The WC Press Development Issue - January 2019

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“All growth depends upon activity. There is no development physically or intellectually without effort...” –Calvin Coolidge

Press PUBLISHER Dan Mathers


COLUMNISTS Becca Boyd Jamie Jones Andrea Mason DJ Romeo Rotary Club of West Chester Chester County Historical Society Published By... Mathers Productions 12 E Barnard Street West Chester, PA 19382 610-344-3463 The WC Press is a monthly magazine distributed free of charge to more than 250 businesses. For a free digital subscription, visit For more information about specific distribution locations, visit



Our no-nonsense table of contents


TURNING A CORNER Eli Kahn’s patience and persistence pays off at 44 West


OWNER OF THE MONTH Dr Leonard Giunta is a man of many talents (and businesses)


REBUILDING THE BOROUGH The philosophy behind Zukin Realty’s transformaion of our town

29 HOW WEST CHESTER GREW AND FLOURISHED A brief history of development in the downtown


Chester County Hospital continues to expand


PHOTO HUNT Find the five differences between the two pictures and win!






from the


Dan Mathers shares some personal insight into this month’s theme

There’s nothing more likely to upset a public hearing than a question pertaining to development. As gun and reproductive rights are to federal elections, new construction permits are to West Chester borough council meetings. You’re either with us, or you’re against us. So, it should be no surprise that we’ve avoided this particular topic for quite some time now. However, considering the myriad projects coming to town in 2019, we just couldn’t hold off any longer. It was time to discuss how this town is changing. At a G-20 meeting back in 2013, then UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon dropped a quote that I think sums up our intentions with this issue: “Sustainable development is the pathway to the future we want for all. It offers a framework to generate economic growth, achieve social justice, exercise environmental stewardship and strengthen governance.” I think that every aspect he touches on is exemplified by a story in this issue... We talk to a local real estate developer who also happens to run a successful retail business. Dr Leonard Giunta comes from a family of West Chester business people, and he talks about the importance of this town offering everything residents need, so they can spend their money here and help build the community. Scott Zukin answered our questions about the downtown hotel he hopes to get approved this month, but he also spoke extensively about how the entire town has benefited from better buildings, ones that still remember our roots. The story even touches on instances in which Zukin Realty has helped struggling clients get back on their feet again. We also linked up with Chester County Hospital who have a massive, 250,000sqft expansion project underway. Not only do they hope to be able to better serve the community’s medical needs with this facility, but they’re also thinking about the planet. The new design is incorporating green spaces, including a verdant roof, focusing on connecting the building to its surroundings. Finally, to put all this expansion in historical context, Malcolm Johnstone tells the tale of West Chester’s development. Turns out, this town was literally born for better governance when the state assembly voted to move the county seat here from Chester. I’ve never used this space to promote a political issue; as a whole, The WC Press will never choose a side or push an agenda. Still, I’ll undoubtedly receive exasperating emails about our chosen theme this month, so I’ll say in advance that if it seems like we’re “pro development,” well, that’s just because this is the development issue, and — as a rule — we do not write anything negative. There’s enough of that in the media without us adding to it. My point is: we’re not picking sides; it’s just a fact that West Chester is growing. Rather than continue to keep our heads in the sand about it, this month we decided to share exactly what’s going on so your opinion on the subject can be better informed. We hope you’re with us. —





All design work and renderings of 44 West are the property of Bernardon.

The patience and persistence of Eli Kahn pays off as 44 West goes forward


ive seconds. That’s how long it

takes a pedestrian to decide if he or she wants to continue walking down any given urban road based on the appeal of its storefront and restaurant commercial streetscape, according to Dr. Timothy Cassidy, a principal at West Chester architectural firm Bernardon. For pedestrians walking the streets of the borough, however, the corner at the intersection of Church and Gay Streets has become…. well, a bit less than appealing in recent years. Bleak and blighted, a large, empty building stood at one of the busiest intersections smack in the center of town, looming in stark contrast to the otherwise vibrant panorama of West Chester’s downtown scene—a sight that has probably caused many a pedestrian to make a less-thanfive-second decision to head in a different direction. But perhaps the solution to an impatient pedestrian can be found in a patient real estate developer. A very, very patient one. The patient developer in question here is Eli Kahn, and the streetscape

is known as Mosteller’s Corner, a spot less mission finally realized by Kahn, and with a history as storied and varied as his hard-fought vision is being brought the borough itself. Tracing back to the to life by Bernardon. So what the heck “First Block” of the West Chester bor- took so long? Kahn attributes it to the ough, starting off as a hotel called Cross previous “anti-growth council,” in a nutKeys all the way back in 1786, it has by shell. “We hadn’t had one in the previturns harbored Mosteller’s Inc.—once ous 27 years, and we haven’t had one the largest retailer in Chester County— since, but we had one then, and we had and eventually morphed into the local to wait it out,” he told us. “If you don’t government offices of the courthouse have a whole lot of patience, you’ll never complex. But for several years now, the make it in this business.” building has languished, and Kahn has revisited and revamped his vision for the prime parcel again and again in It’s been a long road; in fact the face of opposition—as well as The WC Press first talked a groundswell of steadfast supwith Kahn about this project porters. It’s been a long road; in fact The WC Press first talked with almost exactly four years ago Kahn about this project almost exactly four years ago for our January 2015 Real Estate issue. While there’s a certain level of tenacThe wheels were finally set in motion on October 16 of last year, when Borough Council gave final approval for the project, and demolition at the site began on December 7. The new project, dubbed 44 West, is a somewhat relent-

ity involved here, there’s apparently the ability to not play ball when holding out for what you feel is the right thing, too. Indeed, in a quote in the June 21, 2017 Daily Local News, Kahn said after a council rejection of one of several previous





Demolition of the old building begins on North Church Street plans: “When council didn’t want to talk about this, we walked away.” And, in light of the final approval for the project, he had another, more recent quote for the Daily Local, he told us. “They called me for a comment when the demolition began, and the first thing I said was ‘It’s about f*#$ing time.’ They didn’t print that, obviously, but if you’re going to ask me how it felt, I’m going to tell you. That’s how it felt.”

such a historically rich borough as West Chester. “It’s human nature,” Kahn said. “Familiarity provides comfort, and people will push back on change. You can’t get caught up in the emotions of it; you just have to keep pushing if you know it’s going to be a great project. And this is a great project.”

Although Kahn submitted

were lots of objectors, saying it was too big. Now, I literally have people coming up to me when I walk down the street there and they say ‘You know what? I was wrong.’” Keeping his emotions in check is part and parcel of doing his job well, Kahn said. “I don’t take it personally—I can’t. Maybe I would have when I was younger, but not now. You have to keep in mind that it doesn’t really matter what you do—someone is always going to complain. It’s a damned if you do, damned if you don’t kind of thing. A lot of the objectors on this [44 West project] were fairly reasonable, in fact—and we have freedom of speech in this country, which gives us the free exchange of ideas, and that’s what makes it great.”

Although Kahn submitted and different proposals, one conthen withdrew several different stant remained: the structure proposals for the location since would have to come down buying it in 2011, one constant remained no matter the incarnation of his various visions on paper: the That business of pushing forward in present structure would have to come the face of opposition is not unmined down. And that presented a large part of territory for the developer; it’s an occuthe problem, from both a practical demolition-and-construction-on-a-bus- pational hazard. There are opponents to At the same time, Kahn does admit tling-corner standpoint, and a very every project, according to Kahn. “A few basic one: people don’t like change— years ago I built a large apartment build- that there is a bit of an emotional punch particularly people who live and work in ing on King Street in Malvern—there here for him, which is that this realized



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A new view, seen from the same angle and location as the previous photo. vision will also be a tribute to his former business partner, Jack Loew, who passed away in 2014. “This project is going to honor my late partner and friend Jack, who was without a doubt one of the most influential human beings in my life. So is there emotion involved for me on this one? Yes. Absolutely.”

creating something that would stick out like a sore thumb, and Kahn and Bernardon had one word in mind when coming up with the building’s design: timeless. The final version of 44 West is a four-story, 44,000 square foot building with retail and restaurant space on the ground floor and office spaces above. The building will feature lots of windows to let in natural light, something that Kahn says is in 100 years from now, no high demand for modern comone’s going to care about mercial tenants, and scarce in the building. It’s going to a town with so many historical be all about the plaza... building.

We couldn’t help but notice another emotion in speaking with Kahn about this enterprise: excitement. “I really couldn’t be happier, partly because the wait is finally over, but also because all you have to do is go over there to the site and you can see it: people are talking about this, and they’re getting excited about it—because it is exciting! Everyone’s pumped, and that’s a great feeling.” The trick with the 44 West project has been to update the location without

The building will be just a part of the project, however, because there’s also a counterpart—in many ways the piece de resistance: a plaza with a water feature and art installations. In fact, to hear Kahn talk about it, the outside part of the project is what will really put it on the map, so to speak. “Trends in architecture come and go,” Kahn told us. “We came up with a design that is timeless, utilitarian, and relevant for the building—no one’s ever going to be able to say ‘this building is out of style.’ It may not land on the cover

of a magazine, but it will stand the test of time. But the building is only part of the project’s design, and 100 years from now, no one’s going to care about the building. It’s going to be all about the plaza. That’s going to be a landmark, a place for people to gather, or to tell each other when they’re making plans ‘meet me at the plaza.’ And that’s’ something that’s timeless, too.” A cohesive element with the neighborhood area surrounding the buildings is also a critical component of a project like this, particularly in a historically significant borough like West Chester. “The building’s architecture recognizes some of the historic significance of West Chester architecture,” said Neil Leibman, principal at Bernardon. “It’s important to continue with a building vernacular that will enhance and compliment the borough. The plaza and the building need to be in unison with each other; even though they’re two buildings, it is one project. We needed to create storefronts for prospective retailers or restaurateurs that would want to take advantage of Gay and Church Street streetscapes as well as the Plaza.”





The public space at 44 West will be a common area open to all in the borough That’s not to say that there were no obstacles in coming up with the project’s blueprint. “One of the challenges was that the proposed design changes the landscape of a premier corner of West Chester,” Leibman said. “By removing the buildings that currently define the corner of Church and Gay Streets, it creates a new environment of not only a building but a plaza that will redefine that portion of West Chester and create an essential gathering place for residents and visitors.” Kahn said that while paying attention to and honoring the history of a place is always a consideration for any project he undertakes, the history of a town needn’t (and shouldn’t) necessarily preclude changes that will keep it relevant and help to propel it forward into the future. A rich backstory needn’t mean “no change, ever.” In fact, to his mind, it’s counterintuitive—just as we shouldn’t be blindly tearing things down, we shouldn’t automatically react to forward motion negatively. “There’s such a thing as being stuck,” he said. “In the end, change is one of the only constants in life.”

The 44 West project is expected to entail a couple the history of a town’s history of months of demolition prior needn’t necessarily preclude to the construction phase, which is expected to take changes that will keep it relevant approximately 10-12 months. and help to propel it forward This means if all goes well, the project will meet its targeted completion date at the end of this mind over the course of several years— year. As for the tenants who will occupy and Kahn feels good about it. “I don’t do the new space, well, Kahn seemed pretty projects that I don’t feel good about; I’m enthusiastic about that as well. “I can’t proud of everything I’ve done,” he said. make a formal announcement on that,” “I’m not interested in pushing things on he told us. “But let’s just say that I am people, but when you know that somepresently oversubscribed. If I could have thing is right for the town, you just have to added another floor to the building, I could stick with it.” have easily leased it.” That’s no small feat, In the end, though, Kahn feels it doesn’t considering that the first floor can accom- really matter what he says. He believes modate up to four commercial tenants, that the finished product will speak for and the office space floors can accommo- itself. “I couldn’t be happier about this date up to six office tenants on each floor, project, and I’m confident that everyone according to Leibman. “However, they can will be pleased with the way this turns out. be of varying sizes and will depend on the Whether they admit it or not is another tenant, so an exact number of offices per story. But I can’t worry about that.” floor is not known at this time,” he said. There is a great Bob Dylan quote that Either way, it’s pretty impressive, given seems to fit both Eli Kahn and the fruithat the fate of Kahn’s vision for reimag- tion of the 44 West project: “Everything ining the corner of Church and Gay has passes, everything changes. Just do what been in peril on several occasions—never you think you should do.”





Owner of the


PHOTO Amy Tucker INTERVIEW Dan Mathers

Dr. Leonard Giunta is a man of many talents, but today we’re chatting (mostly) about his Gay Street furniture business So, how’s a doctor end up running a furniture business? Well, for years I’ve developed real estate, and I had a piece of real estate in Exton where two people who rented from me sold furniture. As they started selling more, they wanted to expand, and they asked me to partner with them. A long story short, they were supposed to be the experts, but I quickly found out they were not as educated in the business as I’d hoped. It was going nowhere, so I decided to buy them out. That’s when I started the first Giunta’s Furniture in Exton.

What brought the business to West Chester? I’ve always loved West Chester. As you may know, my father had a grocery business here for 50 to 60 years. West Chester didn’t have a furniture store, and I had a piece of real estate in Gay Street Plaza that was big enough to start a store here. Both stores have seen significant growth in the last three years. My daughter Jenny is the manager here in West Chester, and we really know the business now and have developed a lot of recurring customers. How do you go about competing with online retailers and big-box stores? We’ve found success by being unique — that’s why we sell furniture, and accessories and gifts. Furniture can be a large investment, so people don’t buy it all that often. We wanted to find a way to bring people in on a daily basis. Gifts and accessories are purchased more regularly, which brings people through the door. It’s been a very successful combination. Are you also a practicing doctor? Yes. I practice family medicine.

And a real estate developer. For about 40 years now. Have you dabbled in any other projects along the way? Many. Because of my background as a physician, I had the opportunity to become a founding partner in Jackson ImmunoResearch, a company that produces immunoproteins for the medical research community. I also bought another company about five years ago called Proper Nutrition that sells nutraceuticals that are used for IBS and hypoproteinemia. Is furniture your newest endeavor? Nope. I recently bought a 20-acre farm in Marshallton raising sheep and selling them to market. That’s a pretty diverse background. So, why furniture? I liked it — I enjoy retail. As a doctor, if I’m not working, I don’t generate any money. In stores, with good managers, I can still grow without being directly involved all the time. Plus, I love West Chester and having retail businesses helps the community flourish. By keeping people spending their money here in town, we all benefit. This community is important for all of us.





Near and Far

Jamie Jones of Whirlaway Travel explores some travel options abroad and highlights their local counterparts

The end of 2018 was a whirlwind of last-minute trips that took me to Arizona, Florida and finally Kenya. Getting to each of these destinations required flying, something that I have gotten quite used to over the years. This year, however, flying was a bit different. I was able to experience Kenya Airways brand-new, non-stop service from JFK to Nairobi, meet with the team and view the TCS Private Jet Expeditions’ sleek 52-seat, all first-class Boeing 757 and hop around Kenya on Elewana SkySafari’s private 9-seater Cessna that was more comfortable than most commercial jets I’ve been on. Our pilot, Peter, even let us each have a turn at “flying” the plane. All of this flying got me thinking about, well… flying. One of the biggest pains in planning travel is figuring out the easiest way to get from point A to point B. Sometimes this involves cars or trains, but most of the time it requires getting onto some sort of flying machine. Personally, I find commercial flights the worst part of a journey. What should be a five-hour flight is really a nine-hour journey: driving to the airport, waiting for twohours, actually flying, waiting another 30 minutes to get my luggage and then driving to my final destination. For the journeys in which I fly economy (or steerage, as some of my clients call it), the stress of not knowing who I’ll be stuck with for the next five hours is enough to drive me to the airport bar. Security lines, lagging luggage returns and tray tables that harbor more germs than a hotel room remote control only add to the anxiety. Much to my delight, TCS Private Jet Expeditions and SkySafari brought just about as much joy in the journey to my destination as my time at the destination itself. On both flights we boarded with minimal (if any) security at private airports. Flight crews were personable and seemed happy to have us aboard. Most important was the time saved. On a TCS 24-day journey, the average time spent in airports alone is three DAYS less than doing the same itinerary on commercial flights. And, for my trips within Africa, my SkySafari flights were shockingly rewarding. They had us boarded and in the air within 10 minutes of our arrival. These two options (at wildly varying price points) make me excited to fly again. Unfortunately, outside of work, the opportunity to hop on a private plane is not my reality, but taking pilot lessons at Brandywine Flight School could very well be within reach for most of us. Located right outside of West Chester, the school makes the joy of flying among the clouds accessible to people looking for a future career in flight, (and those that just want to pretend, on an intimate level, that we are birds). Not looking to commit to 60-hours of flight school? Head over to the Chester County Helicopter Museum where on select days they offer a short trip for under $100. Considering there are no baggage fees, the price is a steal! Commercial flights may have soiled my joy of air travel, but the possibilities of private flight—both as far as Kenya and as near as West Chester—have brought renewed excitement to the idea of getting some wind beneath my wings. —








COTT ZUKIN, president

134 E Gay St

of Zukin Realty, has From dirt floor to modern a tendency to be very optimistic about the benefits of development in the borough, and considering that the company his father founded, which he now runs, has been at the center of much of that development, it’s easy to see why. Since the 1990s, Zukin Realty has played an instrumental role in transforming the real estate prospects of the borough, and Scott still remembers the town’s condition before their involvement. “People either don’t know or don’t remember what the borough looked like 15 years ago,” says Scott. “The borough used to be a really challenging place; people forget that it hasn’t been that long since 60% of the town was vacant.”


Over the last quarter century, Zukin Realty has grown from a single building to a company that owns and manages more than 400 units, transforming iconic properties along the way. “West Chester was originally just a bunch of houses,” says Scott. “There weren’t all these retail and dining spaces—they had to be created.” Their recent project on Market Street, the space that has become Mercato Restaurant and Bar, is a great example. It was originally three buildings, all owned by the county and all in a state of disrepair. Zukin Realty purchased the property and renovated it, literally, from the ground up, all while preserving its historic exterior. “We combined the first floors of the buildings and dug out a basement to make an extra space,” Scott says. “While we sought the right client for that space, we renovated the upper levels, turning them into apartments.” They applied this same formula to Dolce Zola’s space at 134 E Gay St, when the owners who were then running the smaller iPasta wanted to expand into something bigger. Zukin Realty combined From dive bar the first two floors of adjacent buildings while maintaining the exteriors and added a beautifully renovated to luxury retail basement, as well as space for a patio.

135 E Gay St

15 N Church Street is another source of pride for Zukin Realty. “That place was vacant for about 20 years,” says Scott. The windows were all blown out, and the building was utterly dilapidated (see the previous page for confirmation). “It could have been deemed something in need of being knocked down,” he says. Rather than demolish the building and start from scratch, Zukin Realty worked hand-in-hand with the Historic Architecture Review Board to preserve the building’s exterior, all while creating a beautiful interior space that’s become the home of Yori’s Church Street Bakery. “We wanted to maintain that character and maintain the history as best as possible,” Scott explains. Zukin Realty’s work at 15 N Church St won them a Preservation Award, one of many they’ve earned over the years. They have also received awards for notable properties like the ones that house Ram’s Head Bar and Grill, as well as 119 E Gay St, the current home of The Social. According to Allen Burke, chair of the West Chester Preservation Awards, much of the recognition for these projects relates back to Scott Zukin himself. “Through the years, West Chester Preservation Awards have been given to four different Zukin projects, largely in recognition of Scott Zukin’s passion for excellence in the art of carpentry combined with a love of borough history,”





Zukin Realty hopes their hotel at the corner of Gay and Walnut will start construction this year.

he said. The Social is a great example of Scott’s passion and interest in carpentry. On that project, they dove deeper than usual, conducting historical research to uncover photos and illustrations of the building’s original appearance. Rather than simply cleaning the space up, they took steps to restore the structure to its original appearance, even going so far as removing individual wooden brackets and meticulously repairing and reinstalling them. And, if all goes according to plan, Zukin Realty will be bringing a massive new project to the borough, a six-story structure set to go up at the corner of Gay and Walnut, where the vacant property that was once Rite Aid now stands. The project has been in the works for years, as they’ve been working with the borough to get their plans approved, but Scott is hopeful they’re nearing the end of the process—he expects an answer from the borough this month. “We’ve given them everything they’ve asked for at this point, and we’ve worked very hard over the last six months to implement requested changes to the design we presented to them over the summer,” says Scott. “The ball is in their court.”

What Scott is hoping to get approved is a 110-room hotel (see above), with a large first-floor restaurant space that would be sizeable enough for hosting events. Scott’s a big believer in building for a purpose, and he’s certain there is a greater purpose behind this project. “This town could use another hotel,” Scott says. “A hotel brings a population to town that’s out and about, looking for something to do after business is concluded for the day—it brings a vibrancy to the town.” Scott’s optimistic that their plans will be approved, so he has begun to court interests from potential restaurants. Sticking to his insistence on introducing beneficial businesses to the borough, the restaurant most likely to occupy the first floor is Big Fish, a nationally recognized seafood company founded in Delaware. “This town is in a need of a seafood restaurant,” Scott says. “Big Fish have other successful locations, and they’re focused on quality to the extent that they have their own delivery trucks and go to the markets to source the fish themselves.” There are a few consistent elements in everything that Zukin Realty does, the

most well-known of which is their concentration on multi-use properties, those that allow commercial space on the first floors and living space above. “This has never been a commuter town,” Scott says. “Part of what makes West Chester special is that many of the people who shop, work and dine here live right above the businesses they visit.” Scott insists that the people who live downtown are just as important as the businesses, and that any development in the town needs to consider both sides. “We work to keep the tennants in the buildings that we buy and renovate,” he says. “In the past we’ve had tennants that we worked with, along with area non-profits, to take them from unemployed, on the verge of homeless, to paying their own bills.” The other consistent element is a focus on maintaining character while developing properties that can benefit the current needs of the community. “We really strive to take these old buildings and retain their history while we adapt them for contemporary use,” Scott says. “I think it’s possible for responsible development to blend a property’s past with its future.”






Becca Boyd shares tips on life and cooking on her blog at


Whether or now you’ve resolved to eat healthier, you’re likely ready to emerge from the food coma induced by December’s deluge of cookies and alcohol. Here are two recipes to get you started. Spaghetti Squash is a great food for us hungry folks (the chewing-to-calorie ratio is amazing), while the muffins, which freeze beautifully, will keep you from the morning drive-through with something nutritious and delicious. – Chicken Enchilada Stuffed Spaghetti Squash - serves 4 2 small spaghetti squash, 1 medium zucchini, finely diced halved and seeds removed 4 roma tomatoes, finely chopped 2 chicken breasts 1 tsp. kosher salt 1 (15 oz) can Hatch red enchi- Pepper to taste lada sauce 8 oz. Pepper Jack Cheese, grated

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place squash halves, cut side down, on a dish and spoon 1-2 tbsp. of water onto the plate or dish. Microwave ten minutes (if you have two small squash, do one – two halves – at a time). 2. Meanwhile, bring a small saucepan of water to boil. Add chicken and reduce to low. Cook chicken at a bare simmer for about 10 minutes. Remove and shred or chop chicken. 3. When squash are cool enough to handle, scrape the insides into a large mixing bowl. Add chicken, enchilada sauce, zucchini, tomatoes, salt and pepper and stir to combine. 4. Place squash shells on foil-lined baking sheet. Spoon mixture back into squash shells. Top with cheese. Bake for 15 minutes to heat through and, if desired, move to top rack and broil until cheese is bubbling and brown. Big Batch Zucchini-Carrot Mini Muffins - Makes about 60 2 c. white whole wheat flour 6 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted and cooled 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon 2 c. grated and squeezed-dry 3/4 tsp. kosher salt zucchini 2 tsp. baking soda 3/4 c. honey or maple syrup 1 c. grated and squeezed-dry carrot 2 large eggs 1 c. raisins 2 tsp. vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk flour, cinnamon, salt and baking soda. 2. In a smaller bowl whisk honey, eggs and vanilla. Add mixture to dry ingredients and fold to combine. 3. Add melted/cooled butter and fold to combine. 4. Add zucchini, carrots and raisins and fold until evenly distributed. 5. Line mini muffin pan with liners or spray with nonstick spray. Add batter to pan, filling cups to mounded brim (about 1 tablespoon of batter). Bake for 15 minutes. Cool on wire rack and store at room temp or freeze up to three months. JANUARY 2019 THEWCPRESS.COM




Get to know the businesses that Spring is just around the corner, may have started as mom-and-pop and we explore everything that’s operations but have grown into green and growing to inspire your sizeable employers. gardening.



2019 April SUSTAINABILITY It’s not just a buzz word — many local businesses pride themselves on it, and we think they’re worthy of recognition.


With the school year ending, we’re Our annual guide on ways to From business to borough council, highlighting local options that occupy your family in the coming this town finds a good many memlearners young and old can utilize months has grown to be a highly bers of the under 40 crowd making to stay sharp. anticipated feature. an impact.



A Brief History O f Development In Downtown

West Chester





Post Office #4 Historic 101 East Gay Street

photograph from 1907

STORY Malcolm Johnstone CURRENT PHOTO Courtney Potts HISTORIC PHOTOS Courtesy of Chester County Historical Society


n April 9, 1784, the future West Chester was conceived when the first map of what was then simply a village was laid out into four square blocks divided by Gay and High Streets and bounded by Chestnut, Walnut, Market, and Church Streets. This grid was sliced into 32 land parcels by a handful of locals and then sold for commercial development. What prompted this action was the Pennsylvania Assembly’s decsion to allow the seat of Chester County to move from the City of Chester to “the vicinity of Turks Head Tavern.” This meant a courthouse needed to be constructed, which would occupy the location where the lawn and fountain now sit, just north of the historic courthouse. As the first courthouse was being built, it became clear that this settlement of farmers would swiftly evolve into a political center that would attract

commerce. This first courthouse officially opened on November 28, 1786, when the first court session was held. But the actual birth of West Chester occurred later, on March 3, 1788, when the Pennsylvania Assembly, acting as proud parents, designated the village a “county town,” named it West Chester, and swaddled it in its current boundaries. The best and earliest example of what is referred to as West Chester’s first period development is the Darlington Building. It was named after William Darlington (1782-1863), a doctor, botanist, banker, politician, and all-around good guy who lived and worked within the building at 13 N High St. It was originally built in 1789 by James Smith and enlarged by William Sharpless in 1792. The structure predates all other buildings in the downtown and may be considered a historical anchor building. While the first courthouse (1786) was demolished along with its neighboring administrative building in 1846, it holds its place as cornerstone for development


in West Chester. Indeed, it led the way to the creation of what is now West Chester’s iconic historic courthouse at the corner of High and Market Streets. It was designed by Thomas U. Walter to replace the original courthouse of 1786. The architectural design is Greek Revival represented in several structures on High Street. It opened in February 1848 and became one of Walter's greatest architectural achievements. It also made county government the largest developer in downtown West Chester. Other features have been added to the area surrounding the Historic Courthouse over the years. A public drinking fountain, which ran water continuously from an underground spring, was placed in front of the Courthouse in 1869 to provide "water for people, horses, and dogs" from separate drinking bowls.






Bank of Chester County #1 First 17 North High Street photograph from 1940

Eventually, more room was required to accommodate the courts and public services. As a result, a new structure called the North Wing opened in 1966 at what was then 16 North High Street. International-style architecture was used. Amazingly, it included a vertical stone relief sculpture with four panels by Bucks County artist Harry Rosin (1897-1973).

Each panel is ten-feet high, five-feet wide and one-foot thick and together they weigh 18-tons. It depicts several Chester County historical figures plus George Washington and Marquis de Lafayette. It represents the largest and most outstanding public art work in West Chester. After the county government, the prize for being West Chester’s larg-

est developer goes to William Everhart (1785–1868) who was one of West Chester’s most influential citizens and instrumental in the expansion and prosperity of the city. He is most notable for developing the Lincoln Building (1833) at 28 West Market Street. Designed by William Strickland, this Federalist structure marks the beginning of the second





period of development for West Chester that began after Everhart purchased the Wollerton Farm consisting of 102 acres southwest of Market and High Streets. The structure became known as the Lincoln Building in 1947 when it was rededicated by the Chester County Historical Society in recognition of the fact that Abraham Lincoln's first biography was written and published there on February 11, 1860. It is considered one of the most historically intact sites in West Chester. The property owner, Chester County Community Foundation, welcomes visitors to browse inside during weekday business hours.

West Chester Fire Company #2 First 30 N Church St photograph from 1930

William Everhart was largely the first and most prevalent private developer to buy and parcel off a large sum of land for means of development. His purchase of the Wollerton Farm and the subsequent development of the land allowed West Chester to grow into what it is today, with Church Street, Miner Street, Price Street, and South High Street coming into being. West Chester’s population more than tripled during his development years, leading to a building boom that has continued, with some unfortunate interruptions, to this day. There are many fine examples of this continued development that still stand in downtown West Chester. The following is a list of highlights, a collection of buildings with a storied past that have stood the test of time...

#1 First Bank of Chester County 17 N High St (1837) Easily the grandest single-story facade in West Chester, the First Bank of Chester County (now occupied by Wells Fargo Bank) was designed in 1836 by Thomas U. Walter. It is the oldest commercial structure in West Chester still doing the business for which it was built. The architecture, highlighted by the Doric portico, was inspired by Stuart & Revett’s Antiquities of Athens, published in 1762, London. It is a grand example of Greek Revival, part of what helped West Chester earn the nickname Athens of Pennsylvania, and it has the tallest one-story facade in the borough. Stepping onto the portico, one

WHEN WEST CHESTER’S FIRST FIRE COMPANY WAS ESTABLISHED ... EACH VOLUNTEER WAS PROVIDED WITH TWO WATER BUCKETS. can look up and find the words “Thomas U. Walter, Architect” engraved into the stone ceiling. The inside lobby has been restored to its original splendor with a magnificent Tiffany-style chandelier as the centerpiece.

Horticultural Hall 225 N High St at Chestnut (1848) This was the last West Chester commission of renowned architect Thomas U. Walter before he became the architect of the Capitol where he oversaw the

construction of the current dome atop the U.S. Capitol Building. The facade, an example of Romanesque architectural style, features buttresses (those columns that support the corners of the structure) and a recessed Norman arch above the door. It is made of serpentine stone, a limestone with a greenish hue from the Taylor Quarry north of West Chester and used in many other West Chester structures. At the time it was constructed, only one other building in the U.S. existed for horticultural exhibitions. At its completion in 1848, the first horticultural exhibit featured a miniature steam railroad and many other exhibits. A historical marker at curbside recognizes Pennsylvania's first women's rights convention that took place there in 1852. The building became the home of the Chester County Historical Society in 1938.





Chester Armory #3 West 226 North High Street postcard from 1928


with its patterned brick and carved stone and an eclectic design mix of Tuscan Romanesque, Gothic, and Colonial Revival. The tower was used for spotting fires, housing the alarm bell, and drying the company's 800-foot hose. It is currently the home of Restaurant 51.

#3 #2 First West Chester Fire Company 30 N Church St (1888) When West Chester's first Fire Company was established in 1799, it had 23 volunteers. The company was considered well-equipped with the exception that it did not have an "apparatus for extinguishing fires." Instead, each volunteer was provided with two water buckets. By 1887, the fire company found itself on North Church Street in a small engine house that needed to be modernized to the needs of the growing community. Architect T. Roney Williamson was commissioned to join two buildings into one Queen Anne-style station,

West Chester Armory Building 226 N High St at Washington (1916) Tracing their unit roots all the way back to Benjamin Franklin, the Pennsylvania National Guard Bravo Company, 1-111 Infantry Battalion, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team—also known as the "Associators"—called The West Chester Armory home for nearly 100-years while serving the country in natural disasters and most armed conflicts. The 10,900-square-foot building accommodated up to 170 troops, complete with a basement rifle range, until their move to the new Coatesville Readiness Center in Sadsbury in 2013. The structure has been re-purposed into the Uptown! Knauer Performing Arts Center.

Farmers & Mechanics Building 2 W Market St at High (1908) One of the best-known landmarks in the seat of Chester County, the F&M Building was designed in 1907 by William C. Prichett and completed in 1908. The six-story structure is known as West Chester’s first, and only, authentic skyscraper. With a height of 90 feet, the Beaux Arts-style building remains the tallest commercial structure in the borough of West Chester. The site's Neoclassical architecture is one-of-a-kind, as its exterior is faced with Indiana limestone and yellow hardface brick with decorative terra cotta details. Added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1983, the building has a deep history in the region. In 1918 when the Boy Scouts were chartered in Chester County, the F&M Building served as the company headquarters. Throughout World War II, the building was used by Pennsylvania’s Citizen’s Defense Corps to watch for enemy German planes. Today, the F&M Building is owned by the Myles Corporation and is the home of align.Space.





Warner Block of High St #5 The 100-134 N High St photograph from 1930


#4 Historic Post Office 101 E Gay St at Walnut (1907/1935) In 1905, the United State Post Office decided to construct a new regional post office that would also serve as a federal building. This was during a time when James Knox Taylor served as the supervising Architect of the Treasury (1897-1912). He believed that government buildings should be monumental and beautiful, designed by individual architects in classical styles and built of the highest quality materials. The Post Office was actually built in two phases, thirty years apart. The first phase called for the Post Office to be designed as a two-and-a-half story structure with a raised main floor above a daylight basement, giving it a piano nobile quality. This building is particularly noteworthy for its Cockeysville Marble that was quarried at Baker's Station near Avondale, about 18-miles away. It's a white stone that has crystalline qualities that glitter in the sunlight. Cockeysville Marble is most famous for its use in the Washington Monument in Washington, DC, where the first 152 feet of the monument is faced with it. In 1935, the structure was more than doubled in size. The addition has identical stone features to the original, although a curious feature is the appearance of certain stones near the top that have a blue-ish hue. This stone is called Brandywine Blue and appears to have been used simply to add interest.

#5 Hotel Warner & the Warner Block 100 block of N High St (1930) Brian McFadden, a local developer and owner of lodging establishments down the shore, adapted the old Warner Theater into an up-scale hotel at 120 North High Street. Most of the High Street block where the Warner stands departs from the architecture found in other parts of downtown. That's primarily because a shallow underground spring limited development to mostly

corrals and stables until 1930. It was then that Warner Bros. Pictures saw West Chester as an ideal community for a grand theater that could seat up to 1,600 movie goers. They hired the architect firm of Rapp & Rapp of Chicago, who designed theaters throughout the country. The architecture that was currently all the rage at that time was Art Deco, a French import and the theater became the showplace of Chester County. Despite efforts to save the theater, its auditorium was demolished in the 1980s, although the facades along High Street survived. With the new construction of 80 well-appointed rooms, it has found new life as the Hotel Warner.





Making a Difference Rotary Club of West Chester contibutes a monthly column exploring good works, good fun and local organizations that are making a difference.

This January, the Rotary Club of West Chester will kick off its 37th Annual Fruit Sale. Members will be knocking on doors, calling and emailing their contacts, all in an effort to persuade them to buy California oranges and grapefruits that will be delivered in late February. Longtime fruit sale chairperson Christine Wildauer, who owns Lorgus Flowers, rallies the membership each year to get out and sell fruit. “Without the support of each and every Rotarian, we would not have this successful fundraiser that allows us to support the community,” she says. It’s more than just the love of citrus that has Rotarians dialing up their friends and family. Each year the club picks a different organization to partner with and benefit from the proceeds. Recently the club has worked with the West Chester Senior Center, Fame Fire Company, and even The West Chester Area School District. This year’s partner is the local branch of Opportunities Industrialization Centers of America, an organization dedicated to providing free adult education and essential life skills programs that prepare individuals for employment and self-sufficiency. Since 1979, the organization, known as Chester County OIC, has assisted more than 15,000 adults and youths in improving their lives through increased knowledge and training. The unofficial motto is “Helping people help themselves!” The OIC has several programs designed to help folks better their situation. The Workforce Reintegration Program is an employment and vocational counseling program assisting those Chester County residents who are unemployed, underemployed, homeless, or in a transitional living situation. The WRP provides resume preparation and interviewing skills. The OIC also offers free classroom instruction to help students prepare to pass the General Education Diploma examination, and they even facilitate the County Test Center offering the GED exam, in conjunction with the Chester County and the Workforce Development Board. One of OIC’s most recognized programs is the Nurse Aid Training Program. This is a comprehensive 13-week training program which prepares individuals for certification as Nursing Assistants for work in the healthcare industry. They are planning to use funds from the fruit sale to make improvements in the facilities and classrooms used for nurse training A new initiative for the Chester County OIC is the Skills/Opportunities/Achievement/Responsibility (SOAR) program, intended to help younger residents who have been involved in the adult or juvenile justice system make a successful transition back into the community. The goal is to encourage and assist these at-risk folks to become productive, responsible and law-abiding citizens. So, keep in mind that, if you get a call from a Rotarian asking you to buy a case of fruit this winter, you’ll be getting more than citrusy goodness; you’ll be making a difference. – If you are interested in making a difference, please feel free to check us out. The Rotary Club of West Chester meets every Thursday at noon at the West Chester Country Club.




Introducing the Next Generation of Care. We’re undergoing our largest expansion yet, implementing programmatic innovation to bring new possibilities for all who come to us for care. With 250,000 square feet of progressive design, we’re not only building a better space for healing, we’re defining the future of medicine in our community. Another reason your life is worth Penn Medicine.

See what’s coming.

Chester County Hospital continues to expand it’s coverage, and to do so, they’re gonna need a bigger building. Story Kate Chadwick






a phenomenon familiar to anyone who’s ever undertaken a home renovation or DIY project: you identify a situation (this room is looking drab!), pinpoint a solution (let’s rip up this tired carpeting!), and like a Hydra, another issue grows a head to replace it (these new floors make the wall paint look terrible!). But going through those steps is how you end up with the space you want and need. For the folks at Chester County Hospital, it’s been a similar situation, but on a much, much larger scale. How much larger? A 250,000 square foot expansion along with a 26,000 square foot renovation. Happily, they are past the identifying and pinpointing stages and are now well on their way from the planning to the implementation of the biggest expansion ever undertaken at the facility, according to CCHS President and CEO, Mike Duncan. “I’ve been at CCHS from almost eight years, and the hospital was in fine shape, from a good patient satisfaction level, high quality medical staff, great culture standpoint, when I got here,” Duncan told us. “At that point, though, we still had a fair number of semi-private rooms, so we needed to begin building. That’s when we built the Lasko Tower.” That project, in 2014, added

72 patient rooms for cardiac patients, orthopedic and surgical recovery units, and a mother and baby pavilion, and updated the hospital to essentially all private—as opposed to semi-private—rooms, which has become the industry norm, particularly in suburban areas.

point for our continued growth. That’s what initiated the present expansion.” Sounds good, but! “Our operating rooms were essentially landlocked in a 1925 building,” Duncan said. “We couldn’t just expand them where they were. So then it was ‘Okay, let’s build new rooms in a new platform from scratch, and while

OUR OPERATING ROOMS WERE ESSENTIALLY LANDLOCKED IN A 1925 BUILDING. WE C O U L D N ’ T J U S T E X P A N D T H E M . .. S O T H E N IT WAS ‘OKAY, LET’S BUILD NEW ROOMS IN A N E W P L A T F O R M F R O M S C R A T C H .’” Upon opening the Tower and implementing a few other initiatives, the hospital experienced a bit of a growth spurt, according to Duncan. The next Hydra-like limitation to the hospital’s growth? The operating rooms. “Our 10 operating rooms were fine, but some of them were built several decades ago, and back then, they were simply much smaller. With newer procedures, you need bigger rooms. We have two surgical robots, we have imaging, there are computer stacks that are in the room, and you need more people to operate all this stuff. The size and number of the operating rooms became the choke

we’re at it, why don’t we put in more private rooms on top of that, and while we’re at that, why don’t we just expand the emergency room?” Like most renovations that take on a life of their own, money is an essential component. In this case, the solution was a partnership. “Six years ago, the board and the management team and I concluded that we wouldn’t be able to do everything we wanted to do for this community unless we partnered with somebody who was bigger. And that led us to Penn Medicine.”





A L O T O F G L AS S I S I N C O R PORATE D I NTO THE P ROJE CT’S DE SI GN S O T H AT PEOPL E I N S I DE T H E HOSP I TA L—WHE THE R PATI E NTS OR STA F F — C A N L OOK OU T S I DE A ND SE E THE P HY SI CA L BE A U TY TH ERE It was a great fit right out of the gate. “Penn Medicine has been just a fantastic partner,” Duncan told us. “They’ve invested the capital, helped us recruit additional doctors and nurses, and at the same time, they’ve recognized that Chester County Hospital has a unique and very special culture. They’ve gone out of their way to acknowledge that culture, and to let the local management team maintain that feel of how we treat one another here. I was impressed when Penn leadership—from our very first meeting—mentioned that our culture here was something that they wanted to be protected.” With the partnership established and the capital secured, ground was broken in May of 2017 for this ambitious project, and things seem to be on target for completion of it by the target date of December 2019—“It’s our Christmas present to the community,” Duncan said. “At this point, we’re very optimistic that we’re going to be right on schedule. The most important thing we needed to get done has gotten done: the new tower is enclosed. So snow or bad weather won’t impede us at this point—all the work has moved indoors.”

Speaking of the indoors, even the architectural firm selected for the job was a good fit. As it happened, the same firm, Ballinger, which has worked with CCH for over 20 years, also does business with Penn Medicine. “So when we wanted to do this expansion,” Duncan said, “we already had somebody who understood what’s important to us doing the design.” A couple of the concepts considered in the design were not only the history of Chester County, but the geography of it. So it was not only important to maintain the hospital’s architectural elements, but a lot of glass is incorporated into the project’s design so that people inside the hospital—whether patients or staff—can look outside and see the physical beauty there. “Right now, if you walk into an operating room for your eight- or 10- or 12-hour shift, you won’t see the outdoors again until you get in your car to go home,” Duncan told us. “In the new structure, there’s glass right next to the operating room, so between cases, a nurse or doctor or tech can step out into a quiet space and look out onto the beauty of Chester County.” There will

also be several interior courtyards with trees, and a huge green roof on top of the operating rooms. In addition to creating these physically beautiful spaces, a lot of work has gone into creating quiet spaces where a doctor and a patient or a patient and family can find spaces for conversation. “We’re creating a calm, quiet environment for everyone here. Even the floors in our new neonatal intensive care unit are sound absorbent. It’s unbelievably quiet, which helps the babies.” With the renovation completed by the end of next year, move in will commence in January of 2020, and it’s expected that everything will be operational (no pun intended) by the early part of April. The project—like many renovations—is both exciting and demanding, and Duncan says the CCH management team is working hard—really hard. “We’re doing two full time jobs right now,” he said. “We’re successfully running the hospital that we’ve got, and at the same time, we’re building the hospital that we want: a hospital for the future.”





Design Dilemmas Andrea Mason of Perceptions Interiors is a professional interior designer who wants to help you upgrade your space

With a new year comes new trends. If you are looking to try something different in your home, check out one of these trending interior design details that are sure to make a statement in 2019. A VIBRANT HUE Pantone has announced the color of the year: Living Coral. This powerful and uplifting hue is best described as orange meets pink and is perfect for any design style. When it comes to daring and bright colors, it’s best to stick to interchangeable items. Great examples accessories that will make an impact are pillows, drapery, an accent table, or a rug. KEEPIN’ IT GREEN Being eco friendly is a trend that I hope will never go out of style. I have recently seen a rise in its popularity partly due to the fact that it’s becoming easier and easier to get your hands on earth-friendly furniture lines and materials. The salvaged/rustic style is also a big hit right now in the design industry. Furniture from recycled metal and wood materials make great tables and many furniture companies carry an eco-friendly line. Their upholstery pieces are made with no harsh chemicals or materials, making the furniture perfect for a healthy planet and home. Repurposing items like an old barn door or flooring from a torn down house all leave less of a carbon footprint and create unique spaces that are timeless. FLORALS ARE IN! ...and two beautiful and easy ways to implement this look are with wallpaper and fabric. These are not your grandma’s florals. There are now endless floral patterns, from neutral and modern to traditional and vibrant. Like any graphic print, it’s a great way to add personality to a space. It’s also a fantastic way to brighten your home and bring an element from the outdoors inside. OLD AND NEW Modern meets vintage is a design style that has been around for quite some time, but it will take center stage this year. Mixing designs from different eras can be challenging, but if done correctly, it will create a look that is unique to you. Taking a classic chair and upholstering it in an updated fabric will breath new life into the piece while making a statement. A mid-century sofa on top of an oriental rug would combine two time periods and look collected and cool. Layering and mixing patterns and colors will also create an eye-catching, eclectic-chic look. OVERHEAD Statement ceilings are looking up in 2019. People often forget about their ceilings as a way to implement design, but there are a few ways you can use this striking design trend, with paint, wallpaper or architectural features. Painting or applying wallpaper can make an otherwise boring room have color and pattern. Architectural features, including beams or coffered ceilings, create drama and interest. It’s shaping up to be a great year for design; I can’t wait to see what trends pop up. Happy New Year! —




Faunbrook B&B

An 1860s grand manor estate on the south side of West Chester

Weddings d shoWers d rehearsal dinners guest stays d events d 2 to 100 guests 699 West Rosedale Avenue • West Chester, PA 19382 610-436-5788 • 800-505-3233 •



Good luck spotting the five differences in this photo of an architect’s rendering of a street scene, then send your answer to, and you’ve got a chance to win a Barnaby’s gift certificate. Congrats to December’s winner Elizabeth Thomas who spotted the five differences in the Christmas display!





January Playlist DJ Romeo curates a list of the tracks you’ll be enjoying all summer long. The following is a list of songs that will take over the radio stations in the next few months. You’ll soon know them by heart and play them ‘til they’re tired. But, good news: you can download them first and look like the cool musical genius to all of your friends. | @DJRomeo24

Marshmello ft. Roddy Ricch – “Project Dreams” Rei – “Good Mood” Randy Houser – “New Buzz” Blackway ft. Black Caviar – “What’s Up Danger” Benny Blanco & Calvin Harris – “I Found You” Meek Mill ft. Drake – “Championships” The Chainsmokers ft. Winona Oak – “Hope” Nicki Minaj ft. Anuel Aa & Bantu – “Familia” Tiesto – “Grapevine” ZAYN – “There You Are” Avril Lavigne – “Tell Me It’s Over” Brett Young – “Ticket to L.A.” PRETTYMUCH – “Jello” Ariana Grande – “imagine” SHAED – “Trampoline” Matt Maeson – “The Mask” Backstreet Boys – “Chances” Mark Ronson ft. Miley Cyrus – “Nothing Breaks Like A Heart” CHVRCHES – “Miracle” Sabrina Carpenter – “Sue Me” Charli XCX & Troye Sivan – “1999” Jake Miller – “Wait For You” Ella Mai – “Trip” Cris Cab ft. J Balvin – “Just Wanna Love You” Lauren Daigle – “You Say” Midnight Quickie ft. Matter Mos – “Summer Love” ZAYN ft. Nicki Minaj – “No Candle No Light” Robin Thicke – “Testify” The Lumineers – “Pretty Paper” Brantley Gilbert ft. Lindsay Ell – “What Happens In A Small Town”





Can’t-Miss January Events

January 15

Uptown! Speaker Series: Good Night Ladies

Watch an award-winning film directed by Christina Hannum, who tells an incredible story of her talented grandmother, one of the world’s great masters of foxhunting, as well as an accomplished horsewoman. Good Night Ladies was a Rome Finalist, the winner of the film award EQUUS, and screened at the World Equestrian Games in 2018. After the film, there will be a Q&A with the filmmaker. The film starts at 6:30pm and tickets are $15 dollars in advance, $20 at the door. Uptown! Knauer Performing Arts Center 226 N High St, 610-356-2787

January 17

Jazz Cocktail Hour

Experience a Prohibition Party with vocalist Chelsea Reed and the Fairweather Five String Band. This cocktail event will be on the main stage, with a performance by the Swing Kat Dancers. Twenty VIP ticket holders will have an opportunity to take a dance lesson before the show and will be invited to perform with the professional dancers on stage. Tickets range from $20–$45, plus a $3 service fee. Hooch tastings by Manatawny Still Works begin at 5:30pm in the Uptown! Bar. The Party kicks off at 6:30pm. Uptown! Knauer Performing Arts Center 226 N High St, 610-356-2787

WC Bartender’s Ball is the biggest party of the year, and it’s raised more then $40,000 for local charities January 25

WCU Planetarium Presents: The Expanding, Accelerating Universe

Get familiar with our amazing universe. The Sandra F. Pritchard Mather Planetarium at WCU will be holding evening shows for the general public. The show will be hosted by a PhD astronomer, explaining what’s visible in the current night sky. Each session focuses on a particular subject of astronomy. There are no physical tickets to this show. Your name will be on a sign-in sheet provided by the planetarium staff after buying the tickets. Tickets go on sale on January 4, at 8:15pm. The show starts at 7pm and last about an hour. Mather Planetarium 750 S Church St, 610-785-2875

January 26

Hypnotizing America with Tim Miller

Ever wonder what it’s like to be hypnotized? You can experience it for yourself, at Uptown! Tim Miller is not your average hypnotist—he brings energy,

excitement, and humor into his shows. He believes that hypnosis is not magic or voodoo; its being able to engage with the subconscious mind. He thrives on laughter throughout his shows and chooses volunteers from the audience to guide his acts. You can buy tickets on Uptown!’s website ahead of time for $20, $25 dollars at the door, or if you’re a student you can snag ‘em for only $15. There is an additional $3 service fee. Curtains open at 7pm. Uptown! Knauer Performing Arts Center 226 N High St, 610-356-2787

January 28

WC Bartender’s Ball

The Bartenders Ball is back again this year. Join in on one of the biggest parties in West Chester with a roaring 20’s theme. The night opens with a cocktail hour, followed by an awards ceremony for the best in the business, capped off by crowning West Chester’s Bartender of the Year. The event boasts a five-hour open bar, and a live-music dance party kicks off after the awards. Tickets aren’t on sale yet, but follow the event on Facebook to stay informed.



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