets and details, contact PRH at 215.462.9777 or

River to River. One Neighborhood.

All great accomplishments begin with a dream.

Philadelphia honors individuals RowHome for their Service Magazine to our City


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Pat Ciarrocchi News Anchor, CBS3 Media Award

photos by Phil Kramer Chester County native Pat Ciarrocchi is the longest-tenured female anchor in Philadelphia. Delivering the news to a loyal audience for more than 30 years, Ciarrocchi’s dedication to journalism has been recognized with numerous awards including multiple Emmy Awards. Ciarrocchi’s career spans the globe, reporting live at major news events including the canonization of St. Katherine Drexel in 2000 and at the funeral of Pope John Paul II in 2005, in addition to special reports in Israel and Great Britain. Ciarrocchi’s passion for the news began in 1974 at WAMS Radio in Wilmington, Delaware. In 1982, Ciarrocchi joined CBS3 and became a viewer favorite. In 2000, Ciarrocchi was inducted into the Philadelphia Broadcast Pioneers Hall of Fame, which came as no surprise to faithful viewers and colleagues. Currently, as co-host with Ukee Washington of Talk Philly, CBS 3’s Emmy Award-winning news and lifestyle program, viewers continue to follow Ciarrocchi as she makes her mark and shares her talents with a grateful Delaware Valley. When Ciarrocchi is not delivering the news, she is extremely active in numerous causes that raise money for area residents including The Pat Ciarrocchi Golf Classic and Pat’s Passion for Fashion Show and Auction. We Salute you, Pat. Your selfless dedication to the residents of Philadelphia is an inspiration to all.


Q. What was your first job? A. My first job was selling soft ice cream at Bunny’s CreeMee Freeze, in Kaolin, Chester County. I became an expert at making a tall, stacked ice cream cone with a perfect swirl on the top. The secret? It’s all in the wrist. Q. Who was your best friend growing up? A. Dolores Pesce was my best friend growing up. We met in first grade and became fast friends and passionate Phillies fans by the time we were in fifth grade. We loved Johnny Callison playing right field. We also would watch The Mike Douglas Show every day at 12:30 PM on Channel 3. (Who would have thought I’d do newscasts from that same studio?) Q. What is the best advice anyone ever gave you? A. The best advice from my cousin, Jean, who is a women’s trailblazer in business was “The harder you work, the luckier you’ll get.” That’s a paraphrase of a Thomas Jefferson quotation -- but “right on” in the best advice category. Q. What is the best advice you ever gave? A. The best advice I ever gave - besides “The harder you work, the luckier you’ll get” -- happiness is a choice. When you recognize that, the door is open to everything else. You need to learn to be happy. Q. What song from back in the day makes you smile as soon as you hear it? A. The song -- from back in the day -- that makes me smile (and dance) is “Heatwave” by Martha and The Vandellas. As a woman, I never knew how applicable it could become. Q. Please complete this sentence: On the road to success... A. On the road to success -- don’t get distracted by the potholes. Climbing out can give you an unexpected new vision of the journey.

2012 Blue Sapphire Award

Doug Collins

Coach, Philadelphia 76ers

Harry Kalas Memorial Sports Award Philadelphia 76ers Coach Doug Collins was not born in Philadelphia but a look at his life will show that he truly is destined to be here. Originally from Christopher, Ill., Collins was a star player at Illinois State University. He was chosen to represent the USA in the 1972 Summer Olympics and played in the controversial game against the Soviet Union that ended with the USA’s rejection of a silver medal. In 1973, Collins was the first overall draft pick by the Sixers. He played just eight seasons before injuries forced him into retirement in 1981. Collins became the Sixers coach in 2010 and has led the team to playoff berths in each of his two years. This past season, the Sixers won their first playoff series since 2003 and took the Boston Celtics to seven games in the conference semifinals. The team followed up the playoff run with a number of off-season acquisitions, most notably star center Andrew Bynum. We Salute you, Doug Collins. Your contributions to our city have had a profound effect on fans throughout the region. You have been a respected player, coach and community advocate throughout your esteemed career. We are honored to present you with the 2012 Harry Kalas Memorial Sports Award.


Q. What was your first job? A. Bagging groceries at the IGA Goodliner and mowing lawns. Q. Who was your best friend growing up? A. Laird Wisely Q. What is the best advice anyone gave you? A. Don’t be afraid to fail!! Q. What is the best advice you ever gave? A. Live your passion!! Q. What song from back in the day makes you smile as soon as you hear it? A. Pretty Woman by Roy Orbison Q. Please complete this sentence: On the road to success... A. You must be able to endure heartbreak and failure - it will give you the strength and courage to live life to the fullest.

2012 Blue Sapphire Award

Sal Dupree

James Kenney

Entertainment Award

Service to Community Award

Vocal & Acting Coach/Performer “If you have any talent, that is God’s gift to you. If you use that talent, that is your gift to God.” Sal Dupree is a nationally known veteran performer, vocal and acting coach and music producer. Born in Brooklyn, NY in 1944, Sal spent his younger years in foster homes throughout Camden, N.J. and Philadelphia, before moving to a Philadelphia orphanage, where he lived until he was 17. His upbringing ultimately led him to devote his life to encouraging young performers. Dupree entered the music industry early. Beginning with Doo-Wop performances on the street corners of South Philadelphia, Dupree launched a lifelong career in music that has led him from Atlantic City to Las Vegas. He holds the record for longest-running act in the shore town’s history (22 years) at Bally’s, Taj Mahal, Golden Nugget & Tropicana. In 1975, Dupree founded the Dupree Performing Arts Studio in Northfield, N.J. His guidance has led students to land key roles in some of Broadway’s most popular musicals including Annie, The Sound of Music, Peter Pan, Les Miserables and Beauty & the Beast. Dupree also is credited with coaching Bianca Ryan, the 2006 winner of America’s Got Talent. Most recently, Dupree served as the inspiration for the movie musical “Standing Ovation,” a film showcasing local talent, where he also served as the film’s Music Supervisor, Producer and featured actor/singer. We salute you, Sal Dupree, for encouraging our youth to follow their dreams.


Q. What was your first job? A. My first job was delivering sandwiches in Center City Philadelphia for a local restaurant. Q. Who was your best friend growing up? A. My sister, Yvonne Greenberg. Q. What is the best advice anyone gave you? A. Don’t be afraid to change the direction of your life if you see that the direction you are taking will lead you to a stone wall. Q. What is the best advice you ever gave? A. Don’t allow anyone to step inside your dreams. No one has that right! Q. What song from back in the day makes you smile as soon as you hear it? A. Oh My Papa. It was the song I had to sing for 10 years in the orphanage that helped to raise funds for the kids. Q. Please complete this sentence: On the road to success... A. You may be knocked down but you will also find the kindness of caring and love from real people that will lift you up and help you to eventually find your successes.

Philadelphia City Councilman-at-Large

City Councilman James Kenney is a lifelong South Philadelphia resident who has been proudly serving the city of Philadelphia since 1992. Councilman Kenney is a 1976 graduate of St. Joseph’s Preparatory School and a 1980 graduate of LaSalle University. Kenney’s contributions to Philadelphia include positions as Chairman of the Legislative Oversight Committee, Committee of the Environment and the Committee on Public Property and Public Works. Kenney also is an integral member of community and civic groups including Friends of FDR Park, East Passyunk Business Improvement District, Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation, Mural Arts Advisory Board and the Mayor’s Office of Community Service. Councilman Kenney’s open-door policy has encouraged generations of residents to discuss the issues impacting them on a daily basis. In 2009, Kenney responded by instituting the City’s 311 Call Center -- a service designed to track and address residents’ concerns such as vacant property issues, street light outages and graffiti removal.  In its first year, 311 received more than 1 million calls with a customer satisfaction rate of 89%. Philadelphia’s 311 Call Center also was recognized worldwide by National Public Radio (NPR) and the International City Manager Association (ICMA). Philadelphia RowHome Magazine salutes Councilman James Kenney for his service to our city of neighborhoods and his contributions on behalf of the individuals who live, work and enjoy all of the amenities of this culturally diverse, historically rich City of Brotherly Love.


Q. What was your first job? A. 1973. Dishwasher/ Bus Person at Luigi’s Restaurant, 2nd & South. Q. Who was your best friend growing up? A. Not one particular but many friends. Q. What is the best advice anyone ever gave you? A. “Get up! You’ll be late for work!” (My parents) Q. What is the best advice you ever gave? A. No good deed goes unpunished but do it anyway. Q. What song from back in the day makes you smile as soon as you hear it? A. TSOP- The Sound of Philadelphia (By MFSB- Mother, Father, Sister, Brother). Q. Please complete this sentence: On the road to success... A. Try to make others’ lives better.

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Standing Ovation sponsors WishRock Award by Jennifer Barkowitz


he movie Standing Ovation delivers an optimistic tale of perseverance and passion that showcases a talented cast of kids as they learn the importance of friendship and family on a journey to fulfilling their dreams.

But this isn’t your average Hollywood film. Since Standing Ovation’s nationwide theatrical release in 2010, Kenilworth Films Producer/President Diane Kirman has made it her mission to help children build a better tomorrow- both here and abroad. Following the film’s release, Kirman decided she wanted to give back to the community. She created Standing Ovation Live, an outreach program designed to help children to “Stand up, Reach Out and Take Action.” Flanked by cast and crew, Kirman boarded a plane to Nassau, Bahamas, to perform


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a charity concert to benefit the Ranfurly Home for Children, an orphanage offering a safe haven for children ages 5-20. During their one-week visit, Standing Ovation Live raised more than $10,000 for the orphanage. But the fundraising didn’t stop there. Upon returning home, Standing Ovation Live partnered with the Boys & Girls Clubs of America. Kirman’s cast performed concerts at charity events in cities throughout the country and donated a portion of merchandise and DVD sales to the Clubs. Since its inception, Standing Ovation Live has raised more than

$300,000 for various charities. Kirman believes there are so many gifted young people who need to know they can reach for the stars. This year marks a new chapter for Standing Ovation, proud sponsor of Philadelphia RowHome Magazine’s 2012 WishRock Award. The Award, a new category in the magazine’s annual “Salute to Service” program, will be presented to young individuals “whose passion for the Arts has inspired a new generation of believers.” Philadelphia RowHome Magazine (PRH) selected three young performers to receive its First Annual WishRock Award Felicia Punzo, Chickie Pagano and Brandon Tomasello. According to PRH Publishers Dorette Rota Jackson and Dawn Rhoades, the WishRock Award is presented to “young dreamers whose passion for the arts has inspired a new generation of believers.”

Sponsored by Standing Ovation, the WishRock marks one of many steps along their journey to success, the Publishers say. The WishRock Award will be presented during Philadelphia RowHome Magazine’s 7th annual Black Tie Dinner Gala & Blue Sapphire Awards Presentation - An Affair to Remember - sponsored by Cescaphe Event Group on Thursday, November 8th, at Vie. May this award always remind you to “believe in yourself, follow your dreams and reach out to help others along the way.” On behalf of Philadelphia RowHome Magazine and Standing Ovation, thank you for sharing your talent and your determination with us, attesting to the fact that all great accomplishments begin with a dream. For more information about Standing Ovation, visit www.

Philadelphia RowHome Magazine presents the 2012 WishRock Award

Chickie Pagano “No dream comes true until you wake up and get to work!” That is the motto of 16-year-old Chickie Pagano, who learned at the early age of 11 that she wanted to be a performer. Beginning in 2008, Pagano began performing at various venues in Philadelphia, Delaware, NYC and LA before crowds as small as our street corners to crowds of 30,000. In 2010, Pagano was awarded a scholarship to the Rage Complex School in Granada Hills, CA, to study acting, singing and dancing. The program was slated during the middle of the school year and Pagano had to forgo the program. She did, however, make an appearance at Rage Complex’s showcase at the famed House of Blues on the Sunset Strip in LA. Pagano also has performed at the Academy of Music, Lincoln Financial Field’s “Head House Plaza”, Citizens Bank Park and the Wells Fargo Center. Music is just one of Pagano’s many talents. She also has performed and starred in many local theater productions including Hairspray and Rent. Most recently, Pagano was selected to perform at the Young People’s Concert Series, hosted by the Mann Music Center. The concert is held in numerous states throughout the US and showcases emerging artists in an effort to encourage other kids to pursue their dreams. The Mann Center also selected Pagano to perform at the Clef Club, where she entertained the Canadian Youth Orchestra. Pagano continues steadily on the road to success. She is currently working on recording tracks for her upcoming CD, in hopes of signing a recording contract in the near future.

Brandon Tomasello Brandon Tomasello was introduced to performing arts at a young age. In the year 2000, Tomasello entered the Philadelphia Performing Arts Charter School (PPACS) as a third grade student. It was here that his unique voice was discovered. Shortly after entering PPACS, Tomasello was offered a spot in the prestigious Philadelphia Boys Choir, where he performed on a variety of stages and studied vocal arts under some of the most talented instructors in the city. But it was while he was in the fourth grade that Tomasello had truly found his musical match in Frank Sinatra. His Grandmother was busy fixing dinner and enjoying the music when Tomasello was immediately drawn to the sound. After his first encounter with “Ol’ Blue Eyes”, he was hooked. Tomasello and Grandmother spent countless hours listening to Sinatra as she taught him all about the world of “The Voice”. After graduating from the PPACS in 2006, Tomasello continued to pursue his love of music and the unique sound of Frank Sinatra. He built himself a studio in his grandfather’s office building behind their house and began his own production company, FIMA. It was here that he recorded his first album, “It’s My Time.” In 2011, Tomasello was asked to perform at the Whiskey Bar at Atlantic City’s Resorts Casino. His performance immediately caught the eye of the late Resorts President Dennis Gnomes, who decided that Tomasello needed a bigger stage. He was then moved to the 1,600-seat Superstar Theater where he headlined the Sinatra tribute show “Swing, Sing, Sinatra.”

Felicia Punzo Felicia Punzo is well on her way up the ladder of success. At the early age of four, Punzo knew performing would be her life. Currently a sophomore vocal major at the University of the Arts, Punzo has starred in 13 musicals, appeared in several TV commercials and has worked with heavy-hitting mega producers whose credits include Jennifer Lopez and Justin Beiber. And she shows no signs of slowing down any time soon. Recently voted “Best Philly Celeb” by the PHL 17 Hot List, 2012 has proven to be a breakout year. An associate member of the Grammy Recording Academy, 19-year-old Punzo was invited to host the reality TV show, Party Rockers Dance Reality Show, filmed at Chickie’s & Pete’s Play 2. When she isn’t focusing on her music, Punzo performs at charity events for various causes including Cancer foundations, The MS Walk, Church festivals, Philadelphia’s Columbus Day Parade and the Special Olympics, among others. Also an advocate for anti-bullying, Punzo’s YouTube campaign was featured on the MYPHL17 morning show, Eye Opener. Her new EP “Grown” was released this past summer and is currently available on iTunes. rowhome magazine

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The Hollywood


Snookie snuggles with baby Lorenzo






by Anthony E. McBride


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he summer of 2012 left some casualties in the way of Hollywood. Katie Holmes & Tom Cruise had one of the fastest divorces in Tinseltown after nearly 6 years of an odd marriage. Katie won primary custody of daughter Suri and Katie is said to be, “Happier than ever.” Kristen Stewart got nabbed cheating on Robert Pattinson, ending their off-screen romance and tweens everywhere are now thoroughly confused with this Twilight saga! Lindsay Lohan’s troubles remained the same. She smashed into a dump truck on the sunny California coast. Lohan escaped injury but couldn’t escape the paramedics just seven days later when they found her unresponsive in her hotel room. The troubled star was said to have been struggling with the classic Hollywood symptoms of “dehydration and exhaustion.” Officially banned from the swanky and infamous Chateau Marmont (the same hotel where actor John Belushi famously died from an overdose in 1982), Lohan allegedly owes at least $46,000 on her tab! Who even gives her a line of credit anymore? The East coast couldn’t escape 2012’s summer wrath as the Jersey Shore lost its lease on the beach house when an evic-

tion notice stamped with the word ‘CANCELLED’ on it was handed out to the cast! This 6th season will be the show’s last. Sources close to the cast say, “Everyone is kind of relieved but at the same time, very sad.” Nicole “Snookie” Polizzi and J. Wow still have their show to hold onto and Pauly D. is still hanging tough with his. Snookie finally gave birth to a beautiful bouncing baby named Lorenzo, who might be the only saving grace for his Mom’s reality show. Everyone loves a baby, right? In music news, singer Adelle, 24, announced she is with child and couldn’t be more excited. Taylor Swift is now edging her way into the Camelot love story by dating Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s son Connor Kennedy, 18. The pair are reportedly so hot and heavy, there may be concerns of an elope in their near future! As I predicted in my last column, America’s Got Talent ran away with huge ratings over the summer but who knew American Idol judges Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler would resign? With Brittany Spears and Christina Aguilera firmly seated on their respective shows, who will replace the AI judges? Adam Lambert and Mariah Carey are frontrunners! That’s the sizzle from your Hollywood Hotline! prh

South Philadelphia guitarist inducted into Rock & Roll Hall of Fame


by Dan Vanore

Danny Cedrone is credited with famous guitar solo on Bill Haley’s Rock Around the Clock

am taking my editor’s advice and writing this story the way I feel it. I spent my entire life waiting for destiny to take its course. As with most worthwhile goals, destiny sometimes needs a little help. For any musician who has ever picked up an instrument or sang into a microphone, being inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is the ultimate honor. An honor that was finally bestowed upon my Grandfather, Danny Cedrone, the little known local musician whose fiery guitar solo on Bill Haley & the Comets’ iconic recording of Rock Around the Clock is recognized as one of music history’s finest riffs. On April 14th, 2012, Danny Cedrone, who died suddenly in 1954, was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame along with rest of The Comets. This Philadelphia Story has been 58 years in the making and there is only one way to tell it. From the beginning. Not the beginning of his life, but the beginning of mine. My first memory of my grandfather’s music was watching and listening to my mother sitting by the record player with her father’s guitar in her hands, playing along with his 45s. Pausing between songs, she’d tell me little stories about her dad. The kind of man he was. How he would play for free at local orphanages during the holidays. When he came home, he would sit with his head in his hands, crying for the children who didn’t have homes to spend Christmas in. She talked about the many gigs that she and her sister would accompany him to just to spend time with their favorite musician. As he chased his dream, he’d reassure my grandmother. ‘Mil, all I need is that one hit. That one song. And we’ll be on our way.’ My mother’s stories brought life to the grandfather I never met. A talented musician who died in 1954 from an accidental fall at the age of 33 -- a few years before I was born. I knew how fast his fingers moved across the guitar frets. I felt his passion for the music that was changing the world as we knew it. As a young boy growing up in the 1960s, I realized that my grandfather’s entire career

was shrouded in mystery. As Rock Around the Clock climbed the charts, everyone who listened to the song remembered his legendary guitar solo but no one except for my family members knew that it was Danny Cedrone who played that technically brilliant solo. Not one piece of documentation had yet come to light to definitively prove that it was my grandfather who played that renowned solo on Rock Around The Clock. That is until Bob Jackson, a fellow musician and good friend of mine, came across an article by Dan Forte in Musician Magazine back in 1982. Forte spoke to legendary Decca producer Milt Gabler who verified for the world what my family knew all along. Forte was quoted in the article saying, ‘Danny Cedrone was one of the great unsung pioneers of rock guitar. May his name live forever!’ From that moment on, my family was on a mission. Every week, my Aunt Janet and Uncle Carlo came home with another Danny Cedrone recording or piece of evidence proving he was the guitarist on that groundbreaking solo. We made many friends along the way who joined our quest to give my grandfather the credit that eluded him during his short life. Then we met Howard Kramer, assistant curator of the famed Rock Hall. In 1997, Kramer made the trip to my South Philadelphia home to take a look at my most prized possession. My grandfather’s guitar. A few months later, Kramer arranged to pick the

guitar up and display it in the Rock Hall. It was the first step in a journey that would last 15 years. With the guitar on display, I continued to press Kramer for guidance that could lead to Danny Cedrone’s induction into Rock history. A rightful place alongside the Comets in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. The announcement came on a perfect spring morning. Rock Around the Clock was the ‘one hit’ my grandfather dreamed of his entire life. And his talented solo will live in infamy as one of Rock & Roll’s most influential recordings. My family owes a debt of gratitude to Howard Kramer and the rest of the powers that be in the Rock Hall. I believe they recognized an injustice and worked tirelessly to make it right. On the day of the Induction ceremony, I proudly walked down the red carpet, taking photographs and watching the ceremony from behind the stage on two huge television screens. I documented every moment for my friends and colleagues at RowHome Magazine and the thousands of readers who have been following the Danny Cedrone story through the years. Then the moment came when The Comets’ bass man Marshall Lytle mentioned my grandfather’s name to the packed house. His exact words were, “And let’s not forget our great guitarist Danny Cedrone.” Many of the reporters in the room congratulated me. I shared my story with so many people that day and their handshakes and well-wishes added to the closure my family sought for more than half a century. This ending is bittersweet. An ending that no one in my family anticipated following the tragic death of my grandfather back in 1954 -- a few short months before Rock Around the Clock was released to the rest of the world. I would like to end this story with Dan Forte’s words about my grandfather. But with a slight adjustment. Danny Cedrone, one of the great pioneers of rock guitar, is now a member of the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame. His name will live forever and for that, my family and I will be forever grateful. prh rowhome magazine

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PRHBUSINESS The Power of Purpose 〉〉 Action – Your actions give you a sense of accomplishment and bring your purpose into reality. Make a weekly list of the actions needed to fulfill your purpose, and each day, take the most important step. When I got into the habit of making action lists, I was amazed at how much I accomplished in just one week. Check each item off your list as you complete it. Actions cause reactions, which act as a stimulator for further planning. 〉〉 P  ersistence–Persistence—especially in the face of adversity—is one of the major causes of success. This is where clarity and desire will help you with persistence and keep you focused on your purpose. Place around your environment a few pictures of how you envision the result that persistence will lead to as reminders of your purpose. Persistence will open more possibilities than you could have ever imagined for experiencing visibility, credibility and growth.

A Suitable Solution

This is your future and your purpose: Wake up each day with the clarity to see the abundance and opportunities that are there waiting for you as you move toward the realization of your purpose. prh


by Sara Canuso

ne of the major motivators for a fulfilled life and work is purpose—the knowledge that our actions can make a positive impact on our world. Whether your purpose is huge—like ending world hunger—or smaller—ending hunger in your community—it is the reason for getting up in the morning and persevering through challenges.

How can you use purpose to give your life meaning? How can you make a difference in your world? 〉〉 Clarity–Being clear on your purpose is the starting point of all achievement. Sadly, we typically spend more time planning a vacation than we spend clarifying our purpose! Do you have a clear view of where you would like to be one year from now? What you would like to achieve? What will be the impact of your actions?  It is critical to write down your purpose in detail since this is going to act as a blueprint for success. Take the time to ask those you trust for their ideas, thoughts and concerns. When drawing up your blueprint, include the purpose for both your personal life and your professional life, so you may enjoy a balanced feeling within yourself.


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〉〉 Confidence –Self-confidence is the inner feeling of certainty, a belief that you are worthwhile and valuable and that your purpose has meaning. Self-confidence gives you the energy to realize your dreams; it is essential for empowering your thoughts and actions. If you lack confidence, make the choice to get out of your way and live the life you were meant to live. 〉〉 Focus –This is a major cornerstone for building the foundation of your future. I use the analogy of a famous tightrope walker who never fell off the wire. When asked how he accomplished this he said that he never looked back, down or sideways. He just kept his head held high and kept looking straight ahead. Focus on your purpose and use it to guide you in the right direction.

Sara Canuso, President of A Suitable Solution, advises business executives, lawyers, financial advisors and solopreneurs on how to make the most of the impact of image and body language in communicating with others personally and professionally. Sara helps her clients reach their fullest potential by assisting in the discovery of their Personal Brand: the development of a positive appearance and self-image. She provides a one-on-one coaching process that positively impacts how each client sees their future. A powerful speaker, author and coach, Sara is known for her insightful keynote presentations and corporate training seminars. She has addressed thousands annually at the Pennsylvania and New Jersey Governor’s Conference for Women, American Bar Association Women’s Rainmaking Conference and Women in Technology, Philadelphia Business Journal and National Association of Women Business Owners events. As a leading expert, her views have been sought after by the Wall Street Journal, NBC, CBS and KYW Radio. She has been a featured columnist on the impact of image in corporate America in the Legal Intelligencer, WestLaw Journal, Philadelphia Business Journal, Philadelphia Maven and the Burlington County Straight Word. prh

Local activist makes her English voice heard


by Maria Merlino

opular community activist Van Tsang was living in Hong Kong in a tidy little house with her carpenter husband Shin and their two young girls, Sally and Betty. As a Doctor of Chinese Medicine, she said she had a happy life working as a mid-wife and acupuncturist. Until her world was turned upside down. In 1989, the Tiananmen Square Massacre occurred in Beijing. The British territory of Hong Kong would soon be returned to China. To flee the political unrest in their country, the Tsang family applied for visas to the United States and settled in South Philadelphia. Tsang enrolled her daughters in school but the language barrier posed many challenges, including a “bullying” incident at one of her daughter’s schools.

“I realized that as an immigrant, I was at a disadvantage. I did not understand the language and had no word power.” She said she was determined to learn the new language. Not only did she learn English but three Chinese dialects, Cambodian and Vietnamese. Spanish is the next idiom on her list. Tsang, formerly an interpreter for the Philadelphia School District Office of Multilingual Curriculum and Progress, now works for Universal Charter School. She also volunteers her free time to community activities and tutoring -- personally funding many of these programs. “Sometimes I sell candy to fund the agendas but not everyone has the money. I buy food and cook it myself for Chinese cultural events and rent

costumes for dancing.” Tsang says the future for children of immigrant parents must begin before they go to school. The key to their success, she says, is reading. “That is why it’s so important to learn the language of the new country,” she explains. “Just read the labels on cans if that’s all you know,” she tells parents. “And read out loud. The child will get the importance of this ability.” Tsang says that with the proper language skills, children will succeed. “They must learn English and the parents must learn English. Otherwise, you will be lost. Literally lost because how can you find the bus?” she laughs. “If you live in this country, you have to learn English.”  prh

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rowhome magazine

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Lena & son Dan Olivieri Jr. Courtesy of South Philly Review / Greg Bezanis

D. Olivieri Jewelers marks a diamondstudded year


by Maria Merlino

ack in the 1940’s, a creative 15-year-old teenager from 6th & Wharton accepted an apprenticeship on Sansom Street’s Jewelers Row. “My father was a natural born artist,” daughter Debbie Olivieri begins about her dad, the late Daniel P. Olivieri Sr. “He was way ahead of his time.”

Lena & Dan Olivieri Sr.


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Olivieri said her father started out as an errand boy but soon had his own work bench in the jewelry shop along the City’s prestigious strip. Before long, his passion for the industry fueled his climb to the top of his craft. An excellent watchmaker and diamond setter, Olivieri loved the trade. As Marcasite became the rage of the era, department stores like Lit Brothers and Gimbel’s turned to Olivieri to design unique pieces for their customers, Debbie Olivieri continues. “When my father was 19, he entered a radio contest to spend a day with Frank Sinatra. And he won!” she smiles. “He was picked up in a limo and taken to New York. As a thank you, he designed and crafted a pair of solid gold cuff links for him. These cuff links are still in the Sinatra estate.” In 1957, after serving in the Korean War, Olivieri opened his own jewelry shop at 2523 South Broad Street. As he and wife Lena raised their young family -- Maria, Debbie and Danny Jr. -- Olivieri Jewelers marked the start of what would become one of the city’s premier family-owned businesses. As an active member of the community, Olivieri Sr. was named one of

the first presidents of the South Philadelphia Business Association (SPBA), a post currently occupied by son Dan Olivieri Jr., who recently established a scholarship in his father’s name. A proponent of public transportation, Olivieri Sr. was instrumental in working with city officials to extend the Broad Street Subway line south of Snyder Avenue to Oregon Avenue, daughter Debbie adds. “My father believed that more business could be accomplished if people were able to easily get to stores beyond Snyder Avenue,” she explains. “He was very proud when that corridor eventually opened up.” This year, D. Olivieri Jewelers celebrates 55 years of service to more than three generations of customers. Many activities, including a Black Friday Block Party on November 23rd are planned. But the biggest celebration is the legacy of a father whose passion for his trade lives on in his children and the shop he first opened back in 1957.prh D. Olivieri Jewelers is a member of the RowHome Magazine Business Network.

10 EASY WAYS TO GET HOLIDAY SHOPPERS THROUGH YOUR DOOR 1. Focus on Customer Service. People enjoy personalized attention. Acknowledge customers as soon as they come through your door with a polite smile or nod. Don’t be overbearing. People like to browse for a few seconds to get their bearings. 2. Celebrate the season. Holiday shopping is an emotional experience. People enjoy seeing decorations; hearing favorite holiday songs; smelling scented candles and sprays. Anything that triggers happy memories will get people in a good mood. If your customers are happy, they will stay longer. 3. Make customers comfortable.  A study in the Journal of Marketing Power found that the more relaxed people feel in a store, the more money they tend to spend on just about anything. Soothing music, calming scents and a few scattered chairs or stools will give shoppers a chance to rest their feet. 4. Remind shoppers to “treat themselves.�  Offer customers special discounts, gift certificates or holiday promotions. While giftshopping for others, people enjoy spending a little something on themselves. 5. Get online.  Make sure your store address, phone number, hours of operation and a map or driving directions are easy to find when people search for your business. Also use social media tools like Facebook and Twitter to keep customers updated on sales, events and specials in your store. 6. Get involved.  Sponsor a charity event, donate toys to needy children or collect food for hungry families. By participating

De Fino Law Associates, P.C. Don’t Settle for Less

in the events that matter to your target customers, people will remember your generosity and talk about it in their social circles. 7. Host events. You don’t have to break the bank! Bake cookies. Display a box of chocolates. Offer customers special discounts or gifts with purchases with an “Invitation-Only� shopping event. Collect business cards prior to the event and send an email to your customers to save on printing and mailing costs. 8. Pets have feelings too! According to recent surveys, more than half (53 percent) of respondents say they  like shopping in stores that allow pets. If petfriendliness works for your store, set out a few water bowls or keep some biscuits in a basket on your counter to let customers know their pooches are welcome.

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Attorney at Law

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Wills and Estates Corporate Real Estate Traffic Violations


9. Start a newsletter. Or print out some flyers and leave them on your counter. Include special dates, sales, promotions. Customers will keep track of those dates and take advantage of your specials. 10. Stop & Shop at our local spots! Since its debut more than 8 years ago, Philadelphia RowHome Magazine has been encouraging its readers to “Go Home Philly. Stop & Shop at our Local Spots!� Local businesses specialize in goods and services that reflect the interests and traditions of the community. Keep these businesses in mind when you plan your gift list. And refer your family and friends to these specialty shops! It is good for the local economy and celebrates the spirit that helped build generations of family-owned shops. prh

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Peanut Chews are RowHome Grown!


hiladelphia born and raised, GOLDENBERG’S PEANUT CHEWS® have been manufactured in the city since 1917. Packed with peanuts and small batch flavor, the chewy, chocolatey, bitesized candies are kosher and gluten-free and are available in Milk Chocolatey and vegan-friendly Original Dark flavors.

GOLDENBERG’S  PEANUT CHEWS were developed in 1917 by Philadelphia’s own Goldenberg family and  used by the U.S. Military during World War I as a ration bar. The high energy, high protein recipe and unique taste made it popular with the troops and have helped it remain popular today. To kick off it’s 95th year, in 2011 Goldenberg Candy Company introduced its new product label, putting the family name back on the front of the package, along with the traditional rich red and chocolatey brown that had been part of the Goldenberg’s ’wrapper design for decades. The new packaging emphasizes the brand’s Philadelphia heritage and includes a creative use of the UPC bar code, which reflects the city skyline. The supporting ‘chewin’ it old schoolTM’ advertising campaign was conceived by Old City ad agency, Machinery. The campaign includes TV commercials and messages like “We were on South Street when it was punk” and “Avenue of the Arts will always be Broad Street to us” that offer a vintage nod to the candy’s’ Philadelphia roots. In July, Goldenberg’s added old school mobile wallpapers and a ringtone to its website so that consumers can carry the flavor 40

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of the campaign with them when they’re on the go. In September, the company launched an assortment of one-of-a-kind eCards that include messages such as Happy Birthday, I’m Sorry, Happy Anniversary and Get Well and feature the unmistakable voice of the actor from the recent television commercials. Since purchasing the Goldenberg Candy Company in 2003, Just Born, Inc. has continued the delicious candy making tradition started by the Goldenberg family almost a century ago. Goldenberg’s Marketing Manager Bob Zender noted, “As a family-owned business, Just Born has maintained its operations in Northeast Philadelphia and has continually invested to grow the business. We’’re excited about our new ’chewin’ it old school’ advertising campaign and package design updates that are helping to expand the brand’s’ reach.” The refreshed GOLDENBERG’S PEANUT CHEWS candies have been welcomed by new school and old school brand fans alike!’ prh For more information, visit GOLDENBERG’S PEANUT CHEWS online at and on Facebook and Twitter.

Magician Rich Baccare of Richie B Magic with Lauren Gedraitis of South Philly

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ShopRite! If you’re looking for ways to save, look no further.


ccording to owner James Colligas of Colligas Family Markets, ShopRite of Snyder Plaza, the Colligas Family Markets is more than a supermarket. “We are a purpose-driven company and that purpose is to provide our customers with an exhilarating, pleasurable experience!” With a no-line, no-wait checkout experience, no-hassle return policy and convenient delivery service, customers agree that Colligas Family Markets is the place to shop in South Philadelphia. “Having a real appreciation for our customers, we are consistently looking for new ways to “Wow” them,” Jim says. Since 2005, Colligas Family Markets has engaged the community in a variety of ways, from involving the neighborhood in choosing a mural for the build-

ing to deciding which exclusive store-made products deserve to be awarded the Colligas Family Market’s Gold Seal of Excellence. Throughout the year, the store always has something special going on! A strolling violinist for Valentine’s Day, Bag Pipes for St. Patty’s Day, an accordion and Choral singers on Christmas Eve. The Colligas family assures you that you will find everything you need to make your holiday gathering perfect and have fun doing it at the same time!  prh

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rowhome magazine 41 8/13/12 9:37 AM

The Navy Yard Past and Present Philadelphia is home to our nation’s first Naval Shipyard 42

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PRHOn the Waterfront


by Jennifer Barkowitz photos courtesy of Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC)

hiladelphia is the birthplace of our nation’s first Naval Shipyard, however, the Naval Shipyard located at the end of South Broad Street is no longer the same place Philadelphians once knew. Today, The Navy Yard is a dynamic, urban community filled with energy, ideas and rich history built around the needs of people gathered together to do business in a progressive way. HISTORY In 1794, President George Washington signed the Naval Act that called for the construction of six warships to protect and defend our country. Work commenced at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard located on Carpenter Street in the Southwark section of Philadelphia. In 1876, Philadelphia Naval Shipyard (PNSY) relocated to League Island on South Broad Street along the Delaware River. During World War II, PSNY employed more than 50,000 people, who constructed and repaired upwards of 1,200 ships. The channel between South Philadelphia and League Island was filled in, creating today’s 1,200-acre Navy Yard. PNSY operated for 120 years before the Base Realignment and Closure Commission (BRAC) ordered PNSY to cease operations in 1996.

TODAY Since 2000, the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC), on behalf of the City of Philadelphia, has been responsible for the planning, operations and development of The Navy Yard. A comprehensive master plan was developed in 2004, with a 2012 update release this fall, offering a wide range of building types – from historic adaptive reuse to brand new, LEED-certified construction in the office, research & development, and industrial and manufacturing sectors. By the end of 2012, The Navy Yard will house more than 120 companies and 10,000 employees, including the headquarters of GlaxoSmithKline, Urban Outfitters, Inc., Tasty Baking Company and Aker Philadelphia Shipyard, as well as many fast-growing businesses like Mark Group, Iroko Pharmaceuticals and Rhoads Industries. To date, more than $700 million of private investment

has been placed at The Navy Yard. A key element of The Navy Yard’s development strategy is the Smart Energy Campus, incorporating energy-related technologies and demonstration projects, green building construction, innovative stormwater management practices, an expansive park system, sustainability and energy deployment research. The Navy Yard is still home to the Naval Ship Systems Engineering Station (NAVSSES), the U.S. Navy’s only organization responsible for shipboard machinery systems research and engineering. In addition, the U.S. Department of Energy invested $129 million in The Navy Yard, creating the Energy Efficient Buildings Hub. Visitors can experience the energy and culture of The Navy Yard Monday through Friday, from 6 am to 6 pm. Many public events are planned, as well, including the Philadelphia Horticultural Society’’s Fall Garden Festival, various beer festivals, the Broad Street Run, Vintage Baseball games, recreational sports leagues, Earth Day Bike Tour and URBN’s Farmers Market. Visitors are encouraged to participate in the self-guided walking tour, which takes guests through the past and present of The Navy Yard. Winding through

the campus, visitors will pass by old ships and new, green construction, and make their way around the historic buildings and open park spaces, ending on the waterfront by Urban Outfitters’ campus. Guests can have lunch at Shop 543 or the Jharoka Café inside Building 543. Or place your order from DiNic’s Roast Pork and Yardbirds Café. On certain days, food trucks will be parked on the Marine Parade Grounds as part of the new, popular Lunch Truck Lineup. Getting to The Navy Yard is easy and convenient. The new Navy Yard Shuttle offers connecting service from the AT&T Broad Street Subway station to The Navy Yard. Or take advantage of free parking. FUTURE The Navy Yard is an ever-evolving campus with $350 million worth of projects currently under construction or in the development/planning phase, including a Marriott Courtyard hotel, various new construction and historic renovations, and several world-class parks. For more information, or to access the walking tour, visit, or follow The Navy Yard on social media for news, events, photos, and more: and prh

PRHOn the Waterfront

Guild Volunteers (L to R) Paul Weiss, Rob Sawyer, Laurine Valenti, Scott Cointot, Eric Lorgus, Mike Matulewicz, Nat Bender, Mike Carlsson, Patrick Flynn, Linda Bills, Eddie Walsh, Sarah Wade, Lisa Kolibabek, Rita Fox-Elmes, Alexey Bachmanov, Becky Goldschmidt, Jack Gifford, George Wisser, Jack Little, Ann Gifford, Ed Stemmler, Pete Bailey, Nathan Gifford

Hope Floats

Crew keeps history alive on the Delaware


by Eric Lorgus

ave you ever dreamed of sailing on a tall ship? Or working on an old tugboat? Welcome to the Philadelphia Ship Preservation Guild, the non-profit that maintains and sails two of Philly’s finest historic vessels the tall ship Gazela Primeiro and the tugboat Jupiter. Recently designated as Philadelphia’s official tall ship, Gazela Primeiro is believed to be the oldest, wooden squarerigged ship still actively sailing in North America. Rebuilt in 1901 in Portugal from a smaller vessel, Gazela sailed with the Portuguese White Fleet until 1969, crossing the Atlantic each summer to fish for cod on the Grand Banks. In 1971, philanthropist William Wikoff Smith purchased her and donated her to what is today the Independence Seaport Museum. The guild assumed ownership in the 1980s. Not much has changed on Gazela since her Portuguese days. The cook still uses the same stove, the crew still sleeps in the same cramped berths and the anchor


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is still raised by a 1930’s vintage hand-crank-started diesel engine. In the foc’s’le, a faded list of old Portuguese radio codes remains. In the early days of radio, two-digit codes were used to send phrases such as “Congratulations. You are a father. Mother and child are well.” The tugboat Jupiter was built in Philadelphia in 1902. She worked as a harbor tug and assisted with the launch of the battleship USS New Jersey in 1942, and the launch of the first nuclear-powered merchant ship, NS Savannah, in 1959. She was retired from commercial service in the late 1980s and donated to the guild. The guild is managed and staffed by volunteer members of all ages and from all walks of life. During the off-season, they maintain the vessels under the direction of a professional shipwright. During the sailing season, they take turns sailing as crew on either or both vessels. The guild welcomes new members and no experience is necessary. For more information, please visit prh

Philadelphia RowHome Magazine Salutes our Nation’s First Naval Shipyard

The Philadelphia Navy Yard 1801 - 1996

On behalf of a grateful nation and the following companies - current members of the Philadelphia Navy Yard’s Business Community - we salute your history and are proud to be part of the future of this historic landmark. JEFFERSON AT THE NAVY YARD LOPEZ MCHUGH LLP NORTHEAST SHIP REPAIR LLC PHILADELPHIA INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION (PIDC) PNC BANK SB1 FEDERAL CREDIT UNION

PRHOn the Waterfront

Crossing the

Delaware Award-Winning plans for waterfront expansion by Laurie Heinrichs

top: Race Street Pier and the Benjamin Franklin Bridge at night (Photo Credit: Edward Savaria) right: Washington Avenue Green, a one-acre upland ecological park located at the end of Washington Avenue (Photo Credit: DRWC) left: A rendering of Penn’s Landing showing a new park from Front Street to the river, creating a new civic space for a variety of large and small events (Rendering © KieranTimberlake/Brooklyn Digital Foundry)


fter a two-year effort involving countless stakeholders and Philadelphians, the Master Plan for the Central Delaware River Waterfront is complete and establishes recommendations for transforming six miles of the waterfront between Oregon and Allegheny Avenues. This transformation will be accomplished through a system of parks and trails and a series of detailed recommendations on land use, transportation, zoning and development. ✒


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In March 2012, the Philadelphia City Planning Commission adopted the master plan into the Philadelphia 2035 comprehensive plan. The master plan has received praise from Philadelphians and organizations as well as national recognition and awards including the Commonwealth Gold award from 10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania and the Institute Honor Award from the American Institute of Architects. The plan recommends a series of parks along the waterfront spaced approximately 1/2½ mile apart and connected by a continuous waterfront multi-use recreational trail. At the Penn’s Landing priority site, a new civic park will stretch continuously from Front Street to the river’s edge, spanning across I-95 on new decking over the interstate and Columbus Boulevard. Areas around Washington Avenue and Spring Garden Street are also identified as priority sites. Key connector streets will be upgraded to improve access across I-95 for pedestrians while Delaware Avenue/Columbus Boulevard will accommodate multiple modes of travel including cars, bicycles, pedestrians and transit along the length of the waterfront and connecting back to Center City. One purpose of the master plan is to guide the transformation of the physical environment along the waterfront. Therefore, it includes recommendations for how land should be used, how dense and how high building clusters should be as well as recommendations for building facades, sidewalk & street dimensions and open space. In addition, the plan contains public art, historic preservation and programming strategies aimed at creating a unique waterfront that appeals to all users and complements the character of Philadelphia. Now that the City has formally adopted the plan, implementation is the next step. DRWC completed several early action projects during the master planning process, including the Washington Avenue Green, the Race Street Connector Phase 1 and the Race Street Pier. Current projects include Race Street Connector Phase 2, the Columbia Avenue connector street, a preliminary archaeology study of the West Shipyard, the Penn Street Trail segment, conceptual design for the Delaware River Trail, Washington Avenue Green Phase 2,and straightening the existing south trail near Washington Avenue. To learn more, visit prh

2531-35 S. Broad Street, Philadelphia PA 19148

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PRHOn the Waterfront

The Stolfo Funeral Home Where everyone is treated like family Paul C. Stolfo, Director 2536 S. Broad Street  Philadelphia, PA 19145 215.334.7376

1301 S. 3rd Street Philadelphia, PA 19147 267.324.3461


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Four Chaplains give hope to dying soldiers


by Christine Beady

n January 23, 1943, the US Army Troopship DORCHESTER left New York Harbor for Greenland carrying 902 men. Just after midnight on February 3, a German submarine sent a torpedo into the Dorchester’s aging flank. The explosion ripped through the boiler room, destroyed the electrical supply and released suffocating clouds of steam and ammonia gas. Many died instantly. Others stumbled from their bunks and groped their way to the decks. The ship began listing to starboard as it rapidly took on water. Overcrowded lifeboats capsized and rafts drifted away before anyone could reach them. The only order and source of hope in the ensuing chaos came from the Dorchester’s Four Chaplains: George L. Fox, a Methodist minister; Alexander D. Goode, a Jewish rabbi; Clark V. Poling, a Dutch Reformed pastor; and John P. Washington, a Roman Catholic priest. Together, they calmly guided the terrified soldiers to their boat stations, distributed life jackets to those without them and coaxed men over the side. When the life jackets ran out, the Four Chaplains removed their own so that four other young men might live. As the ship sank beneath the cruel

waves, these men of God linked their arms in brotherhood and prayed.  “It was the finest thing I have ever seen, or hope to see, this side of heaven,” one witness said. In those early morning hours, 688 of the Dorchester’s 902 men perished. On February 3, 1951, eight years after the DORCHESTER sank, President Truman dedicated the chapel. He told the audience, “This interfaith shrine . . . will stand through long generations to teach Americans that as men can die heroically as brothers so they should live together in mutual faith and good will.”   Former Governor of Pennsylvania William W. Scranton said, “The Chapel of Four Chaplains is the cutting edge in the move toward true brotherhood.”  For more than four decades, the Chapel remained on the Temple campus until it became structurally unsound and was condemned. Today, the Chapel of Four Chaplains is located at the old Navy Chapel at the Philadelphia Navy Yard. The Chapel of Four Chaplains is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization. Its United Way Donor number is #50075. The Chapel is also available for rentals. Please contact Christine Beady, Executive Director, at 215-218-1943. prh


SugarHouse Casino is ready for some football by Dan Stevenson Regional Sales Executive, SugarHouse Casino


or those of you who don’t know me, my name is Dan Stevenson and I joined the SugarHouse Casino team in the spring as a regional sales executive. Since then, I’ve had the chance to work with some amazing people and do some really fun things at SugarHouse—from hanging out with Danny Briere to watching countless PHL17 Post Game Shows right in the casino’s Refinery restaurant. As a neighbor of the casino myself, I definitely feel that SugarHouse is committed to being “Philly’s Casino,” which is the main reason I am glad I joined this team. Like most Philadelphians, I am loving the NFL season and our Eagles. SugarHouse kicked off the first game in a big way with an appearance from Brian Dawkins. And we’re keeping the momentum going through the Super Bowl. All season long, SugarHouse is bringing back its $1 Million Football Challenge where guests can select their winning football teams each week for a chance to win free slot play or up to

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$1,500. At the end of the season on Jan. 6, more cash prizes will be given out and the player with the most correct picks for the season will win an all-inclusive trip to New Orleans for the Super Bowl! In addition, if you can pick 205 games correctly, you’re going home with $1 million! If you’re 21 years old and don’t yet have a free Rush Rewards card, sign up today so you can play. In case you need another reason to visit SugarHouse during football season, come to The Refinery on Sundays to catch the Eagles game and enjoy delicious tailgate specials. Menu items include appetizer combos like wing and rings for $10; a SugarHouse Sampler Platter with wings, waffle fries, sliders and mini hot dogs for $15; and a “4th Quarter” that includes four types of sliders for $10. Plus, Miller Lite 16 oz. aluminum bottles will only cost $3. Don’t forget, you can also watch the game on our 140 LCD screens throughout the casino or on the TVs built into our 1,600 slot machines. At SugarHouse, we’re always ready for some football. Go Birds! prh rowhome magazine

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by Dana Spain CEO, PAWS

ou have heard of service with a smile but how about service with a wag and a lick? Service dogs provide essential help to people with an array of special needs. They are the eyes for the blind, the ears for the deaf and are used to provide therapy for autistic children as well as aging seniors. Recent studies confirm that using dogs as companions and guides have therapeutic results in veterans diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). PTSD has become prevalent in veterans returning from tours in Iraq and Afghanistan having been exposed to traumatic events including the threat of injury or death from unseen assailants and roadside explosive devices. The effects from PTSD have caused a spate of suicides among soldiers and Marines returning from combat. Symptoms of PTSD include “reliving” the event from combat; emotional withdrawal and avoidance of friends and loved ones; hallucinations, nightmares and paranoia; and a sense of guilt having survived an event where others perished. Although once dismissed as a way to treat PTSD, service dogs are now being widely used to mitigate the symptoms of PTSD in veterans. These pets also help veterans adapt to civilian life, giving them a reason to simply get

up another day. Studies show that dogs can be trained to perform a variety of tasks to help vets overcome the experience of psychiatric episodes. They can be trained to jolt a soldier from a flashback, sense a panic attack before it happens and even turn on light switches to interrupt a nightmare. Service dogs also can be trained to dial 911 in case of emergency. These amazing animals use their inherent ability to sense danger, protect their owner from stressful situations and provide unconditional love and support. Support groups and training organizations have sprung up around the country to help veterans with PTSD through the use of therapy dogs, but the story gets even better. Rather than breeding them, most groups now adopt rescue dogs to train as Service companions. This saves two lives at once, that of the veteran and the dog facing death in highkill shelters across the nation. Recently, the Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) started a similar program. Named for a Marine returning to active duty this year, the Captain Cahill Service Fund pairs dogs with returning combat veterans at no cost to the solider. The Service Fund covers the cost of adoption, training and veterinary care for the dog. Help us help our veterans while saving the lives of shelter dogs. Donate to the Service Fund online at prh


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PRHbrides guide

Best Trends Forever

For a night you’ll never forget, make your New Year’s Eve plans early with Cescaphe at Philadelphia’s hottest new venue, Vie! For reservations call 215.238.5750

by Joseph Volpe Cescaphe Event Group photos by 217 Photography


Maria D’Alessandro & Craig Starr

n any given afternoon, as I pass through the hustle of our offices, nothing makes me happier than the busy planning of our wedding couples with my team Nat, Nichole, Tori, Dana, Emily, Meghan, Betsy–Ann, Julie, Missy, Nikki, Joanna, Dawn and Cecilia. (Kelli will be back soon. She and her family are busy with new baby Michael!) In our studios, there is a tangible buzz and excitement of that moment when the vision painted in the minds of our brides comes alive! There they sit, sifting through stacks of wedding cake photos - cooking up fondant and painted sugar flower challenges for our chef… flipping through endless linen swatches to match against a sample of her bridesmaids’ dress material… perusing our newest seasonal cocktail


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list for the perfect spirit to serve guests upon arrival… Irony, I think as I laugh to myself. When we decided to include all these fabulous options for our brides, we also created a sea of way too many choices! As options abound, there is no other powerhouse decision-maker like ‘the Bride’. If there is something I have grown to respect, it is the ‘calm, cool and collect’ of an engaged woman and yes, the patience of a smart young groom. After reading all the right magazines, stalk-

ing out their favorite blogs and collecting countless ‘Pintrest’ inspirations, our couples are ready to turn an ordinary Wedding into THEIR Wedding. In just a few short months, our clever brides take their every interest, combine them with those of their fiancé and sprinkle in the unique qualities that signify their love to create a celebration fit for their most beloved family and friends. Not to mention, their wedding has to be everything she ever dreamed of since she was a little girl. No pressure, RIGHT?

As I pass through the offices and menu planning rooms, what is the one word I hear more than any other amid the chatter of flowers and favors and food? The word ‘Trendy’! When describing every detail, the word Trendy is now in front of it. Everyone wants to know the Trend in flowers (And nobody does it better than Alicia, Donna and their team at Beautiful Blooms). What is the Trendy favor? And, of course, what is the Trendiest food! The inspiration for planning the perfect wedding comes from everywhere, including the craziest places. Even my two daughters Francesca and Sophia (hence “Cescaphe”), only 18 and 15, have inspired our team. Before I sat down to write this, a miniature text war broke out between my daughters and me. We spent 4 days together and it was my first day back to work. I texted them a group message. “Miss you guys.” They responded with photos of themselves. A shot of Francesca making a silly face. Then a shot of Sophia with her largerthan-life smile. Then, another shot of Cesc with a ‘serious’ funny face. Then, Phee shoots one over with a face I never saw before. A funny, serious, confused and cross-eyed expression all in one. Suddently, I felt “inspired” by all this “phototexting” as I termed this exchange of feelings the moment they happen. Could this be another “Trend” in the making? I couldn’t wait to tell the girls in the office. Was there a way to turn this instant “phototexting” into a new Trend for our couples? The ideas started flying! Turns out there is an app called, cleverly, “Appy Couple” that lets couples share details about their wedding AND gives guests a chance to upload photos in real time. Can you imagine the memories you and your guests

can capture and share as your wedding day unfolds? We at Cescaphe Event Group will continue to work hard at building the same controlled interaction at our weddings. After all, creating life’s most precious memories is what we do best. And when it comes to Trends, our couples are infinitely creative! One couple selected scenes from their favorite movies as the backgrounds in their photo booth. Grease, The Hangover and Rocky helped capture the moment! One groom asked us to serve a special microbrew from his hometown in Ohio for their toast. How could we refuse? For their introduction, a Bride surprised her new husband with the “Voice of the Phillies” himself -- Harry Kalas! A nature-loving couple asked the bride’s father to carve holes for tea lights in a branch from a birch tree in her backyard. The trees meant so much to her growing up. What better addition to the Wedding reception than the soft, candlelit glow from a favorite tree? Some couples show silent movies on Tendenza’s mirrored screens. Or carefully choose the music that brings the Curtis Center’s new speakers to life with the sounds of their favorite underground DJ. It may be a “Hottie Toddie” served to their British guests in Vie’s outdoor courtyard or a cheesesteak wrapped “to-go” in the Ballroom’s courtyard as a reminder of the couple’s first date. When it comes down to it, the newest trend is still in the making. And it will be the most original. Find out what makes the two of you HAPPY. Gather all of your family and friends together. And have a great time. What a memory you just created for the first time in your new life together. prh

Cescaphe is a member of the PRH Business Network. About Joseph Volpe, the Brides Guide. Ever keeping his eyes focused on the latest wedding trends, Cescaphe Event Group CEO/Chef Joseph Volpe is recognized as the area’s leading authority on ballroom bliss. With his innovative approach to the most important celebration of your life, his award-winning Cescaphe Ballroom, The Atrium at the Curtis Center, Tendenza and Vie, combine a captivating ambiance with exquisite cuisine for an unforgettable experience. Visit or call 215.238.5750.



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w w w. p ot i to s b a k e ry. c om rowhome magazine

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PRHbrides guide

Through Antonio’s



by Pat Ciarrocchi

he flowers were always a small token. I never had a chance to buy him a tie or a sweater - the usual gifts for a grandfather. Flowers really were the only appropriate gift, since it would be presented graveside.

I missed running up to him as a small child and grabbing his leg. I missed hearing his laughter, which my grandmother, Julia, always said was infectious. But I don’t think I ever missed his love. Whether or not I was conscious of him loving me, I believe he did. I knew his eyes -- black as coal, intelligent, eager. They seemingly reached out to me through 54

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the ether of time from the oval, framed picture my grandmother had placed on his headstone. She wanted us to know him, even though , we would never know him the way she did. My grandfather’s name was Antonio Branella. I always referred to him as Pop-Pop Tony. That’s how he was introduced to me by his only daughter, my mother, Mary.

But she didn’t know him either. My mother was just two years old when her father was killed. It had been accidental. He had been overcome by carbon monoxide in an explosion at Coatesville’s Bethlehem Steel Company, the day after my mother’s second birthday. The crushing experience of losing her husband emotionally paralyzed my grandmother, Julia. She

was 26 years old, now a widow with their toddler daughter Mary and their six month old son Anthony. The details of how her Antonio was killed were never really clear to her. Or to us. I believe speaking the language of their native Italy and very little English could have confused those details, until now. The way we were told of Pop-Pop Tony’s death always included... “Two men were caught in the explosion that caused a gas leak at the blast furnace... and your grandfather went in to save them. He got them out, they survived but he was overcome by the fumes and died.” To my grandmother - and to us

- it seemed like heroism of the highest order. It was 1930. Dreams of this immigrant couple and others had changed as the Great Depression gripped the United States. Even though Antonio and Julia had coaxed their dreams to life out of their love, now they were surely torn. Julia returned to the Abruzzi region of Italy and the little village of Nereto, where her family awaited her… A farmhouse, her parents, four brothers - the oldest would become a Catholic priest - and three sisters, the youngest with hands that were gifted when they held a needle and thread. My great aunts, Julia’s sisters, say she cried every day for a year. Nereto became Julia’s refuge. There was so much healing to do. Overwhelming grief was made all the more difficult by the question of what to do next. How does a widow with two small children carve out a life from shattered pieces of a life imagined? Julia relentlessly turned over in her mind the unfulfilled dreams that she shared with my grandfather. What could have been? How can God allow this kind of tragedy to happen? What had seemed so rich with promise was now riddled in disappointment. Still she searched. My grandmother told me how she would climb to a second floor balcony at the farmhouse. To the west, she could see the Grand Sasso mountain range stretch across the horizon. To the east, the Adriatic Sea. With time... with care... somehow in that space between mountain and sea, her tears parted. When they did, Julia saw the faces of her children and in them, Antonio. Their daughter and son, Mary and Anthony, were two little Americans who had earned through their birth, the right for the opportunity to be Americans. Julia’s choice had been made in her heart, again. She knew she had to return to America. Destiny drew her back. My grandmother never told me of her courage or fear. She just

told the story of her life, without embellishment or judgment. Her humility was at the core of her being. Though she married again and gave birth to three more children, she always carried with her the treasure of a true love. Theirs was a love that had spanned an ocean and now time. It’s been only recently that my mother’s drive to learn more about her father’s death... 82 years later... revealed a story that I had not expected. My mother’s insistence led her and a friend to the archives of the Coatesville Record newspaper. The date - Monday, March 24, 1930. The headline: One Killed, Two Made Ill By Gas At Blast Furnace. In big, bold type, the headline dominated the upper left hand corner of the front page. The sub-headline: Antonio Branella, 38, Loses His Life. Men Enter Room After Gas Machine Gasket Blows Out. As I read the headline, my heart started to race. My grandfather was a headline in the local newspaper. The story explains at 11:30 PM, the night of March 23rd, 1930, a gasket blew out of a gas machine used to operate the furnaces at Bethlehem Steel. The workmen were warned not to enter the room. They could be suffocated by the escaping fumes. Then, the paragraph I’ve read now dozens of times: “Branella, it was learned at the investigation, disobeyed orders and disregarded all warnings. He is said to have entered the gasfilled chamber in order to shut off the escaping carbon monoxide fumes. No sooner had he entered the room, than several of his coworkers noticed that he had been asphyxiated by the gas.” “Disobeyed.”   The word rang in my head. The article continues. Two workers -- Alphonso Marino and Oreste Marcoldile -- saw the plight of their co-worker, “took their own lives in their hands” and attempted to rescue the man who had been overcome. They fell unconscious. A fourth worker, Jackson Pattos, found a gas mask and got all three men out of the toxic room. It goes on to say: “Doctors and nurses tried in vain to revive Branella. Marino and

Marcoldile were revived. Branella was an Italian who had come to this country quite a few years ago. He was a married man. His death was accidental.” When my mother turned 85, on March 23rd, 2012, it was the 83rd anniversary of the explosion that called my grandfather into action, ignoring warnings, disobeying... in order to shut off the escaping carbon monoxide fumes. His action was selfless. The details, different than what I believed growing up. But still selfless. There are times my mother wishes that he had thought of their family, waiting for him to come home from his shift

framed a hand-made tablecloth from her Hungarian grandmother and I liked its elegance and the life it had seen around the table. On our next visit, my grandmother arrived at my Philadelphia apartment with a brown paper bag and a white cloth folded neatly inside. As she unrolled it, I could see a linen doily, 24 inches wide, edged in flowers cut out of the material. Each stitch that finished the lace work was perfect. It was beautiful. I learned that it had been a gift from Julia’s youngest sister, Antoinetta. She was the sister gifted with a needle and thread. She had made the doily for my grandmoth-

A granddaughter... shaped by eyes unseen... eyes I recognize, but can’t explain why. at the mill. Antonio’s decision had changed so many things that night. Reading the newspaper story again and again, I wonder now whether Antonio understood the warning about dangerous gas. Was it spoken in English? In Italian? They were immigrants. The men who tried to save him... had to be Italian immigrants, too. It’s a good assumption if you look at their names. But I also believe these men were friends. My grandmother, Julia, always said everyone loved Antonio. I wish I had been given the opportunity. At times, my mother still feels the sting of a father lost. Very few possessions of those precious years as a family remain. Antonio’s wedding ring and some pieces of lace from my grandmother’s wedding gown. When I was in my late 30’s, I asked my grandmother if there was something simple of hers that I could have. An acquaintance had

er’s dressing table as a wedding gift for her marriage to Antonio. Julia had never spoken of the dressing table cloth through the years. Yet, that day in my apartment, she whispered and told me how she kept the linen doily on her dresser for more than 60 years. A thread that had connected her to their dream. Now, my gifts of flowers are for two. The linen doily is framed, connecting this granddaughter of immigrants to love, courage, destiny and truth. A granddaughter... shaped by eyes unseen... eyes I recognize, but can’t explain why. prh  Through Antonio’s Eyes” (Attraverso gli oc-

chi di mio nonno) by Pat Ciarrocchi from Non soltanto un baule © Copyright 2005 Edizioni Farinelli, New York. Reprinted by permission of Edizioni Farinelli.  For more on Non soltanto un baule and other Italian language study materials, see

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Sexy and the

City Nicole Miller

by Alicia DeLeo & Phyllis Palermo

Fashion Designer Nicole Miller uniquely combines elegance and defiance to achieve a subtle sensuality that is the essence of modern femininity. In her hands, the drape and cut of designer apparel are transformed to a younger, more sophisticated look. An American born to a French mother, Miller was dually trained at the Rhode Island School of Design and Paris’ Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture. RISD inspired her sense of freedom and creativity, while Chambre Syndicale helped her master the classical techniques of couture. Miller’s silhouettes are skillfully draped to achieve a natural body consciousness that is sensual and dynamic. Often inspired by film imagery and exotic cultures, she is the preeminent American among fashion’s print and color elite. Her material selections are guided by a commitment to technological advancements. Miller is often the first to introduce a new fabric and popularize it for wider use. Outside the design studio, Miller is equally influential. She made fashion history when Minnie Driver, Gretchen Mol and Jill Hennessey walked a fall runway, ushering in an era of actress-as-model. A recent redesign of freestanding stores reversed another widely followed fashion trend as each was given a look that is unique and distinct. Miller’s rationale behind the idea: a world fatigued by the sameness of chain stores and too-rigid designer identities. The non-conformist glamour of Miller’s fashions has caught the attention of many in Hollywood – with Angelina Jolie, Halle Barry, Jessica Simpson, Daryl Hannah, Hillary Duff and Felicity Huffman among those recently appearing in her designs. A total of 20 freestanding Nicole Miller stores are located in major cities across the United States, includ56

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ing two here in Philadelphia. Nicole Miller Signature and Collection apparel and accessories are also available at fine specialty stores as well as Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Saks and Bloomingdales. Motivated by a desire to make her aesthetic available to a broader range of customers, Miller offers her Nicole by Nicole Miller collections at more than 600 JC Penney stores nationwide. In favor of all programs to protect the earth and our environment, Miller actively supports the Rocky Mountain Institute and Robert Kennedy Jr.’s Riverkeeper. Together with her husband Kim and son Palmer, Miller divides her time between her homes in New York City and Sag Harbor, NY.


Miller: Fall 2012 Often characterized by whimsy and surprise, Nicole Miller’s Fall designs do not disappoint. Ranging from lace and sheer fabrics to floral and exotic prints, Miller welcomes Fall 2012 with shades of ruby red, cobalt blue, copper and black.

Runway and


Striking and colorful prints are a dominating trend throughout Miller’s Runway and Wanderlust collections. Both are erainspired, speaking to the ease of the 1970s and the femininity of the 1920s. Wide-Brimmed Hats top almost

every outfit, while Fringe adds flair to skirts and blouses. Her color palette and patterned fabrics are striking and unique, often blending jewel tones with dark leather – florals with brown suede or even plaid with fur.

Bella Angel Bridal Hair & Makeup

Essentials Jersey Knit Dress. Timeless and effortless. Try wearing one with brown tights, a long suede vest and short booties. Faux Leather Pants. Slim, tight and neutral, these are the perfect casual selection to pair with all those billowing blouses and eccentric patterns you’ll be buying! A Belt should not go to “waist.” Take advantage of its multi-purpose status. Tuck your collared blouse into a pair of flared jeans to show off a chain-link belt. Or cinch the waist of an oversized cardigan with a bright red one. Be fearless with Patterns. Miller’s Wanderlust collection does this to perfection. Don’t overthink it. Mix bold with bold, and color block galore. Word has it that animal prints are the new neutral, so take a chance and mix up your closet.

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Holiday 2012

Nicole Miller’s Holiday Collection breathes lace and sheer with accents of ruching, printed metal, taffeta and leather. Fashion tip: Do not wear these details all at once. Pick one that best suits your style and shape. OUT: Flashy Sequins, Metallic Palettes IN: Lace Cocktail Dresses, Sheer Gowns, Elegant Wide-Leg Jumpsuits, Drop-Waist Dresses, Jewel Tones like Deep Purple & Turquoise, Lace-Printed Tights Visit Nicole Miller Manayunk and Nicole Miller at the Bellevue or online at

Happy shopping! Phyllis & Alicia rowhome magazine

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Face time By Joanne Masciantonio / The Cutting Point Fall is the best time to treat yourself or someone on your gift list to a professional facial. After all that fun in the summer sun, your skin is ready for some pampering.

The Top 5 Reasons to Get a Facial


Facials stimulate the skin. Increased circulation helps delay the aging process and prevent the wrinkling appearance on your face as you age.

2. Facials guarantee you a deep cleansing. This cleansing, exfoliation and hydration treatment will help unclog your pores and eliminate dirt and impurities that affect your skin’s appearance.

tone, oil production and texture. A facial can help you understand the proper products specifically suited for your skin.

4. Facials rejuvenate your complexion. Combining a series of pampering methods including creams, lotions, masks, peels, exfoliation, steam and massage, a facial is one of the best ways to restore your skin’s natural glow.

Facials can reduce stress. 3. Customized products. Skin 5. Sit back. Relax. And enjoy the type is determined by pore size, Chad Shank (215) 952-8750

ultimate “me time.” The Cutting Point welcomes Judy Deleo, named Best of Philly for Facials. Schedule your “me time” today. Call 215.389.8100. Gift Certificates Available. The Cutting Point is a member of the RowHome Magazine Business Network


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Brought to you by Liz Emory of Seasational Cruises

Celebrate Valentine’s Day on a Romantic Cruise As a Cruise Specialist, I have traveled the high seas and experienced all the excitement a cruise ship vacation has to offer. The best part of a romantic Valentine’s Day Cruise is that you spend all of your time with that special person in your life. Create memories that last a lifetime on a Valentine Cruise vacation. Sit back and relax while I help you plan. With a beautiful Cabin, Broadway shows and comedy clubs onboard, a cruise can Wow you with options. You will find sensational night life, dancing under the stars, walks under the moonlight, dining options galore and the casino royale. There is something for everyone to do! Most of all, you will enjoy seeing the sights and spending time together as you live, love and laugh on a romantic Valentine’s Day Cruise. Here are a few Valentine’s Day Cruises I am featuring for a romantic escape in 2013. Royal Caribbean Allure of the Seas 3 Night Bahamas Cruise. Departing on 02/14/2013 to 02/17/2013 from Ft. Lauderdale, FL (Port Everglades). Allure of the Seas visits Nassau, Bahamas, for 4 days, 3 nights. The Allure of the Seas is an amazing ship, equipped with spas and thermal suites and an extensive treatment menu. You will also enjoy a fitness center, 4 pools, 10 whirlpools and even Central Park to completely unwind while on board. This also can be an adult-only retreat with many dining choices and Aqua Theatre Broadway shows for an invigorating nightlife! Plenty of wonderful sights to see when we are in the Bahamas and lots of water activities to do, as well! Cabin prices start at $699 per person plus taxes and port charges. This is the perfect Valentine’s Romantic Cruise to take with that special person in your life!

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Royal Caribbean Explorer of the Seas 7 Night Bahamas Cruise. Departs on 02/10/2013 to 02/17/2013 from Bayonne, N.J. Mi_Pals-2009.indd This Explorer of the Seas Mega Ship will Visit Port Canaveral, FL., Nassau, Bahamas, Coco Cay, Bahamas. This exciting Ship is like a city within itself. The Explorer of the Seas has 4 pools, 6 whirlpools, Vegas-style casinos, 15 bars, clubs and lounges. Broadway entertainment is provided in the main theatre including fabulous Ice Shows. Feeling athletic? There are lots of on-board sporting events. Spectacular fine dining features the Captain’s Gala Dinner. Dance the night away under the stars at the big pool party. When you arrive in the Bahamas, you’ll be whisked away to Coco Cay, the Royal Caribbean’s private Island, where you will enjoy fine food, music and a relaxing day on the beach. Cabins start at $579 per person plus taxes and port charges.

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This is the perfect Valentine’s Cruise for you and someone you love. Worried about staying on track and managing the fun? I travel with all my group tours to make sure it is “smooth sailing” on your special retreat! Come Sail Away with me. Book your cruises today by calling 877-327-7707 toll free, 267252-4792 local or email Visit for more details. Seasational Cruises is a member of the RowHome Magazine Business Network

rowhome magazine

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Sp ce


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Off The


Happy  Windows 2-­inch  wood Shutters Verticals Mini  Blinds

Pleated  Shades Roman  Shades Drapes Valances

by Mark Casasanto

Call  Eileen  215.465.7525 Discount  Price  with  installation


n 1984, with graffiti artists running rampant, Mayor W. Wilson Goode spearheaded an effort to clean up the city when he launched the Mural Arts Program, an off-shoot of the Anti Graffiti Network. With newly hired muralist Jane Golden in the lead, the goal was to befriend, and eventually channel the creative talents of the urban artists who were defacing the city one building at a time. Twenty-eight years later, Philadelphia serves as the floor model for cities around the world, attesting to the fact that art can play a key role in urban revival as well as economic development. Dubbed “The City of Murals,” Philadelphia has more than 3,500 in its collective portfolio. And the Mural Arts Program has become a beacon to urban artists who come here to train and eventually take their talents around the globe. Helping artists of every age channel their talents into a program like this turns the scars of graffiti and vandalism into creativity and self-confidence, according to program directors. “Life in the City,” Philadelphia’s first mural, was located on the Spring Garden Street Bridge. Although it is gone, its artist, Jane Golden, continues to paint the town as Executive Director of the Mural Arts Program. “We will never run out of walls,” she assures. “But why stop at walls? The sky’s the limit!”

What’s the most popular mural in the city? “The most iconic image is located at Broad & Spring Garden, called Common Threads,” says Jennifer McCreary, the program’s Director of Communications. Painted by Meg Saligman, the rendering rises eight stories high and features figurines once owned by the artist’s grandmother. What makes the mural so unique, McCreary says, is that local high school students posed to mirror the original antique figurines. It depicts the interlink between cultures over the course of time, she adds. What’s the best way to see our city’s murals? Book a tour sponsored by the Mural Arts Program. Not only will you get a first-hand glimpse of the most beautiful artwork in the region, it’s the best way to visit this city of neighborhoods. Golden is excited for Philadelphia and the future of the Mural Arts Program. “We can work with photography, sculpture, light and sound to do things that are extraordinarily creative and push the boundaries of public art,” she notes enthusiastically. And given her track record, there’s no reason to doubt that public art in Philadelphia will soon be jumping off the walls. Where will it land? Only Jane Golden knows. For information on the Mural Arts Program or to schedule a tour, call 215.925.3633. prh

1601 Oregon Ave. Philadelphia, PA 19145-4596

Harry Alessi Real Estate Associate Office: 215.389.2222 Fax: 215.467.5547 Cell: 609.636.9783


Real estate rowhome magazine

| 61


& rder LawO S  ki at your own risk by Frank C. DePasquale Jr., Esquire

Q: I was walking my Teacup Poodle when a large dog got away from his owner. The dog attacked and killed my dog. Do I have any recourse against the owner?

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A:Yes. The law places an absolute responsibility on the owner of the large dog to keep his dog on a leash and under control at all times. Unfortunately, you can only recover the monetary replacement value of your beloved pet. The law does not allow you to recover for the real loss you suffered – the emotional loss of losing your dog. If the large dog attacked and injured you, then you would be able to sue the owner’s homeowner’s insurance coverage for your pain and suffering and other monetary losses.


Q: My family is taking a skiing vacation over the Christmas Holidays. Do the operators of the ski resorts bear any responsibility in the event any of us are injured while skiing? A:The short answer is no. Our legislature has determined that skiing is an inherently dangerous activity that is subject to the Assumption of the Risk Doctrine. In other words, if you participate in this activity, you do so at your own risk.


My wife let one of our son’s friends drive her SUV and he got into a fender bender. He does not have his own insurance coverage. Will my insurance coverage cover him?

A:Yes. Your own insurance covers any individual who has a valid driver’s license and your permission to operate your automobile.

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Legal Questions

Legal questions for Frank DePasquale? Email him at info@ or mail to PRH Law & Order, PO Box 54786, Phila., PA 19148. Please include your name, address & phone number for verification purposes. PRH will not publish your last name.

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Four Generations of Our Family Serving Your Family rowhome magazine

| 63


Will You Pay a

Medicare Tax When You Sell Your Home?

by David M. Spitzberg, CPA


cause a problem. This includes gains on the sale of securities. Does this also involve the sale of your home? Will you be able to exclude from gross income as much as $250,000 or $500,000 of gain from the sale or exchange of your principal residence? To the extent that this tax break is utilized, the gain is not included in net invest ❱❱ Net investment income or ❱❱ The excess of modified ment income and modified adjusted gross income over adjusted gross income. As if all of this is not enough to a: $ 200,000 for a single remember, an additional .9% Medicare Tax on wages and taxpayer income is also b: $250,000 for joint filers self-employment scheduled to begin for taxpayand surviving spouses ers above applicable $200,000, c: $125,000 for a married $250,000 or $125,000 levtaxpayer filing separately els. Check with your employer for possible increases in your Net investment income includes Medicare Tax withholdings. interest, dividends and the taxable Let’s not forget that addiportion of annuities. Royalties and tional Federal tax increases are net rental income could also be also being considered. States considered. Distributions from and localities are also looking IRAs and qualified retirement for more ways to raise money. plans are not included. Therefore, tax planning with the Net gain from the sale of prop- assistance of competent tax proerty that goes into the calcula- fessionals could result in signifiprh tion of taxable income could cant tax avoidance.. lthough I realize that you just want a simple answer, the following must be considered. In accordance with the Affordable Care Act, for tax years starting after December 31, 2012, a 3.8% Medicare tax will be applied to the lower of each year’s

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PECO helps you plan for the Winter

Low-Cost to No-Cost ways to save money


by Jennifer Barkowitz

an we be lucky enough to have ANOTHER mild winter? Or will we feel the wrath of all those spring-like days we enjoyed last January through April? Just in case Old Man Winter returns with a vengeance, PECO is offering customers a free Smart Home E-Audit, an online questionnaire that helps you lower your home energy bills and reduce consumption throughout the winter months. By logging onto the PECO website (www.Peco. com), customers can enter their account number and get answers to some of the most frequently asked questions including: ‘What contributes most to my energy bills’?; How can I lower my bills?’ and ‘Why does my bill fluctuate each year?’ Once you complete the evaluation, PECO offers customers low-cost to no-cost options that will help keep you toasty this season without blowing your budget.

Recommendations include having your home weatherized by a professional, installing programmable thermostats, removing window air conditioners and keeping blinds, shades and drapes open on sunny days to take advantage of solar heating. Customers can then set up an energy savings plan and track the progress of your home.

With fingers crossed that you won’t need them, RowHome Magazine brings you a few more tips from PECO ❱❱ Have your furnace professionally inspected every two years. ❱❱ Replace the filter for your heat pump or furnace for the new heating season. ❱❱ Inspect the insulation between heated and unheated areas to ensure insulation is at least six inches thick. Insulation is

the single most important energy conservation measure. ❱❱ Inspect the caulking or weather stripping around windows, doors and any openings to the outside such as dryer vents. ❱❱ Install plastic sheeting for windows if homes do not have storm windows or double pane windows. ❱❱ Air ducts can be a major source of heat loss. Keep heating vents clean with a vacuum or broom. Do not cover ducts with drapes or furniture that can block the airflow and possibly cause a fire. ❱❱ Install water-saving showerheads to reduce the amount of hot water that you use. ❱❱ Install programmable thermostats that can better regulate temperatures. ❱❱ f you have a fireplace, keep the fireplace damper closed tightly when not in use. prh



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PRHon the corner

RowHome Remembers

Sherman Hemsley


by Mark Casasanto photo by Phil Kramer

3-year-old Phil Kramer (famed Philly Bridal Photog & PRH Photog) with Hemsley & Dad Morris at brother Alan’s Bar Mitvah in 1966

bout four years ago, my editor asked me to interview Sherman Hemsley. I met Hemsley when I was working in hospitality at a swank Center City hotel. I made a call and two hours later, I knew more about Hemsley than I knew what to do with. He wasn’t promoting any new projects at the time. Except for a stint on reality TV’s ‘The Surreal Life,’ he wasn’t really doing any acting. He said he was waiting on a call from a theater production company, hoping he’d be touring with the troupe when it made its way to Philly. Unfortunately, that project never panned out. Sherman asked me to hold up on the feature article I was writing about him until he had a more definite agenda. Though his future plans were uncertain at the time, I knew one thing for sure. I was sitting on a gem of an interview. I was saddend by the recent news that Sherman Hemsley died. I remembered our conversation years ago. He just turned 70. I dug out my handwritten notes and started laughing at Hemsley’s musings on growing up at 22nd & Christian in South Philly. How he skyrocketed to the top of his television career as George on The Jeffersons. His disappointment over not making it as a musician. “The neighborhood stuff, now that was fun,” Hemsley started out. “I used to sing in a DooWop group called the Barons at 20th & Christian,” he said of his former corner hang. He 66

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said he really wanted to be a bass player – even backed Bobby Darin at one of his gigs – but the acting bug bit him at a young age. “I played fire in a fire prevention play at W.S. Peirce Middle School,” he laughed. “Man, when you get a reaction from an audience, it does something to you. That was it. That’s when I got the bug.” After leaving Edward W. Bok Vocational School rather unceremoniously, Hemsley joined the Air Force, giggling that “it was either jail or the Air Force... I chose the Air Force.” He continued to master his craft post-military, while working for the US Postal Service and studying at the Philadelphia Academy of Dramatic Arts. Moving forward, good fortune soon came knocking.

On Broadway, he won critical acclaim as “Gitlow” in the musical Purlie. A few years later, while starring in Don’t Bother Me I Can Cope, Producer Norman Lear, who was keeping an eye on the local talent, cast him as “George Jefferson” in the 1970’s sitcom, All in the Family. Lear would later remark that Hemsley’s comedic timing made him realize that he had a star in the making. In prophetic fulfillment, when All in the Family wrapped, the spin-off, The Jeffersons, soon took a 10-year flight with Hemsley and co-star Isabel Sanford as its wings. “Something that not many people realize,” Hemsley said of his often-loud, pompous character George Jefferson. “That whole strut thing I had going on... that came from the Italian guys I grew up with. That’s where I got it from. And loud? Everybody is loud in South Philly!” In the mid-eighties, when The Jeffersons made its run, Hemsley again found fame with the sitcom Amen. This time, he played a surly, egotistical Philadelphia based deacon protective of his personal domain, his church. After almost 20 years on the prime time screen, Hemsley was grateful. “Time goes by and you don’t even think of where you’ve been or what you’ve done. But I’ll tell you this. I owe it all to Philly. It started here and my best work was done right here.” You made Philly proud, Sherman Hemsley. Amen. prh

South Philly is headed to the big screen

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Local producers write a 1st place script

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by Jennifer Tini photo by Phil Kramer


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va DeLuca is a lovesick teen trying to balance the zany personalities of her South Philly Italian relatives while keeping a lid on her relationship with Billy, the love of her life, and an ‘off-limits’ Irish boy from the neighborhood. “Shenanigans” is a screenplay that captures the elusive bond and insanely passionate nature of residents of South Philly- a closeknit neighborhood where turkeys fly, privacy is non-existent and revenge almost always results in some type of physical altercation. Sound like home? It does to us! Monique Impagliazzo began writing “Shenanigans” as her Senior thesis at Temple University Film School almost a decade ago. Fresh out of college, Monique interned at the Mary Anne Claro Talent Agency in Philadelphia. Recognizing her talent, Claro referred Monique to TV/ Film Producer Diane Kirman, who was in the midst of producing the children’s feature film musical, “Standing Ovation,” alongside actor/producer James Brolin. Once Monique was brought onto the production, my sister Krystal and I joined the team and reunited with our old high school pal! There we were, years later, watching our dreams become realities as the credits rolled: Jennifer Tini, Co-Producer; Mo-

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nique Impagliazzo, Associate Producer; Krystal Tini, Costume Designer and Choreographer. After “Standing Ovation” wrapped in 2009, we invited Monique to move to Los Angeles where we had been residing for two years. It was there in our West Hollywood studio apartment that collaboration on “Shenanigans” began. We put our minds together, creating new characters and incorporating some off-the-wall (but very true) stories  that defined our Italian heritage and growing up in the neighborhood. The result? A comical script that paints a hilarious, colorful picture of life in South Philly! In March of 2012, we entered “Shenanigans” in the Emerging Screenwriting Contest in Los Angeles. The script placed 5th overall and 1st in the comedy genre out of more than 700 scripts! Continue to follow our journey to the big screen by visiting Shenanigans The Film on Facebook or, for investment opportunities and other inquiries, e-mail us at info@ prh

• And much more Visit or call 215-334-2600 and see how we can lend you a hand.

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n my 40 years of “service” in the acting profession, I have worked with some people who have had a profound influence on my career. Lee Strasberg was truly a genius at dissecting acting problems, but was not much for social interaction. In the years I spent studying with him, he helped me immensely even if he wasn’t exactly the life of the party. Bob DeNiro was my idol and to get a chance to act opposite him was a dream come true. His attention to every little detail left its imprint on my work. Sid Caesar, the comic legend of the 1950’s & ‘60’s Golden Age of TV, was one of the most humble men I’ve worked with in show business. I try never to get too “full” of myself because of his example. Jodie Foster was the most courageous actor I’ve encountered. In “The Accused,” she never backed off the most grueling role any woman could play. Maybe that’s why she won the Oscar for


by Leo Rossi

Hats off to

West Coast

“Best Actress!” Most of the time, you work with someone and then you don’t see them for years. One actor who I knew would be my friend for life is Dennis Farina (Get Shorty, Luck). We talk every week and see each other at least once a month. Directors usually don’t like to hang out with actors. Why? Because actors are always hitting them up for jobs. Some directors who I “hang” with on a regular basis are Harold Ramis, (Analyze This, Ground Hog Day), Bobby Moresco, (Crash, 10th & Wolf) and Jonathan Kaplan, (The Accused, Unlawful Entry). The one person, who I met when we acted together, who has been the greatest influence on my life and career is Lynn Eastman-Rossi, my wife. During all the rejections and periods of no job offers, she kept me going with her love and support. She wins my Oscar as the “Best of the Best”. prh Ciao Philly!

East Coast

The Unsung Heroes

Vendors Crews & Partners

by Sharon Pinkenson Executive Director, Greater Philadelphia Film Office

f you’ve worked on a Philadelphia-area production in the past 20 years or so, you are no doubt familiar with our annual fall production party! Each year, we host this very large networking event for local crew and vendors. This event provides a venue for our industry folks to meet & network, say thank you to one another and to collectively celebrate another successful year doing what we do best—making motion pictures! We are currently planning this year’s event. So, when I began penning my contribution to this edition of RowHome Magazine, which is dedicated to service, I thought I’d share my perspective on the folks who build the sets, tune the sound, tweak the image, serve and staff the hundreds of films, TV commercials, music videos, corporate training tools, weddings, bar mitzvahs and more—our local Crews, Vendors and Partners. Their work is immortalized on the big screen for eternity. But at 2300 St. Alban’s Place, where park benches and landscaping remains intact from filming of The Sixth Sense in 1997, the impact on future generations is beyond measure. Use of The Navy Yard, where art departments and set construction crews turned an otherwise vacant hanger into their shop, generated thousands in revenue for the City and created hundreds of jobs. The donation of Parisian café furniture to City Hall/ City of Philadelphia by Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen director Michael Bay has a cultural impact on anyone who visits the iconic movie site. These are


just three examples of many unsung contributions and service projects taken on by production crews. They often give silently and ask for no compensation or recognition. Back to our annual production party, which was originally an exclusive event for our listers & advertisers (production vendors listed in our database that producers use to source for project hires), we host this event because the crews, vendors and corporate partners attending also support GPFO. The sale of listings, advertisements and sponsorships provide a valuable revenue stream for our 501(c) 3 non-profit agency. Contrary to popular belief, we are not funded with any portion of film production budgets or film tax credits, so their investment in GPFO helps to support the staff and services we provide free of charge to our growing community of media makers. Finding your place in the entertainment/production industry is hard anywhere, but those of us who are able to do it here at home in greater Philadelphia feel especially privileged. We feel privileged to be with our families, enjoy a manageable quality of life and bask in all of the excitement our city and region has to offer. So we work hard together! And, we work hard so that our finished product is so good - native or not - you’re coming back to Philly for the next one! On behalf of the GPFO Staff & Board, to all of the men & women who roll cable, hoist equipment, set up shop, clean up sets, deliver, host, direct, act, perform...THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE! prh

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Muhammad Ali receives Liberty Medal by Jennifer Barkowitz


uhammad Ali became the 24th  recipient of the prestigious Liberty Medal, an award given annually by the National Constitution Center. Originally founded by the Philadelphia Foundation, the award honors “men and women of courage and conviction who strive to secure the blessings of liberty to people around the globe.” Ali was chosen for his dedication to civil and religious causes and accepted the medal at Philadelphia’s National Constitution Center on September 13. Ali, 70, currently is battling Parkinson’s disease. He was present at the event and his wife Lonnie accepted the award on his behalf. Through his wife, Ali stated humbly, “All I did was stand up for what I believed.” Ali, who was born in Louisville, KY, but once owned a home in Cherry Hill, NJ, is largely considered the greatest boxer of all time. Past Liberty Medal winners include former Presidents Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush, as well as Bono, Steven Spielberg and former U.S. Supreme Court Justice, Sandra Day O’Connor. prh

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f you’re like most people, you have no plans to spend any time in the hospital let alone decide where to go once you are discharged. Bob was 65 years old when he fell on the ice while taking out the garbage. After surgery and a week in the hospital, the discharge planner asked him which rehabilitation facility he wanted to go to for continued care. Bob was shocked. He thought he was going home. Unfortunately, many people find themselves in a similar situation. In fact, 96 percent of people between the ages of 60 and 75 do not anticipate needing surgery over the next year. Like Bob, most patients are shocked and confused about not being able to go directly home after their hospital stay. If you were to find yourself in this situation, would you know what to do? Would you know where to go? Liberty Court, a Genesis HealthCare skilled nursing and rehabilitation facility at 1526 Lombard Street has the answer. Many people assume that skilled nursing means “nursing home.” That is just not the case at Liberty Court. Liberty Court specializes in short-term, post-hospital rehabilitation to get you back home fast. “Everything at Liberty Court is designed around the needs and wants of the shortterm customer. Every patient here has the same goal, to go home!” explains Gary Bauer,

Administrator at Liberty Court. “When speaking with patients and families prior to their stay, it is important for them to understand what makes Liberty Court different than other sub acute rehabilitation centers.” - At Liberty Court, Physical, Occupational and Speech rehabilitation therapy are available 7 days a week. - Genesis physicians are on-site and treating patients every day. Many centers do not have physicians on-site daily. - Liberty Court’s nursing-to-patient ratio is more than three times better than the state regulations. - Liberty Court uses the most up-to-date rehabilitation equipment, including the “Litegait” a training device that simultaneously controls weight-bearing, posture and balance over a treadmill or over ground. No other sub-acute facility in Philadelphia has one. Liberty Court offers clients 55 recently renovated private suites. Each renovated floor also has its own bistro for dining and a 2500-square-foot rehabilitation gym. So remember, if you find yourself in the hospital and in need of post-acute rehabilitation, know that there is a fast lane back home and it is right in your back yard - Liberty Court. prh Liberty Court is a member of the RowHome Magazine Business Network

Laser treatment helps melt inches

by Jennifer Barkowitz


r. Robert Fortino and the staff at the Broad Street Weight Management Center have been hard at work preparing to introduce Philadelphia residents to the latest in weight loss developments. Last month, Dr. Fortino, a Board Certified Physician, began offering the Zerona Fat Melting Laser, a noninvasive weight loss procedure that promises to melt fat from the thighs, stomach and hips. The 40-minute procedure uses a low-level laser on the area of your choice, which penetrates the skin melting the fat within fat cells. The released fat then passes through the lymphatic system without adversely affecting cholesterol or triglyceride levels, according to Zerona manufacturer, Primcogent Solutions. The Fat Burning Laser requires one important factor from its patients.

Commitment. Clients must be willing to attend a number of sessions every other day during treatments. Plans range between 6-10 weeks, depending upon the weight of the patient and how much he or she would like to lose. Most patients reported losing an average of three inches after two weeks of treatment. Cardio exercise and drinking plenty of water also will assist the patient in seeing optimal results, Dr. Fortino says. To learn more about the Zerona Fat Burning Laser or to make an appointment with Dr. Fortino, contact the Broad Street Weight Management Center at 215.336.8000. prh The Broad Street Weight Management Center is a member of the RowHome Magazine Business Network.

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Joseph P. Badolato D.O. Board Certified General Practice

Is your backpack weighing you down?

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by James E. Moylan, D.C.


ith the new school year comes new shoes, new school clothes and a new backpack. There is increasing research showing the need for awareness of backpack safety due to a significant rise in injuries associated to misuse and overuse. Larger is not necessarily better. The bigger the backpack, the more things kids will try to fill it with. Children are going through growth spurts, so their biomechanical or spinal balance may be difficult to control. Adding significant weight to their spine adds more stress and forces compensation. The bad postural habits they learn while growing can carry into adulthood. Backpack Basics The weight of the backpack should never be more than 10%

of their body weight. The backpack should not be carried below their waist. The backpack should have padded straps or harness and both straps should be worn to balance out the added weight distribution. Wearing the backpack with one strap may look “cool”, but is actually a quick way to create spinal stress and increase the chances of scoliosis. The backpack should have multiple compartments that prevent overstuffing, force balanced distribution, and prevent sharp items from poking into their backs while being carried. Reducing the size of the backpack will also prevent increased injury should the student trip and fall. Have your children checked yearly for scoliosis and update their backpacks yearly, as well.prh

Dr. James Moylan, D.C., Chiropractic Physician, is a member of the RowHome Magazine Business Network 74

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Don’t let the holidays ‘weigh’ heavy on you


here will be parties for hosting, marshmallows for toasting” … and cookies for baking, cocktails for mixing and all of the good things that come with the holiday season. Calories are everywhere! What IS a body to do? You worked hard all year to maintain a reasonable weight and now the final, calorie-laden months are upon us. Surviving the season in South Philadelphia has unique obstacles! Great restaurants on every block. Your Grandmom‘s cooking. Traditional family gatherings. And your favorite pair of jeans, as stubborn as any two-year-old, are not zipping without a 10-minute struggle! The staff at the Professional Aesthetics and Wellness Center can offer some simple strategies to help you enjoy the holidays while keeping your calorie consumption in-check. Have a plan. Planning for activities that center around food will help you feel a sense of control. If you are dining at a restaurant, check out the menu online and choose your meal before you arrive. Avoid butter or cheese-filled sauces and fried foods. Look for “lite” salad dressings or use oil & vinegar. If you are at a party, check out all of the food choices BEFORE filling your plate. Starting with raw vegetables or salads will fill you up without running up a high calorie count. Another planning trick is eating a small, protein-filled snack before leaving your home. If you arrive feeling comfortably full, you will make healthier food choices. Portion size is critical! This is not the time to “super-size!” A portion of meat or fish should not exceed the size of a deck of cards. Measure out a ½ cup serving of veggies - it will allow you to “eyeball” the serving that is on your plate. Push your plate away for five minutes, THEN decide if you really need seconds.

by Dr. Richard Dittrich & JoAnn Casella, CPN You have probably been brought up with the idea that “kids are starving” somewhere in the world. Unfortunately, that is true, but finishing everything on your plate is not going to fix the problem. It is ok to ask for a “doggie bag”. Leftovers are lunch tomorrow. You will save calories AND cash! Alcohol has calories & creamy drinks are caloric suicide. Try a “wine spritzer” instead. Or alternate alcoholic beverages with glasses of water or seltzer. Socialize! Connect with old friends, make new friends. “Work” the room at a party. Boredom is a primary reason to “pick” at food. “Dress for Success”. Nothing says “no more dessert” like a tight waistband. If you spend the season in loosely-fitted clothing, it will be easier to try “just one” more cookie!

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Take a walk! Enjoy the sights and sounds of the holiday season. The brisk weather will encourage a quick pace! Forgive yourself! It is the holiday season and it is no fun to decline every holiday treat. Choose foods wisely, take a walk and set realistic weight goals. The staff at Dr Richard Dittrich’s office and at the Professional Aesthetics and Wellness Center wish you and yours the merriest of holidays. The Wellness Center offers medically supervised weight-loss programs, including the exciting new HCG (or Omaha Weight Loss) plan. We are happy to speak with you ANY time of the year to discuss the weight loss program that is right for you!  prh Dr. Richard Dittrich and the Professional Aesthetics & Wellness Center are members of the RowHome Magazine Business Network

800 Lombard Street Washington Square West Philadelphia, PA 19147 PH: 215. 629.9858 CELL: 215.990.7812 Email: rowhome magazine

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Auto Body Shop by Nikki Volpicelli photo by Heather steers customers in Sizemore the right direction




| rowhome magazine

’m tired of cars,” says Dominic Nigro, co-owner of the Philadelphia-based Nigro’s Auto Body Repair. “I don’t like them anymore. I like people.” Obviously, this statement is not wholly true. The 36-year-old Temple University graduate is committed to the automobile industry, managing the Washington Avenue body shop his father Aniello opened in 1984. “I came here from Florence on September 18th, 1974, with a lot of clothes and $1500,” Aniello Nigro says of his arrival in Philadelphia from Italy. Dominic started managing the shop in 1996 as the sole estimator. He also is a staunch community advocate. He says he constantly looks for ways to improve his service, from hosting how-to’s and other educational events to lobbying City Hall for better automotive insurance practices. The Nigros support a variety of local and national charities, raising funds for victims of the Tohoku earthquake in Japan, Breast Cancer Awareness and Alex’s Lemonade Stand. They even allow customers to donate half of their deductible to a charity of their choice. Together with their team, this father and son duo practice what Aniello calls “Old World Craftmanship” on various makes and models, from Bentley to Hyundai. “At Nigro’s, you’re going to get the same service whether you’ve got a beamer or a junker,” the owners insist. Committed to quality service, the Nigros say they never had to redo any of their work in the 30 years the shop has been open. The European method of body work practiced at Nigro’s encompasses everything from repairing paint scratches to repairing nearly demolished automobiles. This year, the shop was the first of its kind to win the “Best of Philly Award.” Last year, it was voted “Top Shop” by Auto Body Repair News. It’s also the premier body shop for the Simeone Foundation Museum in PhiladelphIa, home to 60 of the world’s rarest race cars. According to the Nigros, the Foundation trusts the boys’ team with its gems -- Maseratis, Jaguars, Bentleys. “They completely repaired an Alpha Romeo vehicle which was hit by a deer and sustained substantial damage. When completed, the antique car was as good as new,” says Frederick Simeone, M.D. Not only does the shop offer detailed body work, Dominic says he is driven to educate his customers on a variety of auto-involved

practices and techniques. He writes educational articles for Auto Body News Magazine on topics that include insurance company “steering”, collision billing services and customer engagement. Currently, Dominic holds a “Safe Kids” event on the first Tuesday of every month in conjunction with Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Technicians show parents how to properly install car seats. The shop also hosts “Ladies Nights,” when girlfriends get together to learn how to change a tire, check fluid levels and understand brake systems in the event of an emergency. When it comes to keeping children safe, Nigro partners with the Police and Fire departments to hold events that teach school kids safe practices like street safety and what to do in case of a fire. Dominic says he is at odds with the insurance industry regarding a “dirty little thing” that he and the auto body community call “steering.” The malpractice has been around for as long as the auto insurance industry, he explains. It happens when an insurance company “steers” its clients to specific shops and vendors for auto body work and services through the Direct Repair Program (DRP), a system that can have negative effects on clients as well as independent body shops, Nigro explains. “Insurance companies decrease their payout by requesting cheap and used parts that could be harmful to the car and driver.” Independent shops not involved in the DRP system lose business despite their efforts to provide quality service to customers, he adds. Nigro says he is working to change the laws that allow this practice to continue. He believes that insurance agency strong-arming is monopolizing the industry and requires government intervention. “Insurance companies should be transparent,” he says, “allowing the customer to determine where he wants to go to get his car fixed.” Nigro says he is hitting City Hall and plans to go as far as the national level to ensure that the checks and balances process is fulfilled between the government and auto industry. In the meantime, he plans to continue his public awareness campaign to alert people to the dangers of steering. “We’re the shop that fights for you,” he says. “We stand up against the insurance company. We don’t compromise the integrity of the care.”prh Nigro Auto Body is a member of the RowHome Magazine Business Network

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His home is his Castle by Maria Merlino


f you ask Frankie LaMacchia, he will tell you that he is exactly where he’s supposed to be in life. In 1998, at the age of 22, he was involved in a devastating motorcycle accident that left him paralyzed from just below the chest.

He says his life did not skip a beat since the accident. “In fact, it excelled.” Through faith, family, friends and fortitude, he moved forward in the most positive approach. The St. Monica/Neumann High School grad is a proud 14-year employee of Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, working as a Senior Business Analyst. He is also a health and fitness expert, and for the past five years, he is a proud resident of the city’s historic Girard Estate neighborhood. “Rowhomes


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are not designed to accommodate someone living in a wheelchair,” LaMacchia said. “After the accident, many people said that I should consider moving to a rancher in the suburbs or a condo.” Determined to live in the South Philadelphia neighborhood where he grew up, LaMacchia began the search for a rowhome large enough to accommodate him and his wheelchair. “When I was looking at real estate, I discovered that the Girard Estate

homes were big enough, with alterations, to accommodate my needs.” His Lambert Street home was the second Girard Estate house that he toured and he was sold. He installed a wheelchair lift off the back deck and chair glides to give him access to the second floor and basement. Then he renovated the bathroom. Currently Vice President of Girard Estates Neighborhood Association (GENA), he is a respected voice in this tight-knit community. His main goals? To share the rich history of the area as well as keep the neighborhood clean and green for all to enjoy. “Girard Estate really is a hidden gem in South Philly,” LaMacchia said. “I remember walking through this neighborhood as a child. I thought the houses were castles.” prh

CYO Coach tallies more than 54 years of service


by Tony Santini ith schools merging throughout the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, organized sports under the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) is in fluctuation. One thing that hasn’t changed in the past 50 years, however, is the service provided by Vince DiPietro,

Youth Sports Director for the South Philadelphia CYO Sports program. South Philly born and bred, Coach DiPietro grew up at 28th & Wharton, lived on the 1200 block of Newkirk for a while and spent most of his 56 years of married life on the 2600 block of Snyder Avenue where he and wife Betty raised four children: Vince Jr., Donna, Joseph and Stephanie. By day, Vince was a Paint Chemist for the Dupont Company before

retiring. By night, weekends, holidays and summer vacation, Vince spent just about all of his free time coaching, managing or directing his own children and a throng of neighborhood kids who played CYO sports between 1958 and today - more than 150,000 student athletes. From 1958 to 1962, Vince served as Coach of the King of Peace Boys Basketball Freshman & Sophomore teams. Since

1962, he has served as the Commissioner of CYO 7th & 8th Grade Boys Basketball. From 1974 to 2000, he served on the Athletic Board for Youth Sports for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. Currently, he is the Coordinator of Athletic Ministry (Athletic Director) for CYO Region 6 Sports which includes all of South Philadelphia. He reflects on the young athletes that advanced successfully into high school, collegiate or professional sports careers as a result of the CYO Sports program. Bobby Atene (Basketball) St. Edmond’s, St. Joe’s; Steve Melchiore (Basketball) St. Edmond’s, Penn State; George

Riley (Baseball) Stella Maris, Chicago Cubs; Mike Koplove (Baseball) Holy Spirit, Arizona Diamondbacks; Tommy DiMuzio (Football) St. Edmond’s, Dallas Cowboys; Ramon Moore (Basketball) St. Gabe’s, Chicago Bulls; and the late, great John Marzano (Baseball) Annunciation, Boston Red Sox. Vince says he would like to see coaches teach young athletes the fundamentals of the game. “There’s more in life than just winning,” he says. “Respect for authority, for other coaches, other players and themselves.” Not a bad adage for any of us to prh follow.

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The Making of the Golden Girls by Mark Casasanto photos by Phil Kramer


n a hot August afternoon, as most Americans watched in amazement, the United States Women’s National Soccer team clinched its third consecutive Olympic Gold Medal. Somewhere in South Jersey, one proud Aussie quietly beamed a confident grin as if to say, ‘I told you so’. Coach James Galanis is not your ordinary soccer coach. The Australian national, who began his professional playing career at the tender age of 15, now resides locally. He has coached nationally-ranked amateur teams as well as professionally with the Atlanta Beat of the now defunct Women’s United Soccer Association. But as founder of the Uni-

versal Soccer Academy in Lumberton, he has become friend, trainer and mentor to Olympic heroines Carli Lloyd, Heather Mitts and Hope Solo. Ask Galanis and he’ll tell you that the message he offers youngsters at his camp is the same one he delivers to Olympic athletes. While most high-level players share similar abilities, the Olympians make bigger sacrifices and don’t let obstacles stand in their way. “That’s what makes them special,” he tells his Olympic students. “When the team goes down 1-0, everybody else starts doubting. My athletes rub their hands together and say ‘Give me that ball. I’ve got this. I’m gonna be the hero.’”

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Latest Trends for Men & Kids Hot Shaves Personal Grooming Walk-Ins Welcome! 215.551.0717 Carli Lloyd seizes the moment Ten years ago, current national team midfielder Carli Lloyd knew she had the talent to play on the national level. But, she readily admits, “I had no confidence or self-belief. It was definitely not there.” When she met Galanis, she realized for the first time in her career that she was able to attain immediate results. “He had a plan for me. We went into it together with hard work and preparation.” And Galanis is quick to admit, “There is no one out there who works as hard as Carli. She clocks the hours and is out here sometimes six hours a day, twice a day.” That hard work and preparation bolstered her confidence and the inner strength she needed as the London Games were about to kick off. Just before the start of the tournament, the United States’ line-up card suddenly was devoid of the #10. Lloyd was relegated to a reserve roll. “Not knowing my future, not knowing if I was going to get time in the Olympics, I was devastated.” She looked to Galanis for wisdom. “James told me don’t worry. You are going to persevere through all of this. You’re going to get your moment, your chance and you will seize it.” When an injury on the US side opened the door for a starting opportunity, Lloyd stepped in again and indeed seized the moment. She played one of the strongest six matches of her storied career, scoring the only two goals in the Gold Medal match against Japan. Fulfilled prophecy for Galanis who calls Lloyd “the best all-around player in the world.” Sweet redemption for Team USA and Lloyd who describes it as “the most exciting, proudest moment of my life.”

Three’s the charm for Heather Mitts Most players can only dream of standing on an Olympic platform with their teammates, accepting a gold medal on behalf of their country. Heather Mitts accomplished that feat three times. She started working with Galanis in 2007, shortly after tearing up her ACL. “Carli invited me to come out and train on the breaks... I give him so much credit for making me a better soccer player mentally. He gave me so much confidence and he really transformed me into the player I am now.” A seasoned veteran, Mitts earned a start in the second match of the games against Columbia. “To be able to come out and contribute, after everything that happened during the World Cup... with my injuries... To help the team and get one step closer to winning Gold, it doesn’t get much better than that.” And on the podium for the third time, smiling, laughing and singing the national anthem? “Overwhelming! It was sheer joy to be able to go out and enjoy that moment and celebrate together.” Looking ahead, Mitts is in the process of relocating back to the area with her husband, former Philadelphia Eagle AJ Feeley. She has no regrets walking away from the game she loves to concentrate on her future. “I’ve been able to play through three Olympics. I’m so fulfilled and have been fortunate to play as long as I have.” Lloyd, on the other hand, is right back at it on the pitch. “I’m feeling great with this Olympics. I think there were people who lost faith in me. I proved them wrong. I’m going for it... the next World Cup, the next Olympics. I think it’s going to be an even bigger and better me.” Meanwhile, Galanis, the self-proclaimed soccer junky, takes a minute to reflect on it all. “Champions are gonna be champions because they want to be champions,” he says. Whether it’s an encouraging text to Hope Solo, a six-hour session with Lloyd or a redeployment of Mitts’ skills, Galanis has it covered. “Through it all, be it a young player or an Olympian, I’m teaching them how to be champions in life. And to me, that’s the difference.”

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Coach leads team to historic winning streak by Tony Santini


arl Arrigale, Head Coach of the Saint John Neumann-Maria Goretti Varsity Boys Basketball team, has led the Saints to three consecutive Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) Division 3 State Championships. He is also riding a 70-game winning streak over the past four years – the longest winning streak in Philadelphia Catholic League history! Coach Arrigale originally hails from King of Peace parish where he was born, raised and began a coaching career that spans more than 20 years – the last 15 of them at Neumann-Goretti (NG) High School. He and his wife Denise are residents of St. Richard’s parish where they have been raising their three children: Marlena, 16; Alexandra, 13; and, Christopher, 10.

RH: A lot of people look up to you. Who are your role models? CA: In life, I’d have to say my mother Marlena and my father Carl. In sports, it would be Vince DiPietro and Dom Giordano from King of Peace. They are the reason that I got into coaching. RH: Who or what motivates you today? CA: First and foremost, it’s making my family proud. Other than that, it’s giving local kids an opportunity through basketball that they might not have had otherwise. RH: What do you say to motivate your athletes? CA: We have a credo at NG…”Play hard, play together and play for each other. The other things will come naturally.”

RH: What is the toughest opposing gym in which you’ve played? CA: St. Joe’s Prep for a Friday afternoon game. The entire student body is in attendance and, like the basketball fans at a Duke University home game, they have organized cheers and really get on our players. Roman Catholic’s third-floor gym is no picnic, either. RH: Do you ever think you will coach college basketball? CA: Well, how does the saying go? Never say never? But, for now, I am very happy doing what I’m doing. RH: Other than you, who do you think is the best coach in the Catholic league? CA: Speedy Morris.

RH: Who is your favorite athlete of all time? CA: Mike Schmidt. RH: What is your favorite restaurant in Philadelphia? CA: Chickie’s and Pete’s at 15th & Packer and Johnnie’s at 12th & Wolf. RH: Where did you go on your last vacation? CA: D isneyworld for sight-seeing. North Wildwood for relaxation. RH: Tell us something about yourself that we can’t find on Google. CA: I’m an avid fan of the television show, “Pretty Little Liars,” and have been known to DVR it if I knew that I was going to miss an episode.

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Anyone who Lives, Works, Worships or Studies in Philadelphia can

Open an Account An Unselfish Wish


by David W. Cava

his past spring, my brother-in-law asked me to join him in a golf outing to help a family in need. If you have ever watched someone chase a toddler through a department store, you’d have a fair mental picture of me playing golf. Despite that fact, I was happy to spend a sunny afternoon away from work with a great group of guys for an even greater cause. After several sun-drenched hours of playing hide and seek with that nasty little ball, I was ready to skip the dinner and go home. The sound of live music emanating from the dining tent changed my mind. Much to my surprise, the musicians were no older than 13. Intrigued, I sat down and enjoyed a meal with my friends while the young performers cranked out many of the same old tunes that I jammed with my band when I was their age. During a break in the music, a young couple took to the stage. The woman tearfully thanked everyone for their generosity. She said she was proud of her little boy—how he bravely faced every day with a smile. The gentleman also shared his heartfelt appreciation with the crowd. Then he introduced their 7-year-old son. A little boy wearing a fireman’s helmet sheepishly took hold of the microphone, smiled and softy said, “thank you”. He waited for the applause to subside and then concluded with a wish that all of the children in the hospital would get what they wanted for Christmas. On the ride home, I couldn’t stop thinking about the little boy and his unselfish wish. It was easy for me to remember what it was like to be the kid on stage rocking out with his friends. But I couldn’t imagine what it was like to be the little boy in the fireman’s helmet. His life was so far from the carefree days of my childhood. Growing up, I never thought about my health. Not even for one minute. Yet, for that little boy, there probably isn’t a day when he doesn’t. I kept my eye on the boy and his family after they left the stage. The band played and they danced. Despite the many hurdles they face, they surround themselves with love. There was so much laughing and dancing, hugging and kissing going on that I couldn’t stop thinking about the little boy’s wish for his friends in the hospital. That they, too, would get what they wanted for Christmas so they would be happy, too. It took me a day of bad golf, a night of live music and a wish from a little boy wearing a fireman’s helmet to truly appreciate the saying, “Happiness is in the heart, not in the circumstances.” With the love and support of family and friends, we can bravely face any obstacle - big or small. And maybe, if we’re lucky, even find a bit of happiness along the way.  prh

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South Philadelphia Business Association honors local scholars


photo by Scott McClennen

ach year the South Philadelphia Business Association (SPBA) rewards the hard work and dedication of area students with scholarships to the college or higher-education institution of their choice.

This year, through fundraising events and donations, the SPBA awarded ten $1,000 scholarships to local high school seniors, some of whom are entering the military or medical programs. The recipients were chosen from hundreds of applicants and show a true commitment to community outreach. The SPBA, headed by President Dan Olivieri Jr., recognized their accomplishments at the Association’s annual dinner held in their honor at Galdo’s Catering. From tutoring classmates to volunteering in their communi-

ties, these teens show an enthusiasm for learning and helping others that is worth a salute! Congratulations to Alexandria Bilotti, Renata Cavalieri (Neumann-Goretti), Capri Ciampitti (Neumann-Goretti), Shamus Clancy (St. Joe’s Prep), Justin DelBorrello (NeumannGoretti), Brianna DiDonato (Neumann-Goretti), Michael Giangiordano (St. Joe’s Prep), Anthony Panvini (St. Joe’s Prep), Santina Pescatore (Merion Mercy) and Brigid Squilla (Merion Mercy).

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ords can comfort, inspire, motivate, teach. They also can win contests. When John Green set out to engage young students in a Scrabble Competition, his goal was to get them to think. And he succeeded. He inspired them so much, the students placed first in a Winter Scrabble Competition. The First Masonic District of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania presented Green with its 2012 Humanitarian Award in recognition of his “relentless and selfless service to the children of Prince Hall Elementary School” in North Philadelphia. In an award letter presented to Green by the Grand Lodge, co-workers nominated Green for the honor “for the great qualities you exhibit: intelligence, work ethic, positive attitude, teamwork, leadership and diligence.”



Everyone knows it’s Slinky

by Dorette Rota Jackson

Whether you are 5 or 95, nothing can replace the thrill of unwrapping the perfect present. Close your eyes and remember. What Toy brings you back to that moment in time? Did your toy make it to the Top of the List of favorites over the past 100 years?






ETCH A SKETCH (1960) KEN (1961) G.I. JOE (1964) EASY BAKE OVEN (1963) ROCK’EM SOCK’EM ROBOTS (1964) LITE BRITE (1967) HOT WHEELS (1968)







2000s RAZOR SCOOTER (2000) BRATZ (2001) MINDFLEX (2009) ZHU ZHU (2009)


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PRHstudent WRITERS block

Endless Dreams by Marialena Rago

PRH: Who has inspired you to believe in yourself? Encouraged you to follow your dreams? Whenever an adult asks a child, ‘Who encourages your dreams?’, the answer is almost always their parents and I think that is the perfect answer. My mom and dad have always encouraged me to follow my endless list of dreams no matter how big or small. Whether it is past dreams or future dreams, I know I can count on them. I have always loved to perform since I was little. From dance recitals to performing musicals, my parents have always been there in the front seat. One year, I researched a sleep-away camp in upstate New York. It was difficult to get into because of the number of returning campers,

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each year. There was a waiting list. My mom called the camp and got me in the first time. I was shocked not knowing how she did it, but she did. That summer, and for two additional summers, my mom and dad took the fourhour car ride up to rural Loch Sheldrake, New York. And when it was performance weekend, they took the drive, again, to see me play a rooster, an asylum nurse and Old Sally. Now, as I put my performance days aside for a few years and look toward college, my parents are there for me, again. They encourage me to go for my dream school in New York City and are helping me with the long college process. I know that whatever I decide, they will be there for me every step of the way. prh

© Just Born, Inc. 2012.

Anything is possible if you believe in yourself

by Santina Pescatore PRH: Who has inspired you to believe in yourself? Encouraged you to follow your dreams? One person who has inspired me to believe in myself is the person I like to call “mommy”. Her incredible work ethic and pure selflessness have acted as my guide as I travel on the tumultuous journey of life. One of the greatest gifts my mother has given me is the satisfaction of knowing that being myself is enough. When I was younger, I hated doing anything girly, including wearing dresses. Although my mother could have forced me “to act more as a girl should”, she let me dress how I wanted and even let me be Batman for Halloween. I am lucky to have a mother who accepts me for the person I am and not for the person that society expects me to be. As my mother fulfills the jobs of both lawyer and mother, she has taught me that if I choose, the goals I achieve can be limitless. Whether it is by watching one of my mock trial competitions or simply by encouraging me to pursue my dreams of becoming a doctor, my mother always remains supportive. Her ability to accept the person I am, tell me the truth even when it may be an inconvenience, and encourage me to pursue my dreams has made my mother one of the most influential people in my life. prh

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PRHstudent WRITERS block

My Inspiration

by Dominique Verrecchio PRH: Who has inspired you to believe in yourself? Encouraged you to follow your dreams? One of the earliest memories I have of myself is dressing my Barbies up in outfits made out of dishrags and socks. Whenever someone asked me what I wanted to be, the answer was always ‘a fashion designer’. Today, at 16 years old, I would still love to pursue a career in fashion. With my newfound love for writing, my dream has somewhat changed. I hope that someday I can write for Vogue or maybe even become the editor-in-chief. One of the key things in making my dream visible is the inspiration I get from others. Many people in my life inspire me to strive, but the person who inspires me the most is my mother, Catherine Verrecchio. My mom taught me that everything is possible as long as you believe. Even when the light at the tunnel grows dim, she still helps me believe in myself and lights the way. My mom encourages me to never give up in what I believe in and to reach for the stars. She helps me do well in school so that my dreams are possible. My mom makes it very well known that no matter what I become, she will be proud of me. She inspires me to be the best person I can be. She lights my dreams with hope to make them possible and encourages me through my journey to success. My mom is truly my inspiration.  prh


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0 - 24 Months

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 PRH RowHome Remembers

From the front lines of WWII’s Battle of the Bulge

This is My Story by Frank Tavella


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was inducted into the military on April 15, 1943. After boot camp, I was accepted into the parachute jump-training program. I was among 1800 privates at the start of the course. Only 600 remained in my graduating class. I then volunteered for a paratrooper assignment in Europe. In exchange for accepting the assignment, I was promised a 30-day furlough. My commanders kept delaying the furlough until I reached the port of embarkation at Camp Shanks, NY. This was my final stop before going overseas. I realized I was not going to get the 30 days as promised so I asked for a three-day pass to say goodbye to family before going off to war. When my commanding officer denied the request, I saluted him and advised him that I was going AWOL. He replied, ‘You’re not that kind of soldier.’ I said, “I’m going” and left his office. That night, I, along with two other soldiers named Joe and Al (who were also denied the furloughs and passes) snuck out of camp. That began my AWOL adventure. We visited my family in Philadelphia and Joe’s family in Brooklyn. Then Al and I hitchhiked to Chicago to visit his family. While on AWOL, we always traveled in uniform because if we were caught in civilian clothes, we would have been considered deserters. And we were not deserters. We wanted to serve. We just wanted to say goodbye to loved ones before going off to war. I left Chicago and returned to Fort Meade, MD, to turn myself in. I learned that my crime could have gotten me a general court marshal, which carried a 20-year prison sentence. At the hearing, I told my side of the story. The military court decided to reduce the general court marshal to a summary court marshal (a lesser charge) because of my unblemished record prior to this incident. And because my commanding officer failed to have me arrested after I had announced my AWOL intentions to him. My sentence was 25 days in the stockade. I don’t know what happened to Al and Joe. After I served my 25 days, I was sent to Newport, VA, to prepare to go overseas. I was led onto the ship in shackles. After one day at sea, my sentence was completed. We arrived in Sicily to await our assignments. During that time, I worked in the kitchen cooking for my fellow soldiers. There were many local children in the area hanging around the base. They were often hungry so we shared our leftovers with them.

My first assignment was to instruct new recruits entering jump school in Europe. After that, I was assigned to the 517th parachute infantry regiment. That began my regular tour of duty in southern France. We spent more than 40 days on the front lines, which entitled us to a rest period. We were going to spend Christmas in Paris! Then the Bulge broke out. The Germans had Bastogne, Belgium, surrounded, demanding the Americans surrender. US General McAuliffe replied with the famous quote that captured our American spirit, ‘NUTS!’ Christmas in Paris was cancelled. We were rushed to the front, again. This time in Belgium. We fought the Germans back from one side. Patton’s army advanced from the other side. We were successful in pushing the “bulge” back. We were winning, again! Then we were sent to clear a German observation post. The Germans were lobbing shells at our position to try to stop our advance. We were easy targets in an open field, so I left to find cover. I found a ditch in the road and stayed there to wait out the shelling and prepare for our advance. My helmet rolled off my head and I crawled up to retrieve it. I felt a sharp pain in my ankle. I tried to walk and couldn’t. I was wounded. The helmet mishap probably saved my life because the shrapnel would have entered my back if I had remained in place. I packed the wound with snow to stop the bleeding and waited for help. My sergeant found me

and carried me back to a farmhouse, where I waited five hours for an ambulance. The weather and the enemy had delayed its arrival. I spent three weeks in a hospital in Paris. Then I was sent home to continue treatment at a hospital in Atlantic City, NJ. The US Army honorably discharged me on September 12, 1945. I learned after I got home that the “bulge” was pushed back to its original position on the very day that I was wounded. I am proud of my service to my country. And proud to be an American. It was, for me, the worst of times. By age 21, I had seen the ugly reality of war. I was faced with such choices as “kill” or “be killed.” The remains of the Malmedy Massacre were horrific. The hungry kids in Italy remain etched in my memory. I saw friends shot to death. Others sustained disabling and disfiguring wounds. It makes a boy grow up fast. But, it was also the best of times. We fought the good fight. To be a small part of a great effort to save the world from the Nazis can be rewarding. We were on the right side of history and we were unstoppable. All of us were heroes in the end. As to my AWOL episode, it’s just a part of my mischievous, colorful American spirit. I was a street kid when I entered the military – not accustomed to respecting authority. But I conducted myself with valor and honor in battle. I earned a few medals. By the time of my discharge, I had become a man. After the war, I worked for the Post Office. My job required me to travel throughout the United States for much of my career. I’ve seen most of the country. What a great experience that was. My schedule allowed me to be home with my family for one full week every month. I got to tour the country and be a stay-at-home dad one week every month. It was the best of both worlds. After I retired from the Post Office, I began a new adventure. I took a position with a company that was dredging the Niger River for gold. This job required travel to Africa. For the past 30 years, I have been traveling to Bamako, Mali, in Western Africa – most recently in 2010 at age 87. These days, I go simply to visit friends and enjoy the world. My WWII experience opened my eyes and fed my taste for adventure. I’m an ordinary guy from South Philly but I’ve had extraordinary experiences. I have seen much of the U.S., Europe and Africa. And the adventure continues. prh rowhome magazine

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PRHRowHome Remembers


Put on your dungarees and let’s go honky tonkin! SUBSCRIBE AT GOHOMEPHILLY.COM

Within seconds of its posting, hundreds of RowHome Readers logged on to answer Philadelphia RowHome Magazine’s Facebook Poll:

WORDS YOU DON’T HEAR ANYMORE Here are just a few of the top picks. ❱❱ Carbon Paper

❱❱ Halter Top

❱❱ Telephone Operator

❱❱ Dungarees ❱❱ Pedal Pushers

❱❱ Transistor Radio

❱❱ Clamdiggers

❱❱ Beanie

❱❱ Britches

❱❱ Chapel Veil

❱❱ Vestibule

❱❱ Dippity Do

❱❱ Acqua Net

❱❱ Page Boy

❱❱ Spats

❱❱ Pixie

❱❱ Spectacles (eyeglasses)

❱❱ Hipsters

❱❱ Receptacle (electrical outlet)

❱❱ Adding Machine ❱❱ Party Line

❱❱ Ice Box

❱❱ Fels Naptha Brown Soap (used for everything ❱❱ Crepe Hangers from washing your hair to scrubbing ❱❱ Wind the Clock the white marble steps in front of ❱❱ I ce Trays your house) ❱❱ Pimple Balls

❱❱ Vanette

❱❱ PF Flyers

❱❱ Pipsqueek

❱❱ Honky Tonky

❱❱ Stockings

❱❱ Hunky Dory

❱❱ Paragoric

One reader posted “Buster Brown Shoes” and even provided the lyrics to the popular 1960 TV Commercial jingle that got everyone singing the catchy tune..

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BUSTER BROWN SONG LYRICS Does your shoe have a boy inside? What a funny place for a boy to hide. Does your shoe have a dog there too? A boy and a dog and a foot in a shoe, Well, the boy is Buster Brown, And the dog is Tige his friend. They’re really just a picture, But it’s fun to play pretend.

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PRESSED By Dorette Rota Jackson

 A peach tree grows in Philly by Dorette Rota Jackson


’m in the middle of compiling a list of the most popular toys of the century when the phone rings. It’s Pasquale Scioli, “tailor to the Eagles,” our friend and business colleague. ‘Doretta,’ he says in his thick Italian accent. ‘Itsa me. Pasquale. Calla the man who takes the peekachores..the man with the camera. Understand?’ I recap what I think he just said. ‘You want me to call my photographer?’ You need him to take a picture for you?’ Pasquale says ‘Ahh.’ That means yes. A good sign that we are communicating. I anticipate the arrival of one of our Eagles. A great photo-op. He’s been custom-fitting the team’s jerseys for more than 20 years. Some of the shirts are bigger than Pat. He loves the “Eeegz” and the “Eeegz” love Pasquale. The players are in and out of his shop all season. ‘E-A-G-L-E-S’ he chants whenever we walk through his door. Pat continues the conversation. ‘I want you to take a peekachore of my peach tree,’ he says in broken English. ‘I justa came home from Italy. It’s a miracle! So many peaches on my tree! I never saw anything like this in all the years I live here!’ I tell him we can’t hire a photographer to take pictures of his peaches. I suggest he ask his granddaughter to snap a photo and email it to me. I politely hang up the phone and get back to my research. My sister can’t believe that one of my favorite toys made it to the top of the list during the 1960s.


| rowhome magazine

She thinks I spent my whole life reading and writing. Says my idea of fun was far from joyful. Santa left Chatty Cathy under my tree back in 1965. I carried Chatty with me everywhere. Even set a place for her at the dinner table. There Cathy sat with her pink plastic teacup and a bottle that doubled as orange juice if you turned it upside down. ‘What’s that doll drinking?’ Dawn asked every night. ‘Babies don’t drink tea.’ ‘It’s magic tea,’ I’d tell her. ‘If you drink it, you will wake up as a princess.’ ‘Then why do you wake up as a Nun?’ she’d ask. Confused look on her cherub round face. My Singing Nun album was my absolute favorite present under the tree back then. On Christmas morning, I’d dress up in a black robe and rosary beads and sing Dominique as I played a little wooden guitar. My sister and brother Anthony got to be the audience and had to ‘clap real loud’ when I finished. At which time I’d slide my easel in front of them and spell words on my new blackboard with a brand new stick of chalk. C-A-T. ‘Sound it out! ‘Ka-ka- Kaaat!’ I’d hint. It was the ultimate fun time for me! The magic of Christmas morning. And a little brother and sister to be my pretend students! During recess, they got to play with their own toys. Dawn cut the hair off her Barbies and Anthony spent hours lining his green plastic army men on top of the TV console while Bing Crosby sang White Christmas from the album on the stereo. And what you be-

lieved to be a unique scenario unfolding under the roof of your home was playing out in living-rooms throughout the neighborhood. Generations of time-honored family traditions. For instance. Everyone knows that Santa doesn’t deliver toys that require assembly. The first thing dads do with toys that need assembly is throw away the instructions. ‘Just let me see the picture on the box,’ my dad would holler year after year. ‘Let me see what this thing is supposed to look like.’ Why do you think Colorforms and Etch-a-Sketch were so popular back in the Sixties? And God forbid the toys needed batteries! How many times did you flip the switch on your new walkie talkies and listen to the sound of silence? May explain our Boomer-era obsession with Duracell. My sister and I always got a new pair of skates for Christmas. One pair of skates. She wore the left skate. I wore the right one. We’d use the key to tighten the metal fasteners around the soles of our shoes and head out to Sartain Street to try them out. My mother was afraid we’d fall and break our teeth like she did if we wore both skates. Explains why our friends didn’t ask us to go to the Skating Rink on Sunday afternoons. Did you ever try pushing yourself across the ice on one skate? Everyone liked to jump rope in our neighborhood. We spent hours on the sidewalk outside our homes, singing meaningful songs like…

‘Not last night but the night before, 24 robbers came knockin’ at my door. I asked them what they wanted and this is what they said. Give me all your money or I’ll shoot you down dead. So I gave them all my money and this is what they said, Dawnie, Dawnie, do the twist. Dawnie, Dawnie, give a high kick! Dawnie, Dawnie, do the kangaroo. Dawnie, Dawnie, that’s enough of you!’ How many of you are singing along right now? Tired of watching your Slinky crawl down the stairs? Time out for a game of Twister or Operation. Never Monopoly. The only thing I liked about that game was the thimble. Toys unify the ages. They spark happy memories, I thought to myself. Then Dawn’s shrill voice shattered my trip back in time. ‘Yo. Dominiquee, neekie, neek. Pick up the phone. Pasquale wants to talk to you again.’ ‘Listen to me,’ Pat insists. ‘This is something everybody should see. It’s a miracle. Ahh.’ I thought to myself, he just returned from a trip to a beautiful country. A land filled with olive groves, vineyards, mountains and sea. But the sight of a peach tree growing in the middle of his South Philly neighborhood took his breath away. And in that moment of silence on the phone, it dawned on me. Pasquale’s miracle. Favorite toys will soon become fads of the decade. But not peach trees. Peach trees are forever. That’s a memory we can all hold prh onto.



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Anything Is Possible If You Believe In Yourself Philadelphia RowHome Magazine presents

The 2012 WishRock Award Sponsored by

Standing Ovation to

Chickie Pagano Felicia Punzo Brandon Tomasello

Your passion for the Arts has inspired a new generation of Believers The WishRock marks one of many steps along your journey to success. May it always remind you to “believe in yourself, follow your dreams and reach out to help others along the way.” On behalf of Philadelphia RowHome Magazine and Standing Ovation thank you for sharing your talent and your determination with us All great accomplishments begin with a dream

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