Thursday, July 21, 2022

CCRA Newsletter


This Week: July 21, 2022

Editor - Barbara Halpern

Lead Writer - Richard Vaughn

Design/Layout and Writer - Travis Oliver

Guest Writer - Marian Robinson

Guest Photographer - Ben Zuckerman

Claes Oldenburg

This week saw the passing of Pop Art pioneer Claes Oldenburg at age 93.

For the uninitiated, Oldenburg transformed everyday foods (think ice cream) and objects (toothpaste) into soft or supersize sculptures, and in the process influenced both Modern Art and sculpture.

Locally, of course, he is known for his 45-foot clothespin near City Hall.  No one who knows Philadelphia doesn’t know the clothespin or, by extension, Claes Oldenburg, a true Pop Art giant.

Whoops: Printer Error Regarding Your Appeal Letter


It has come to our attention that some of you may have received our Clean, Safe and Green appeal letter with a different outside address due to an error by our printer. 

If you received one, we sincerely apologize for the confusion. Please consider donating to our Clean, Safe, and Green efforts by visiting our website.

CCRA News and Events

Tonight! Concert in Fitler Square

CCRA is sponsoring two Concerts in Fitler Square on two Thursday evenings this summer, on July 21 and August 18.

These events are hosted by Friends of Fitler Square Park and will feature two local bands. On July 21, (6-8 pm) come out and hear KARAMA, followed by Lewis Brothers Bluegrass Band on August 18.

Follow their Facebook page for details. It’s all part of making

Center City West a better place to live, work and play! This is a collaboration of two of your favorite local nonprofits.

See you there!

CCRA Zoning Committee Meeting

Tuesday, July 26, 7PM

This meeting will be held via Zoom.

Please be advised that this Zoom meeting will be recorded for future public viewing. By attending this Zoom meeting, you hereby automatically consent to being recorded during the meeting, and hereby automatically consent to the Center City Residents’ Association use of your image and voice recording for all purposes.

If you do not consent to being recorded during this Zoom meeting, please voice your concern to the host at the beginning of the meeting or do not join the meeting.

To attend the meeting click here.


Rollin’ On the (Schuylkill) River with Riverboat Tours

Think you know the Schuylkill? Ha! Bet you don’t!

Let newest CCRA Merchant Partner Schuylkill Banks Riverboat Tours settle the bet via one of their fun and educational riverboat tours featuring spectacular views of Philadelphia.

Learn about the past, present, and future of the tidal Schuylkill River and its impact on Philadelphia.

Tours run on select Thursdays and Sundays from May through September.

Private charters are available depending on the operator's schedule.

CCRA members receive 10% off a riverboat tour of the tidal Schuylkill by calling 215-309-5523.

Clean, Safe and Green

Cyclists Beware!

In spite of a concerted effort by our friends at the Bike Coalition, the PA Senate Committee amended its Parking Protected Bike Lane bill to exclude municipalities like Philadelphia. Why? Read here for the details. To find your State Senator, look here.

Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

It’s Official: Black Doctors Row is City’s First Black Historical District

Earlier this month the Philadelphia Historical Commission voted unanimously to designate Christian Street/Black Doctor’s Row as Philly’s first Black Historical District effective immediately.

The proposed historic district spans a six-block stretch of Christian Street, running from the first street addresses west of South Broad Street (1412 Christian St. on the south side, and 1419 Christian St. on the north side) to 20th Street.

Details here.

Jazz, Food and Historic Black American Experience

On Saturday, July 30 from 3-5pm, head over to the Philadelphia Water Works to hear jazz musicians and social change artists Keisha Hutchins Hirlinger & Doug Hirlinger Group explore the effects of water: joy, life, death, sorrow, resilience and love. Between the 30-minute musical sets, Chef Valerie Erwin of Geechee Girl Rice Cafe will be open, with food prepared by young, local entrepreneurs of color.

This free, multi-faceted installation at the Philadelphia Water Works by the Philadelphia Jazz Project, called Pool, investigates the role of segregated public pools in the United States with the goal of a deeper understanding of the connection between water, social justice and public health. The exhibit includes rarely-seen archival film footage and photographs that explore the history and contemporary implications of segregated swimming in America. Concerts are on select Saturdays. Float here for details.

Community News and Events

Not a Typo: $24M for Airport Bathrooms

As part of the 2021 Infrastructure law, 24 Million dollars has been awarded for upgrades to the bathrooms at Philadelphia Airport, the idea being to “enhance the guest experience”, according to Philadelphia Division of Aviation Interim CEO Keith Brune.

To get an idea of what $24M buys bathroom-wise, enter here.

Welsh Week Coming to Philly Aug. 27 – Sept. 4

Did you know: 16 signers of the Declaration of Independence were descendants of Wales?

Did you know that Welsh town names include Bala Cynwyd, Bryn Mawr, Lower Gwynedd Township and Tredyffrin Township?

Or that singers Tom Jones, Shirley Bassey and Bryn Terfel are all Welsh? That’s just the beginning, as you’ll see when Welsh Week comes to Philly beginning Aug. 27. Sample the fare here.

Got the Itch for Niche? Book, That Is?

Try these Indie Stores

Yes, it’s the summer, but maybe you’re done with beach reads and are looking for something a little different, a little more discrete. The good news is that our area is flush with independent bookstores that pretty much cater to all tastes.

Plow through the shelves here.

Isaiah Zagar Mosaics: Iconic, Unique, Local

Equally unique and iconic in Philadelphia, Isaiah Zagar has been creating one-of-a-kind outdoor mosaic works of art on local buildings for decades.

His installations are made from pottery shards, broken bottles, jagged mirror pieces, found objects and a dazzling variety of other components which, while possibly confusing when first viewed, contain fascinating images, clever messages, and just plain mind-boggling patterns.

The Magic Garden, his three-story building and garden in the 1000 block of South Street, is a draw for people from all over.

Details here.

Still Among the Living: 24-Hour Diners

While no longer plentiful as before, there still are a few 24-hour diners on the scene for those occasions when…. well, you know. The tradition lives here.

Art in the Park

Once the heat spell passes, take a walk over to Eakins Oval to enjoy some experimental mural artwork by four up-and-coming Philly muralists. Sponsored by Streets Dept. Walls, WaWa Welcome America and Mural Arts Philadelphia, these mini-murals will be on display throughout the summer.

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.

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 River Boat Tours, Receive 10% off a riverboat tour of the tidal Schuylkill by calling (215-309-5523)

The Rounds, Use code CCRATHEROUNDS to receive free membership.

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

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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