Briefs: November 17th, 2021

The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society will be planting more than 1,350 trees throughout Southeastern Pennsylvania from Nov. 17-21.

Volunteer to plant trees

The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society is collaborating with more than 80 of its Tree Tenders groups, community organizations and neighborhood volunteers to plant more than 1,350 trees throughout Southeastern Pennsylvania from Nov. 17-21. Interested volunteers can sign up to help plant trees by visiting

Help fight hunger

The Jewish Relief Agency will hold its second virtual annual event Hunger, Growing Needs, Glowing Deeds, on Sunday, Dec. 5, at 6 p.m. Set to livestream on the eighth night of Hanukkah, the program will illuminate the stories of three volunteer families, while underscoring the needs of area families struggling with “food insecurity.”

JRA’s “We Deliver” approach to fighting hunger supports more than 6,500 low-income individuals each month.

Community members are invited to watch Hunger: Growing Needs, Glowing Deeds. To register or become a corporate sponsor of the event, visit

Kidney donor wanted

Elaine Wible, a Nazareth Academy High School graduate, is looking for a kidney donation as she continues on dialysis three times a week. Wible is a Holy Family University graduate and registered nurse at Einstein. For more information, visit

Da Vinci Art Alliance opens two solo exhibitions

The Da Vinci Art Alliance at 704 Catharine St. has two new solo exhibitions by artists Marcie Ziskind and Scout Cartagena.

Both shows will run through Nov. 24.

Sticks and Stones by Marcie Ziskind is the artist’s recollection of the city’s experience with pandemic, including business shutdowns, political divides and racial injustices. Ziskind walked around the city, witnessing the emotional and physical wreckage of a broken city.

According to the Da Vinci Art Alliance, Sticks and Stones is “the physical embodiment of the way words can hit you, pummel you, stick with you, and forever change your perspective. It is meant to remind us that although they can hurt, words must be said to evoke thoughtful transformation.”

Fifteen percent of all proceeds from this exhibit will be donated to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

You Have Their Eyes by Scout Cartagena recounts an experience with a rare auto-immune disorder, making it feel like the artist was a stranger in their own body.

Each year, Cartagena loses parts of their memory and mobility, fueling their desire to preserve

their sense of self by creating art that is tangible. Through You Have Their Eyes, Cartagena uses art to process their identity as a queer, Afro-latinx and non-able-bodied person. Using reflection, diffusion, imagery and transparency as metaphors, Scout is working to unearth the identity they have come to know against the memory they have begun to lose.

Upcoming screenings of music documentary Safe X Sound

A music documentary told by musician Brian Walker and produced by South Philly resident Brianna Spause will be screened two times over the next two weeks.

“Safe X Sound” is an exploration of consent and safe spaces in the East Coast underground music scene. According to the creators, the intent of the documentary is to address the value of consent, safe spaces, inclusion and the value of live music for underrepresented voices. 

A screening will be at the Grape Room (with performance by Space Ghosties) on Nov. 28 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $7 in advance/$10 at the door. A Novel Idea at 1726 E. Passyunk Ave. will host a screening on Dec. 4 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $5.

Children’s Playhouse earns NAEYC accreditation 

Children’s Playhouse, Whitman Center, located at 2501 S. Marshall St. in South Philadelphia, earned accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children —the world’s largest organization working on behalf of young children.

“We’re thrilled to have been recognized for our commitment to reaching the highest professional standards and to have earned the mark of quality from NAEYC,” said Damaris Alvarado-Rodriguez, owner of Children’s Playhouse, Whitman Center, and Children’s Playhouse, Newbold since 2005.

To earn NAEYC Accreditation, Children’s Playhouse, Whitman Center, went through an extensive self-study and quality-improvement process, followed by an on-site visit by NAEYC Assessors to verify and ensure that the program met each of the 10 program standards, and hundreds of corresponding individual criteria. NAEYC-accredited programs are always prepared for unannounced quality-assurance visits during their accreditation term, which lasts for five years.

More than 6,000 programs are currently accredited by NAEYC. Less than 10 percent of all childcare centers, preschools and kindergartens nationally achieve this recognition. 

“NAEYC-accredited programs have committed to a process that takes time, energy and dedication to complete” states Alissa Mwenelupembe, senior director, Early Learning Program Accreditation. “Children’s Playhouse has demonstrated their commitment to young children and their families.”

McSwain opposes raises for state officials

Former U.S. Attorney Bill McSwain, a Republican candidate for governor, condemned the automatic 5.67 percent pay raise set to be awarded in December to more than 1,000 state officials.

“As officials such as John Fetterman and Josh Shapiro award themselves sky-high raises, Pennsylvanians are being forced to navigate the impacts of inflation on the prices of everyday goods, such as milk, a gallon of gas or a turkey this Thanksgiving, to say nothing of the thousands of families and business owners still working to financially recover from the burdensome COVID-19 restrictions imposed by these same individuals. Accepting these raises, in some cases over $10,000, while the average Pennsylvanian is struggling, is unconscionable and demonstrates the depth of disconnect between Harrisburg and hard-working Pennsylvanians,” McSwain said.

“As governor, I would reject such a pay raise, and I am calling on all affected state officials to decline this raise and return the full amount to taxpayers. In difficult times, leaders need to do what’s right, not what’s easy. The act of accepting this raise would be to knowingly place self-interest over reducing the hardship of those whose interests they claim to represent.”

Cabinet secretaries will receive an $8,235 raise for a salary of $153,479. Rank-and-file lawmakers will receive a $5,122 raise for a salary of $95,457.

Holiday fair at St. Hubert

The St. Hubert holiday vendor fair will take place on Nov. 20, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., in the school cafeteria, 7320 Torresdale Ave. All proceeds benefit the St. Hubert Parent Association. Email

Jeanes holding health seminar

Temple University Hospital – Jeanes Campus will present Venous Insufficiency and Varicose Veins on Wednesday, Nov. 17, from 6-7 p.m. Dr. Samuel Han will explain a simple test and treatments for vein problems. To receive Zoom instructions, contact Rosemarie Schlegel at 215-728-4861 or

SJ Prep offering tuition awards

St. Joseph’s Prep has established an Affinity Awards Program to attract prospective students. The awards are worth $3,000 annually and will be presented to students whose parents come from the following three categories:

  • Active first responders: Firefighters, police officers, active-duty military, emergency medical technicians.
  • Alumni and/or employees of historically black colleges and universities.
  • Full-time educators or administrators at K-8 schools.

Students must be accepted to the Prep through the applications process. 

Job opportunities for those in recovery

Virginia-based Leidos, a defense, aviation, information technology and biomedical research company, has more than 3,000 positions available to be filled. 

Leidos addresses the impact of substance use disorder disease, and is teaming with ecoverycareers to publicize company job opportunities for qualified individuals in long-term recovery.

The internet job-board address is, and ecoverycareers invites all businesses to add the company to their recruitment resources.

If you or someone you know is in successful drug or alcohol disease recovery and are looking for a new job or career change, register and look for opportunities at

North alums awarding grants

The Northeast Catholic Alumni Association awards tuition grants to the sons, daughters, grandsons and granddaughters of its members.

The checks are awarded to students who meet criteria, and the monies are sent to the Catholic school that they are choosing to attend. Aid is sent to Catholic elementary and high schools and universities in the Philadelphia, Camden and Trenton dioceses.

Grants are given to 32 students annually for their four years in high school or college and three years in elementary school.

Students can apply for a grant if their father or grandfather attended Northeast Catholic and is a dues-paying member of the alumni association. Applications are accepted until Jan 31, 2022.

Call 215-543-1051 or email

Breakfast with Santa

Santa Claus will be at St. Hubert High School for a breakfast buffet on Dec. 4, from 9 a.m. to noon.

The menu will consist of eggs, bacon, sausage, french toast, home fries, bagels, juice, coffee, tea and water.

The morning will feature an indoor snowball fight, craft corner, coloring station, letters to Santa, selfie station, reindeer food making, Christmas bean bag toss, dancing, facepainting and a gift from Santa’s sack.

Tickets are $23 for ages 13 and up, $18 for ages 3-12 and free for ages 2 and under. A framed picture will be $5.


Author publishes romantic suspense novel

Mayfair’s Becky Flade announced that Tirgearr Publishing will release her next novel, Fall to Pieces, on Nov. 30. It is available for pre-order at all major digital retailers.

Homicide Detective Alexandra Danvers is determined to bring child killer Arthur Book to justice, no matter the cost.

Set in Philadelphia, Fall to Pieces features locales such as Juniata Park/Golf Course, the Roundhouse, The Library Company and Rittenhouse Square. The cover art displays the Center City skyline, the Schuylkill River and the Expressway at dusk. 

Successful harvest

The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society celebrated the end of its 2021 harvest initiative, with local gardeners donating some 18,728 pounds of produce to local nonprofits. The program also raised $30,087 to support efforts to combat “food insecurity” within the region.

Among the top produce donors to PHS Harvest were Longwood Gardens, Spring Gardens, Kennett Middle School Giving Garden, Branching Up, PHS Farm Park and Chester Eastside Garden Club.

Additional participating organizations in the Harvest initiative include, Art-Reach, Sankofa Community Farm at Bartram’s Garden, Chester County Food Bank, Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger, Cooperative Gardens Commission, Delaware Center for Horticulture, Food Bank of Delaware, Food Connect, The Food Trust, Mama-Tee Fridge, Neighborhood Gardens Trust, North Light Community Center, Philabundance, Share Food Program and Whole Foods Market. 

Monster Jam at the Linc

Monster Jam returns to Lincoln Financial Field on Saturday, April 16.

The show starts at 7 p.m., with a pit party for fans going from 2:30 to 5:30.

At the pit party, fans can see the massive 12,000-pound trucks up close, meet their favorite drivers and crews, and take pictures.

Tickets are available at

Conto fighting at Live!

South Philadelphia heavyweight fighter Sonny Conto (7-0, 6 KOs) will put his undefeated streak on the line when he enters the boxing ring at the new Live! Casino & Hotel, 900 Packer Ave., on Thursday, Nov. 18, at 7 p.m. It will be the first live boxing event at the newly opened 1,000-plus-seat Live! Event Center. Conto will face Joel Caudle (8-5-2, five KOs) of Raleigh, North Carolina in a six-round fight.

The card will consist of a minimum of seven fights, with the first one beginning at 7 p.m. Doors open at 6:30. The card is promoted by Joe Hand Promotions.

Tickets at $50, $75 and $125 are on sale now and are available at, or by calling 215-364-9000. Guests must be 21 or older to attend.

Earn a high school diploma

Adults in pursuit of a high school diploma can attend daily classes at South Philadelphia High School at 2101 S. Broad St. on Mondays through Thursdays from 3-6 p.m. Participants will need to provide proof of age, residence and a transcript. Participants must be at least 18 and have some high school credits. Contact Mrs. Nock at 215-400-8400, Ext. 3, option 1.

Thanksgiving parade on Sunday

Groups are invited to march in the 44th Mayfair-Holmesburg Thanksgiving Parade, which will take place on Sunday, Nov. 21, at noon on Frankford Avenue. The route will go from Rhawn Street to Knorr Street, where performances will be.

Businesses, performers, bands and more are invited to participate. Family-friendly floats are accepted.

Pat’s Music Center will be the grand marshal.

The parade will consist of string bands, favorite local bands, school marching bands, cheerleaders, dance groups, classic cars, military vehicles and Santa Claus and his elves, collecting Christmas letters.

Scouts will be collecting nonperishable foods, and the Marines will be collecting for Toys for Tots.

Anyone interested in marching in the parade can call Lisa Greco at 215-624-6667 or Donny Smith at 267-538-4668, or email

Open house at Orleans

JEVS will hold open houses for its Project WOW and IT Pre-Apprenticeship programs, which help low-income Philadelphia youth develop skills in building trades and information technology, every Monday and Wednesday in November at Orleans Technical College, 2770 Red Lion Road.

The dates are Nov. 17, 22, 24 and 29, from 9 a.m. to noon.

For more information, go to


The Sisterhood of Congregations of Shaare Shamayim is hosting a virtual bingo on two consecutive Mondays, Dec. 6 and 13, starting at 7:30 p.m.

The cost is $36 per person and includes two cards for eight games of bingo each night. There is also a 50/50 for $5 that will be drawn on Dec. 13.

Send your payment to the CSS office, 9768 Verree Road, Philadelphia, PA 19115, attention: Bingo. Payment must be received no later than Nov. 24, and you must include your email address for the link to be sent to you.

Call Gerry or Nancy at 215-677-1600. 

Donate food at AHCU

American Heritage Credit Union invites the community to take part in its Spirit of Giving Food Drive. All nonperishable food donations will be given out to various food pantries and food banks throughout the community to help families in need this holiday season.

The donations will be collected through Nov. 27 at all American Heritage branch locations. Nonperishable goods such as soups, canned meat and vegetables, rice and pasta are at a higher demand this time of year. 

Christmas bazaar at Cannstatter

The St. Patrick’s Day Observance Association will hold a Christmas bazaar on Nov. 28, from 3-7 p.m. at Cannstatter’s, 9130 Academy Road.

The cost is $30 and includes food, live music, wine, beer, Christmas shopping, wood crafts, candles, Irish shops, pictures with Santa and raffles.

Vendor space is $40 per spot. Reserve by emailing

Activities at Academy of Natural Sciences

The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, is hosting several current and upcoming exhibits.

Permian Monsters: Life Before the Dinosaurs goes through Jan. 17, 2022.

Invisible World of Water runs through April 17, 2022.

Cinema for the Climate is set for Saturday, Nov. 20. Kids and families are welcome from 10:30 a.m. to noon. Adults and Drexel students are invited from 2-4 p.m. To register, visit

Junior Scientist Workshop: Do Birds Say Brrr? is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 11, from 10 a.m. to noon. The workshop is geared for kids in grades 3-5. To register, visit

A “winter break” camp will run from Monday to Thursday, Dec. 27-30, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The camp is for ages 6-10. Register at

Water exhibit to open in November

The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, is presenting Invisible World of Water, on view through April 17, 2022 and free with general admission.

The exhibit coincides with “Water Year,” a 2022 initiative of the Academy of Natural Sciences and Drexel University aimed to increase public attention of the resource.

For more information, visit

Kimmel schedule

The Kimmel Cultural Campus has returned to live Broadway programming.

Here is the schedule through next summer: Hamilton (through Nov. 28, Academy of Music); Anastasia (Nov. 23-28, Merriam Theater); Stomp (Dec. 28 to Jan. 2, Merriam Theater); Pretty Woman: The Musical (Jan. 4-16, Academy of Music); Hadestown (Feb. 9-20, Academy of Music); Beautiful – The Carole King Musical (Feb. 22-27, Academy of Music); Rent: 25th Anniversary Farewell Tour (March 4-6, Merriam Theater); Oklahoma! (March 8-20, Forrest Theatre); Waitress (March 29 to April 3, Academy of Music); Hairspray (May 16-22, Merriam Theater); To Kill A Mockingbird (July 12-24, Academy of Music); and Dear Evan Hansen (Aug. 16-28, Forrest Theatre).

For more information, call 215-893-1955 or visit

Upcoming bus trip, cruise

The Bristol Cultural and Historical Foundation is sponsoring a bus trip to the Mt. Hope Estate’s holiday dinner theater in Manheim, Lancaster County, on Nov. 29. Cost is $115.

The group is sponsoring a cruise to Charleston and Bermuda, June 2-12, 2022, on the Celebrity Summit, sailing from Cape Liberty, in North Jersey. Rates range from $1,577 to $2,387 per person, double occupancy.

Call 215-788-9408 for information and reservations.