Newsletter for Thursday, Sept. 3
INSTAGRAM OF THE DAY
Not even school buses are immune from the dreaded PPA boot; photo via @twooonephive on Instagram.
SURPRISE! THERE ARE, IN FACT, POPE TICKETS (FORGET WHAT THEY SAID EARLIER)
The best areas where Pope Francis will make public appearances in Philadelphia will be ticketed, despite earlier assurances from the World Meeting of Families that the papal events on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway would “be free and open to the public.” In a map released by the Secret Service, it looks like nearly half the Parkway is a special zone for ticket holders. To get a ticket, it helps to go to (Catholic) church a lot; they’re being distributed via a lottery system in at least one diocese, for instance. WMOF head Donna Crilley Farrell explained the “limited” ticketing that, uh, isn’t meant to limit things. Here’s the exact set of quotes: “These plans were put in place to ensure that representatives representing the vibrant life and ongoing work of the Archdiocese were part of these joyful events… It is important to be clear that the announcement of limited ticketing does not limit participation in these events in any way.” Got it? Good, because that somehow explains why the WMOF was able to post on its “Frequently Asked Questions” page that tickets were not required for the events. And that’s true, unless you want to, you know, see them. But don’t worry, Farrell says: “There is plenty of room for all who wish to attend.”
SAVING MEMORIES OF THE SPECTRUM, ONE SIGNATURE AT A TIME
Meet Andrew Kay, a 30-year-old who is on a mission. He’s the proud owner of the “S” from the “SPECTRUM” lettering that hung for decades on the side of the venue that once stood in South Philadelphia. He’s on a mission to have every living athlete and musician known for playing there autograph the 6-foot-by-4-foot, 70-pound hollow blue letter. So far, he’s got Trey Anastasio from Phish, Dr. J, Bobby Clarke, and a whole lot more names — before history forgets the city’s once-crucial performing and sports venue.
Free screening of the classic (?) time-travel comedy as part of the 2015 Schuylkill Banks Movie Series.
Where: Paine's Park at East side of the Schuylkill River by Martin Luther King Drive
When: September 3, 2015 at 7:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
How much: Free
BILLY PENN LIKES
MEET PHILLY’S SOCIAL MEDIA STARS ON VINE, INSTAGRAM, YOUTUBE AND TWITTER
Social media these days can lead to fame and fortune every bit as legitimate as the more traditional routes to show business. And in this climate, a select few Philadelphians have thrived. Vine lovers can thank the Philly area for the most popular woman on that network. A person involved in one of Instagram’s top ongoing feuds lives right here — like Ed Bassmaster, who was behind the HitchBOT prank. Or Brittany Vurlan, who’s closing in on 10 million Vine followers. These are 11 of the most popular social media personalities who either live or have roots here.
INSIDE PHILOSOPHICAL HALL, A CLUB BEN FRANKLIN STARTED
The Philosophical Society still has annual meetings that aim to forward the pursuit of knowledge. It has had a total of 5,000 members; 1,000 of them are alive today, some of whom you’d recognize: Jimmy Carter, actor and film director Martin Scorcese, the late astronaut Neil Armstrong, renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma, investor Warren Buffett, the late journalist Walter Cronkite, and the Notorious RBG — Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. And today, one in every 10 members of the society is the owner of a Nobel prize. Many of the members, certainly the colonial ones, walked the halls of Philosophical Hall on 5th Street. Billy Penn went inside to see some of the history that’s still there.