May 11, 2013 |
Gambling foes filled the audience at Wednesday's hearing before the state Gaming Control Board, silently standing to strongly protest the building of another casino in Philadelphia. About 75 people, mostly from Chinatown, held anti-casino signs during back-to-back testimony from gaming opponents at the end of the fourth and last day of public input on a second license. The protesters represented a coalition of community groups called No Casino in Our City. While most of the earlier speakers were endorsing one project or another, the 11 people to testify at the end of the hearing denounced gambling as bad public policy that was promoting addiction.
April 25, 2013
With taquerías and other conspicuously non-Italian businesses proliferating in South Philadelphia's Italian Market, should the neighborhood be renamed for the sake of anthropological accuracy? The answer is the same whether you're a Sicilian or a Sinaloan: No . The Daily News' Helen Ubiñas raised the question in a recent column, arguing that these days, the neighborhood's name "just doesn't reflect the reality of the street. " As she pointed out, the collection of businesses occupying the historic curb market along South Ninth Street has steadily become less Italian and more Asian and Latino, particularly Mexican.
April 6, 2013 |
A quick-acting Philadelphia detective caught two suspects who allegedly pistol-whipped and robbed a 58-year-old man late Friday afternoon in Chinatown, police said. Around 5:30 p.m., the man was attacked inside a rental property he owns in the 1200 block of Vine Street, said Lt. John Walker of Southwest Detectives. The victim was forced into the basement, where he was beaten with a .357 caliber pistol and forced to strip to his underwear. Detective Rob Conway was driving down Vine Street returning from an investigation when he spotted the victim, who was outside and screaming for help.
March 12, 2013 |
THIRTY-FOUR years ago, Sarah McEneaney was a young art-school graduate who bought an old building on a gritty industrial stretch of Callowhill Street, because the price was right and she wanted a home with studio space for her artwork. Back then, "it would be busy during the day and, at night, it would be desolate and kind of scary," she said. But the neighborhood slowly grew busier as Chinatown inched northward and developers built condos, she added. City officials now plan to chart that change.
February 5, 2013 |
Lai Lun Mark's smile is as beautiful today as the day she won the title - Miss Chinatown, 1964. "A lifetime ago," she said and laughed during an interview. Flashbulbs popped as she accepted the winner's trophy in the Grand Court of Wanamaker's department store, crowned by no less than Richard M. Nixon, then planning a comeback campaign for the presidency. A week later, Mark, 20, became the white-caped centerpiece of a boisterous Chinese New Year parade, chauffeured through Chinatown in a red Ford Galaxie convertible, waving to crowds that stood five deep on the sidewalks.
February 4, 2013 |
Robert Moy was a king of Chinatown ticket-fixers, according to federal authorities, even advertising his surefire services in the newspaper. "Tackles the traffic ticket," said an ad in the local China News Weekend, "and guarantees no points or fewer points. " The day after being indicted on charges that could send him to prison for years, Moy was open for business on Friday, running Number One Translations on the second floor of a building at 926 Winter St. Two giant stone Foo Dogs stood out front.
December 28, 2012 |
THE ASIAN Arts Initiative, a community-based arts center in Chinatown, has always encouraged local residents' involvement. AAI's latest project, the Social Practice Lab, continued that practice by inviting artists to solicit input for neighborhood art projects from local residents. There's plenty of challenge in the stark, industrial areas on Chinatown's northern edges. Artist Ben Volta and Gayle Isa, executive director of Asian Arts Initiative, recently met with PECO, for instance, about the huge electrical substation between 11th and 12th streets near the old viaduct.
December 21, 2012
THERE'S SOME truth to the joke that Jews like to take in Chinese food and a Woody Allen movie on Christmas Eve, to get away from all that. This year, Allen has denied his tribe a new opus. But look-alike comedian Ross Bennett is ready to make Christmas Eve escapees laugh while you nosh, as star of the Moo Shu Jew Show, sponsored by the Gershman Y. Actually returning for the fifth year, this multicourse Chinese feast plus comedy show will be landing at a new Chinatown location, Ocean Harbor Restaurant, 1023 Race St. Also serving up the yuks are Lenny Marcus - a funny bunny who recently debuted on "The Late Show with David Letterman" plus standup comic/author Joel Chasnoff, whose material (and book The 188th Crybaby Brigade)
December 2, 2012 |
I recently revisited the site of my first great travel adventure - after a half-century, almost to the day. The destination of this foray into nostalgia and rediscovery was San Francisco. Why I had allowed a full 50 years to go by without returning to one of America's most beautiful and appealing cities is not easily explained. I had lived outside of the United States for several decades, and once back on the East Coast I was busy with other concerns. Still, San Francisco had always remained in my memory as a fabulous place.