Thursday, September 8, 2022

CCRA Newsletter


This Week: September 8, 2022

Editor - Barbara Halpern

Lead Writer - Richard Vaughn

Design/Layout and Writer - Travis Oliver

Welcome Back

While technically Summer doesn’t end until September 22, Labor Day has come and gone, and we’ll go with that. Farewell, Summer!

And Welcome Back. Welcome Back to all vacationers (you know who you are), to all workers (please return to the office), and to all school kids (yeah, we know).

After much leisure, we must say that It does feel good to be getting good work done. As always: Good to be away, good to be back.

Welcome Back!

CCRA News and Events

City Controller Rhynhart to Discuss Gun Violence

at CCRA Event Sept. 20

CCRA is hosting a Zoom event with City Controller Rebecca Rhynhart at 1pm on Tuesday, September 20.

Register here to join the discussion on gun violence in the City and hear whether the City's approach to its reduction is cost-efficient and effective. 

Ms. Rhynhart will present her observations and findings on gun violence, and will entertain questions from CCRA members.

While the Controller's office has no direct control over anti-violence programs, it is in a key position to observe what is taking place, by whom, to what effect, and whether our tax dollars are spent on anti-violence programs that are efficient and effective. Details on her observations here.

Annual Meeting 9/29

CCRA’s Annual Meeting will take place on Thursday, September 29 at the Freire School Auditorium at 2027 Chestnut at 7pm.

In addition to electing new Directors, we will have an exciting keynote speaker and announce a significant new initiative in our efforts to seek Justice, Equity, Diversity and inclusion in Center City West.

Refreshments will be provided by 12th Street Caterers who wowed us with their food at the 75th Anniversary Gala. Mark your calendars and join us.

Since this is a members-only event, we are requesting all members register in advance. Each member is permitted to bring one guest.

Register here.

Because one can never have enough friends, our pals at Fitler Square Neighbors are piloting an initiative that will include events and innovative programs intended to help neighbors form stronger friendships with each other and create greater community cohesion.

Part of this initiative is a brief online survey.

Won’t you please take part here?


CCRA’s Merchant Partner program is a true Win-Win: It provides smaller local businesses with complimentary advertising and exposure while giving CCRA members generous deals and discounts. This week we spotlight boutique-y travel agency Excursions from the Square

Excursions from the Square Says Get Up and GO!

Not just any travel outfit, Excursions from the Square is singularly unique in that it focuses on museums, architecture, history and the performing arts. Offering trips for both groups and individuals, destinations include the New York Botanical Garden, a Hudson Valley art tour and the Berkshires. Now is the time to book an excursion!

(CCRA members receive a 10% discount on a one-day trip and a $25 discount on extended trips.)

Clean, Safe and Green

Be a Tree-Tender!

Register now for the upcoming PHS Tree Tenders Fall Basic Training webinar to learn the basics of tree biology, identification, planting, and care.

As a participant, you will be joining one of the nation’s oldest and most respected volunteer urban tree care programs.


This four-part program will take place virtually over Zoom from 6:00 - 8:00 pm on Thursdays beginning September 22 through October 13. Outdoor workshops also included. Sign up here.


And help CCRA Green Tree Tenders plant street trees in the neighborhood on Saturday, November 19.

Email Susan Kahn at for more information. 

Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

City Reverses Course on Harriet Tubman Statue

Last January the traveling statue

of Harriet Tubman was unveiled outside City Hall.

The structure drew such positive attention that Mayor Jim Kenney immediately supported a plan for a permanent piece from the same sculptor (Wesley Wofford).


But there were complaints about what was called a closed-door commission process, and so now the City has announced an open call for artists to craft the structure. Details here.

RIP LGBTQ Pioneer Michael Hinson

Michael Hinson, a legendary figure in the Philadelphia LGBTQ community, has passed away at the age of 55.

One of the first Philly residents to seriously strategize against HIV/AIDS in the Black community, he was the city’s first unofficial LGBT liaison, founded Colours Magazine, and co-founded the Black Gay Men’s Leadership Council and Philly Black Pride.

More details of his life are here.

Community News and Events

Fringe Benefits: Festival Starts Sept. 8

If extreme times call for extreme measures, what better times than these to make a few dates with the Fringe Festival?

FringeArts is Philadelphia’s home for contemporary, outside-the-box performances that often defy expectations. It all starts Sept. 8.

Get your Fringe on here.

REAL-ID: What Is It, Do I Need It

You’ve probably heard some buzz about REAL-ID and wondered what exactly it is and do you exactly need it. 

The answer, unsurprisingly, is that

A) it depends, and

B) it’s complicated.

To break it all down we suggest you get real here.

Rudest U.S. City? Take a Freaking Guess

So a language tutoring outfit called Preply, looking to help travelers determine what to expect when visiting, surveyed over 1,500 residents of the 30 largest metropolitan areas in the U.S. and asked them about the rudeness level of their own city.


Who’s No. 1? You guessed it: Philadelphia, with a rudeness quotient of 6.43, well ahead of second-place Memphis (Memphis?), with a 6.05 score and, surprise, New York City at 6.0.


This is not the opinion of outsiders we’re talking here; these are the locals talking.

Well, after all: “No one likes us, and we don’t care.”

Get your rude on here.

See the Next Big Things at B.PHL Innovation Fest

This Weekend

You can future-forward your Fall this year by attending the B.PHL Innovation Fest held this weekend at Location 215 on Spring Garden St.

It’s a gathering place for creatives, entrepreneurs, leaders, students, and industry changemakers, and features talks and workshops with a variety of local names, from Sixers star Tyrese Maxey to Japanese Breakfast vocalist Michelle Zauner to former Comedy Central VP Tara Schuster. Find the future here.

A Friend of the Schuylkill is a Friend of Mine

Mark your calendars for the Fall Opener Event of the Friends of Schuylkill River Park.

It’s this Saturday, September 10, and will feature a combo flea market/yard sale, a 3-on-3 basketball tournament, the Philadelphia Freedom Band and, of course, much food and drink. Amble over to their website here.

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.

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

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

12th Street Catering, 3312 Spring Garden St. (215-386-8595)

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

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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