February 5, 1999 |
Ask Bob Folwell to describe himself in 25 words or fewer and the Friends' Central basketball coach comes up with the following response: "Robert Folwell is a people person," he said. "He's a person who has a lot of passion, a lot of love. He's a person who wants to pass that passion, that love on to his family and to people around him. " He then talks about making a difference. "I don't care if it's to one kid or to 30 kids," Folwell said. "That's what life's all about.
January 28, 2014 |
James Dupree says city officials are trying to pave paradise and put up a supermarket. Dupree, a renowned Philadelphia artist, is embroiled in a bitter back-and-forth with the city over the fate of his art studio, an 8,600-square-foot building that takes up nearly a block along Haverford Avenue in the Mantua section of West Philadelphia. The property was seized in December 2012 by the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority. The authority condemned a two-block stretch through eminent domain, a legal process that allows government to take private property, pay the owner, and develop the land for public use. When the authority seized the Mantua property, it said the surrounding neighborhood was in desperate need of a supermarket.
June 2, 2009 |
By the time he was 42, Miles Mack had become a neighborhood icon in Mantua, running basketball games and changing lives at McAlpin Playground. Then a bullet took his life in that very park. When the idea of naming the park after him was proposed after his death in September, his mother, Sandra Mack, didn't see much use in it. But as the months passed, she came to believe that having his name there would remind kids that there was at least one person who always had their back. "Miles loved the kids in Mantua," she said.
June 30, 2015 |
SHE MOVED her kids to Hilton Street a few years ago, a stone's throw from the coral reef of humanity that wraps around Kensington and Allegheny avenues and the Market-Frankford El. Their block looks like an old prizefighter who punched above his weight for too long: cracked windows here, boarded-up doorways there, and jagged gaps where homes once stood. Paradise, it's not. But "Gringa" - that's her nickname, the only name she felt comfortable sharing - did her best to keep her kids happy and safe, letting them splash around in a little wading pool right under her nose, on the sidewalk in front of their house.
September 5, 2014 |
The feds promised to help West Philadelphia. And now a cabinet secretary is showing up to take a look around. Julián Castro, head of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, will tour parts of the new Promise Zone on Friday, as two local institutions commence a $4 million initiative to transform early childhood education in a troubled part of the city. The effort, led by the William Penn Foundation and Drexel University, seeks to double the number of neighborhood children in high-quality child care within three years.
May 13, 2014 |
The house is a wreck, all broken windows and boarded doors, soon to be torn down. But Annie Hunt remembers when the home was alive - a place of light and laughter, a haven for a mother and son. The West Philadelphia property belonged to a strong and determined woman, Hunt's aunt Leona Richardson. As a teenager in the late 1930s, Richardson struck out alone from the segregated South, leaving small-town Louisiana and making her way to Baltimore. When World War II broke out, she got a job in a defense plant as a welder.
January 18, 2015 |
At some city public schools, there is no recess at all - deep budget cuts mean there are not enough adults to monitor students' playtime. But at McMichael Elementary in Mantua, children troop out onto the schoolyard in orderly lines, pledge to be respectful and kind, then break out into orderly but joyous games of football, dodgeball and foursquare - blowing off steam with a genial man known as Coach Steve. McMichael is one of 13 Philadelphia School District schools and three city charters that use Playworks, a nonprofit that places a full-time staffer in schools to structure recess.
February 28, 2014 |
ARTIST James Dupree says that despite the city's "You're gonna love the arts in Philly" slogan, Philadelphia hasn't been showing him any love. Instead, Dupree said, he has been confronted with pain and despair over a continuing legal struggle with the city to keep his studio space in Mantua. The city Redevelopment Authority wants to take his massive, 8,600 square-foot studio building, on Haverford Avenue near 36th Street, to make room for a supermarket and parking lot. His studio is filled with 5,000 works of art - including wildly colorful pieces, mixed-media jewelry boxes with feathers, and a wall installation showing how the city helps developers take property from low-income homeowners.
June 13, 2015 |
Some Gloucester County residents have been receiving election-mail blasts from the past. Days after polls closed for the state's primary election, some county residents only this week received sample ballots for the June 2 election. Officials say an apparent mailing problem is to blame. As of Thursday, some residents still had not received sample ballots - including county Election Superintendent Stephanie Salvatore. "As angry as these voters are, none of these voters are as angry as I am," said Salvatore, of Mantua.
August 27, 2015 |
The details of the beef that got Kenneth "Ken-Ken" Williams killed remain murky: It happened after a night of drinking on Memorial Day weekend, and the alleged shooter and a witness were Williams' friends. The identity of the alleged shooter - Eric McFarland, 24 - might never have been known, had someone not started spreading rumors around Mantua that witness Dustin Goode was the real killer. On Tuesday, Goode, 30, testified that he was roused from his apathy when he learned that neighbors believed he had shot Williams and that McFarland was about to tell police the same thing.