September 8, 2014 |
They arrived at Camp Saginaw carrying sleeping bags and blankets, hustled about a soccer field, mounted go-karts - even made s'mores. And just after 1 p.m. Saturday, the scores of boys and men turned east, toward Mecca. "There's a time for prayer, and there's a time for play," said Ahmad Chaudhry, 39, as the Muslim attendees prepared to perform two of five daily prayers beneath a canopy in Oxford, in southwest Chester County. So went the gathering of more than 1,000 attendees in the Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association, a branch of the national Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.
September 6, 2014 |
A national Muslim youth group will hold its 45th annual retreat this weekend, bringing together more than 1,200 men and boys from around the country to Chester County with the goal of strengthening a sense of community and identity among young Muslims. "They're not anything like the type of Muslims we hear about on television and the radio," said Bilal Rana, president of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association. The organization, which has 71 local chapters and more than 3,000 members, is part of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.
August 28, 2014 |
THE ONLY THING more discouraging for Phillies fans eager to see the current season come to an end is the dearth of major league-ready talent in the minor leagues. Pitchers Aaron Nola and Jesse Biddle could be ready for the big leagues at some point in 2015, but not in April. After power-hitting corner infielder Maikel Franco, there isn't a prospect realistically expected to compete for a job at big league camp next spring. But shortly after the 2014 season ends, a ray of hope within the lower levels of the minor league system will be on display out west.
August 28, 2014 |
Diane Wilfert, 68, adores watching her grandchildren - just not on Sundays during football season. From the first snap to the final buzzer, the grandmother from Pilesgrove, N.J., can be found perched on the couch - fantasy football roster in hand - hoping her team, the Cat's Pajamas, has a winning day. Wilfert, now retired, loves fantasy football - where participants choose real players to create imaginary teams. Her $40-to-join league, comprising family and friends, includes a draft party, gives her something to talk about with her sons-in-law, "and it's been wonderful for my marriage," she said.
August 28, 2014 |
THE MEN of Penn Masala were sworn to secrecy about their cameo in "Pitch Perfect 2," the sequel to the sleeper hit "Pitch Perfect," which made a reported $113 million at the worldwide box office and netted a Billboard Top 10 hit with "Cups (When I'm Gone)," sung by star Anna Kendrick . "Pitch Perfect 2" is directed by fellow Penn grad Elizabeth Banks (class of '96), who produced and starred in the original. Members of Penn Masala, billed as the world's premier South Asian a cappella group, were "beyond excited" about the cameo in the movie about the all-ladies a capella group at fictional Barden University, as first reported by the Daily Pennsylvanian . While president Dilip Rajan , a senior at Wharton, and business manager Pranay Sharma , a sophomore at Wharton, kept mum on what they sang and why they were chosen as the only collegiate a cappella group in the film, they noted their unique blend of Hindi, Bollywood and western music that spurs from their members' backgrounds, some of whom were born abroad and others in the States.
August 22, 2014 |
Thousands of members of the National Black MBA Association will gather in Atlanta next month for their annual convention, reserving a combined total of more than 10,000 nights in Atlanta's hotels and eating in Atlanta's restaurants. They would have been spending their money in Philadelphia, except that in 2012, worried about labor hassles and inefficiencies at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, the group canceled its September 2014 convention here and moved it to Atlanta. Now they've rebooked for Philadelphia - in 2017.
August 16, 2014 |
As one of eight seniors on the roster, running back Kenneth Harper knows the day is coming when the uniform he'll wear won't be Temple football's, but something more appropriate for the workforce. To get ready for that, Harper, a finance major from Gainesville, Fla., who last season led the Owls in rushing yards (613) and touchdowns (11), interned over the summer here with PNC Bank. "I worked on high-net-worth accounts," Harper said. "Asset management and portfolio management, stocks, bonds, and mutual funds, and things like that.
August 14, 2014 |
A study that said more money has not helped city schools is flawed and presents a skewed picture of the Philadelphia School District's reality, a local nonprofit says. The conservative Commonwealth Foundation said in an analysis released earlier this month that while the system's budget had grown over the past decade, its students were still struggling, and that "serious reform" was needed to fix the city's schools. But Research for Action, a Philadelphia-based organization whose mission is to strengthen public schools, found the Commonwealth Foundation brief "misleading, inaccurate, and devoid of context needed for an informed understanding of what is happening in the city's schools.
August 8, 2014 |
HUMAN NATURE is a vocal quartet consisting of four white young men from suburban Sydney, Australia, whose stock-in-trade is the Motown Records canon of the 1960s and '70s. As such, it's easy to dismiss the unit, which tonight begins a two-weekend run at Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa. After all, how could these guys do justice to music made by African-Americans before, in some cases, they were even born? If you agree with those sentiments, we suggest you take it up with Smokey Robinson - yes, that Smokey Robinson, the one who wrote and sang some of the most enduring songs in pop-music history.
August 8, 2014 |
Do individuals have a responsibility to help shape America's image in a deeply troubled world? Mostly definitely, says Nancy Gilboy, president of Citizen Diplomacy International of Philadelphia. Founded amid the Cold War in 1954, the organization, which serves as a bridge among companies, governments, foreign groups, and individuals, is celebrating its 60th year with a new name - and an increasingly urgent mission to spur citizen participation. In the 1950s, when people abroad thought of America, they might conjure "the U.S. soldier who liberated [Europe]