Thursday, April 6, 2023

CCRA Newsletter


This Week: April 6, 2023

Editor – Barbara Halpern

Lead Writer – Richard Vaughn

Design/Layout and Writer – Travis Oliver

If They Build It.....

You’ve likely noticed the literal tons of construction in and around Center City West, and with it the requisite noise, dirt, congestion and assorted urban joys.


But you know what? We’ll take it.

Not because the side-effects are fun, but because Growth is Good. It means that people believe, that developers are willing to risk their resources in the belief that Center City West is and will remain a most desirable place to live, work and play.


So the next time construction delays make you homicidal, pull back a bit and adopt the view from, say, the 27th floor. The Big Picture is in fact a rather pretty one.

CCRA News and Events

Focus Group Kickstarts Under-40 CCRA Friends Group

Last Wednesday evening a group of under-40 CCRA members convened over dim sum and samosas to participate in a focus group, professionally facilitated by Joy Sardinsky.


It was a lively and productive conversation that ranged from sharing their reasons for joining to discussing strategies for better engaging -- and growing -- the under-40 cohort in CCRA.


More to come from these “Young Friends” who are just getting started; stay tuned to future newsletters for updates!

CCRA Board of Directors Meeting

CCRA is holding its monthly board meeting on Tuesday, April 11, 7pm, at BEX Meeting Space (One Commerce Sq, 2005 Market St.). Our guest speaker is Councilmember Kenyatta Johnson. 

This is a members-only meeting. If you would like to attend, please notify Travis Oliver.

ICYMI: CCRA Public Meeting on 19th & Chestnut

Last week, CCRA held a zoom meeting regarding the proposed construction project at 19th & Chestnut. If you missed the meeting you can watch it on our YouTube Channel. Click here if you would like to see the renderings.

Philadelphia Mayoral Forum

To reserve a spot, go here.

Early Office Closure

In observance of Good Friday, CCRA will close early on Friday, April 7, at 1pm. The office will reopen on Monday April 10. 

In addition, in observance of the holiday, no trash will be collected on Friday. Collection will resume on Saturday.

We wish you a Happy Passover and Easter to those who celebrate.


CCRA’s Merchant Partner program is a true Win-Win: It provides local businesses with complimentary advertising and exposure while giving CCRA members generous deals and discounts. This week we spotlight Dom’s Shoe Repair.

Dom's Shoe Repair: A Shoe-In

Ever have a beloved pair of shoes you wore to death and which pained you to toss? Or a pair of boots to die for that simply went the way of all flesh? Or sandals, too? We’ve all been there. It’s painful.

The next time that happens, though, you need to get that footwear to Dom’s Shoe Repair at 203 S.20th St. The man may not quite be a miracle worker, but he’s close. Stories abound of how he’s taken lost causes and restored them to their former glory.


And no, it’s not just about the shoes (nor boots, nor sandals). Dom’s has been known to resuscitate handbags in dire straits, plus there are even urban legends about him making watchbands good as new. All of which is done with Honesty, Humor and Hospitality.


Need more? How about a 10% discount to CCRA members? (FYI: The discount may not be combined with other sales or discount programs.)

Clean, Safe and Green

Seeds of Change: Sustainable Saturday Set for May 6

Bring the kids to the Penn Museum (located at 3260 South St) and celebrate the Earth and connect to the natural world. Learn about respect for the earth from Indigenous cultures. Bring a children’s book from home for a book exchange. Listen to a story about protecting our natural world. Learn about caring for plants and trees with the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society. Other activities include making seed packets for your garden and creating artwork using recycled materials. Get your tickets here.

Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

Try Old Faves, New Faves During Dine Latino Restaurant Week

Only two days remaining to take advantage of the offers featured as part of Dine Latino Restaurant Week! The sixth edition of this twice-annual event will see 26 restaurants participate, each of which offers the same solid deal: buy two entrees, get a complimentary appetizer or dessert. Along with tried-and-true favorites, there are a handful of newcomers on the list. Details here.

​​Sixers Tab Lokal Artisan Foods as “Buy Black” Winner

The Philadelphia 76ers announced that the team has selected Lokal Artisan Foods as its third recipient of the annual “76ers Buy Black” program. Since opening in 2018, owner Charisse McGill has expanded her French Toast Bites stand to a local community staple in Philadelphia. 

Lokal Artisan Foods will receive a custom marketing plan, free advertising across the team’s social and digital platforms, custom-created content, radio spots during 76ers game broadcasts on 97.5 The Fanatic, and other opportunities. Score the details here.

Join CCRA Now

Community News and Events

The Search Is On! (For Easter Eggs)

Yes, it’s Spring and it’s time to let out that inner kid inside you, and what better way to do that than with an old-fashioned (or new-fashioned) Easter Egg hunt? There are hunts in churches, parks, cafes, even in stables(!). Your search begins here.

Cuisine to Vie For: SIX James Beard Award Finalists from Philly

Six is the number of Henry VIII’s wives currently enchanting Broad Street, and it’s also the number of Finalists in the 2023 James Beard Awards, a/k/a one of the highest honors in all of Foodie World. We've got nominees for Best Restaurant, Emerging Chef and Best Restaurateur, among others. Dish the details here.

From the Athenaeum: Story Explorers Book Fest

Visit the 2nd Annual Story Explorers Book Fest on Saturday, April 22 at The Athenaeum of Philadelphia! Children, youth and their families are invited for a day of our favorite things: books, libraries and maps!

All day long there will be book sales, and chances to learn about The Athenaeum, the Kislak Center at Penn and local non-profit A Book A Day. Enjoy readings and workshops by local authors and teachers.

In the first floor gallery, explore our latest exhibit and learn more about the city of Philadelphia. Take a break in the lounge with a puzzle or a worksheet!

Schedule of Events:

10:30am - Book Making with Anthony Latess

11:45am - Reading with author Elayna Darcy

12:15pm - Gallery Tour

12:45pm - Reading with author Laurie Morrison

1:30pm - The Geography Lady

2:15pm - Gallery Tour

All Day: Puzzles, worksheets, collaging

For info, go here.

Tell Me Again Who's Running For Mayor

The race is on, and this time around there are more candidates than you have fingers vying for the nomination in the May 16 Democratic Primary.  We’ll save you the trouble of Googling each and every one of them by pointing you to a rundown here.

No Parking on the Lawn on Kelly Drive

That rope-line barrier along Kelly Drive? It’s a not-so-subtle warning to drivers to not park (illegally) on the grass between the roadway and the Schuylkill. Why? Only because it destroys the greenway and threatens pedestrians. (Other than that, what’s not to love?)

The parking-on-the-lawn thing started with the pandemic, and like the pandemic it needs to go. Go deeper in the weeds here.

Historic Gas Station Relocates to Fairmount Park

Last month, Parkway Corp. successfully moved the historic Filling Station at 20th and Arch Streets to the Sedgley Porter House in Fairmount Park to make way for its new Chubb Headquarters project. The building will be renovated into meeting space for the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia’s youth cycling program and the Schuylkill Navy. We are thrilled that this historic gas station did not meet the wrecking ball! The preservation effort was made possible by the experienced design and construction team: Atkin Olshin Schade Architects, Keast & Hood Structural Engineers, Pennoni Associates, and Haverstick-Borthwick. Full story here. Watch the move HERE!

T’ai Chi at Markward Playground

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.

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

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 & Gallery, 2103 Walnut St (215-567-6800)

Loews Hotel Philadelphia, 1200 Market St (215-627-1200)

Kimmel Cultural Campus, 300 S. Broad St (215-893-1900)

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

Mr FIX, 413 S. 20th St (215-261-5646)

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 Philadelphia Orchestra, One S. Broad St (215-893-1955)

The River Boat Tours, Schuylkill River & Walnut St (215-309-5523)

The Rounds, internet only

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 - Temporarily Suspended

Astral Artists, 1500 Walnut St. (215-735-6999)

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

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

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

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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