Mel Heifetz calls the $16 million he just gave to the Philadelphia Foundation "nothing unusual." Heifetz announced on Facebook his “lifetime of work” donation in support of the LGBT community. Heifetz has been giving to charitable organizations for decades. He also donated $1 million each to Democrat presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and former President Obama. Here's how the South Philly native who grew up poor made it happen.
For the second year running, we at Billy Penn came up with a few Philly-centric Halloween costumes that are topical, witty and will only be understood by a select few people who actually pay attention to the news. (Halloween is a great way to alienate your most clueless friends, isn’t it?) Check out our video and instructions for how to create each of the costumes we came up with for 2017.
It's looking very likely that the School Reform Commission will vote to dissolve itself by the end of this year, bringing control of local schools back to Philly, per a Philly.com report Friday. The SRC, which has three governor-appointed members and two mayor-appointed members, was created when the Pennsylvania took over control of the Philadelphia School District in 2001. Activists have been pushing for its end for years — it was never meant to be permanent, just a way to funnel state funding to a beleaguered education system. Mayor Kenney and City Council are reportedly in active talks to determine what the next school district governing body will look like.
Admit it. You've ducked into Wendy's or pretended to be a guest at a hotel because you were out and about and Center City and found yourself with no place to go. City officials realize Philly has a serious lack of public restrooms, and they're in the process of soliciting ideas for solutions. A new request for information calls for ideas about restrooms and showers that could be used by commuters, tourists and people who are homeless.
On the Calendar
The families and businesses around 27th and South Street are collaborating for a giant all-day block sale. Expect years and years worth of collected books, tapes, vinyl, art, kitchenwares, clothing, bicycle parts and even vintage typewriters.
Where: Grays Ferry at 27th & South St.
When: October 21, 2017 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
How much: Pay as you go
Local artist Saul Rosenbaum will lead a free coloring party at this new Pennsport cafe. Free "Other Worlds" sheets and drawing implements, just bring yourself and a desire to drink coffee or creations like the refreshing and bubbly "Lemon Espressegrino" (on special for $3 each).
Where: Herman's Coffee at 1313 S. 3rd St. 19147
When: October 22, 2017 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
How much: Free coloring, pay-as-you-go coffee and snacks
Starting this week, Peter McAndrews is bringing back the "Sugo Sundays" deal at his Ninth Street BYOB. For $40 per person, you get a family-style dinner that includes five to six antipasti, three pasta dishes (lasagna, gnocchi and spaghetti with ragu), as much as you care to eat of various meat entrees like roast chicken, roast pork, meatballs, sausage and braciole, a palate-cleansing salad AND dessert. Pick up a bottle of wine (or two) and get ready to feast.
Where: Monsu at 901 Christian St.
When: October 22, 2017 from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
How much: $40
"Over the Hop" is a beer industry fundraiser slash arm wrestling contest inspired by the 1987 Sylvester Stallone movie, "Over The Top." A half-dozen women from the Philly beer scene — brewers, sales reps, bar owners, etc. — will battle it out on stage, while fans sip $5 local beers and cider and cheer on their favorites.
Where: Liberty Vintage Motorcycles at 2212 Sepviva St. 19125
When: October 22, 2017 from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
How much: $10-$20
Local community-oriented tech company Azavea is bringing together stakeholders from police departments, law schools, activist groups and advisory commissions for a panel discussion on what the future of public safety should look like in Philadelphia and the U.S. Free with registration. Light food and drink provided.
Where: HunchLab by Azavea at 990 Spring Garden St., 5th Fl. 19123
When: October 22, 2017 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
How much: Free with registration