Newsletter for Friday, June 12
INSTAGRAM OF THE DAY
A Technicolor sun-and-skyline on the New Jersey side, via @jmcrutch on Instagram.
RAMSEY’S TED X TALK: ON ‘BLACK LIVES MATTER’, EDUCATING POLICE
Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey gave extended commentary Thursday about the #BlackLivesMatter movement and community relations with police, saying poignantly “police have not always stood on the right side of justice… We need to get away from the us against them mentality,” he said, “and acknowledge our own biases.” Ramsey gave a TEDX Philadelphia talk, seen live by a crowd at Temple University and live-streamed at various locations around the city. He proposed ways for the city and its Constitution Center to better educate the police about the history of civil rights. And during the mayor’s race last month, that was sort of a big deal.
CITY COUNCIL ALMOST VOTED ON BUILDING A NEW PRISON (WHY THEY WON’T SAY SO)
Philadelphia City Council was all set to vote Thursday on a bill that will be the first steps to building a prison, only it didn’t sound that way. The bill’s sponsor, Councilman Bobby Henon, pulled the measure which would have let council authorize negotiations to purchase a 58-acre parcel of land from a company called 7777 Philadelphia PA Loan Associates for $7.3 million. Only it’s not clear who currently owns the property, therefore with whom the city would be doing business. Oh, and some people aren’t exactly looking forward to the prospect of spending millions of dollars worth of taxpayer money to construct an entirely new prison in Northeast Philadelphia — right next to the complex where several currently are located. But officials say that at least one of those facilities, the current House of Corrections, is dilapidated and needs replaced ASAP; some residents say they’d rather see the money spent on schools. Here’s how we got here.
THE VENDIES ARE THIS WEEKEND, BUT ARE FOOD TRUCKS STILL A THING?
Saturday brings the fifth annual Philly Vendy Awards to the JFK Bridge, when 15 local food trucks convene on the arch that connects Center City to 30th Street Station. The street food throwdown is a fundraiser for The Food Trust and the Philadelphia Mobile Food Association, but it’s also a chance to taste a ton of different food in an outdoor setting ($65 tickets are available here). It can definitely be fun to stick plastic forks into paper trays and nosh on a variety of food in the open air — especially for charity — but has the food truck trend peaked?
TO DO: WATCH A TANEY DRAGONS DOCUMENTARY WITH MO’NE
WHAT: Venice Island Live, feat. a screening of the new documentary “Taney Baseball: The Movie” with the Taney Dragons in attendance (including Mo’ne Davis).
WHERE: 1 Rector Street, Philadelphia, PA, 19127
WHEN: 7-8 PM
HOW MUCH: Free
BILLY PENN LIKES
THE ALLEN IVERSON BAR CRAWL
Iverson liked to party, period. Probably too much. Author Kent Babb reports in his new book“Not A Game: The Incredible Rise and Unthinkable Fall of Allen Iverson” that Iverson’s thirst for alcohol was so great it led to a decline in his playing career and personal life. How often did Iverson drink? He was drunk during his famous “practice” rant, according to Babb’s book. Here’s where he used to hang out, and what’s there now.
HOW PHILLY-AREA FRIENDS CHANGED BOCCE FROM DYING TO VIBRANT
Bocce in Philadelphia used to be more of a background sport. If you played it, you either did so unofficially and anonymously in your backyard or you gained entry to an exclusive club, one that was usually male, old and Italian. Then something interesting happened: The sport started attracting younger participants, in part because three Philly-area suburbanites thought Washington D.C.’s kickball leagues were a little too “bro-tastic” about a decade ago. Here’s how they switched it around, and why women became the key to its success.