CCRA member and Pulitzer Prize Inquirer columnist, Inga Saffron didn't write about the retail losses of the Pope Francis weekend, but instead captured the reaction of many CCRAers by noting that Pope Francis' visit "created the kind of car free city that urbanists dare imagine only in their wildest dreams." Inga's right. Carless urbanity remains a dream especially in our town where the Chestnut Street transitway is seen to have cratered a bustling commercial strip and came to be regarded as pretty much a nightmare. But for those thinking about chasing that car free city dream, a good place to start is Bogota. Yep. Bogota as in the Cali and Medellin cartels. Like Philadelphia, Bogota bottomed out in the 80's but, like Philadelphia, Bogota has turned the corner. Bogota's success was jump started by its former Mayor Enrique Penalosa. Penalosa's most famous quote: "An advanced city is not one where even the poor use cars, but rather one where even the rich use public transport". In a city with first world throughways and no sidewalks, Penalosa concluded that a bus with 80 passengers should be allotted 80 times more space than a private passenger vehicle and that those who walk and bicycle are just as entitled to a safe transportation experience as a motorist operating a BMW. After establishing miles of high speed bus lanes, dedicated bike paths and sidewalks, Penalosa declared February 24, 2000 as a "Dia sin caro", a car less day. 800,000 vehicles parked for 24 hours. Hospital admissions dropped by a third, air quality soared, but everyone got to work and school. Bogotans made the "dia sin caro" a yearly affair and took their wildest dreams into the polling booth, voting to ban all cars during rush hour by 2015 - a ballot initiative that, like many, didn't happen in the real world. But we needn't look to Bogota for dia sin caro inspiration. Try Santa Monica. Yes Santa bloody Monica, as in southern California, as in the infamous 405 freeway. What's the keystone of the Santa Monica uber pricey shopping/dining district? Its three block long Third Street Promenade where thousands of Angelenos can be seen, drumroll please, walking. Now close your eyes, dream your wildest dreams and while you are doing so, think of Sansom Street.
57TH ANNUAL CCRA HOUSE TOUR, SUN, 10/18,1-5 PM
This year's Tour features 10 spectacular Rittenhouse and Fitler Square addresses and includes a fascinating variety - from a traditional Delancey Street brownstone to the repurposed Swedenborgian Church; from the inside/outside gardens of a sleek Chestnut Street bi-level apartment to the best views of Philadelphia enjoyed from the 37th floor of the Murano - not to mention a Lombard Street hideaway featuring an indoor Roman bath and also an outside shower designed by mosaic artist Isaiah Zagar. We are grateful to this year's tour sponsors: AMC Delancey, Clemens Construction, Allan Domb Real Estate, Robin Apartments and Dranoff Properties.
The self-guided tour begins at day of tour ticket stands located at Trinity Center for Urban Life, 2212 Spruce Street in Fitler Square or Beth Zion Beth Israel (BZBI) at 18th & Spruce Streets (½ block from Rittenhouse Square). Participants receive a booklet with complete tour information, house descriptions and route map which entitles them to a day-of-tour 15% discount on food for dinner at area restaurants (reservations are suggested), including: Aldine, Audrey Claire, Twenty Manning Grill, and The Crow and the Pitcher. Parkway Corporation (31 S. 19th Street & 23rd and Market Streets) will offer $10 flat rate parking during the afternoon and evening of the tour.
Tour tickets are $35 each ($30 prior to 10/16). Tickets are available with a credit card through the CCRA web site www.centercityresidents.org, by calling (215) 546-6719, mailing a check to CCRA (1600 Market St., Suite 2500, Phila. 19103) and, after 10/1, in person at the following locations:
Rittenhouse Hardware, 2001 Pine St.
Pure Florist Design, 500 S. 22nd St.
Jomici Apothecary, 273 S. 15th St.
Maxx's Produce, 255 S. 20th St.
Waffles & Wedges, 1511 Pine St.
Good Karma Café 2319 Walnut
On the day of the tour tickets will be sold at:
18th & Spruce Streets, Temple Beth Zion-Beth Israel
22nd & Spruce Streets, Trinity Center for Urban Life
School Fair: Choosing the Right Elementary School for your Center City Child, MON, 10/5, 5-7pm, fRANKLIN INST. 222 N 20TH ST.
Parents and caregivers of preschool and elementary age children are invited to an elementary school fair designed to help parents research grade school options. The fair gives families the opportunity to speak directly to schools and compare individual philosophies and accomplishments. Public, charter, private and parochial schools have been invited to attend. Light refreshments will be served. Free general admission to Franklin Institute day of fair to all attendees (ask at ticket desk).
Presented by The Franklin Institute, Center City Residents' Association, Logan Square Neighborhood Association and South of South Neighborhood Association.
NEW CCRA DISCOUNT OPTIONS FOR DANCE AT THE PRINCE THEATER, OCT 14-18, 7:30 PM, 1412 Chestnut St
Under the direction of former Ailey superstars Dwight Rhoden and Desmond Richardson, Complexions Contemporary Ballet (CCB) launches Dance Affiliates' inaugural NextMove Series, October 14-18 in six performances. Program highlights include two Philadelphia premieres choreographed by Dwight Rhoden and repertoire favorites showcasing Rhoden's unprecedented approach to contemporary ballet.
Tickets cost $20-$57 and can be purchased in person at the Prince Theater Box Office, by phone 215-422-4580 by email or online. CCRA Members use promo code allattheprince to obtain a $10 discount.
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED FOR CCRA'S 57TH ANNUAL FALL HOUSE TOUR, SUN, 10/18
Hosts/Hostesses are stationed in beautiful homes and condos from 1:00PM until 3:00PM or from 3:00PM until 5:00PM. Duties include greeting tour goers, protecting household items, and encouraging a safe flow of foot traffic. In thanks for your gift of time, you will receive a free ticket to use either before or after your volunteer assignment to tour other homes. If you wish to volunteer, email us at email@example.com.
Preservation easements provide tax Incentives which encourage current owners of historic properties to restrict the development options of future purchasers. If you wish to ensure that future owners will "do the right thing" with your property, you should explore the merits of a preservation easement.
Find out more at a special workshop by the Center City Resident's Association and the Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia. It is sponsored by George C. Pilallis, Connelly & Moore Wealth Management Group of Wells Fargo Advisors. The meeting will begin at 6:00 with a wine and cheese reception in the Wells Fargo banking museum, at Broad and Walnut Streets. The registration fee is $15 for an individual, $20 for a couple and seating is limited. For more information and to make a reservation, click here.
HEAR YE, HEAR YE: MEET OUR REPS
The tentative schedule for the Town Hall meetings with our elected officials looks like this:
November, 2015Councilman Johnson
December, 2015Senator Farnese
February, 2016Councilman Clarke April, 2016Representative Sims
Dates and venues will be provided ASAP.
CALL FOR CCRA COMMITTEE VOLUNTEERS
CCRA is looking for members to serve on several committees and taskforces. If you are interested, please email CCRA.
The committees and taskforces for which CCRA is seeking members include:
Parking taskforce - to examine the demand for parking, parking patterns and what we can do to improve on-street parking in our neighborhood
Sidewalk cleaning taskforce - to examine efficacy of our street cleaning efforts and fundraising for those efforts
Technology/innovation taskforce - to improve CCRA's use of IT to better serve our members, including redoing our webiste
By-laws committee - this committee reviews proposed revisions to the buy laws
Nominations committee - selects future board members and officers for nomination
Grays Ferry Triangles Little Library in need of children's book donations
Any children's book donations will be accepted at the library, 23rd & South St and Grays Ferry Ave (just drop off in box), Baby WorkPlay (next door to Igloo at the plaza) or SOSNA office. Or email CCRA office for other arrangements.
CCRA MERCHANT MEMBERS DISCOUNT PROGRAM
Support our local merchants and save money too. These local merchants will provide a discount (described here) to any member who shows a current CCRA membership card (Di Bruno Bros. has its own CCRA card) and personal identification.
Dance Affiliate - Get $10 off Dance Performances with your CCRA Membership. Members use promo code allattheprince.
Uber - Limo service Uber provides $20 off a first ride, Good for new users only. Members use promo code CCRA14.
Philly Foodworks - Use the code "CCRA" when signing up for home delivery and receive a $20 discount on delivery charges.
NEIGHBORHOOD NEWS AND EVENTS
ART EXHIBIT: "THE NATURE OF COEXISTENCE," THRU SUN, 10/4, TWENTY-TWO GALLERY, 236 S. 22ND ST
"Weathered" Mixed Media on panel, 36" x 24"
In this exhibit, Jessica Barber explores the co-existence of beings and their environments, whether it be industrial / man-made, or organic. Through printmaking and mixed media, she examines these relationships,through an intuitive, textual approach.
KINDERGARTEN AND 1ST GRADE OPEN HOUSE AT GREENFIELD SCHOOL, THURS., 10/8, 9 AM, 22ND & CHESTNUT
Greenfield, our neighborhood public K-8 school, is holding an open house on Oct. 8 for parents of future Kindergarteners and 1st graders. Hear from the principal, teachers, and parents of current students while you have a bite to eat, tour the school, and ask lots of questions. Please enter through the Sansom St. entrance. Click here for more information.
TOWN HALL MTG, THURS, 10/8, 7-8PM, BROAD ST. MINISTRY, 315 S. BROAD ST
State Senator Larry Farnese has invited CCRA residents to his Town Hall meeting. Come out to get an update on the state budget and share your thoughts and concerns of education funding, public safety, consumer protection and economic development issues of any other issue regarding state government. Constituents are welcome to submit questions ahead of the town hall at: RSVPdistrict01@pasenate.com.
This workshop will explore parenting from a mindfulness perspective. Participants will examine common themes of parenting all ages of children from infancy through teen years, and will practice experiential exercises to support our children to grow and be themselves, and to better notice how our own thoughts and emotions get in the way. Participants will be introduced to a variety of mindfulness techniques designed to enhance awareness of attention, intention, mindful communication, and presence within the parenting experience, and consider how to apply these tools to decrease stress in the experience of parenting. Ticket price: $59. For more information and to register, click here.
Refund Policy: Full refunds are available up until Thursday, October 15th. After this date the program is non-refundable. No exceptions.
save the date - Schuylkill River Park Fall Festival, Sat, 10/17, 11AM - 3 PM, Schuylkill RIver Park
Come join the Friends of Schuylkill River Park for their annual Fall Festival. Fun for the whole family including your dog! Food, raffles, DJ, petting zoo, crafts and dog activities including a doggy costume parade. The festival opens at 11:00 and runs until 3:00pm. Rain date is Sunday October 18th.
PENN'S VILLAGE PRESENTS DAN COREN, MUSICOLOGIST, TUES, 10/20, 3 PM, ACAD OF VOCAL ARTS, 1920 SPRUCE ST
Join Penn's Village as Dan conducts a series of music discussions. The first will focus on theme and variations, a musical form in which a composer states a melody and then repeats it several times with changes to create interest and variety. Dan will use examples from Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, and the golden era of American jazz to demonstrate the richness and complexity of this deceptively simple-seeming idea. Please RSVP by calling 215 925 7333 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The venue is handicap accessible. Let them know if you need this amenity since there is an alternative entrance.
COUNTRY FAIR, CITY STYLE, SAT, 10/24, 7-11 PM TRINITY MEM CHURCH, 2212 SPRUCE STREET
Come to the Country Fair inside Trinity Memorial Church. There will be games, contests, dessert and pet photo contest, dancing, food and friends. Tickets are $10/person and will be available to purchase online or at the door. Please RSVP by Friday, 10/16. Food provided by Bacchus Catering and beverages will be available. Music provided by Silver Sound DJ's.