Page 1

Vol. 1, No. 5

September 2018

eastfallsnow.com • FREE

Blue ribbon committee aims for master traffic plan by John T. Gillespie


vale Avs. and one on Kelly Drive. DeLissio agreed to convene the gathering following a meeting with EFCC and Town Watch leaders. “While epidemic might be too strong, the frequency of these occurrences has reached a point that requires more than promises or piecemeal responses,” EFCC wrote to DeLissio, Deputy Streets Commissioner Richard Montanez, Streets Engineer David Dlugosz, City Councilman Curtis Jones and PennDOT District 6 Director Bruce Masi. “East Falls wants a comprehensive traffic plan that slows traffic throughout the neighborhood with physical restraints and warnings, such as raised crosswalks, choke points, easily installed rubberized speed cushions, elec-

tronic speed signs, skid resistant surfacing and other steps,“ the EFCC letter said. As a start, the letter said, planners could address:

post-Labor Day meeting is being scheduled for political, civic, transportation, and city Vision • The 3900 block of Henry Zero officials to enlist support Av. The curvature and blind for the concept of a master nature of this section makes it traffic plan for East Falls. especially vulnerable to crashThe meeting will be cones. Drivers, especially speedvened by state Rep. Pam ers, have very little margin DeLissio (D-194) at the for error. request of the East Falls Community Council. If par• Midvale Av. from Ridge to ticipants agree to move ahead Henry. This heavily congestwith such a plan, the pubic ed stretch needs to be examwill be asked to comment as ined for speed, and restraints the plan evolves. installed. The fashioning of a plan will be left to experts in the • The Ridge Av. corridor. Philadelphia Streets DepartIn place of the current crosswalks, often ignored, the Jamie Woods gets fire-fighting tips from Lt. Kenneth Legions of Engine 35 in ment and the Pennsylvania EFCC is suggesting raised East Falls at the EF Town Watch’s annual National Night Out celebration, August 7. Department of Transportation, with input from EFCC’s More photos on page 7. (Continued on page 4) traffic committee and representatives of Vision Zero, the city’s ongoing plan to adapt its streets to all users: cars, pedestrians, commercial vehicles and bikers. (Note change of date and location) Proposals for the meeting 7 p.m. Wed. Sept 12 grew out of requests by the Zoning Committee members he East Falls Community Downs Hall Auditorium, Jefferson U. East Falls Community CounCouncil’s Zoning Commit- and other attendees voiced con- cil following the latest rash of Agenda to include election of officers. cern about a proposed wall tee held an Aug. 15th More information: eastfallscommunity.org accidents in the 3900 block of fronting on Kelly Dr. to shield meeting to focus on two major Henry Av., at Henry and Middevelopments, each at opposite parking and utilities. It would ends of the community. run west from a height of eight feet at Calumet St. and Kelly One project is developer David Grasso’s five-story apart- Dr. to a height of 16 feet at the end of the property. The conment house on the former sensus of Zoning Committee Rivage Ballroom site lined by efinitely mark your calendar for the East Falls featuring the neighborhood’s leadmembers and others at the Ridge Av., Calumet St. and biggest day-long event ever in East ing restaurants – In Riva, Le Bus East Falls, Kelly Dr. – a proposed 142-unit meeting in the DEC Center on Falls. Slices Pizzeria, Golden Crust Pizza, Foghorn, building that will include the Jefferson University camFallser Fest 2018 is set for Saturday, Sept. MILO, Trolley Car Café, East Falls Beer Garpus was that the design and 10,000 feet of retail space. 29 in the parking lot under the Twin Bridges. den, Murphy’s Irish Saloon, Wissahickon height of the wall appeared Grasso’s original plans for Sponsored by the East Falls Community Brewing Co. and more being added at press unnecessarily large and the long-vacant site were Council and the East Falls Development time. unfriendly to the community. approved by the EFCC nearly Corp., the day will unfold in two parts: Tickets for the evening festivities – includGrasso’s architects pledged to three years ago, when he pro• First, a free family party from 11 am to 2 ing dancing to the Worldtown Soundsystem, posed a six-story building with consider other design and pm, with games for the kids, music, a fire DJ Kevin Kong and Fallser Karaoke by Sean green alternatives. 200 units. His scaled-down engine to climb on and the vendors of the East MaGuire, -- are $20 in advance at Concerns about increased plans call for 118 parking Falls Famers Market. Come even earlier as www.fallserfest.com, and $25 at the event. spaces and wood frame contraffic, too, were voiced, as the the Farmers Market gets underway at 10 am. For vending and sponsorship opportunities, struction compared to the steel area typically is jammed at • Then, from 7 to 11 pm the adults take call 215-848-8084. he envisioned in his original (Continued on page 4) plan. over. Enjoy dancing, karaoke, and a Taste of

Zoning gets updates on Grasso, Scotts Ln. projects

EFCC General Membership Meeting


Sept. 29: Fallser Fest 2018


Clothing designer opens on Ridge Av. by John T. Gillespie


n the fickle world of fashion, building an enduring brand is a goal few aspirants reach. Chanel popularized the woman’s suit, Halston the pill box hat, Kate Spade the everyday handbag, and Liz Claiborne the affordable outfit

for the working woman. They lasted because each filled a niche or a need, real or perceived, that brought them dominance in an ever--changing market. Some, like Chanel, also anticipated the shifting culture in women’s clothing. Before Chanel, (Continued on page 8)

Mary Alice Duff with items from her collection at 4056 Ridge Av.

News: editor@eastfallsnow.com • To advertise: ads@eastfallsnow.com • Opinion: letters@eastfallsnow.com • Questions: info@eastfallsnow.com


September 2018

East Falls NOW

Your September 2018 East Falls NOW Calendar Falls of the Schuylkill Library Hours: Mon. & Wed., 12-8 pm; Tues. & Thurs., 10 am-6 pm; Fri., 10 am-5 pm; Closed Sat. & Sun and Labor Day. LEAP, the Free Library’s drop-in after school program, offers homework assistance, computer literacy and library skills for students in grades K–12, along with daily literacy enrichment activities for elementary school students. This program takes place every Monday through Thursday from 3 to 5:30 pm.

1 Saturday

10 am to 2 pm: EF Farmers Market under the Twin Bridges, rain or shine.

11 Tuesday

3 Monday

10 to 11 am: Fall series of onehour EF Village morning yoga begins, through Dec. 18, at Memorial Church of the Good Shepherd, 3820 The Oak Rd. See EF Village story, Pg 3.

4 Tuesday

10:15 am: Music and Movement Time for babies and toddlers. See Sept. 4.

A happy and safe Labor Day to all of our East Falls NOW readers!

10:15 am: Music and Movement Time at the Library. Babies and toddlers will enjoy a parent-led music and dance story time. Children will play maracas, shake pom-poms, dance and listen to music and dance-themed books. Come tire out your little ones and meet local parents. Groups and daycares should call the library to set up your own special visits.

6 Thursday

9:30 am: EF Village neighborhood walk; meet at the Library garden.

1 to 3 pm: Stop by the Library to have your photo taken for SEPTA’s Key Photo ID; seniors can bring their Medicare card to have it laminated by EF Village.

7 pm: EFCC General Membership meeting; election of officers, Downs Hall Auditorium, Jefferson University (driveway off of School House Ln.)

13 Thursday

9:30 pm: EF Village neighborhood walk; meet at the Library garden.

10 am: Falls Bridge Flea Market. See page 4.

2 to 3 pm: Falls series of EF weekly EF Village afternoon yoga begins, through Dec. 20 at Memorisl Church of the Good Shepherd. See EF Village story, Pg. 3



Dr. Hyosun Christine Kim D.M.D., FICOI 3722-24 Midvale Ave. Philadelphia, PA 19129

18 Tuesday

15 Saturday

10:15 am: Music and Movement Time for babies and toddlers. See Sept. 4.

8 pm: Old Academy Players open their 2018-19 season with A Raisin in the Sun.

10 am to 2 pm: EF Farmers Market under the Twin Bridges, rain or shine. 10 am: EF Historical Society Walking Tour; “Henry W. Brown, His House, and The Oak Road.” Meet at SW corner School House Ln. and The Oak Rd. $10 members, $15 non-members. Rain date

16 12 Wednesday September 8 pm: Old Academy Players A

8 Saturday

10 am to 2 pm: EF Farmers Market under the Twin Bridges, rain or shine.

14 Friday

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Raisin in the sun.

16 Sunday

2 pm: Old Academy Players, A Raisin in the Sun.

17 Monday 4:15 pm: Read with a Therapy

Dog at the Library. School age students are invited to come read with Wally or Orchid, certified therapy dogs, and share a new book or an old favorite in a judgment-free space.

10 am: EF Village morning yoga (See Sept. 11.)

20 Thursday

9:30 am: EF Village neighborhood walk; meet at the Library garden. 2 to 3 pm: EF Village afternoon yoga (See Sept. 13.)

21 Friday

8 pm: Old Academy Players A Raisin in the Sun.

22 Saturday

10 am to 2 pm: EF Farmers Market under the Twin Bridges, rain or shine. 8 pm: Old Academy Players A Raisin in the Sun.

23 Sunday

2 pm: Old Academy Players, A Raisin in the Sun.

East Falls Historic Old Academy Players presents

4:15 pm: Read with a Therapy Dog at the Library. School age students are invited to come read with Wally or Orchid, certified therapy dogs, and share a new book or an old favorite in a judgment-free space.

25 Tuesday

10 am: EF Village morning yoga (See Sept. 11.) 10:15 am: Music and Movement Time for babies and toddlers. (See Sept. 4.)

26 Wednesday

6:30 PM: EF Village free CPR training at the Library; register at info@eastfallsvillage.org.

27 Thursday

9:30 am: EF Village neighborhood walk; meet at the Library garden. 2 to 3 pm: EF Village afternoon yoga (See Sept. 13).

28 Friday

1 to 3 pm: EF Village Friday Matinee at the Library – a film about a favorite cookbook author. 8 pm: Old Academy Players A Raisin in the Sun.

29 Saturday

10 am to 2 pm: EF Farmers Market under the Twin Bridges, rain or shine. SEPTEMBER 14, 15, 21, 22, 23, 28, 29 & 30 Fri. & Sat. - 8pm Sunday - 2pm Single Tickets $20 Group Tickets $17 215-849-1109 oldacademyplayers.org

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24 Monday


All Day Fallser Fest 2018! See Page 1! 8 pm: Old Academy Players A Raisin in the Sun.

30 Sunday

2 pm: Old Academy Players A Raisin in the Sun. And, while this date is beyond September, it’s important to save. Details coming soon: Sunday, Oct. 28 – EFCC House Tour.

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Save this date – Oct. 28 for the EF House Tour


he 2018 East Falls House Tour will take place on Sunday, Oct. 28, from 12 noon to 4 pm. The self-guided tour – a popular fall feature sponsored by the EF Community Council – will offer tour-goers the opportunity to visit a number of distinctive and interesting homes and properties in East Falls. More details, including information on ordering tickets by mail or through the EFCC website, will be published in the October issue of East Falls NOW, the EFCC weekly email and at eastfallscommunity.org. Be sure to save the date!

East Falls NOW


September 2018

7-Eleven: Act now before someone gets hurt


he dangerous panhandling at the Sunoco gas station and convenience store at Midvale and Ridge Avs. is continuing and getting worse. Young kids are harassing customers for tips to pump gas for them. Others want tips for holding open the doors to the store. And others are bothering customers by trying to sell them stuff. One resident of East Falls reported that she was sitting in her car after setting up the pump when she saw a young man approach her car and put his hand on the pump. The customer exited her car to tell the youngster that she didn’t need assistance, and he pushed his body against the pump to shield her from it. Fortunately the customer stood her ground and the young man retreated – not

without some nasty language. The incident left the customer feeling uncomfortable, understandably. Buying gas shouldn’t be a contact sport. The situation is repeating the pattern of last summer, when innocent panhandling evolved into criminal behavior. Early on, kids sought to pump gas for tips, but instead they didn’t hang up the pump and took cash for filling up other cars on the unsuspecting customers’ credit cards. Other youngsters were offering to sell customers gas for cash, using stolen credit cards to pay the bill. This year, as last, the company that owns the gas station, the 7-Eleven Corp., knows that it is losing business because of the negative environment created by this circus of minor league thievery.

they can’t be chasing these kids into traffic. That would be unsafe for everyone. If this aggressive panhandling continues, it’s only a matter of time before someone gets hurt. 7-Eleven must take control A message from the of its property. It must EFCC assume the cost of hiring offPresident duty police officers or trained guards for several hours a day to make sure that these panhandlers are not hassling cusby Bill Epstein tomers. It will it cost the company money. But it will cost less than the business it’s Our concern, however, has losing – and far less than the to be our neighborhood and what’s happening at the main risk it is taking by just hoping entry point to our community for the best. – a central commercial spot in What a Night out! East Falls. The police can do only so On a happier note, congratmuch. They recently arrested ulations to Mary Jane Fultwo youths for trespassing at lam, President of EF Town the station. But they can’t Watch and her board for monitor the store 24/7, and One can sympathize is with the company. It’s having this problem at its gas stations all over the city.

putting together the most successful National Night Out in the group’s history. No less than 100 parents and children enjoyed the visit by Engine 35 from the East Falls firehouse, along with the games, water ice, soft pretzels and cookies on a great summer evening. Thanks to City Councilman Curtis Jones and State Rep. Pam DeLissio, along with Deputy Police Commissioner Robin Wimberly, SEPTA Detective Bryan McCauley, Streets Department officials who brought recycling bins, and officers Joe Lukaitis and Bernie Spain from the 39th Police District, for a successful night of meeting each other and talking about how to make East Falls even greater than it is.

Taking stock: A birthday message of gratitude


y daily evening reflections include prayers of gratitude for the opportunity to make it through another day -regardless of what that day has offered. However, periodically I take ‘stock’ of my life in a more indepth way, and that usually occurs around my birthday. I am a Leo. I am grateful that my constituents, who number about 61,000, made the decision to have me represent them in Harrisburg for the past eight years. It is a privilege to serve in elected office. The experience is humbling and the responsibility of law maker is one that I take seriously. I demonstrate this by participating actively in committees, caucuses and floor debates in Harrisburg. My 76 town halls also are, I hope, a clear demonstration of my commitment to represent my constituents.

To follow my activities, use social media: Twitter @RepDeLissio, Facebook /RepDeLissio, and Instagram @repdeLissio. Additionally, ensure that you are signed up for my electronic newsletter twice a month and my paper newsletter twice a year by calling my office, 215-482-8726. This past year has provided me with an additional opportunity to be grateful. In August 2017 I completed 15 months of treatment for breast cancer. I am cancer free and am doing my best to support other women who are still going through treatment, and I am encouraging all women to be vigilant about self-exams and screening. Pennsylvania offers free mammograms to anyone who cannot afford one and my office can provide additional information. If you need a buddy to go with you, please let me know. This very personal experience has reinforced my sup-

port of universal health care. I introduced my single payer legislation, HB1688, for the second time in October 2017. I also hosted a policy roundtable on this topic in August 2018 to help educate my House colleagues on this topic.

have felt particularly united. However, I am well aware that we live in a country that continues to be brave enough to continue the experiment that now numbers 242 years. Our form of government is indeed an experiment, and I believe that our foundation is strong enough to withstand the current strains and challenges. I believe our system of checks and balances will hold up, too. One more thing, and perhaps most important. We will be able to continue this experby St. Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio iment only if citizens continue to be involved. Involvement I am grateful that we live in includes everything from runthe United States. Given the ning for office (it was exciting events and news of the 18 to see one East Falls voting months or so we might not division field seven candidates

Pam’s Viewpoint

for two committee positions this past May), to understanding how local, state and federal government work. Use your voice, pen and keyboard to tell elected officials your thoughts and opinions. And by all means VOTE! Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 6. If you think you might be out of town or unable to get to the polls, apply for an absentee ballot now. Every vote counts. Do not let anyone tell you otherwise. Please know I am grateful for the opportunity to represent you and to work with you and on your behalf to make our community a great place in which to live, work and play.

Seniors ride free on SEPTA by Mary Flournoy


Published monthly and on-line by the East Falls Community Council PO Box 12672, Philadelphia, PA 19129 www.eastfallsnow.com • www.eastfallscommunity.org For news, contact: editor@eastfallsnow.com For advertising, contact ads@eastfallsnow.com For letters, contact letters@easfallsnow.com Everything else, contact info@eastfallsnow.com

Your East Falls Community Council: William Epstein, President Todd Baylson, Vice President and Zoning Chair Mary Alice Duff, Vice President and Events Chair Joseph Leube, Treasurer Christina Spolsky, Communications Director and Corresponding Secretary Mary Jean Cunningham, Recording Secretary and Membership Chair Christopher Caporellie, Member, Executive Committee at Large John Gillespie, Member, Executive Committee at Large and Transportation Chair Thomas Flynn, Member, Executive Committee at Large Alex Keating, Member, Executive Committee at Large Emily Nichols, Member, Executive Committee at Large Christopher Rooney, Member, Executive Committee at Large and By-Laws Chair Barney Whittels, Immediate Past President

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his is important news for seniors if they have not yet applied to get their SEPTA Key Photo ID Card. As of Sept. 1, riders no longer will be able to use their paper PA Senior Citizen Transit ID Card. As of that date, seniors will be able to ride the Regional Rails for free if they have their SEPTA Key Photo ID Card or a valid PA Driver’s License/Non-Driver ID, only if it was issued before July 2017 and has a magnetic stripe on the back. The quickest way to apply and receive your card the same day is to go to SEPTA headquarters at 1234 Market St. (open 8 am to 6 pm, Mon. to Fri.) or to the Accessible Travel Center at Suburban Station (8 am to 4:30 pm, Mon. to Fri.) To receive a SEPTA Key Senior Photo ID Card, you need to fill out an application and show one of these forms of ID: PA driver/non-driver ID, birth/baptismal certificate, or passport/naturalization papers. You also can go to your State Representative’s local office, but it might take several weeks to receive your card. Constituents of State Rep. Pamela DeLissio should call 215-482-8726 to make an

appointment at her 6511 Ridge Av. office. Constituents of State Rep. Rosita Youngblood can visit her office at 310 W. Chelten Av. any Tuesday (after Sept. 11.) The phone number there is 215-849-6426. And on Sept. 11, SEPTA representatives will be at the Falls Library from 1 to 3 pm to take photos and answer questions about using the new card. They also will provide reimbursement for unused Regional Rail tickets. Bring your Medicare card to the Library, too, and East Falls Village will laminate it for you. Yoga starts Sept. 11 Since 2013, East Falls Village has sponsored a weekly morning yoga class. The class has been so well received that members have requested an afternoon class as well. Beginning on Sept. 11, EFV will hold

two yoga classes each week at the Memorial Church of the Good Shepherd on The Oak Road. The Tuesday class will be held from 10 to 11 am and the fee for the 14 classes is $98 for EFV members and $112 for non-members. The Thursday afternoon class is from 2 to 3 pm and the fee for the 13 classes is $91 for members and $104 for non-members. The classes are open to nonmembers of the Village, but registration is required and payment is expected by or at the first class. To register or for more information, see the Calendar of Events on eastfallsvillage.org, call 267-4444507, or email info@eastfallsvillage.org. Checks should be made payable to EFCC and sent to EFCC, PO Box 12672, Phila., PA 19129.


September 2018

East Falls NOW

An East Falls NOW exclusive: Penn Charter to save Timmons home


he East Falls NOW learned at press time that Penn Charter School has acceded to the wishes of its Oak Rd. neighbors and will not demolish the Timmons Home that it owns on The Oak Rd. When Penn Charter officials presented their facility development plans to the EFCC Zoning Committee in June they included the removal of the home for parking spaces.

The home is used for administrative offices. The goal was to relieve neighboring streets of student parking. After discussions with neighbors concerned about the historical significance of the home, however, Penn Charter Business Manager Hal Davidow told EF NOW that the Timmons Home will remain and that additional parking will be sited around it.

Zoning gets updates on Grasso, Scotts Ln. projects low $300,000s. No surprise in East Falls, traffic here, too, was a concern. most rush hours. The plan, The site currently has one however, will add lanes on the entrance and exit, on Scotts Ridge Av. and Calumet St. Ln. The developer is negotiatsides of the property – steps ing with NewCourtland to aimed at relieving jam-ups. Construction is anticipated to secure an easement for an begin in early 2019, and to last additional entrance and exit onto Henry Av. so as to limit two years. The second project, on Scotts the number of cars using the narrow Scotts Ln. Callahan Ln. just above the SEPTA Ward representatives said that Manayunk-Norristown tracks, they would explore means of was considered jointly by the EFCC Zoning Committee with making the busy Scotts Ln. more negotiable, although they the Ridge-Allegheny-Hunting and most of the more than 70 Park Civic Association. It persons in attendance agreed straddles the boundary of the that there are no easy answers two groups. for the volume of traffic and Development firm Callahan the limited width of Scotts Ln. Ward proposes 92 townhomes While a third topic was not on a 150,000-square-foot site posted on the agenda, the gaththat sits between the train ering discussed reports that the tracks and the former Eastern Pennsylvania Psychiatric Insti- owner of the former Chuck’s Garage on Midvale Av., now tute property now owned by NewCourtland Senior Services. operated by Midvale Auto Repair Service, seeks to evict The homes would be in 42 buildings in single, duplex and the car repair operation and triplex settings, with 122 park- build a 40 to 50-unit apartment building with retail space on ing spaces. The developer the ground floor and no parkintends to seek a change from ing spaces. Bill Epstein, Presithe current RSA5 zoning to RM1, which would permit mul- dent of the EFCC, said that the Zoning Committee will monitor ti-family units on the site. the situation and keep the comPrices are expected to range from the high $200,000s to the munity informed.

(Continued from page 1)

In an effort to eliminate accidents such as this one on Aug. 5 on Kelly Drive near Calumet St., the East Falls Community Council will work with State Rep. Pam DeLissio to organize a comprehensive traffic plan for East Falls. See the October issue of East Falls NOW for news of public meetings. Or if you don’t receive the EFCC’s weekly emails, add your name and email address at info@eastfallscommunity.org. One person died in this accident. Photo by Lyda M. Doyle.

Blue ribbon committee aims for master traffic plan (Continued from page 1)

platform crosswalks that are more effective. “The community seeks actions, not just words,” the letter said, noting that piecemeal steps, such as speed cushions on Queen and School House Lane have been only partially effective. “Each street needs to be

looked at in relation to other streets to avoid a ‘whack-amole’ effect such as happened when drivers switched from Queen Ln. to Penn St. to skip the speed cushions.” Separately, EFCC has asked DeLissio to look into the reasons the State Senate stripped a provision to install speed cameras on Henry Av. from a House-passed bill that

calls for cameras in highway work zones and along Roosevelt Blvd. A master plan is not to be confused with PennDOT’s project to make Henry Av. a safer road from Allegheny Av. to Port Royal Rd. in Andorra. Those changes are at least a year and a half to two years away.

Sept. 8 flea market set at Falls Ridge


alls Ridge will present its second annual flea market from 10 am to 2 pm on Saturday, Sept. 8 at Falls Ridge, in the parking lot behind 4329 Ridge Av between Heritage Dr. and Merrick Rd. Vendors will include those selling food, water ice, jewelry, books, tshirts, and fresh produce. Vendor spots are priced at $20 and can be reserved by calling 215-848-4116.


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East Falls NOW

September 2018

Mifflin school gets new message board A

n attractive new architectural feature has been added to Conrad St. as the Thomas Mifflin School’s Friends of Mifflin (FOM) installed a message board on the school’s property. The board will be used to share information on events, recent awards, fundraisers and open house dates. Kenya Holmes and Bonnie Emilius, Co-Chairs of the FOM, said in a news release that the goal is to help connect community members with their neighborhood school and the programs taking place at Mifflin. The message board will be surrounded by a native plant garden installed by the FOM. The Thomas Mifflin School student Green Team will assume responsibility for the care of the garden when the school year begins. The hope is to expand and create gardens on the entire Mifflin School property, which includes the Mifflin Arboretum along Midvale Av. to the Cresson St./SEPTA bridges. The FOM schedule calls for the new message board to begin by welcoming back students to a new school year on Monday, Aug. 27.

Join Up, Show Up, Speak Up Take part in the EFCC’s monthly general membership meetings – 7 pm every second Monday, East Falls Presbyterian Church, Midvale and Vaux Join an EFCC committee: Zoning, Events, Traffic, By-Laws. Contact info@eastfallscommunity.org Do you have news for East Falls NOW? Contact editor@eastfallsnow.com If you’re not getting East Falls NOW, contact info@eastfallsnow.com

New garden and bulletin board on the Thomas Mifflin School property at Midvale Av. and Conrad St.



September 2018

East Falls NOW

Trees at Inn Yard Park welcome TLC once a tree was selected for pruning? Tarps were spread out as Brice manned his very tall loper and carefully ue Park, a graduate of removed dead and crossed the Pennsylvania Horti- branches, making sure the cut cultural Society’s was at the correct angle. The Advanced Tree Pruning volunteers then gathered the Course, did not let high heat fallen branches and trimmed and humidity deter East Falls them back so they fit onto the Tree Tender’s plans to prune tarps. As Brice worked, he trees in Inn Yard Park on described the characteristics August 9 and 16 and to sched- and needs of the various ule the final cutting on the species, ie, Fringe Tree (Chio3100 and 3200 blocks of W. nanthus virgincus), Lantern Queen Lane on August 30. Tree (Dichrostrachys cinera), With expert ISA-Certified Purple Leaf Plum (Prunus arborist Brice Dorwart, Utili- cerasifera) and Red Maple ty Arborist with Davey (Acer rubrum). He also introResource Group, guiding the duced us to a charming spiked volunteers (Sue, Ray Lucci green caterpillar resting on and Cynthia Kishinchand), 10 the underside of a maple leaf. trees were identified as needOnce a tarp had a sizeable ing attention in this seventh heap of branches, the tarps year of the club. were rolled up and moved to So, what actually happened Sue’s environmentally-friendly vehicle so she could transport them to the Fairmount Park Recycling Center for grinding into wood chips. At this point, it is time for everyone to look at what has been accomplished, not what needs to be done. Of the 33 PHS tree tender groups citywide, Join the East Falls EFTT is one of only six with a pruning club. Community Council Being a tree tender is a by visiting rewarding way to connect “Become a Member” at www.eastfallscommunity.org with your community and Mother Nature. Registration is open for the PHS fall Tree

by Cynthia Kishinchand East Falls Tree Tenders


Help make our community great.

Tender Classes (October 3, 10, and 17, 5:45 to 9: pm, at PHS, 100 N. 20th St.) Visit www.PHSonline.org/programs/tree-tenders or call (215) 988-8800. For information on FTT visit www.eastfallscommunity.org or contact Cynthia Kishinchand via email, crk3114@msn.com, or (215) 849-2474. Currently the Street Tree Management Office of Philadelphia Parks and Recreation (PP&R) is conducting a citywide inventory of trees and tree pits, a daunting task in this metropolis of 2,575 miles of streets and roadways. To report a dead tree street tree to PP&R, call 311, visit www.beta.phila.gov or call (215) 685-4362. To request a street tree from PP&R visit treephilly.org/freetrees/streettrees/street-treerequest.info@phila.gov or call (215) 685-4362, the Street Tree Contract Management Office One final piece of good news: Thanks to Councilman Curtis Jones, Jr., PP&R awarded EFTT its 21st Philadelphia Activities Fund grant. This grant of $1,000, along with the $500 grant from EFCC, will provide Mifflin School students with opportunities to learn about and experience nature firsthand.

Farmers Market heads into September


he East Falls Farmers Market will head into September with a full schedule of special events every Saturday – rain or shine, from 10 am to 2 pm. Located on the EF Development Corp.’s parking lot adjacent to the Trolley Car Café under the Twin Bridges, the market will run through Thanksgiving. The special events scheduled for September include, in addition to a voter registration opportunity every week: • Sept. 1: musical guest Lauren Scott

• Sept. 1, 8: donation yoga with Yogabrain • Sept. 15 and 29: East Falls Bike Repair • Sept. 15: “Pawsome,” with vendors focusing on pet products and activities • Sept. 29: Fallser Fest 2018 – the Farmers Market will be front and center for this inaugural community event! To keep up to date on the EF Famers Market schedule, visit https://www.eastfallsfarmersmarket.com/schedule.html.

East Falls NOW


September 2018

East Falls turns out for National Night Out


he National Night Out Celebration August 7 brought together East Falls citizens, volunteers and public servants to

Jacob Marzolf tries his skills at a bean bag toss.

“make our neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live” according to the sponsor, EF Town Watch.

The Ocasio and Chapman families enjoy the East Falls Town Watch’s refreshments at National Night Out. From left, Ebony Ocasio, Leo Ocasiio, Alisoin Champman, Sal Chapman, Taylor Ocasio and Zoe Ocasio.

Town Watch board member Joan McIlvaine scoops out some water ice for Silas Rendick of Fox St. at the National Night Out celebration.

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September 2018



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East Falls original Barbershop located at 3471 Ainslie Street Tues.- Friday 10am - 6pm • Sat. 9am - 4pm

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Join Up, Show Up, Speak Up Take part in the EFCC’s monthly general membership meetings – 7 pm every second Monday, East Falls Presbyterian Church, Midvale and Vaux Join an EFCC committee: Zoning, Events, Traffic, By-Laws. Contact info@eastfallscommunity.org Do you have news for East Falls NOW? Contact editor@eastfallsnow.com If you’re not getting East Falls NOW, contact info@eastfallsnow.com

East Falls NOW

Solar energy program extends deadline by Meg Greenfield


hy go solar? To save money? You will. On your electric bill and your federal tax bill. To reduce your carbon footprint? You will -- using clean energy and sending clean energy to the grid. To feel good? That's between you and your psyche. One owner of a twin house who solarized said this: “My PECO bill was $8.50 in May, June and July. August historically is my most expensive month when we run central air, a dehumidifier and fans. This year my August bill was $24.09. I used 978 kwh and generated 758 kwh. I am thrilled with the savings from solar. I actually look forward to checking out my PECO bill each month. We like playing a small part in helping the City reach its sustainability goals. The monitoring app says our solar generation so far is the equivalent of planting 93 trees.” Whatever the reason, now is the time. The Philadelphia Energy Authority has extended the deadline to sign up for the second round of its Solarize Philly program until September 30. For details go to solarizephilly.org. Join the more than 3,500 Philadelphians who have signed up to get a free evaluation and proposal from a vetted installer. More than 222 homeowners have solarized under the program, including more than a dozen in East Falls during the pro-

gram's first round. This means they benefited from discounted group buy tiered pricing. The greater the number of installs, the greater the discount for everyone. Without going into how the panels produce energy, the bottom line is that your solar panels produce electricity. If you do not need the energy, it goes back onto the grid, to PECO. PECO credits you for every kilowatt you send at the same price per kilowatt that PECO would charge you. That credit is applied to your bill. It can reduce your bill to the base charge per month, currently $8.49. Receiving a bill for $8.49 feels good. Once a year, PECO settles up. If you generated more than you bought from PECO, a credit is applied to your bill(s) until you use up the credit. Another financial benefit is a credit -- not a deduction -against what you owe in federal income tax, of 30 percent of the cost of your installation. Spend $10,000, get a tax credit for $3,000. If you don't use up the credit the first year, it carries forward to the next year. In addition, for every 1,000 kilowatts you generate, you will earn a renewable energy credit (SREC). When you install your system, you will be signed up with SRECTrade, Inc. to sell those credits. You do not have to do anything but tell the company where to send the money. It takes monthly readings and sells your credits, taking a 10 percent commission. Today

the SRECs are going for about $11. The cost to solarize, on average, is from $10,000 to $20,000. You can pay in cash, arrange a home equity loan, or ask the contractor to help arrange a loan. If you need a loan and cannot get one, you might qualify for a new special financing pilot program through the Energy Authority. You will pay a monthly amount less than your current electric bill and in 15 years own the system outright. Panels are expected to last 20 to 25 years. Details are on the Authority website. You can install on a flat roof, and you can install on a slate roof, although slate will cost a bit more. There is no minimum size. The average rowhouse in Philadelphia in this program has a five-kilowatt installation. A detached home with more usable roof space might have a larger install. You need some sun. The free evaluation will check on this and project your cost, production, savings and time to recoup the cost. The installer secures the permits and arranges for the interconnection with PECO. Since the panels have a long life, you should make sure your roof is in good condition. On flat roofs, the panels are secured by weights, with no holes in your roof. Signing up for an evaluation involves no cost. Visit solarizephilly.org. You will need a recent electric bill to answer some of the questions.

Clothing designer opens on Ridge shop, now that’s unheard of. I’m thrilled to offer women a women didn’t wear suits or completely new way to think pants. about their wardrobes and Designer-seamstress Mary their bodies.” Alice Duff has chosen a much Duff does it all on the broader palette on which to premises, bringing a taste of create her clothes — the sizeNew York’s 7th Avenue to East inclusive 0 to 28 market, the Falls. All clothing is designed, upper end of which is “plus cut and sewn in-house by size” 14 and up. It has been seamstresses under Duff’s long ignored by the industry direction. Alterations are proand retailers. vided free of charges. In June she opened Alice Duff uses natural fabrics Alexander at 4056 Ridge such as cotton, linen, silk and Avenue beneath the twin tencel, which provide “comfort bridges and across from Doband breathability.” She favors son‘s Mills. The store is bright colors, funky prints, as named for her daughter and well as occasional neutrals. husband. The family lives in To fund Alice Alexander, East Falls. Duff went to the crowdfunding “I started this company out source, Indiegogo, in one of sheer frustration,” Duff says. instance raising $11,000 in 23 “As a plus size consumer days. Contributors were myself, I struggled to find rewarded with generous dishigh-quality, interesting pieces counts on the brand’s latest in the apparel market. Findcollection. ing those pieces that were ethiAll of Alice Alexander’s cally-made and in my size was clothing is designed and proflat-out impossible. duced in Philadelphia. The Sixty-seven percent of Amer- brand does not outsource its ican women, she says, wear manufacturing or do wholesize 14 and up. Most retailers sale. This allows Duff to prostop at size 12. vide her customers with Another challenge women clothing made of high end face, she says, is change in size materials, such as linen and that often comes with the birth silk, at a fair price. of child, as it did with her. “We’re truly size-inclusive,” “Americans,” Duff asserts, “are says Duff. “Our size chart growing larger.” ranges from 0-28 but if that “Opening a retail store that doesn’t work for your body, welcomes women of all shapes that’s on us, and we’ll make and sizes is truly unique. something just for you at no Opening one that actually does additional cost.” the sewing right there in the Unable to find sizes that fit,

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Duff began sewing her own clothes, consciously building a new wardrobe piece by piece. To enlist support of other women, she documented her journey by launching a sewing and style blog. Realizing there was a business in her new sewing hobby, Duff enrolled in fashion design school at Philadelphia’s MADE Institute, where she balanced taking classes and working full-time. In May of 2017, Duff left a successful career in the nonprofit sector to launch Alice Alexander. That September, she launched her first collection, which included sizes 1228. In 2018, Duff was accepted into the Philadelphia Fashion Incubator at Macy’s Center City. Alice Alexander’s second collection, The Warm Weather Collection, was released in mid-March for pre-order. It included an expanded size chart, offering sustainable and ethical clothing to women of all sizes. Additional pieces were added to the collection in midJune to coincide with the store opening. Alice Alexander is open Thursday and Friday from 11 am to 7 pm and Saturday 10 am to 6 pm. Private appointments are available Tuesday and Wednesday. For more information or to shop on-line go to www.alicealexander.com.

East Falls NOW

September 2018

McMichael Park hosts readers, volunteers by Alexis Franklin Turtle Talks McMichael Park’s summer reading series concluded on August 6. Story-hour accompanied by a Story-walk in McMichael Park where “Daniel Finds a Poem” brought out the “rib-it” in everyone. Several dogs, tricycles and even a toad joined in the reading with Ms. Meredith McGovern, Children’s librarian from Falls of Schuylkill Library. The book was enlarged and stationed at several tree locations as children and their parents walked through the Park and participated in the various activities. Some families brought pasta dinner and others enjoyed their snacks, which were shared by the Friends of McMichael Park. The humid night did not stop these families and friends from joining in. This was the second summer reading series collaborated between the Falls of Schuylkill Library and the Friends of McMichael Park. Love Your Park Week Save the date as the Friends of McMichael Park again host Love Your Park Service Day on Saturday, Nov. 10 from 9 am to noon. Again this year trees will be planted, gardens will be cleaned and leaves will be raked. It’s a great neighborhood get-together on a brisk November morning. Kidfriendly activity will follow depending on weather. Volunteers are needed. Contact Lexy3904@gmail.com if you can help. The Fairmount Park Conservancy and Philadelphia Parks & Recreation steward is the Parks Friends Network, a collective of 115 neighborhood-based volunteer groups throughout Philadelphia that takes care of many of the city’s parks and public areas. These advocates play a key role in supporting Love Your Park Week, a biannual event that engages 5,000 citizens and volunteers to revitalize Philadelphia’s public green spaces and create safe, welcoming and fun recreation opportunities in parks across the city. Love Your Park Week represents more than just maintaining clean, safe and fun parks . It’s also an opportunity for community members to work alongside their neighbors and form connections in a common space. Thank you to Councilman Curtis Jones Jr. The Friends of McMichael Park appreciate the generous grant awarded from the Philadelphia Activities Grant through the office of Councilman Curtis Jones, Jr. This 2018/2019 grant enables the Friends of McMichael Park to offer various programs throughout the year. Support for these efforts and upcoming events is greatly appreciated.

Story hour at McMichael Park, led by librarian Meredith McGovern.



September 2018

Kitchen Corner

Beer in the batter goes well with the Eagles! by Anne Farnese


n Sept. 6 the NFL kicks off its 2018 season when the Super Bowl LII champion Philadelphia Eagles host the Atlanta Falcons at Lincoln Financial Field. Some fans will cheer from a seat in the stands, others on a stool in a bar, but most will root during the game from a comfortable spot in their home. No matter where they sit, it’s fair to say beer will be the most popular choice of beverage consumed by football enthusiasts during the game.

East Falls NOW

Old Academy opens with A Raisin in the Sun

Jalapeno-topped Cheddar Beer Bread 2½ cups all-purpose flour 2 tablespoons sugar 1 tablespoon baking powder 1½ teaspoons baking soda 1 teaspoon salt 1½ cups IPA beer (room temperature) 1¼ cups finely grated cheddar cheese (save ¼ cup for topping) ¼ cup of jalapeno slices (pat dry)

The Old Academy Players cast for A Raisin in the Sun, opening Sept. 14: rear, from left:Vanesa Ballard, Janae Rockemore and Will Jiggets; front, Brian Neal and Jerome Scott.

Heat oven to 375º. Grease and flour a 1.5 quart loaf pan.

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, Beer can also be a cooking baking soda and salt. or baking ingredient. The Lightly toss one cup of frothy fermented beverage cheddar cheese with flour gives distinctive flavor mixture. Add beer and mix notes to a variety of foods when used for braising or as thoroughly with a rubber a substitute for some of the spatula. Spread batter in loaf pan liquid in soups, stews and sauces. Baked goods take on and top with jalapeno slices a nuanced taste when made and remaining ¼ cup of cheddar cheese. with beer—chocolate cake Bake for 50 minutes or made with stout is yummy. until a wooden skewer inserted in the center comes Kitchen Corner recomout clean. Cool in pan for 10 mends this easy-to-make minutes then turn out onto beer bread, especially tasty a wire rack to cool. for ham sandwiches. Enjoy, and GO EAGLES!


ast Falls’ historic Old Academy Players will open its 96th season with the American drama A Raisin in the Sun, written by Lorraine Hansberry. Directed by Carla Childs and produced by Jesse Friedman, Janine Lieberman, Helga Krauss, Dale Mezzacapa, and Loretta Lucy Miller, this classic will be performed on Sept. 14, 15, 21, 22, 23, 28, 29 and 30, Friday and Saturday at 8 pm and Sunday at 2 pm. Set in the 1950’s on Chicago’s South Side, the groundbreaking play revolves around the dreams and conflicts with-

in three generations of the Younger family -- son Walter Lee; his wife, Ruth; his sister, Beneatha; his son, Travis; and Mama, the matriarch Lena. When Lena’s deceased husband’s insurance money comes through, she dreams of moving to a better neighborhood. Walter Lee has other plans – to buy a liquor store and be his own man. Beneatha dreams of medical school. The struggles of this poor, striving black family to maintain dignity, love and trust in a harsh and changing world make this one of the most important and inspiring works in American

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Democratic Jewish Outreach PA (DJOP) was founded in 2008 to support President Obama’s first campaign. It has grown to be a significant asset to progressive Democratic ideals and candidates. As a Federally registered PAC we support candidates from Pennsylvania for the US Congress, Senate and the Presidency. We have run ads in support of such candidates in the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Jewish Exponent and in regional newspapers. We have, as well, made contributions to numerous candidates and held fundraising events on their behalf. We send out an e- newsletter and have conducted several well-attended educational programs. We anticipate being extremely active in the months leading up to the November election. It is unquestionably the most significant in our lifetimes. The continuation of the outrageous behavior and policies of Trump and the cowardly acquiescence of the Republican Party will have profound consequences for decades to come. If nothing else, we owe our children and our grandchildren a return to sanity, compassion and decency in government. We again will run ads in the Jewish Exponent and the Philadelphia Inquirer in support of PA Federal Democratic candidates. Please go to our web page to learn more about our good work and to support us: www.djop.org and check us out on Facebook at Democratic Jewish Outreach PA.

drama. The 1959 play was the first written by a black woman to be produced on Broadway, as well as the first with a black director, Lloyd Richards. Hansberry noted that her play introduced details of black life to the overwhelmingly white Broadway audiences, while director Richards observed that it was the first play to which large numbers of black people were drawn. The New York Drama Critics’ Circle named it the best play of 1959, making Hansberry the first African-American and youngest person to win the award. A Raisin in the Sun was nominated for four Tony Awards and made into a movie in 1961 featuring its original Broadway cast. Old Academy Players’ cast includes: Vanessa Ballard (Mama), Jerome Scott (Walter), Lynn Shirley (Ruth), Janae Rockemore (Beneatha), Will Jiggetts (Travis), Brian Neal (Joseph Asagai), Isaiah Price (George Murchison), Omar Bullock (Bobo), and Breen Rourke (Karl Lindner). Lorraine Hansberry’s play remains relevant today. Through its words and ideas the audience experiences the hope, humor, desperation, aspirations, dignity and love of the unforgettable Younger family. This powerful production takes the audience on a journey long remembered. Subscribe to Old Academy Players’ season for shows for the low price of $85 – a savings of $40! Individual ticket prices are $20 for plays and $25 for musicals. Old Academy Players is a non-profit community theater located at 3544 Indian Queen Ln., its home since 1932. It has provided continuous community theater since 1923 and is a member of the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance. Groups of 15 or more can take advantage of discount pricing. Parking for all performances is free. For information and tickets, call 215-843-1109 or visit the theatre’s website to get your tickets at www.oldacademy players.org.

East Falls NOW


September 2018

What did I just see? by Navin Sasikumar


all migration is in full swing. Birds are moving south from their breeding grounds in the north. Lots of butterflies, bees and dragonflies are still on the wing. Fall flowers such as asters and goldenrods are starting to bloom. With so much happening people are often curious about the critter or plant that they just saw in their backyard or neighborhood park. Let me introduce you to a wonderful and free tool that helps you identify and learn about the biodiversity around you. iNaturalist is a website (https://www.inaturalist.org) that also has mobile apps for both iOS and Android. You sign up for an account and when you see something you would like to identify, you take a picture of it and upload it either using the website or your phone along with the time and place you saw it. In the species section, you can pick one of the automatic suggestions or wait for a human expert to come along and identify it for you. The automatic suggestions function works pretty well for some things (especially birds and mammals), but not so well for

others. This makes the volunteer human identifiers an important part of the platform, too. So if you see someone else’s observation and you know what it is, you can help them identify it! In addition to helping you identify living things around you, iNaturalist is a wonderful citizen science tool. Your observations can help researchers track how the biodiversity of a region changes over time. Or if an invasive

Navin on Nature by Navin Sasikumar

insect starts showing up in an area (the spotted lanternfly, for example), scientists studying them can track the paths it took to reach a particular area based on your observations and those of other observers in the area. So even if you know what something is, adding the observation to iNaturalist can be useful for scientists. You also can use the tool to see what critters others have been observing in your area.

For example, to see all the species seen in East Falls, you can go to the website, select Explore from the top bar and select East Falls in the location field. We are at 217 species at the time of this writing! And I’m sure we can get lots more species as more and more people start using iNaturalist to record their observations. Philadelphia also is conducting a bioblitz on the weekend of September 15th – an event where people try to record as many species as they can over a given period of time. This is important to track the effects of climate change and development in an area. We are going to be going to different spots in Philadelphia and using iNaturalist to record the species of plants, birds, insects, mammals, etc that we see. So if you see something during that weekend, be sure to upload it! And next April, Philadelphia is going to be competing against other cities all over the world to see who will take the biodiversity crown as part of the City Nature Challenge. Stay tuned for more details as we Sample page from iNaturalist website. get closer to that date. If you have questions about and wildlife in the area, feel Happy observing! using iNaturalist or just gen- free to email me at navin eral questions about nature sasikumar@gmail.com.

EFSA soccer season opens September 8 by Jen Arnoldi


s summer winds down it’s time to think soccer -- and East Falls Sports Association is the perfect program for new and developing players. Held at McDevitt Recreation Center on Saturdays from Sept. 8 to Nov. 17, the program gives players ages 4 to 11 a chance to experience

practice and game play with an emphasis on skill development. For ages six and under all activities are held Saturdays from 9 to 10:30 a.m. For ages 7 to 8 and 9 to 11, practice is followed by a game from 10:30 am to noon. The older age groups are invited to an optional practice on Tuesdays from 6 to 7:30 pm. Registration is open on the website www.efsasports.com through Sept. 8. More than

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200 kids played last year and the EFSA hopes to see numbers increase this season, including in the older age group of 9 to 11 year-olds. Soccer is growing in popularity in the Falls. For the second year the neighborhood has fielded an under 11 boys travel team that will play in the Philadelphia Parks &

Recreation League and practice at McDevitt. To build community, EFSA is planning to attend a home soccer game at Jefferson University on a Saturday in October. More information on that, as well as picture day and other announcements, will be available at the website. This program thrives

thanks to parent and volunteer participation. Anyone interested in coaching, volunteering at the registration desk or helping at the snack stand (where pretzels and fruit, as well as coffee and other treats are available each week) can get in touch with Jennifer Arnoldi at jmartell@att.net.


September 2018

East Falls NOW

Profile for The Chestnut Hill Local

East Falls Now September 2018  

East Falls Now September 2018