Newsletter for Saturday, August 1
INSTAGRAM OF THE DAY
The ceiling of the cathedral Pope Francis will visit the day before his public appearance on the Parkway; photo via @mithundas on Instagram
THE QUICK RISE AND SLOW FALL OF CHAKA FATTAH: A CAREER THAT STARTED WITH REFORM ENDS IN CORRUPTION CHARGES
Elected for the first time to the state general assembly in 1982, Chaka Fattah is facing his first true crisis after winning landslide election after landslide election in the U.S. 2nd District in Philadelphia. Eight years after the start of a federal investigation, the U.S. Congressman and ranking member of a prestigious House appropriations committee was indicted Wednesday on racketeering and fraud charges. This is the story of the rise and fall of a powerful Philadelphia politician, one entrenched in the political fabric of the nation and the city. It is also the story of a dysfunctional city Democratic party and machine, one that watched the federal investigation wind on for nearly a decade without once running a competent candidate against Fattah, who’s been up for re-election every two years.
DAY-TRIPPING THE PA RENAISSANCE FAIRE: BEER, TURKEY LEGS AND ULTIMATE JOUSTING
Get your tights ready: The Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire starts this weekend in northern Lancaster County. In its 35th year, the PA Ren Faire is a 13-week festival that has more than 90 shows daily and boasts a culture of its own. Hardcore fans will dress in period garb for the occasion, so expect lots of tights, but everyone is welcome no matter what they’re wearing — some 10,000 visitors a day swing through to hark back to early 16th century Europe. Here’s how to plan your PA Renaissance Faire day trip.
BILLY PENN PLAYLIST: FROM MAYOR NUTTER’S ‘BRAIN STEW’ TO ‘SO APPALLED’ AT NAKED CAFE MAN
It was a news-filled week in Philadelphia. The level of anxiety for the upcoming pope visit went up a few notches with the release of a map detailing restricted areas, followed by a press conference from an exasperated Mayor Michael Nutter. Then on Wednesday, U.S. Congressman Chaka Fattah got indicted. Cole Hamels was traded, Scott Walker ate a cheesesteak (two, really), and there was fallout from some dude walking around naked in Rocket Cat Cafe. Billy Penn recaps those stories and more and pairs them with music in the #BillyPennPlaylist.
ON THE CALENDAR
OK, Camden isn't the first place you think of when you think great beer, good wine, fine art and creative crafts, but the city across the Delaware definitely has one fantastic thing going for it — the view of the Philly skyline. Ferry or PATCO over (or jog across the Ben Franklin Bridge) to take it in while browsing the many stalls at the fest and hitting up the beer and wine garden and food trucks.
Where: Wiggins Park Marina at Dr. Martin Luther King Blvd, Camden, NJ
When: August 1, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
How much: Pay as you go
Shofuso, the gorgeous Japanese house and garden in West Fairmount Park, is searching for its grandfather. For the 1876 Centennial Exhibition, a Japanese structure was erected on the same site, and archaeologists are excavating the area behind the waterfall to see if they can find its remains. For one day, the survey is open to the public, although project will continue to be documented online throughout the summer.
Where: Shofuso Japanese House and Garden at Horticultural & Lansdowne drives, West Fairmount Park
When: August 1, 2015 at 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
How much: Free
The original Joe's Steaks out on Torresdale Ave. is all about keeping it ultra classic, but the gorgeously retro new outpost on the corner of Frankford and Girard in Fishtown is branching out. (There's even a vegan cheesesteak.) Starting August 1, milkshake options go cutting edge with a rotating flavor made with Little Baby's Ice Cream. Crunchy Peach kicks off the series, with peach granola ice cream, milk and a swirl of whippped cream on top.
Where: Joe's Steaks + Soda Shop at 1 W. Girard Ave.
When: August 1, 2015 at 11:00 a.m. to August 2, 2015 at 3:00 a.m.
How much: $6.95
Agricultural powers that be (the USDA, really) have declared August 2-8 to be National Farmer's Market Week, and Chipotle is getting in on the game. Marketing ploy or not, it can't hurt to be one of the first 500 people to show up at the Headhouse Farmer's Market and score a $5 token good for anything sold there — you might even be able to afford a whole heirloom tomato. BOGO burrito cards will also be handed out.
Where: Headhouse Shambles at Second & Lombard streets
When: August 2, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
How much: Free
A giant block party takes over North Second Street each summer, and the seventh annual edition is packed with music, beer, food and fun. More than 150 vendors are set to offer arts, crafts and edibles (not that kind...yet), and three stages along the stretch will showcase all kinds of bands, from hip top to folk to rock to reggae.
Where: 2nd Street at N. Second St. from Germantown to Green
When: August 2, 2015 at 12:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
How much: Free with pay-as-you-go food and drink