Thursday, June 9, 2022

CCRA Newsletter


This Week: June 9, 2022

Editor - Barbara Halpern

Lead Writer - Richard Vaughn

Design/Layout and Writer - Travis Oliver

Flaw & Disorder

That enforcement of the law has been a bit lax on the east end of South St. does not exactly qualify as Breaking News. But now three people are dead and others lie wounded as a result of a Saturday night shootout.


For those wondering “What to do?”, we have some local suggestions apart from the overall need for restricted access to firearms.

Operating ATV’s and dirt bikes on city streets is illegal. Confiscate them.

Also illegal is dancing atop other peoples’ cars.

Issue citations.

Send a message, in other words, that lawlessness won’t be tolerated.


Yes, “It’s complicated”. 

But what’s not complicated is this:

We’re either serious about enforcing the law or we’re not.

CCRA News and Events

Some Enchanted Evening:

CCRA’s 75th Anniversary Celebration

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If anyone had any doubts about whether CCRA knew how to throw a party, those doubts were dispelled for good after last week’s 75th Anniversary Gala celebration.


And what a night it was!

Starting with a cocktail hour – “Le Prelude” – at Bart and Jil Blatstein’s lovely home, to the Celebration itself at the Ethical Society – complete with an appearance by CCRA’s “Citizen of the Decade”, Maestro Yannick Nézet-Séguin -- from end to end it was truly one very special evening.


Our profoundest gratitude and thanks to all donors, to all members, to all who helped out and again, most especially, to Yannick Nezet-Seguin. It truly was the “Spirit of 75”!

Party with the Ladybugs


On May 25th, CCRA’s Community Garden was the site of a spectacular Ladybug Release Party, which was enjoyed by a diverse group of neighborhood residents. This event occurs every year to help the gardeners fight pest infestations, but the real joy unfolds when the kids help to release the ladybugs. Missed it? Even if you have a small backyard garden, you can get everything you need for your own ladybug fete by crawling over here.

Open Them Up!

On behalf of CCRA’s members, President Rick Gross wrote to City Council President Darrell Clarke, imploring him to do what’s necessary to get our libraries back open on Saturdays. Our concern goes way beyond our City Institute branch, which so many of us use as a place to enjoy books, educational programs, quiet reflection, community and social engagement. Of paramount concern to CCRA is the effect of these closures in areas of high unemployment, poverty, and crime, where children lack internet access and safe places to learn after their school day ends. To read the full letter, go here. 


Free Library, Philadelphia City Institute, 1905 Locust, on Rittenhouse Square will be closed for critical building repairs for several weeks. During closure, you can pick up material Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2 to 6 p.m. and Fridays, 1 to 5 p.m. The library will be fully closed on Mondays and Wednesdays. You can call 215-685-6621 every week day for assistance.

Juneteenth Office Closure and Trash Collection

In observance of the Juneteenth holiday, CCRA is closed on Monday, June 20.  The office will reopen on Tuesday, June 21.  All messages and emails will be returned on Tuesday. 


In addition, no trash will be collected on Monday, June 20. Collection will resume on Tuesday, June 21.



CCRA’s Merchant Partner program is a true Win-Win: It provides smaller local businesses with complementary advertising and exposure while giving CCRA members generous deals and discounts. This week we spotlight Rittenhouse culinary legend

Di Bruno Bros.

All Roads Lead to Di Bruno’s


​​Just what would Center City do without Di Bruno’s, anyway? Scary thought, right? Ponder if you will all the stellar dinner parties that would have been subpar minus the killer cuisine of Di Bruno’s. A culinary pioneer for 80 years, Merchant Partner Di Bruno’s is a full-fledged, European-style marketplace.

You name it, they have it: meat, seafood, wine, beer, produce, chef-prepared meals, homemade desserts, and oh, that cheese cave!

Di Bruno’s has consistently saved the bacon of party-givers in more ways than one, and now you can save – 10%! – by becoming a member of CCRA.

Clean, Safe and Green

Glass into Soil? Really? Read On


Help change the city’s waste system. On Earth Day, Bottle Underground launched a crowdfunding campaign to increase the amount of glass they are keeping out of the landfill. BU recently announced the start of a glass-sand project collaborating with a local landscape firm, Olin Architects, that's been designing "soil-less soil" to replace natural materials for green stormwater infrastructure in city rain gardens. How do you turn glass into soil? Pixie dust? No! Go here to find out. 


Bottle Underground's goal is to raise support to renovate their basement workspace. The renovation will include a cargo lift, drop off area, and on-the-ground transport aids. This will make it possible for people to recycle more glass and much more efficient for their team to process the waste. Last year, they processed 50,000 pounds of glass waste at BU and are expecting to double that capacity in 2022! 


Please check out Bottle Underground's LIVE indiegogo campaign Bottle Underground needs a Lift! Any contribution helps to make an impact.

Eat Your Veggies…and Grow Them Too

Do you have suburban garden envy? No more! You can grow your own veggies in containers if you have a small spot in the sun to place a container. To learn how city dwellers can use those green thumbs, go here.  

Side note: our CCRA Managing Director Travis Oliver is the king of container gardening. Feel free to reach out to him if you have any questions.


Take Me to The River, The River that Feeds Back


The Academy of Natural Sciences has dubbed 2022 “Water Year”, which gives a fresh perspective on the water systems that bind us together.


The latest part of “Water Year” is “The River Feeds Back”, a sensory experience and tactile interactive exhibit from sound artists Annea Lockwood and Liz Phillips. Dip into the details here.

Shore Up Your Bike Ride


Tired of fighting parked trucks in the Philly bike lanes? You could wait for PPA to enforce the No Parking regulations. Or….check out this gas-free, toll-free, car-free ride from Philly to Atlantic City and on to Ocean City.

For $4.50, hop on the AC train at 30th St Station and come back the same day. Thanks, Bike Coalition, for this relatively stress-free 27 mile option for cyclists. Don’t forget your peanut butter crackers.

Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

Happy Juneteenth!


Yes, town has its challenges. But….we have Friday Nights at the Art Museum back! Weekly Pay as you Wish on Fridays has returned in time for Juneteenth, the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States. 

Rashaan Rich and the JuneB All Stars will be headlining the music on June 17th. Starting at 5pm, imbibe locally sourced spirits and wines, munch on tasty small plates, and take a stroll in the galleries. TGIF.

PRIDE Marches On: PHL Pride March


After a year or so of reflection, reordering and a reboot, the PHL Pride March kicked off last Sunday at 5th & Arch Streets and ventured though Old City and into the Gayborhood.

Among other things, it marked the 50th anniversary of the City’s first Pride March.

Details here.

Community News and Events

Wooder Ice Here!  Get Yer Wooder Ice!

If there’s anything more refreshing and life-affirming than a water ice on a hot Philly day, we’d sure as heck like to know what it is.  The even better news is that there are plenty of places around town to satisfy the crave.  Pro Tip: It tastes even better when you pronounce it “wooder”.  Slurp it all up here.


Family Fun at Markward


Fitler Square folks- Have fun with the whole family at Bingo on Thursdays at Markward. All through June, there'll be games at the Rec Center, or outside, weather permitting. Bingo not your thing? Don’t like bingo lingo, like number 4, knock on the door? 


Then check out the new backboards and rims at the basketball courts next to the Dog Park. Thanks to all neighbors, businesses and members of local groups who raised the money to make this happen. Teamwork makes the dream work….awww shoot! 

Back to bingo.

Philly Love Glows at the Neon Museum


Because having a Neon Museum isn’t cool enough, there is now an exhibit within the Museum that celebrates the love that 14 local artists have for the City.  It’s a multi-medium exhibit entitled “City of Love: Artists Inspired by Philadelphia”.  It runs through June 19, and the details reside here.

That’s a Wrap: 2100 Hamilton is a Done Deal


Construction has been completed on 2100 Hamilton, the 10-story, 27-unit condominium located at, yes, 2100 Hamilton in Logan Square.  Designed by Cecil Baker + Partners and developed by Bock Development, the luxury condo building  spans 25,802 sq. ft. and offers residents a fitness center, underground parking and a half-acre roof.  Details here.

Philly Got Game: Sandler Hoop Flick Debuts

“Rocky” it ain’t, but Adam Sandler’s new film “Hustle” has Philly written all over it.

Shot here in the fall of 2020, there are no fewer than 30 Philly-area locations that made the final cut. Ex-Sixer Boban Marjanovic has a ‘big’ role (he’s 7-foot-4), and the film was directed by Philly native Jeremiah Zager, son of local mosaic artist Isaiah Zager. Now playing locally and on Netflix. Details here.


It’s A Happening - at Dilworth

This weekend, Center City District is puttin' on the ritz at Dilworth Park. Think roller skating, wandering entertainers, vodka tastings, D.J.’s and musicians, and seasonal food.

It’s also your chance to support small local vendors, as the Philadelphia Marketplace will pop up for the weekend with offerings for all tastes. For details, jamskate over to here.


Over the Hump Wednesdays

Center City District SIPS is back! Every Wednesday night through August 31. From 4:30 p.m. to 7, sip on $6 cocktails, $5 wine, $4 beer and half-price appetizers. After happy hour, Center City District SIPS customers can also enjoy 15% off dinner at participating restaurants. Where? Where? Here!

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Useful links

Merchant Partners "Deals and Discounts" Program

Would you please support our local merchants and save money too? These local merchants will provide a deal or discount to any member who shows a current CCRA membership card and personal identification.

Ursula Hobson Fine Art Framing, 1528 Waverly St (215-546-7889)

Veda Modern Indian Bistro, 1920 Chestnut St, (267-519-2001)

William Schwartz Jewelry, 1831 Chestnut St (215-665-8115)

Alimentari Restaurant at Di Bruno Bros., 1730 Chestnut St, 2nd Floor

Astral Artists - Use promo code "CCRA" to receive a $10 flat rate on all tickets to their virtual concerts.

Blue Sole Shoes, 1805 Chestnut St, (215-496-9244)

Branzino Italian BYOB, 261 S. 17th St (215-790-0103)

City Fitness, 2101 South St. & 1819 JFK Blvd. (609-254-9048) 

Di Bruno Bros., 1730 Chestnut St. (215-665-9220)

Dom's Shoe Repair, 203 S. 20th St (215-972-0098)

Excursions from the Square (215-732-8487, 215-738-4500)

Eye Candy Vision, 218 S. 20th St (215-568-3937)

Frameworks Studio and Gallery, 2103 Walnut St, (215-567-6800)

Good Karma Cafe, 331 S. 22nd St, (215-546-1479)

Liberty Pet Vets, 265 S. 20th St (888-458-8587)

Nature's Gallery Florist, 2124 Walnut St (215-563-5554)

PhotoLounge, 130 S.17th St. (267-322-6651)

Rittenhouse Hardware, 2001 Pine St. (215-735-6311)

Seafood Unlimited, 270 S. 20th St (215-732-3663)

The Bake Shop on 20th, 269 S. 20th St. (215-644-9714)

The Rounds, Use code CCRATHEROUNDS to receive free membership.

CCRA assumes no responsibility, and makes no representations or warranties, regarding any product and/or services sold by any Merchant Partner.

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Center City Residents' Association | 1900 Market St, FL 8, Philadelphia, PA 19103

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