February 3, 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.
October 26, 2012
Ramen Boy lasted, oh, about as long as one slurp. Or so it seemed for this sleek Chinatown entry from the owners of Yakitori Boy into the city's suddenly piping hot ramen scene. After a steady thrum of (justified) bad buzz on the "Yokohama-style" bowls, it closed after just five months while the owners regrouped. What a remarkable turnaround they've made in forming a new partnership with the Terakawa ramen restaurants from New York, which brought new recipes and a new chef. The cozy wood counter decor is the same, but the soups, focusing on richer tonkotsu, the cloudy broth steeped from Berkshire pork bones in the Kyushu style, are entirely more satisfying, and definitely worth another visit.
October 13, 2012 |
If you look at the whole of Philadelphia's architectural output over the last two decades, it becomes clear that much of the effort was about repair and recovery. Neglected neighborhoods were rediscovered, dilapidated houses were renovated, empty lots filled in. The most intensive repair has already occurred in Center City's neighborhoods. Downtown is now in such good physical shape, and has so few vacant building sites left, that the reclamation has shifted to the ring of neighborhoods beyond Philadelphia's traditional core, to places such as Graduate Hospital and Northern Liberties.
September 29, 2012 |
Dun Mark is the kind of person who makes Chinatown a community, not merely a place to live. Cross Spring Street early weekday mornings, cut through the alley to the basketball court tucked behind the Chinese Christian Church, and you'll find Mark teaching tai chi to senior citizens, free of charge. Some of his students are 80 or older. "They're healthy as hell," Mark said. So is he. At 88, Mark is fit, strong, and expecting to be around for a while. His mother lived to 107. On Saturday, he and his graying-but-vibrant students will perform at the 17th annual Mid-Autumn Festival, expected to draw 5,000 to Chinatown from across the Philadelphia region for kung fu exhibitions, Peking opera, health screenings, and a moon cake-eating contest.
September 26, 2012
An apartment building in Chinatown was evacuated Tuesday after pieces of the facade fell onto the sidewalk, a Red Cross spokesman said. About 22 people were told to leave at building at 12th and Race Streets around 8 p.m. after the problem was discovered, said spokesman Dave Schrader. No injuries were reported. The people were first relocated to the Pennsylvania Convention Center. The landlord then put the residents up at a local hotel while repairs are being done, Schrader said.
September 26, 2012
An apartment building in Chinatown was evacuated Tuesday after pieces of the facade fell onto the sidewalk, a Red Cross spokesman said. About 22 people were told to leave the building at 12th and Race Streets around 8 p.m. after the problem was discovered, said spokesman Dave Schrader. No injuries were reported. The people were first relocated to the Convention Center. The landlord then put the residents up at a local hotel while repairs are done, Schrader said. - Robert Moran
June 1, 2012 |
Federal regulators shut down 26 curbside bus operators on Thursday, including three in Philadelphia, one in Delaware County, and seven elsewhere in Pennsylvania, in the largest bus safety crackdown in U.S. history. The bus operators, which carried about 1,800 passengers a day along I-95 between New York and Florida, were cited for a variety of safety hazards, including drivers without valid licenses or medical certifications; buses with uninspected brakes, tires, and lights; and drivers who did not get mandatory rest periods.