Women of Manayunk A celebration of Manayunkâ€™s leading female entrepreneurs
Seasonal Transitions | All on the Table Support System
LET’S TALK TACOS.
Crave-tested and perfected.
Are fish tacos the perfect snack package? Ride the wave on over to Winnie’s and find out. Made fresh daily with love. Can’t make it in? We have a recipe for that too. Order online: WinniesManayunk.com
4266 Main Street, Manayunk, PA 19127 | 215.487.2663 | Breakfast - Brunch - Lunch - Dinner
M A N AY U N K L O C AT I O N 4 2 6 0 M A I N S T, P H I L A D E L P H I A , PA 1 9 1 2 7 215.709.2888 N E W L E A F M A N AY U N K . C O M B R O O M A L L L O C AT I O N 2 9 1 6 W E S T C H E S T E R P I K E , B R O O M A L L PA 1 9 0 0 8 610-353-8888 W W W. N E W L E A F C U I S I N E . C O M
LIVE SHOP DINE PLAY
contents SPRING 2020
Mark Your Calendar
hat’s happening in Manayunk W this spring.
In Case You Missed It
A recap of our winter events.
Celebrating Manayunk’s female entrepreneurs.
Step inside Manayunk’s newest businesses.
19 A Welcome Change of Seasons Manayunk boutiques transition fashion from winter to spring.
All on the Table
Manayunk’s leading ladies in the food industry.
How SOWN has helped the city’s older adults for over 35 years.
10 Women Who Mean Business The force of females behind Manayunk’s professional services.
Editorial + Production
Manayunk Magazine is published by the
Editors Manayunk Development Corp. Megan Douress, Leo Dillinger, and Meghan Sack Manayunk Development Corporation Design 4312 Main Street Cantor Design, cantordesign.com Philadelphia, PA 19127 Sales 215.482.9565 | email@example.com M7 Media • 610.417.9261; firstname.lastname@example.org Photography Susan Beard Design Co - susanbearddesign.com Alexa Nahas Photography - alexanahas.com Melissa Kelly Photography - melissakellyphotography.com Cover JPG Photo & Video - jpgphotography.com Photographed by JPG Photo & Video Terry Leahy Films - terryleahyfilms.com jpgphotography.com 4
manayunk.com | Spring 2020
VOTED BEST PLACE TO LIVE â€“ MNYK 2017
4312 MAIN STREET MANAYUNK, PA 19127
MARK YOUR CALENDAR By Meghan Sack
Kick off spring in Manayunk with Opening Day for Trails! On Saturday, April 18, Manayunk will play a small part in this nationwide effort by joining forces with Circuit Trails to bring awareness to all of the ways our green space can be used throughout the year. Join us on the iconic Manayunk Bridge for a morning of fitness and other wellness activities.
april 19 StrEAT Food Festival
On Sunday April 19, join us rain or shine for the StrEAT Food Festival, featuring over 50 of Philadelphia’s finest food trucks and vendors! Purchase homemade oils, spices, or stock up on fresh fruits and vegetables at the farm stand. Participating vendors will be highlighting dishes with the spring ingredient – strawberries! Take a break from eating with festival shopping at local businesses that will be joining the trucks and vendors on the street. From sidewalk sales to promotions, see all that our Manayunk merchants have to offer. In addition to eating and shopping, there will be live music for people of all ages to enjoy at Green Lane, Cotton Street, and Shurs Lane.
manayunk.com | Spring 2020
april 20 - may 1 Spring Restaurant Week Manayunk’s thriving food scene will be on display when more than a dozen restaurants will be serving up special three-course menus during Spring Restaurant Week! From April 20 - May 1, Manayunk eateries will offer fixed menu prices of $15, $25, and $35.
thursdays this summer Stroll the Street Back for another summer, Manayunk.com presents Stroll the Street! Every Thursday evening from Memorial Day to Labor Day, bring the whole family to Main Street for $6 drinks and appetizers at select restaurants, shopping deals, food trucks, activities and more. Stroll the Street is from 5-9 p.m. and is always rain or shine. Theme nights include pet nights and movie nights — there’s something for everyone!
Photography by TERRYLEAHYFILMS (terryleahyfilms.com) and Alexa Nahas Photography (alexanahas.com)
april 18 Opening Day for Trails
www.petfriendlydogbakery.com 4324 Main Street • Manayunk, PA 19127 215.483.7387
4330 Main Street, Manayunk, PA 19127 | 215.483.8888 Franklin’s Table 4330 @ UPenn Campus 3401 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA.Pa.19104 Main Street Manayunk, PA 19127 | 920 Montgomery Ave. Narberth, 19072 | 215.422.4530 www.petfriendlydogbakery.com WWW.THEJUICEMERCHANT.COM WWW.THE J U ICE ME RCHANT.COM
MNYK.Summer2019_Full_RFP.indd MNYK.Fall2019_Full2.indd 5 5
4324 Main Street • Manayunk, PA 19127 215.483.7387
8/30/2019 6/3/2019 3:13:11 8:59:56 PM AM
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT By Leo Dillinger
Founders Philly Freeze-Out (January 25th) A little bit of morning rain didn’t stop visitors from coming to Manayunk and having a good time at the third annual Founders Philly Freeze-Out! The event featured a beer garden made of ice in Canal View Park, a Chowder Crawl hosted by local restaurants, in-store promotions, and a variety of ice sculptures lining Main Street courtesy of Ice Sculpture Philly.
Girl Scout Cookie Month (February) There’s nothing sweeter than Girl Scout Cookie Month in Manayunk! Restaurants offered monthlong drink and dessert specials made with signature selections of Girl Scout cookies, cookie booths with local troops every Saturday, and a Cookie Run hosted by Philadelphia Runner.
Photography by TERRYLEAHYFILMS (terryleahyfilms.com) and courtesy of the Girl Scouts of Eastern Pennsylvania
Holidays in Manayunk It’s always the most wonderful time of the year when visiting Manayunk during the holidays! The neighborhood kicked off the season with a tree lighting ceremony followed by Small Business Saturday, where local retail shops offer a variety of specials and promotions. Other December events included the Rudolph Run, Men’s Shopping Night, and Promenade of Trees.
manayunk.com | Spring 2020
GHP will take you from the ring to the big day, with custom designs, stationery and signs to make your wedding one to be remembered. Forever.
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you IN PHILADELPHIA Helping 267.516.2436 email@example.com your AND THE SUBURBS find cityofpawspetcare.com Extraordinary Service Since 1985! Dog Walking • Pet Sitting • Vacation Services
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Office: 610.520.0100 Bendi JEWELERS Cell: 215.987.2961 CONTACT US TO BOOK!
Philadelphia ® East Falls, Manayunk, Roxborough, and Wissahickon
REALTOR at Keller Williams Main Line
215-508-1903 Manayunk Law Office 4322 Main Street 4374 Main Street P.O. Box 4603 Manayunk Philadelphia, PA 19127 LAUREN@GIRLHOLDINGAPEN.COM firstname.lastname@example.org MNYKLaw.com William J. O’Brien Esq. www.toptailsdogwalking.com 609-221-8683 • girlholdingapen.com
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Not in our service area? • PHILADELPHIA, 4333 MAIN ST.Call PA 19127 or email us today to schedule a meet and greet! We’ll watch your dog in our home Visit our website to review our range of services. regardless of your location, and cityofpawspetcare.com our pet taxi service makes drop oﬀ and pick up a breeze. PA License #RS344146
Jen Colahan McIlhenny ReMax Eastern, Inc.
Trusted local specialist for all your real estate needs. Sellers, contact me for a free comparative market analysis on the sale of your property. Buyers, contact me for a free meeting on the home buying process.
Office: 215-961-6005 Cell: 215-266-4549 Email: email@example.com
REAL ESTATE AROUND PHILLY 50
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Spring 9 Spring2018 2020|| |manayunk.com manayunk.com 47 Summer 2017 manayunk.com Spring 159
Women Who Mean Business Get to know the force of female entrepreneurs leading the professional services industry in Manayunk. By Meghan Sack Photography by Melissa Kelly Photography (melissakellyphotography.com)
un fact: Approximately 75 of Manayunkâ€™s small businesses are owned or co-owned by women. For those keeping track, thatâ€™s about one-third of all businesses in the 19127 zip code. The entrepreneurs in our district are unique, talented, hard-working people who bring style and leadership to Manayunk, especially the many women who bring professional services to our thriving district. From accounting to nutrition counseling, from homebuying advice and even jam sessions in a recording studio, we sat down with just a few of the leading ladies that offer something different and welcome all walks of life to Main Street.
manayunk.com | Spring 2020
Annette McGovern Co-owner of McGovern & Associates P.C. It’s hard to not think about tax season this time of year, especially for Annette McGovern of McGovern & Associates P.C. “Owning a business does become your life,” Annette said of the business she shares with her husband, Jack. “You’re always busy, but we enjoy it.” Annette, a former marketing major and graduate of Penn State University, has always liked working with numbers. She took many accounting courses throughout her time at Penn State where she also met her future husband and business partner, Jack. The two worked at separate firms in the Philadelphia area and after about five years in the workforce, they decided to start their own firm here in Manayunk. “It was just Jack and I when we first opened up over 25 years ago on Main Street,” Annette said. “When you own a small business, you do everything. I oversee the operational end of the business: billing, HR, scheduling workflow, event planning, and marketing.” Today, McGovern & Associates P.C. is one of the most reliable and accomplished businesses in Manayunk, offering services such as income tax preparation, accounting and auditing, bookkeeping and various financial services. In fact, many of Manayunk’s other entrepreneurs use their services from year-to-year. “We have great people working here,” Annette said, noting that her staff can frequently be seen at Main Street events and often give back to the community where their business resides. “We really love the area.” Annette and Jack have more than just their own small business invested in the district. The McGoverns also own real estate in the neighborhood — three properties on Main Street and several others on Green Lane and Ridge Avenue. While tax season is by far the craziest time for Jack and Annette, they certainly know how to unwind and make the most of the off-season. “We are big Eagles fans!” Annette said from her desk, surrounded by Philadelphia Eagles gear. “We’ve been going to the games for 30 years and host memorable tailgates with over 50 people. They’re our dinner parties. We invite clients, their families, and friends, which have resulted in a lifetime of bonding experiences and networking opportunities. We’re also ‘summer people.’ That’s great about our business — we can enjoy the off-season and not work seven days a week.” When asked what advice Annette would give to other women looking to open their own business, she said it plain and simply. “Hard work does pay off.” Spring 2020 | manayunk.com 11
Kristen Humphries Studio Coordinator at MNYK Studios Kristen Humphries always knew music was in her future. “My first memory of music being so meaningful was when I was a kid,” she explained. “I would watch VH1 with my dad before kindergarten and I remember one morning, I saw Aerosmith’s ‘Don’t Want to Miss a Thing,’ and I told my dad I wanted to be Steven Tyler.” Even at a young age, seeing the crowd’s emotions and the logistics of the band’s performance at work made music something Kristen wanted to pursue as a career. Today, she’s the studio manager at MNYK Studios, a 3,000 square-foot studio used for audio and visual recordings and 800 square feet of event space on Station Street. Originally from Collegeville, Kristen went to West Chester University as a communications major with a passion for basketball and music. Eventually choosing the latter, she took her first great leap into the music industry by joining the university’s radio station. Next thing she knew, she was studying in Los Angeles for a semester gaining valuable music industry experience, ultimately leading her to her current position at MNYK Studios. Owned and built by Muhlenhaupt + Company, the studio was established from a noise cancelling room sitting unused in their building. Rather than converting it into a salad bar, they created a space for all kinds of creatives. “My favorite thing is when people come in with projects that are the love of their lives,” Kristen explained. “For me to be able to help them with that is the coolest thing.” Kristen is hoping to expand the event space so everyone can benefit 12
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from the experts and passionate atmosphere enveloping the studio. “The family vibe, especially in Manayunk — everyone here is willing to help each other out and everyone is ready to collaborate,” Kristen said. “We have really found that with every Manayunk business.” One of Kristen’s favorite memories is from a Sofar Sounds’ recording MNYK Studios hosted. “It was the first time I saw our space being used in such a way that felt close to me,” Kristen said. “My favorite thing to do is to go to shows and I had never been able to host them or be involved behind the scenes. The way that it filled the room and made everyone happy — from then on, I wanted to host events all of the time.” Anybody interested in the Philadelphia music scene can easily see the perks of Kristen’s job, focused around creating a safe, workable space for music, videos, podcasts — you name it and she has it covered. However, entertainment industry is a daunting one for both artists and management. As the only woman working in the studio, Kristen is excited about the forward movement we are seeing in the 21st century. “It’s less intimidating now more than ever because we’re seeing more CEOs and executives’ titles in general who are women getting promoted within music management companies,” Kristen explained. “Nonetheless, it can still be intimidating because of the narrative that has existed from day one. Especially in music, women have always been the ‘muse’ and never the artist.” When asked what she is most grateful for, besides her family, she replied, “There were so many opportunities that I didn’t let myself have when I was younger because I didn’t feel I deserved them or didn’t think I’m good enough to learn something new. I don’t have to have all the answers and that is usually how to find your next passion or great idea.”
Christine Ertz: Realtor at Keller Williams An energetic, driven, and exciting person to be around, one of Manayunk’s best realtors is Christine Ertz from Keller Williams on the My Philly House team. Originally an executive assistant and office manager, Christine brought her experience and organization skills along when she took the leap into the real estate business. “I love the idea of being my own boss, but it goes further than that because if you’re not self motivated, you’re not going to get anywhere in this industry,” Christine explained. “I’ve always been self-motivated and organized. I like to push people to their potential.” Although Christine has only been in the industry less than two years, her team’s success speaks for itself. Collectively, they did a total volume of $84.2 million in sales in 2019. “Every house I sell is so I can buy my dog more toys,” Christine laughed. Whether her clients are buying, selling, or just maintaining their space, Christine shares three best practices with them: keep it simple, hire a professional, and clean your house. In other words, don’t paint your walls green if you want to sell, hire a professional for any home improvement projects, and always keep a clean and tidy home. She stated proudly, aside from her loving husband and beloved rescue dog, her clients are her wakeup call — and she wouldn’t have it any other way. “When I see other people’s excitement or when I see the fire in my investor client’s eyes and their passion,” Christine explained. “When people are over the moon about seeing their homes and they can move on to that next chapter in their lives.” Christine can be found at her office at 4359 Main St., walking the street with her contagious smile, or showing her clients the wonderful Manayunk listings hot on the market. She has the inside information on all the great neighborhood properties and the inspiration for D.I.Y. and home renovations, which can all be found on her public Instagram page, @certzrealestate. Christine is a big believer in the Manayunk community and promoting all we have to offer here. “I try to share and give shout-outs to every other female business owner on the street on social media,” Christine said. “Even if that doesn’t mean going and buying each other’s products, I can share what she is doing on social media. It’s such an important tool.” “I want people to know that they can come to me for something,” she added. “I want to be a person in the community that they know I’m there if they need it. I don’t know what I can offer, but I’m here and I have an ear.”
Spring 2020 | manayunk.com 13
Kristen Kochenour Owner of Healthy Bites Nutrition Counseling Kristen Kochenour, MS, RD, LDN is the owner and operator of Healthy Bites Nutrition Counseling. She returned to school to become a certified dietitian after the sudden loss of a dear friend. It was then she realized, “Life is too short to not be doing what you love.” Kristen became a registered dietitian at Drexel University and previously earned an undergraduate degree in marketing from the University of Delaware. Both skills are being put to good use promoting her practice here in Manayunk since opening in March 2018. After working in hospitals and long-term care, she set out to create her outpatient practice with a proactive medicine approach. Growing her business and promoting awareness for dietitians are top priorities on Kristen’s list. “Knowing I am going to come in everyday and see clients and help them get excited and make progress is rewarding,” Kristen noted. Healthy Bites provides a unique experience to help people create a healthy lifestyle for themselves. Her clients’ needs range from weight loss, a boost in energy, and getting rid of pesky stomach pains. Not only does meeting with Kristen encourage her clients to reach their goals, but she also offers an Online Healthy Eating Program for continuing on the right path. “I created this program because my clients were running out of insurance visits or they couldn’t get covered at all without a certain diagnosis,” she explained. “I wanted to make it affordable. It’s a meal-planning software that helps create a plan based on the scripts that I give them. It works via a video conference call or they come to my office and we create goals that fall within their nutritional needs.” Kristen’s take on food trends is holistic and beneficial for long-term health. “[The food trends] are really just marketing from food companies — paying for research that shows different things,” she said. “My ideal for integrating a healthier diet is to find a balance and have realistic expectations.” There are no quick fixes to healthy living; and although it seems daunting, Kristen is there to help each of her clients find success in a healthy and enjoyable way. “Keep your goals simple and realistic,” she said. “If you’re trying to lose ‘X’ amount of pounds in ‘X’ amount of days, that’s too broad of a goal and it becomes impossible. You can make small changes every day.” Luckily, there are plenty of options for healthy eating right here in Manayunk. “Winnie’s all day breakfast is great,” Kristen said, mentioning that it helps her eat healthy and get her day started no matter the time of day. She also recommends Taqueria Feliz’s brussel sprout tacos and camarones ala diabla (shrimp tacos). “But still feel free to hit up Lucky’s Last Chance to get your favorite burger and tots — in moderation!” Kristen laughed. “Be kinder to one another, and it starts with being kind to yourself,” Kristen added. “Not having the positivity you need or the support is something I hear often from my clients. Loving yourself wherever you are at is the way to go. Finding happiness where you are will make you strong.”
manayunk.com | Spring 2020
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A WELCOME CHANGE OF SEASONS By Megan Douress Photography by Alexa Nahas Photography (alexanahas.com)
o matter how you look at it, winter tends to put us all in a slump. Let your wardrobe lighten up your mood! To celebrate the changing of the seasons, Manayunk’s most fashionable retailers put together looks to help you transition from winter to spring, from grabbing Sunday brunch with the girlfriends to heading out to your favorite cocktail bar with a loved one.
SUNDAY BRUNCH WITH FRIENDS Outfit Styled by Threads Winter Look: Jacket - Gia Jacket Sweater - Mara Sweater in “Teddy” Pants - Marled Jogger in “Black” Bag - Breakaway Bag (free monogramming at Threads) Sunglasses - Le Specs Bracelets - Mini Wrap Bracelets
Spring Look: Jacket - Gia Jacket T-shirt - Roman Top Jeans - Agolde Sophie Crop in “Hyper” Bag - Breakaway Bag (free monogramming at Threads) Sunglasses – “Le Specs” Bracelets - Mini Stretch Bracelet Wrap in “Turquoise”
“This look was inspired by the modern-day woman’s weekends. I like to incorporate pieces that can take you from every errand to brunch. The kind of woman who would wear this look has a lot on their plate but wants to look stylish, pulled together, and also very comfort-
able at the same time. The staple piece in this outfit is the Gia Jacket. For the winter look, I styled it with a really comfortable and warm brushed jogger, a cute little sweater, and I layered the lightweight Gia Jacket over it to give it some structure. For spring, it’s super easy to transition with a swap out of denim. I like a light wash denim and a simple patterned t-shirt. I chose this one that has a leopard print and it’s linen, so it’s perfect to layer with the Gia Jacket for chilly mornings. I love this look because anyone can wear it — all of the pieces are wardrobe staples. Everyone needs a lightweight jacket, and the Gia Jacket has a trench vibe, which is classic.” – Anna Purcell, owner of Threads Spring 2020 | manayunk.com 19
THE EVERYDAY WOMAN Outfit Styled by Vamp Boutique
Earrings – Celine Earrings Shoes – Diana Heeled Sandal
“Anyone can wear this look—from the college student to a mom going out for a lunch or a girls’ night – even to the hair salon! The way I transitioned our staple piece, the Lacey Top, from winter to spring is by switching up the accessories. For winter, I styled the Lacey Top with jewel tones in the earrings, bracelets, and leather bag. I added a suede bootie and paired it with a darker denim. For
Top – Lacey Top in “White” Jeans – Nola Mom Jeans Earrings – Small Tassel Earrings Bracelet - Lila Beaded Bracelet
Spring Look: Top – Lacey Top in “White” Jeans - Becky Dark Denim 20
manayunk.com | Spring 2020
spring, I just brought in a pop of bright color with florals on the bag and a nice strappy metallic shoe. I accessorized with some hot pink tassel earrings and a more mellow toned bracelet. This is a fun look — it brings a little bit of the 70s vibe to streetwear! I love that the Lacey Top can be worn in so many ways. You could wear it more casual with some kick sneakers and short denim shorts, or you can dress it up with a skirt and some heels.” – Teresa Davis, owner of Vamp Boutique
OFFICE HOURS TO HAPPY HOUR Outfit Styled by LILA Fashion International Winter Look: Dress - Burnt Orange Faux Suede Dress Sweater - Black Cashmere Batwing Sweater Vest - Black 100% Wool Vest Earrings - Sparkling Teardrop Earring
Spring Look: Dress – Burnt Orange Faux Suede Dress Top - Leopard + Lace Cami Pants - Black High-Waisted Tie Front Pant Earrings - Mother of Pearl Earring Bag - Nude Leather Circle Bag
“At LILA, we try to look for pieces that are versatile and can be worn year-round. We know when our customers come to us, they’re
looking for those types of investment pieces — they want their money to go a long way. They appreciate when we show them all the different ways the pieces can be styled — it opens them up to a world of experimentation. They learn that with just a single anchor piece, they can create a multitude of different looks and have fun in the process! Transitioning this look was so fun! For winter, we styled our anchor piece, the Burnt Orange Faux Suede Dress, as a dress. Because of the colder climate, we layered under it a cashmere turtleneck sweater to make the look cozy but still chic. I always love belting things – I think it adds a really nice finishing touch that pulls everything together and lends uniformity to a look. I also like that it can give more shapeless and unstructured garments a silhouette. A trend I’m loving right now is snakeskin. We incorporated the pattern with a knee-high boot, which gave the look a cool, edgy aesthetic and tied in well with the color story. For spring,
we styled the dress open as a kimono. Even though the material is a faux suede, it’s a super lightweight piece so it’s perfect for transitional weather. We rolled up the sleeves to make it a little more spring appropriate and paired it with a leopard cami and high-waisted pant. The outfit was styled with a heel, but you can absolutely wear it with a flat or sandal as the weather gets warmer. Our winter look can be styled for everyday as it is super comfortable and easy to recreate. We also love it for work, as it is both stylish and office appropriate. As for our spring look, it’s a really comfortable outfit you can live in on the weekends. We love the relaxed fit of the pants, the pop of leopard in the cami, and the kimono thrown on top to pull the look together. And of course, each of these pieces can be paired with so many other things in your closet – the possibilities are endless!” – Laura Anne Lamprou, co-owner of LILA Fashion International Spring 2020 | manayunk.com 21
DATE NIGHT Outfit Styled by Remix on Main Winter Look: Skirt – Missoni Skirt Top – Fiorucci Sweater Shoes - Stuart Weitzman Black Boots Bag - Chanel Black Bag
Spring Look: Skirt – Missoni Skirt Top – Helmut Lang Jean Jacket Shoes – Jimmy Choo Heels Bag – Gucci Bag 22
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“This look is inspired by young professional women and mothers. As a young mother of two, I always go for fashionable yet comfortable. I love this skirt because it’s a four-season piece. It’s colorful — it brings some brightness to winter. It’s very versatile, too. You can wear it with summer sandals, sneakers, heels, or booties to take you from the morning to the evening. I’m actually a very big supporter of skirts and dresses with sneakers!” – Ljupka Neducsin, co-owner of Remix on Main “Like Ljupka said, the skirt brings color to all four seasons. It’s so comfortable and made of silk. The sweater is very cozy and made of
100% cotton. The fabrics are great and make the look easy to transition from season to season. To transition the look from winter to spring, we paired it with a jean jacket because it’s one of those pieces that you can take from day to night and even spring to summer. Every piece in this look is a staple piece.” – Tanya Malinovska, co-owner of Remix on Main
COCKTAIL PARTY Outfit Styled by Nicole Miller – Manayunk Winter Look: Dress – Classic Lauren Ponte Sheath Dress in “Black” Jacket – Nicole Miller Black Leather Jacket Shoes – Dolce Vita Black Booties Hat – JDD Beret Bag - Nicole Miller Horoscope Crossbody
Spring Look: Dress – Classic Lauren Ponte Sheath Dress in “Black” Earrings - Gold Pearl Accent Earrings Shoes – Dolce Vita Patent Leather Pumps Bag - Nicole Miller Horoscope Crossbody
“Nicole is an amazing American designer. She really knows a woman’s body and designs dresses to go from day-to-evening designs that are season less, timeless, and ageless. Our featured dress is the black Classic Lauren Ponte Sheath Dress. The woman who would wear this is body-conscious and likes a great
fitted dress. It can easily go from day to evening as well as effortlessly dressed up or down. I actually own this dress in several colors. In the winter, I’ll wear it with boots, a leather jacket, or a wool sweater so it looks more like a skirt. In the spring, I change it up with my favorite sandal or a pump. It’s sleeveless, so I may pair it with a light jacket or cashmere wrap. The “Lauren” is also a great travel dress because it doesn’t wrinkle. I love that it can take a woman from New York or Philadelphia to LA. It’s priced amazingly for a designer dress.” – Mary Dougherty, owner of Nicole Miller - Manayunk Spring 2020 | manayunk.com 23
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manayunk.com | Spring 2020
Women of Manayunk By Megan Douress
Photography by JPG Photo & Video (jpgphotography.com)
Top from left: Anna Purcell (Threads), Laura Anne Lamprou (LILA), Heather Slawek (Awakenings Pole Fitness), Stephanie Stranieri (Allstate Insurance), Shaw Lewis (Expect Lace), Arielle Ashford (Unity Yoga) Middle from left: Meredith Gornick (Latitudes & Longitudes), Christine Ertz (Keller Williams), Melissa Gregory (Bourbon Blue), Jane Lipton (One Nickel Coworking), Joan Lutzow (Winnie’s Manayunk), Lisa Lamprou (LILA), Ljupka Neducsin (Remix on Main), Tanya Malinovska (Remix on Main) Bottom from left: Brandy Deieso (The Little Apple), Juliet Sabella (The Wall Fitness Studio/Liberty & Lace Bridal), Jessica Golden (Yoga on Main), Tara Sulimay Acosta (Sulimay’s Studio on Main), Teresa Davis (Vamp Boutique), Winnie Clowry (Winnie’s Manayunk), Moon Krapugthong (Chabaa Thai Bistro/Yanako) Spring 2020 | manayunk.com 25
The following women participated in this article: Tara Sulimay Acosta (Sulimay’s Studio on Main) Arielle Ashford (Unity Yoga) Susan Beard (Susan Beard Design Co) Lynda Berdin (Ilumine’ Gallery) Christa Campbell (Merge Dance Studio) Winnie Clowry (Winnie’s Manayunk) Teresa Davis (Vamp Boutique) Brandy Deieso (The Little Apple) Mary Dougherty (Nicole Miller) Christine Ertz (Keller Williams) Sasha Fedunchak (Vacay Beauty) Jessica Golden (Yoga on Main) Meredith Gornick (Latitudes & Longitudes) Melissa Gregory (Bourbon Blue) Laura Anne Lamprou (LILA) Lisa Lamprou (LILA) Shaw Lewis (Expect Lace) Jane Lipton (One Nickel Coworking) Joan Lutzow (Winnie’s Manayunk) Tanya Malinovska (Remix on Main) Patti Martelli (Martelli’s Men’s Grooming Salon) Ljupka Neducsin (Remix on Main) Anna Purcell (Threads) Juliet Sabella (The Wall Fitness Studio/Liberty & Lace Bridal) Heather Slawek (Awakenings Pole Fitness) Stephanie Stranieri (Allstate Insurance)
manayunk.com | Spring 2020
omen are making waves across the globe in 2020. Whether it’s because they’re winning championships, writing influential novels and songs, or running for office, they have represented a much needed change in modern history. This year, we’re celebrating the 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment. The City of Philadelphia has even changed their official slogan to “The City of Sisterly Love” to mark the occasion. Locally, women have represented a significant portion of the Manayunk business community since the Manayunk Development Corporation’s founding in the mid-80s. To celebrate the impact they’ve made on our district, we sat down with a few of Manayunk’s leading female entrepreneurs in honor of Women’s History Month.
What was your first job in your industry? Melissa: My family owned restaurants when I was growing up, so my first job in this industry was doing dishes at eight-years-old. Teresa: When I was 18, I worked in a clothing store on South Street. Tara: I started in my dad’s barbershop. Winnie: My first job in the industry was over 40 years ago. I was a waitress at a restaurant called The Yorktown Inn in Elkins Park. I lied about my age — you had to be 18 to serve alcohol and I was 16. So, I worked around all these 40-something-year-olds that were very “worldly” and I was in my junior year of high school. I never spoke much because I was afraid they would discover my true age and I would lose my job. A few years later, my father bought an Irish pub while I was in college. When I came home from college, I began working for him for many years. That’s where I fell in love with the industry. Stephanie: I was a title clerk at an auto tag agency. When I turned 18, they asked me to get my insurance license and I never went back. Christa: After graduating from college with a BA in Dance, I auditioned for and got a job dancing with Dance Kaleidoscope in Indianapolis, IN. I moved there to dance with them full-time. Susan: My first job was in TV. I was an associate producer. After that, I just decided to try and open my own studio in Manayunk. Brandy: I actually worked at Smith Brothers on Main Street. I think I was a senior in high school. That was my first job in retail in Manayunk!
Did you always know you wanted to be an entrepreneur? When did you come to the realization? Meredith: I knew that at some point in my life, I would hopefully end up being my own boss. I come from a long line of family that are entrepreneurs, from men’s clothing and tailoring, to a butcher. Julie: Honestly, when I was five-years-old. I would go to my grandmother’s store – she had a clothing store – and I would go there and play with the cash register. I loved that people would give her money for the clothing she was selling and it just stuck with me. I would have my sister pay me to paint her nails and that’s when I realized I would be my own boss some day! Jane: I became an entrepreneur when I was nine-years-old. When I was down the shore, I wanted a new bicycle. It was $99, which was a fortune a long time ago. I begged my grandfather for the money and he wouldn’t give it to me, but he showed up at the shore with a box of blow-up head cushions and he said, “Go out and sell these for 50 cents and let me know when you have enough for the bike.” I think I got to about $30 and he said, “Great job – go get the bike.” Lynda: In many ways, I’ve been an entrepreneur for as long as I can remember. When I was nine-years-old and living in Lapu-Lapu (a small town outside of Cebu in the Philippines), I convinced my mother to buy me some fruits. Some of these I arranged nicely in a big, flat basket and the others I used to make some juices that I sold to the basketball players who practiced just outside the gate in front of our home. Most of those guys liked flirting with my older sister and cousins. So basically, they’d buy my stuff just so they could have an excuse to come inside the gate and talk to them. I guess I saw that as a selling opportunity! Christa: I did not! Only after many years of dancing and teaching for others did I realize that I wanted to open my own studio and felt that I could bring a unique approach to it. Susan: Yes, I always knew. I was hired at a big company and on my first day I said to myself, “If I can make them money, I can make it on my own!” Christine: I got tired of making money for other people and making other people happy. That’s when I decided I wanted to work for myself. I wanted to motivate myself. I wanted to get out of it what I put into it. Laura Anne: I think for me, it was working my first job out of college and realizing that it didn’t make me happy. There was no purpose in what I was doing because I wanted to do something that made me truly happy and I felt like I couldn’t do that unless I was doing something for myself.
Being a female entrepreneur definitely has its challenges! What are some of those challenges and what motivates you to keep going? Sasha: Wow, where do I start!? The pressure of everything falling on you and being solely responsible to keep things going, the never-ending workdays, the loneliness from spending so much time working on and in the business, and making little time for “fun.” These are all challenges I’ve experienced over the last year. However, the thing that keeps me going is the community I have built of clients and other entrepreneurs. Mary: The challenges have been many. I’m motivated by my family, my friends, and the community our business serves as well as the people that have benefitted from our success, from charities to prior employees, to our customers. Shaw: The sacrifices – not having time to see my friends and family, all the weight I gained, all the designer clothes I’ve sowed! But mainly time away from friends and family. It’s been a rough year but it’ll pay off. Heather: I’m a single mom – I have two teenage daughters. Juggling their schedules, my schedule, my staff’s schedule, squeezing in some time for myself somewhere – the time management thing and making sure there’s some kind of balance. It is a priority and you have to figure it out or else you have nothing to give and your business will reflect that. Anna: It’s really owning the fact that you’re the only one that’s responsible for your business. If something’s not done, it’s on you. That’s a challenging thing to realize – only you are going to get your business where you want it to be and own that. It’s also a very rewarding feeling. Do you have any mentors that have helped you along the way? How did they help you? Meredith: My mom is my number one mentor. She comes with me for all the shows and gives me her opinion on things I’m looking to bring into the store. Also, there are a lot of women on Main Street who are mentors to me in their own ways, whether they realize it or not. They help me bounce ideas off of them to see if I should do something out of my comfort zone and bring it into the store. Lynda: My mother. She was an incredible businesswoman, even though she never had a formal education. While I went to and graduated from the University of Phoenix with a degree in business administration, I can still say that a lot of the things I’ve learned in the day-to-day operation of a business and the reality of owning and running your own business came from my mother. I’ve attributed my business success to her guidance. Spring 2020 | manayunk.com 27
Stephanie: My dad is an entrepreneur so he is my original mentor. He owns a business here and my sister owns a business here. Also, my boss from when I worked at Nationwide before I went to Allstate. It’s a very male-dominated industry and she really taught me something so valuable — how to interact with men in a professional setting, how to have your voice be heard. I wouldn’t be able to live my life without her. She taught me so much about building female relationships and how important they are. Winnie: I am one of those people that have always learned from everyone along the way! In addition, I am fortunate to own a business in a town on a street that I am surrounded by many great men and one super great female restaurateur. How fortunate to be able to pick up your phone and text a neighbor for a quick question on issues and struggles we come across weekly. One day, I was in the prep kitchen and there was no skilled chef in the house at the time. I had an emergency need for salmon fillets. I ran out my back door and ran in the front door of Bourbon Blue and asked Brendan McGrew if he would help me. Brendan walked right into my prep kitchen and filleted me a side of salmon. That’s what you call, “a good neighbor!” Brandy: When I first moved onto the street, I was closer neighbors to Norma from Gary Mann Jewelers and was actually really helpful to me. She was really encouraging me to take advantage of a lot of the programs that were offered to us as small business owners. Because of her, I did the Storefront Improvement Grant to take advantage of money that is out there instead of using my own. That’s something I would’ve never known about. Arielle: Julie was great! She gave us the lay of the land, the rundown, and introduced us to everyone. Brandy was also great. We had a wonderful welcome into a new community and have been able to talk to the different owners about what’s going on, especially Julie, when it comes to fitness. On a separate note, I have a national Facebook group where we talk about trends that are going on, so we try to make sure we’re up on those trends. Julie: I haven’t had any mentors in business but I have made it my goal to welcome all new businesses to Manayunk. I like to share ideas and kind of hold their hand a little bit, especially my fellow fitness people. We’re a small but very strong group. We go in and say, “Hi,” to the new businesses because we’ve all been there before. I remember what it was 28
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like being the new person in town and wish I had that kind of welcome when I first opened. I think it helps establish relationships and helps establish future partnerships! Melissa: I’ve worked in Manayunk for 20 years at two different places and when I came to Manayunk, it was more, “How do I make my piece of the pie bigger?” and now it’s evolved into, “How do we make a bigger pie so everyone can have a slice?” We literally have something in our office that says, “Unity and Community.” We always try to do whatever we can to support anyone on Main Street. I really like that – we’re doing our job! Why did you decide to open your small business in Manayunk? Ljupka: Manayunk, besides being the perfect location being 10 minutes from the city and 10 minutes from the Main Line, we are also continuing the family legacy. It’s important for my kids to know that Manayunk runs in our blood. Jessica: Yoga on Main has been in the community for 28 years. It’s a place for community, to come together, and to not just practice yoga but support each other in spirituality, growth, and personal development. I was already a part of that community so when the previous owner wanted to move on, it was a chance for me to step into a small business of entrepreneurship – not just for me because I work full-time – but to keep this community going. I consider myself the shepherdess. I keep it going to keep the sense of community going. I moved here 12 years ago and I just love it. It was the perfect opportunity at the right time. Tara: I really wasn’t looking to open another business but someone I knew who already worked on Main Street really hyped it up and said how wonderful it is. She got me to go in and do it! If it weren’t for her, I wouldn’t be here. Julie: There was a need for it and no one else had done it yet. I used to take spin classes at the gym but the times were so challenging for someone who had to be at work by 7:30 a.m. I felt very strongly that if I wanted a 5:00 a.m. class time, there had to be others that did, too! In what ways has the Manayunk business community – specifically those owned by women — supported you over the years? Melissa: I love nights when I see Christine and her husband come in for dinner. I love seeing Brandy, Lisa, Laura Anne, Jane, Julie, Meredith – everyone comes in for brunch. That’s one of my favorite parts, when you see other business owners come in and dine at your place.
Christine: And when they recognize you and you’re greeted with a hug every time! Heather: This lady right here, who owns Vamp! We go shopping there, my teenage daughters and I. She also refers people to the studio. So, it’s great to have other female entrepreneurs supporting each other. Tara: I have to give Teresa her credit because when I wanted to do a fashion show, I went to her and said, “Hey, want to do this thing?” and she was like, “OK, let’s do this!” Shaw: All of the retail ladies have talked me off the edge a few times, so I appreciate you! It’s a lot when you open a business by yourself and you think you can do everything by yourself. You have these meltdowns and you can look at someone and they can tell you’re having a meltdown! I think a lot of these women have been a huge support system to me. Christa: When I first opened back in 2012, many of the other local business owners reached out and were very supportive and welcoming. They have continued to reach out to collaborate over the years and have always been helpful in offering advice or wisdom. I also have had many fellow business owners either bring their children here to dance, dance here themselves, or both! Patti: I have received an outpouring of support from the business owners on Main Street. Some of them are already clients — from coming over to introduce themselves, to reaching out to remind me they are here for questions, concerns, or even just to talk. Some have even gone as far as to send clients they know in to get the Martelli’s hair experience, or they’ll bring their children in. How do you achieve work-life balance? Heather: I think it’s important to create boundaries. Even though we’re entrepreneurs and our businesses are extremely important, you have to create boundaries. You have to decide that you’re only going to take phone calls up until a certain time. If I have people calling me at six o’clock in the morning, I just have to say to myself, “I’m not open yet – they can leave a message!” Create those definitive boundaries between your personal life and your business. Christa: That is something I am continually trying to achieve. I just had my second child in November so how that balance looks changes every day right now! I am lucky enough to be able to be home with my children during the day as I work mostly nights. The bulk of my work actually gets done after they are asleep for the night.
Meredith: That was a hard one at the beginning of owning a business. I had to get comfortable with being able to leave the store for a day. My friends and family learned that they had to give me important dates way in advance to make sure I was able to make it. Having my tram of ladies who work for me makes it easy for me to be able to leave my “baby” in good hands. I met my husband on Main Street, which was very convenient. We’re able to spend time together when he helps me out in the store! Laura Anne: Lisa and I are sisters, and we own a business together. We see a lot of each other, and more so for me then for her because she has a family and a baby, I always say we should do this and we should do that. But by 11 o’clock at night, I have to recognize that every interaction — as business partners and siblings — the store dominates the conversation. But it’s hard being a small business because even when you’re not there, you’re there. Lisa: Let’s be honest, there really isn’t a work-life balance. I do have a kid and I do have a husband, but when you do what you love, you don’t have to balance it because LILA is life. My kid is in the store and I take meetings in my business. It is what it is and if you love what you do, at least for me, I don’t see it as a balance. What is one thing you wish you had known when you first opened your business? Susan: I wish I bought a building on Main Street 28 years ago — always listen to your mother! Teresa: I wish I would’ve known to network more when I first opened. The first couple years, I didn’t network as much as I should have. Since I’ve been doing it more in the last five years or so, it’s really helped my business a lot. Anna: I wish I would’ve known to always stick to my gut feeling and know that people will make suggestions but it is just that – a suggestion. I don’t always have to say, “Yes” to people. I think that’s something I’ve really grown into and now I only make the decisions that are going to be best for my business. I go with my gut more and I’m less of a people pleaser. Every day, I learn something new. It’s been a four-year crash course in a MBA. Give yourself grace to make mistakes. Jane: I wish that I had taken more time to learn standard best practices for business. I didn’t know taxes, how to write a business plan, how to manage my inventory and not get overwhelmed with extra inventory. Spring 2020 | manayunk.com 29
The single thing – the business plan – is a gamechanger. I’m forced to look over my business once a year from every angle. I wish I would’ve known to do that a long time ago because it makes a big difference. Laura Anne: I wish I knew what our customers wanted when we first opened. I thought we were catering to the New York powerful woman. When we first opened, we brought in two collections that were such a miss – nothing sold! I was like, “If we continue down this path, we’re going to have to close.” We were so off. We kind of got to know the neighborhood better and got a better feel for what resonated with Philadelphia. There was a serious learning curve and now it’s so much easier. We didn’t know when to bring in collections, when to do the buying, how to do the accounting – we started from zero. It’s amazing to look back and see how far we’ve come and how much the business has matured over the years. Mary: Everything works out if you stay focused, follow your instincts, treat people with respect, and surround yourself with great people, friends, and family! Sasha: I knew this at the time, and still believe it, but on many days it was hard: treating the customer with the utmost reverence and respect makes a huge difference. Even though we are entrepreneurs or store owners, we’re also human and we have bad days. My biggest regrets in my business is when those handful of bad days impacted my ability to deliver exceptional customer service. I’ve definitely learned how to be more diplomatic, calm, and collected — even on tough days — to make sure my customers are beyond pleased with every interaction they have with me in the store. Julie: That my studio members would become like family. I am so incredibly grateful for every single person that comes through the doors every day. It’s emotional, in a way. I’ve gotten to share so many wonderful memories as well as help support those who need a shoulder to cry on — and vice versa! I’ve had so many days where I just had to put on a smile and my clients just knew something was off and wanted to help me feel better. What’s your biggest piece of advice for female entrepreneurs who are hoping to open their own small business in Manayunk? Sasha: Make connections quickly — everyone is so willing to help one another. Don’t try to do it all on your own. Instead, ask for help and be willing to accept it! 30
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Arielle: Step one, talk to Brandy. Step two, get yourself a good partner. I’m definitely more of the creative one and Robert is more of the backend person. If you have both, that’s awesome. Know where your blindspots or your weaknesses are and fill in those blanks with a partner that will compliment you. Anna: I think it’s really good to know your strong spots and know to ask for help with your weak spots. Ask others for their opinions but take them with a grain of salt. Brandy: Join the Manayunk Development Corporation. Really, it is valuable. You may ask, “Why am I spending money and what am I getting for it?” but it really does put you in the know, it gets you on social media, you’re the first ones to know events and you’re invited to participate. I think we’re opening it up to other surrounding businesses off of Main Street because we realize that a rising tide floats all boats — we want everyone to participate. It helps to be a part of a smaller community and maybe have a say in what happens here. Mary: Be passionate, be kind not only to others but yourself, and surround yourself with people who will invest in your success. What do you think the future holds for women-owned and operated small businesses in Manayunk? Heather: We’re in 2020 and we’re heading into the age of Aquarius, which is all about female empowerment. The stars are aligning and we’re going to take over the world! I know my business in particular is about female empowerment but the power of women is in full force starting this year and into next. I see a stronger representation of women in business, especially in Manayunk. Patti: I feel like Manayunk is growing as a whole. From the new and established businesses to the new and newly renovated housing in the area, we are going to see big changes for this new decade in Manayunk — a town that I’m proud to have been born and raised in! Christa: I think the number of women-owned businesses will continue to grow here in Manayunk and that those women will continue to be involved in the community and help to shape it moving forward. Christine: The better we all do, the better the individuals do. We have to support each other. Mary: There is no limit to what they can achieve! Melissa: If we all stick together like this, the sky’s the limit.
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Putting It All on the Table Highlighting five of Manayunkâ€™s leading ladies working behind the scenes of our neighborhood restaurants. By Leo Dillinger Photography by JPG Photo & Video (jpgphotography.com) and TERRYLEAHYFILMS (terryleahyfilms.com)
omen play an integral role in many Manayunk restaurants. From serving and bartending to curating events and managing the floor, they ensure their customers have memorable experiences while showcasing their passion through their work. They bring years of experience to the table. They pay attention to the fine details in their field while motivating their staff and treating their patrons like family. The women of Manayunk listed here go above and beyond to uphold their respective restaurantsâ€™ reputations.
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Adrienne Maitland-Laguda (Manayunk Tavern) If you’ve stopped into Manayunk Tavern over the last 11 years, chances are you’ve seen Adrienne behind the bar or waiting tables. In 2008, she moved to Manayunk and got a job working full-time at Zesty’s, but the tavern soon became her post-shift hangout with her coworkers. After a few months, she approached owners Joe Keough and Jeff Bender to see if they had any extra shifts available. They started her off working Saturday and Sunday brunches and was offered a full-time position shortly after. One of the perks of Adrienne’s job is getting to work side-by-side with her husband, Joe Laguda, whom she first met while working at Zesty’s. Adrienne laughs at how some longtime regulars still don’t realize they are married as they work side-by-side in such a familial manner. She also loves her job flexibility that’s allowed her to travel and continue to pursue her 30+ year passion directing and choreographing musical theatre. “The guys have been great. Theater has always been a part of my life. They would let me leave for a month and a half at a time,” Adrienne said. “I would bounce to New York, New England, or Maui to work on a show and come back to work whatever shifts were available.” Working long days has become an industry standard, but no matter the circumstances, Adrienne continues to radiate positivity among her customers and coworkers. She won’t hesitate to converse with her regulars or welcome newcomers to the neighborhood, giving them an overview of all that Manayunk has to offer. “I do feel there are days that I can get burned out and it’s harder to get past that eight-hour mark into the 10 and 12 hour day,” Adrienne said. “I think when some of those days happen, I just push through and have a laugh to try and lighten the mood.” Adrienne’s advice for those entering the industry is to show strength through sweetness in order to get what you need accomplished and avoid the traps of hotheadedness that are so easy to fall into. “It is just food and beverage. It’s not a lifeand-death job,” Adrienne said. “There are so many things we all get so lost in and we forget about what’s important. Yes, I’m going to be upset if I give you bad service, but I’m not going to take it home with me and let it keep me up all night. There’s got to be some acknowledgement that you always did your best during the time you’re there.” Spring 2020 | manayunk.com 35
DINE Eun-Jin “EJ” Ahn (U.S. Hotel, Bernie’s Manayunk) EJ has garnered plenty of experience working both the front and back of house over 11 years in the industry. As General Manager at U.S. Hotel and its new sister restaurant, Bernie’s Manayunk, she takes the skills she’s accumulated working in the kitchen and applies them to every facet of her role. “I pride myself on being an efficient multi-tasker because of the years I spent on the line trying to juggle up to six different tickets at one time on my station while keeping track of somebody else’s and matching that time,” EJ said. “I feel like that has contributed to how I operate as a G.M. I try to juggle 15 things at one time and make sure that all 15 know they are a priority.” While the company she represents may be new to Main Street, EJ is no stranger to the neighborhood. In 2013, she came to Manayunk to help Chef Moon Krapugthong manage Chabaa Thai Bistro and Yanako. After working at other restaurants, she found her way back to manage The Spicy Belly in 2016. Last year, she returned once again to oversee U.S. Hotel and prepare to welcome Bernie’s Manayunk in March 2020. Bernie’s will be the sixth restaurant EJ has opened over her career. “Running a restaurant that seats 100+ people requires an operation that’s like a symphony,” EJ said. “Everybody has to come in at the right time and play at the right volume and skill. For me, the challenge is when somebody is out of tune or going too fast or they’re late, and making sure it doesn’t affect the general goal of the symphony. By either addressing the situation or letting it play itself out, the challenge is to make sure we’re playing the right tune every day that compliments everybody’s strong suits. It’s a team mentality.” EJ has made sure to surround herself with a staff that cares, giving them an environment to showcase their strengths, learn new things, and improve on their weaknesses. “I like to say that I don’t hire bartenders, servers, or line cooks. I hire people who have lives, who are making steps to move forward and make a difference in their lives,” EJ said. “The way I operate, I look at the staff and their livelihood and that contributes to my growth. I still have a lot to learn and grow and be challenged on. Being able to impact their lives as their boss, I feel like that, at the end of every day, is the reason why I’m in this industry. The hospitality industry doesn’t get enough credit for the blood, sweat, and tears that a lot of staff goes through to earn their money or make a mark or get promoted.” 36
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Maureen Zimmermann (Jake’s & Cooper’s Wine Bar) After 18 years in hotel management, Maureen felt it was time for a change. In 2011, she walked down to Jake’s & Cooper’s Wine Bar to ask for a serving job and has become a vital part of the restaurant ever since. “When I first started here, I really fell in love with the concept of the restaurant,” Maureen said. “Everything we have to offer, we make ourselves. We’re constantly trying to improve and it’s something that we look at all the time. I can attest to what Bruce [Cooper] has done. He picked his lane 33 years ago and said, ‘This is what I’m going to be.’ And he’s stayed in that lane. I believe in this restaurant and I believe in what we’re producing from our kitchen.” After those initial years building relationships with the regulars, Maureen’s role morphed into something more. She recalls hearing the news of the infamous water main break at the restaurant back in 2016. “My first call was to Bruce and my next thought was, ‘Who was going to talk to the reservations that are booked to say that there’s a problem?’” Maureen said. “I ran down to the restaurant and started calling people to let them know. It was such a large project and it was just Bruce, myself, and maybe two or three other people. Sometimes, it was just Bruce and I sitting in the office upstairs slowly putting it all together until we opened. It was a nice moment where we really got to rely on each other.” Maureen’s responsibilities range from accounting to placing orders to staff scheduling. She encourages her staff to not only stay educated on their menu, but to look at the philosophy of the restaurant as a whole and believe in it. Her goal every night is to “make it work” by preparing for any situation thrown her way and making the right decisions. “I try to tell my staff that each day is a new day,” Maureen said. “You come in, you do a couple of things and get set up. Then you have a great service, you interact with your guests, you make them happy, and then you wrap it up and go home. In the service industry, there is always going to be a problem. You solve one issue and then another one pops up. You just need to be able to roll with the punches.”
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DINE Melissa Gregory (Bourbon Blue) Working in restaurants her entire life, Mel has washed dishes, made salads, ran events, bartended, waited tables...you name it, she has probably done it. In the last 20 years, she’s spent her time in Manayunk. While working at the Manayunk Brewery in 2007, she began a relationship with Brendan McGrew, the General Manager of Bourbon Blue at the time. The following year, Brendan had the opportunity to purchase the business. “One thing snowballed into another,” Mel said. “He came home one day and everyone knows the story of him asking me if I would like a ring or a restaurant. It’s really different working from an ownership side to where it becomes yours. I’ve always taken pride in my work and put in the time, but it gets real. It’s up to you to make sure everything runs as smoothly as possible.” Mel jokes that the only typical thing about her day is that it ranges from 10 to 16 hours long. At any given hour, you’ll find her prepping for a catering gig, setting up for events, working in the office, managing the floor, holding down the bar, or running food. Although the restaurant has been a personal investment for more than 12 years, Mel finds her motivation and inspiration by continuously building relationships with her guests. Not only does she know her regulars’ names and what they drink, she can tell you the names of their kids and pets, their jobs, where they live, and when they’re taking a vacation. “We have so many familiar faces here,” Mel said. “With us being a popular date spot, I’ve watched couples propose, then host their engagement party, and then the rehearsal dinner. The next thing you know, it’s a baby shower and a christening celebration. I feel like we’ve really grown up with these families that have been coming in week after week and year after year. To me, that is the best part.” Over the years, Mel has learned the service industry is anything but glamorous. But with the proper mindset, you can still feel a sense of accomplishment. “You have to have really thick skin and an above average work ethic. If you don’t, you won’t last very long,” Mel said. “It’s long days and long hours and lots of different personalities to balance. But it’s still super rewarding at the end of the day, even those extra challenging ones”
manayunk.com | Spring 2020
Paris Rose-Antonogiannis (Manayunk Brewery & Restaurant) For Paris, the Manayunk Brewery has always felt like home. Over the last 19 years, she has worked on and off at her family’s business, spending the last five in her position as Sales & Banquet Manager. Overseeing all onsite events from weddings and birthdays to rehearsal dinners and corporate events, she motivates her employees to give her guests a day to remember. “My biggest thing is surrounding myself with a good staff that cares as much as I do to make sure they’re taking care of the client,” Paris said. “I want them to see it through my eyes. I try to train them so they see what I see, whether a linen is crooked or a light bulb is out.” Depending on the time of year, Paris organizes five to ten events per week on average. She’s your go-to person from the moment you first take a tour of the space to the final execution of the event, making sure everything runs smoothly and that her guests are happy. She treats every party that comes in as if it was her own family. Out of all the types of events she hosts, weddings are her favorite. The moment she sees a new bride walking off beaming, she’s assured her team did a good job. “You have to have a passion for it,” Paris said. “If people see that you have a passion for it and people see that you’re willing to work with the team, they want to work for you. They want to be a part of what you’re doing.” Paris attributes much of the brewery’s success to the strong, female managerial staff that she works with. She said it’s inspiring for a younger generation of women to see people like their banquet chef, Jessica, their floor manager Tracie, and their controller, Kristen, in positions of power. While it might not always be easy having her father, Mike Rose, as her boss, she couldn’t imagine working anywhere else or with anyone else. “Working for a family business, you always want to strive to do the best you can because it’s personal. It’s not just working for someone,” Paris said. “I care about the details. I want this place to succeed. The positive feedback motivates me. I have a larger investment in this establishment.”
Spring 2020 | manayunk.com 39
CANAL LOUNGE AT
BOURBON BLUE 2 Rector Street
The Canal Lounge is Manayunk’s premier event space. We can accomidate groups of up to 125 people, for any and every event. For more information, contact our event coordinator, Melissa, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
manayunk.com | Spring 2020
Manayunk 4421 Main St, Phila 19127 (215) 509-6005
Queen Village 848 S 2nd St, Phila 19147 (267) 519-2080
artistic burgers * craft beers * serious Brunch
How Manayunk’s very own SOWN has helped Philadelphia’s older adults for 35 years. By Samanta Costa Photography by Susan Beard Design (susanbearddesign.com) and courtesy of S.O.W.N.
(The name and details used in this anecdote are completely fictional and represent an example of the common story we are seeing in Philadelphia today.) It’s a tale many of us have heard before. “Peggy” retired from her crossing guard job and began thinking about joining her local senior center to get more involved with her community while enjoying her retirement. But it all comes to a screeching halt when the Department of Human Services calls to say her daughter abandoned her granddaughter. Within 24 hours, she has to decide if she wants to accept guardianship or allow her granddaughter to be placed into foster care. Naturally, she wants to take care of her grandchild, but with it comes challenges. The child has probably been neglected up to this point. She might have to be enrolled in school. Meanwhile, Peggy is faced with overwhelming emotions about her own adult child who abandoned her 44
manayunk.com | Spring 2020
grandchild. She thought she did an OK job raising her daughter, but the drug addiction won out in this case. She’s faced with new decisions, responsibilities and has to come to terms that her life is now changed forever. Where does she go? Who does she turn to? Someone at the Department of Human Services suggests she contact the Supportive Older Women’s Network (SOWN). She makes the call and reaches out for help. SOWN’s Founding Story SOWN was established with a $300 donation in 1984 by Executive Director and Founder, Merle Drake, MSS, LCSW, who was just 27 at the time. She never thought it would become a lifelong commitment, according to the organization’s founding story video. At the time, she interned at a senior center, where she noticed that many, if not all, of the women who came for bingo or a meal did not know each other’s names. There was an overwhelming sense of isolation, grief, and fear.
“We support older women in ways that strengthen their ability to persevere with supports that restore their dignity, self respect, and value, in a society that sadly and mistakenly treats them as invisible,” Merle says in the video. Marypat Tracy, MSW, LCSW, Acting Executive Director and Director of Programs, got started with SOWN more than 20 years ago. She has a master’s in social work with a specialty in gerontology. You could say aging is her passion. The concept that older women should not age alone, and that they need people on this journey is what drew her to join SOWN. “Right now with the opioid crisis, there is unfortunately a growing group of people who, for the most part, never thought they would be involved in any service organization. And then bam, one day the need is there. They don’t reflect all of our folks, but reflect a certain slice of them,” Marypat said. These are women who thought their retirement might be filled with going on trips to Atlantic City, but instead they’re faced with school dropoffs while juggling their own physical health issues, Marypat explained. What Does the Path to Support Look Like? The staff at SOWN walk women through the journey of aging, like the example of “Peggy,” a grandmother who needs resources. Often times, they will start with one-on-one counseling, or ask “Peggy” if she would like to be part of a group to learn how other grandmothers are dealing with raising children for a second time. Other older women might learn of SOWN through their place of worship, senior center, health center, or library. The path might start with a support group so they do not feel alone in their situation, Marypat said. This is where the first step of healing begins. People like “Peggy” learn what to do with their feelings about their daughter, learn what resources are available, what to do legally about their granddaughter, or find out how to navigate elementary schools. It’s a place where she can vent. After all, she thought she was retiring. People impacted by SOWN realize that becoming part of this community means that someone else finally “gets it,” and understands their journey. They might say, “I don’t have to feel ashamed anymore,” or “someone is there to listen to me,” and, “Someone is going to be there to give me advice,” Marypat said. Programs SOWN holds 1,060 support groups each year in 25 locations with completely free services. The organization estimates they reach about 800 women and about 500 of them are impacted by SOWN’s outreach services each year. “We are gathering older women in natural places where they were meeting, such as libraries, church basements, and senior centers,” Marypat said. “We are bringing them together and training peers to facilitate support groups. It’s not just about the services, but empowering the women within the group to be leaders. And that’s a really powerful piece of it.” GrandFamily Resource Center This program was developed in 2006 to offer a lifeline to grandparents raising grandchildren in Philadelphia. People benefit from individual
counseling, group counseling, information and referrals to other resources, parenting education, opportunities to mentor other grandparent caregivers, advocacy, and access to SOWN’s Philly Families Eat Smart program . The results speak for themselves. All of the grandchildren involved in SOWN’s GrandFamily Resource Center continue to live with their grandparents, with no run-ins with the juvenile justice system or adolescent pregnancies. The program has also helped to ensure that all children involved don’t just stay in school and attend regularly, but 100 percent of high school seniors are on track to graduate on time. Counseling for Homebound Adults: Teleconference Support Groups SOWN is the only Pennsylvania provider of teleconferencing mental health services for older adults. Older adults who can’t get to and from support groups can connect by calling-in to their weekly group, which is facilitated by a licensed clinical social worker. The need for these services came about roughly 25 years ago. There are typically five to six women in any given group call, and it provides a sense of anonymity for those who are afraid to speak in-person about disabilities they may have. People often step away from the call with a sense of empowerment thanks to not only the social worker, but their peers. Philly Families Eat Smart SOWN developed the Philly Families Eat Smart program in 2012. It focuses on health, wellness and physical fitness of grandparent-led families. Services include education programs that teach healthy cooking tips and the role of emotions and food, access to fresh produce, fitness events, and access to computers to find local markets with healthy food options. Parkinson’s Care Partners Support Groups SOWN works with The Parkinson Council and Penn Medicine to provide this support program to older women and men caring for family members with Parkinson’s disease. Often times, it’s their spouse. The group, started in 2015, allows caregivers to connect with others who are living a similar lifestyle. Peer validation and support is combined with professionally led discussions on reducing stress and other tips. It’s just another lifeline that helps elders cope with being a caregiver. What’s Next for SOWN? The evolving role of a caregiver means that supportive programs must adapt, too. This year, SOWN is rolling out their newest program, Philly Families Read Together. The literacy program seeks to improve literacy skills for children ages 3 to 8, as well as the grandparents raising them. People seeking these services will have access in local libraries, daycares, and health centers. Children’s literacy will focus on making sure children are up to speed on reading and using media for learning. For grandparents, digital literacy is one of the bigger issues that people face when raising grandchildren. Many grandparents still expect to see a physical report card, without understanding that they have to log-on to the school’s website to access their grandchild’s grades, homework, and more. SOWN is aiming to eliminate that literacy roadblock by teaching them how to navigate computers and tablets. To learn more about SOWN, volunteer, or donate, go to SOWN.org. Spring 2020 | manayunk.com 45
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NOW OPEN By Meghan Sack Martelli’s Men’s Grooming Salon (4352 Main Street) The newest male grooming salon on Main Street has opened up! Owner, Patti Martelli, can fix you up with a new look for 2020, including a haircut, beard trim, hair coloring, and eyebrow waxing. Super easy booking can be found on their website, martellismensalon.com.
Taps and Bourbon on Terrace (177 Markle Street) Check out the cool new bar in Manayunk featuring a high tech, self-service craft beer system and wide selection of bourbon. With delicious fare, including Philly classics like Italian hoagies, this neighborhood corner spot makes for a great hangout to bring your friends. Yoga on Main (4227 Main Street) Dive into your inner fire at Yoga on Main! If you’re looking for a soothing experience that engages your mind and body, look no further than their new yoga studio. This healing space also offers certifications in yoga and ayurveda as well as wellness workshops for both the practiced yogi and beginners.
Verilife Medical Marijuana Dispensary (4026 Main Street) Whether you’re seeking relief or relaxation, focus or fun, there’s a path to safe, informed marijuana use for you at Verilife Marijuana Dispensary! Stop in their new location to experience the warm, welcoming, and supportive guidance of the Verilife community so you can confidently choose the marijuana products that fit your lifestyle. 50
manayunk.com | Spring 2020
Mi ‘N Tea (177 Markle Street) Opening in April, this new bubble tea and banh mi sandwich shop on Main Street can set you up for many lunches to come! If you’ve not had the popular Vietnamese style sandwich yet, now’s your chance. Don’t forget to wash it all down with a refreshing glass of bubble tea!
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RIGHT ON THE WATER WAY OUT OF THE ORDINARY Life at The Isle brings waterfront living to Manayunk. Life at The Isle brings waterfront living to Manayunk. These brand new apartments feature upscale These brand new apartments feature upscale amenities and offer everything you want to fit amenities and offer everything you want to fit your lifestyle. Enjoy scenic water views from your your lifestyle. Enjoy scenic water views from your apartment or use the private resident pedestrian apartment or use the private resident pedestrian bridge to hop over to Main Street to dine at your bridge to hop over to Main Street to dine at your favorite local restaurant or try one of Manayunk’s own favorite local restaurant or try one of Manayunk’s own brews from the Manayunk Brewing Company. Whether brews from the Manayunk Brewing Company. Whether you want to work up a sweat in the state of the art you want to work a sweat in thethe state of the art fitness center or goupfor a jog along canal, there’s fitness center go for for a jog alongfans. the Located canal, there’s no shortage of or options fitness in the noheart shortage of options for fitness fans. Located in the of Manayunk, you have easy access to nearby heart of Manayunk, you have nearby destinations like Center Cityeasy and access King of to Prussia. destinations like Center City and King of Prussia.
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