Neighborhood Chatter: May is blossoming with outdoor fun

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By Bill Gelman

Columbus Square Park, 1200 Wharton St., is seeking the help of neighbors and community members for a Love Your Park Spring Service Day, a citywide clean-up effort sponsored by the Philadelphia Parks and Recreation Department and the Fairmount Parks Conservancy. The event is taking place Saturday, May 13 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Organizers are looking for volunteers to help sweep sidewalks, pull weeds, spread mulch, rake garden beds and do general park clean-up. The group will meet at the corner of 12th and Reeds streets by the roundhouse. Visit mycolumbussquare.org. …

Hawthornes Beer Cafe, 738 S. 11th St., is hosting the eighth Annual IPA, Champagne and Rosé Block Party on July 1 (the event was originally scheduled for Saturday, May 13, but canceled due to the weather). We are not encouraging underage drinking. This festive occasion will include plenty of backyard favorites — South Philly sweet Italian sausage, St. Louis ribs, three bean burger, beef cheek chili, tostones and lemon poppy churros — music and activities. The kids zone will include bubble fun, a chalk obstacle course, bean bag toss, hula hoops, face painting and a giant inflatable slide. Dogs are welcome, too. Admission is free, but all drinks and food are pay-as-you-go (cash only). Visit hawthornecafe.com. …

The Mummers Museum, 1100 S. Second St., is kicking off its Concert Under the Stars season on Thursday, May 18 with the Duffy String Band performing. Fralinger String Band will follow on May 25. The Philadelphia Mummers String Band Association helps with putting on this free weekly event taking place on Thursday nights through Sept. 21. There will not be a concert on July 6. The music begins at 8 p.m. Bring a lawn chair and come early for a good seat and to purchase something to eat and drink. Food and refreshments will be available after 7 p.m. Visit mummersmuseum.com. …

The fifth annual Saint Pio Festival is taking place next weekend, May 19–21 on the school grounds, 1800 block of Pollock St. Brian Dawkins, Brandon Manning, Dave “The Hammer” Schultz, Bernie Parent and Joe Watson will be making appearances over the course of the three days. There will also be a special Dawkins raffle at the event. To find out how you can earn a chance at a prize pack that includes two tickets to the Philadelphia Eagles home opener, see page 26. Visit stpiocatholicschool.org/saint-pio-festival. …

MMA fans should pencil in May 20 as a night at the fights as Cage Fury Fighting Championships 65 is taking place at the 2300 Arena. The card features fighters with strong Philly ties. “Phighter” Sean Brady, who was born and raised in Philadelphia, is the top northeast prospect. He is set to face Tanner Saraceno for the vacant welterweight title. Joseph Lowry, who spends his days as a member of the Sheet Metal Workers Local Union 19, is facing Mike Pope for the lightweight title. Anton Berzin, who trains in Fishtown and competed on season 19 of the Ultimate Fighter, will be fighting Jamelle Jones for the inaugural CFFC light heavyweight title. The doors open at 5 p.m. with the first bell at 6 p.m. Tickets are $59.25-$154.25. Visit cffc.tv/tickets/cffc-65. …

Nicole DuCoin is hosting a ceramic drink coaster making workshop on Monday, May 15 at the Bainbridge Barrel House, 625 S. Sixth St. Tickets are $16. Visit thecraftparty.com. …

The TSMBC Community Outreach Corp., 2018 Tasker St., is offering a free reading mentoring program for ages 5 to 12. The Saturday program continues through June. The nonprofit organization is offering other community programs and services, too. For more information, please call 215–336–5350, or email coutreach@yahoo.com.