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Briefs: March 16th, 2022

KYL/D to perform Suzanne Roberts Theatre

Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers announced its 14th Spring Home Season performances at The Suzanne Roberts Theatre on Philadelphia’s Avenue of the Arts on April 8 at 7:30 p.m., and on April 9 at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. 

Drawing upon Eastern philosophies while expanding the perimeter of contemporary dance, Artistic Director Kun-Yang Lin’s zen-inspired practice of dance manifests in lush works of poetic sensibility. Widely acclaimed by critics and audiences throughout the United States, Asia and Mexico, KYL/D’s artistry has been described by Dance Magazine as “deeply spiritual, remarkable.”

The concert, Moving Reflections on the Environment and Humankind, includes three stunning works ranging from a piece created just before the pandemic. Tickets: $45, $35, $25 (students). Reservations: kyld.org/2022.

Youth Soccer Day at FDR Park

The Fairmount Park Conservancy, Philadelphia Parks & Recreation and Friends of FDR Park will host a free Youth Soccer Day in FDR Park on March 26 for children 8-12 years old.

The event features cleats, beats, eats and kayaks for a fun-filled Saturday.

The event will feature kayak tours (ages 6 and up), a meet and greet with the Philadelphia Union, giveaways, food trucks, a DJ, balloon artist and face-painting. The Youth Soccer Day will take place from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. with guest speakers at 11:30 a.m. 

Events will take place within FDR Park near the Boathouse. Advance registration is recommended. Walk-up registration is also allowed.

Fiedler and Squilla partner to serve community

State Rep. Elizabeth Fiedler and City Councilman Mark Squilla have formed a partnership to assist residents with city services.

A member of Squilla’s staff will be available at Fiedler’s office on the second floor at 2400 S. 9th St. on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month to help South Philly residents. 

The partnership between Fiedler and Squilla began on March 9, when nearly a dozen constituents received help with property taxes, broken street lights, potholes, the senior citizen water discount, downed trees and more, according to Fiedler. Other common city government issues include illegal dumping, abandoned vehicles, zoning code issues and the senior real estate tax freeze. Fiedler says her office has helped more than 13,000 residents over the last three years.

“My staff and I help thousands of people every year with state programs and services including property tax and rent rebates, PennDOT, unemployment compensation and SEPTA Senior IDs,” Fiedler said. “We also partner to support neighbors in need of trauma and grief counseling, food insecurity, violence prevention and job creation, and many other needs. I’m excited to partner now with City Councilmember Mark Squilla, to help people with city services.”

Squilla’s presence in the office will give residents options at two levels of government.

“I believe constituent service is a crucial part of my job as an elected public servant,” Squilla said. “Having a member of my staff present in state Rep. Fiedler’s office allows us to provide city services in our South Philadelphia community.”

Residents can schedule an appointment by calling Fiedler’s office at 215-271-9190, or simply walk-in between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. on those days.

Bipartisan bill would renew Delaware River Basin Restoration

A bipartisan group of four members of Congress, led by Rep. Dwight Evans, is introducing a bill that would continue the Delaware River Basin Restoration Program, which benefits Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and New York.

The program was created in 2016 and is set to expire next year – the reauthorization would extend it to 2030.

“I’m proud to be lead House sponsor of the Delaware River Basin Conservation Reauthorization Act,” Evans said. “The restoration program provides invaluable support, through technical and grant assistance, to restoration and protection activities throughout the Delaware River Basin, a vital watershed covering over 13,000 square miles in four states and reaching over 7 million people. Maintaining the program is essential to protecting ecological diversity, improving water quality and flood damage mitigation, expanding public access and recreation, and generating economic opportunities throughout the mid-Atlantic.”

In addition to renewing the program through 2030, the bill would also bring federal cost-share provisions in line with the new Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act by increasing the federal share of projects in small, rural, or disadvantaged communities to 90 percent and allowing the Secretary of the Interior to waive the cost-share requirement entirely if a grant recipient is determined to be experiencing significant financial hardship.

Scanlon, Feinstein, Menendez introduce bill to stop fraudulent gun sales

Congresswoman Mary Gay Scanlon joined Sens. Dianne Feinstein and Bob Menendez in introducing the Stopping the Fraudulent Sales of Firearms Act, a bill to prevent gun sellers from circumventing technology companies’ terms of service by making it illegal to fraudulently sell firearms and ammunition online.

“Background checks work, and every single person who tries to buy a gun should have to pass a background check,” said Scanlon. “Right now, gun buyers can too easily evade a background check by buying a firearm online. We need to crack down on deceptive practices that allow bad actors to circumvent rules designed to prevent the sale of guns and ammunition on tech platforms. With the Stopping the Fraudulent Sales of Firearms Act, these deceptive practices would be more than a simple violation of a platform’s terms of service — they would be a federal crime. This is a common-sense solution that can save lives.”

Some technology companies have banned the sale of firearms and ammunition on their platforms. However, sellers often will misrepresent guns as other items to circumvent such restrictions. For instance, sellers on platforms like Facebook Marketplace will claim to be selling “stickers” alongside images of gun maker logos. Sellers will ask interested parties to send a private message where buyers learn the posting is actually for a gun sale and receive details and pricing. Facebook reported in 2020 that it had removed 1.3 million posts related to firearms between April and June from its platforms.

Evans, Underwood believe African Americans were undercounted on Census 

Congressman Dwight Evans and Congresswoman Lauren Underwood led a letter from 45 Congressional Black Caucus members seeking answers from the Census Bureau on the apparent undercount of African Americans in the 2020 census.

“Census data plays an enormous but often silent role in Americans’ daily lives, informing legislative representation and the distribution of hundreds of billions of federal dollars and other resources each year,” Evans said. “A Census that does not accurately represent Black communities robs them of their equal share of federal resources in education, health care, housing, nutrition assistance and many other areas — perpetuating systemic racism.”

The 45 CBC members requested a response as soon as possible as well as a full briefing from Census Bureau Director Robert Santos.

Da Vinci Art Alliance presents Scott Vradelis

After a 27-year break from painting, artist Scott Vradelis will be exhibiting at Da Vinci Art Alliance at 704 Catharine St. with his new series, entitled Winter’s Poem for Spring, which runs March 9-30. Upon viewing this exhibition, you are visiting a group of paintings that came to Vradelis as a visual poem. For Vradelis, painting is often congruent with poetry. A quiet, nearly hidden form of story-telling. A passing of information that gently asks the viewer, “Consider it this way.” Through his paintings, Vradelis invites you to give a moment to enjoy the light of a room, consider the relationship between yourself and the forms presented to you, and engage in a bit of quiet meditation before you go on your way.

1970 Goretti reunion rescheduled for April 24

St. Maria Goretti Class of 1970’s 50 (+2) reunion will be held on April 24. Postponed because of COVID, it will be a celebration of those born in 1952 who will also turn Classy 70 this year. The event is from 1-5 p.m. with a 12:30 p.m. check-in at Penns Landing Caterers at 1301 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd. For more information, check the Facebook page: St Maria Goretti Class of 1970 Philadelphia PA. Send contact information to SMG1970s50th@yahoo.com to ensure you receive an invitation.

Tickets available for Southern Class of 1976 reunion

The South Philadelphia High School Class of 1976 will hold its 45th reunion on March 18 at the Lazaretto Ballroom, located at 99 Wanamaker Ave. in Essington, from 7-11 p.m. All are welcome. For more information, contact the Class of 1976 reunion coordinators Michele T. at impizazz143@gmail.com or 267-971-4386 or contact Maria S. at mshonesty747@aol.com or 215-463-3215. Tickets are $50 per person.

Watch history of St. Patrick’s Day Parade

The history of the Philadelphia St. Patrick’s Day Parade documentary can be viewed every Tuesday in March at 2:30 p.m. on Xfinity 66/966 and Fios TV 29/30, along with Roku and Apple TV.

Here are some other Irish-themed programs available:

Enter American Legion contests

The Pennsylvania American Legion has an opportunity for high school students to obtain money toward college or other life goals.

The high school oratorical contest will give out $3,500 to the winner, $3,000 to the runner-up and $2,500 to third place.

An essay contest on “What America Means To Me” is open to ages 15-18. Essays should be 300-500 words. The winner will receive $500.

For an essay on “What Does The 26th Amendment Mean To Me,” the winner will receive $3,500 and a trip to the American Legion national convention. The runner-up will earn $3,000, while third place takes $2,500. All winners receive a plaque.

For more information, call 215-989-7515 or email jamesboylepost0293@gmail.com.

McSwain would govern pro-life

Bill McSwain, a Republican candidate for governor, has been ranked “pro-life” by the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation Political Action Committee.

McSwain has promised to give pro-life voices a prominent seat at the table in his administration.

“I am proud and grateful to have received the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation PAC’s highest rating. As a father of four, I understand the importance of defending the dignity and sanctity of human life. As governor, I will promote pro-life policies and appoint pro-life and pro-family voices to my administration. I will ensure that Pennsylvania has a culture of life and will sign legislation that protects the unborn,” he said.

Comcast offering affordable internet

Comcast is participating in the federal government’s Affordable Connectivity Program and the $30/month benefit can be applied to any tier of Xfinity Internet service.

Customers can sign up for Internet Essentials Plus, which includes 100 Mbps download speeds, a cable modem and WiFi router, and is free after the government’s ACP credit is applied.

Additionally, Xfinity Internet customers participating in ACP now can add mobile service through Xfinity Mobile.

New and existing Xfinity Internet or Internet Essentials customers can visit www.xfinity.com/acp or call 844-389-4681 for more information, to determine eligibility, and sign up. 

Apply for scholarship contest

Ardent Credit Union, which has a branch in the Navy Yard, is accepting applications for its annual scholarship contest. The member-owned financial cooperative is awarding $1,000 scholarships to 12 students pursuing undergraduate degrees beginning this fall. This is the first year that applicants will submit videos instead of essays.

To apply, candidates are asked to create a “viral-worthy” video demonstrating why they should be awarded an Ardent scholarship. This includes highlighting academic accomplishments, personal stories, community involvement and athletic and extracurricular activities. All videos must be submitted by April 15, and winners will be notified at the end of May.

Qualified applicants must be members of Ardent and either a current high school senior or a 2021 high school graduate who has been accepted to an accredited two- or four-year college, university, technical, trade or business school for the fall. Students who are not yet Ardent members, but are eligible for membership, can join before applying for the scholarship. Ardent is asking that each video be between 30 seconds and two minutes in length, while excluding any logos or copyrighted material to include music.

More information about the scholarships and the application process can be found at ardentcu.org/scholarship.

Museum of the American Revolution celebrates Women’s History Month

Programs include: Liberty: Don Troiani’s Paintings of the Revolutionary War Special Exhibit (Daily, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.); “Meet Elizabeth Freeman” Film (Saturdays and Sundays 11:15 a.m. & 2:15 p.m.); Revolution Place Craft: Make a Heart Pin Cushion (Weekends, 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.). And visit the Museum’s Digital Resources (online anytime) to explore the stories of Revolutionary women. Learn about women like Deborah Squash, who escaped enslavement at Mount Vernon and sought protection with the British Army; Deborah Sampson, who dressed as a man to fight in the Continental Army; and Phillis Wheatley, America’s first published Black female poet. The Museum’s virtual exhibit, When Women Lost the Vote: A Revolutionary Story, 1776-1807, examines the incredible story of women and free people of color voting in early America. For more information, visit amrevmuseum.org.

Sign up for senior softball

Philadelphia Senior Softball League is looking for experienced players for their 58 and over league. The season starts mid-April and runs through September. There are about 30 games along with playoffs. No games are played in July. Games are played Tuesday and Thursday at 10 a.m. at Crispin Field, Holme and Convent avenues.

For more information, call Jim Wilson at 609-636-1702 or Marty King at 215-698-0009. 

McSwain signs education pledge

Bill McSwain, Republican candidate for governor, today announced that he has signed the Education Freedom Pledge. By signing the pledge, McSwain promises to support parental rights in education and educational freedom, including the right of parents to apply their child’s taxpayer-funded education dollars to the school of their choosing, whether it be private, public, charter or homeschool.

“Education is a gateway to a better life, and every family deserves the freedom to choose the education that is best for their children. As governor, I will empower parents to have the final authority over their children’s education, and fight back against teachers union bosses in defense of students and good teachers. I am proud to sign the Education Freedom Pledge, which reflects my commitment to ensuring that every child, regardless of ZIP code, has access to an excellent education.”

As part of McSwain’s Parents Bill of Rights and Pillars of Education, he favors school choice, wants to ban critical race theory, and pledges to never accept a cent from teachers unions.

Flower show tickets available

The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society announced that tickets are on sale for the Philadelphia Flower Show.

The theme is In Full Bloom. The show will take place at Franklin Delano Roosevelt Park, 1500 Pattison Ave., from Saturday, June 11, through Sunday, June 19.

For tickets, go to PHSonline.org/the-flower-show.

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 www.ticketmaster.com.

South Phila. HS class of ‘68 reunion

The South Philadelphia High School Class of 1968 will hold its 55th reunion on Saturday, Oct. 21, 2023, from noon to 4 p.m. at the Waterfall Room, 2015 S. Water St. Tickets cost $60 and include buffet dinner and open bar. For tickets and more information, call Arleen Liberi [609-922-2419], Maria Leati [856-287-3734] or Stephen Michielli [267-252-2740].

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.

Hidden Works of Nature: The Microscopic World in the Library & Archives will be on exhibit on the following Fridays, hourly from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.: March 18; and April 1 and 15.

A junior scientist workshop titled Water Bugs, geared to kids in third to fifth grades, is scheduled for Saturday, March 19, from 10 a.m. to noon. Register at https://bit.ly/3pbrMLq.

Extreme Deep: Mission to the Abyss will run from April 2 to July 24.

Invisible World of Water runs through May 1.

Sea Change is running indefinitely.

A creek exploration field trip will take place on Sunday, April 3, from 9–11 a.m. at Kirkwood Preserve, 855 Grubbs Mill Road, Newtown Square. Test the waters and identify the species that live there as you learn about the ecology, equipment and methodology that scientists use to explore and understand creek systems. Recommended for adults and families with children ages 8 and up. For more information and to register, visit https://bit.ly/35oBunq.

The film Microcosmos at Bryn Mawr Film Institute is scheduled for Sunday, April 10, from 1-3 p.m. Hang around after the film for a presentation and Q&A with the Academy of Natural Sciences featuring live invertebrate specimens! For more information, fee and registration, visit https://brynmawrfilm.org/event/microcosmos/.

A Junior Scientist Workshop: How Does a River Flex its Mussels? is set for Saturday, April 16, from 10 a.m. to noon. Examine Academy specimens and learn how the Academy is partnering around the region to restore mussel populations. Meet some baby mussels and try out a few filter feeding activities to see how hard these animals work. The workshop is for grades 3–5. For more information, fee and to register, visit https://bit.ly/3s8Mv5t.

Earth Day Story Time will take place on Wednesday, April 20, from 10:15 to 11 a.m. Join in for the reading of Over and Under the Pond and then craft a special finger-painted pond to learn how animals and plants need water to survive. Recommended for ages 3-5. For fee and more information, visit https://bit.ly/35oBunq.

The Earth Day Festival on April 22 will take place from 4–8 p.m. and admission will be pay-what-you-wish. Visitors can celebrate life on Earth and the systems that support it with a night of fun and interesting science programming, conservation conversations and craft beer.

Access to Science Earth Day Celebration is scheduled for Saturday, April 30, from 9 to 11 a.m. Visitors on the autism spectrum and their families are invited to experience the museum before the crowds. Guests can visit the dinosaurs, dioramas and all the other exhibits at their own pace. Enjoy some quiet time with Academy educators to learn more about water conservation and how you can make the world a cleaner, greener place. Free with registration; to register, call 215-299-1060 or email AccessToScience@ansp.org. For more details, visit https://bit.ly/356a8ml.

Kids Club: Take Action is set for Saturday, April 30, from 10 a.m. to noon. At 10:45 a.m. authors will read their new book, Coco’s Fire: Changing Climate Anxiety into Climate Action. The reading will be followed by a discussion. The event is designed for ages 6–10. Register at ansp.org/kidsclub.

A Junior Scientist Workshop: What’s So Mighty About a Diatom? will take place on Saturday, May 14, from 10 a.m. to noon. Discover how diatoms have inspired scientists to invent special tools and create art, then take home your own daring diatom design. Designed for grades 3–5. For more information, fee and to register, visit https://bit.ly/34YJhsE.

The River Feeds Back, going from June 1 to Oct. 16, is an immersive sound installation created by artists Annea Lockwood and Liz Phillips. The exhibit brings visitors into the deep sonic environment of the Schuylkill River watershed through recordings and a layered sound map that captures glimpses of the river system including the life of aquatic insects, eels, fish and swirling currents.

Ocean Bound will run from Aug. 20 to Jan. 15, 2023.

Water exhibit opens

The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, is presenting Invisible World of Water, on view through May 1 and free with general admission.

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

For more information, visit ansp.org

Explore ocean depths

A new exhibition opening this spring at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, reveals the mysteries of the ocean’s greatest depths.

Extreme Deep: Mission to the Abyss, opening April 2, invites museum visitors to explore newly discovered life forms, thermal vents, deep-sea research submersibles and shipwrecks including the Titanic.

Museum visitors will observe firsthand the technology that only recently has allowed scientists to travel to the ocean floor and discover the creatures that thrive in total darkness. They can test their skill at manipulating a robotic arm of a replica of the submersible Alvin to pick up lava rocks and clams similar to what scientists do to gather samples of creatures from the ocean floor.

Visitors can also fly a remotely operated vehicle over a model of the Titanic’s deck and, in another display, see how currents created by superheated water erupting from thermal vents carry nutrients that support life forms few ever dreamed existed. 

Extreme Deep: Mission to the Abyss will be on view through July 24.

Celebrate water and the planet

The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, will present a series of events and activities to celebrate water and the planet.

Events and activities include World Water Day Story Time on Wednesday, March 23, 10:15 to 11 a.m.; Academy Kids Club: Water Scopes on Saturday, March 26, from 10 a.m. to noon; 

Water, Climate Change and Disturbance Ecology on Saturday, April 2, 1-4 p.m.; Junior Scientist Workshop: How Does a River Flex its Mussels? on Saturday, April 9, from 10 a.m. to noon; 12 p.m.; Drexel Earth Fest on Tuesday, April 19, from 11:30 a.m to 1:30 p.m.; and Naturepalooza on Saturday, April 23, from 10 a.m to 2 p.m.

For more information, visit https://bit.ly/35oBunq.

Kimmel schedule

The Kimmel Cultural Campus has returned to live Broadway programming.

Here is the schedule through next summer: Oklahoma! (through March 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 kimmelcenter.org

Upcoming cruises

The Bristol Cultural and Historical Foundation 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.

Meanwhile, a fully escorted Holy Lands & Aegean Majesty cruise will sail Oct. 6-17, 2023, featuring 10 ports-of-call. Rates, including airfare, range from $4,198 to $7,998 per person, double occupancy.

Call 215-788-9408 for information and reservations. 

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