November 27, 2002 |
When you face Memorial Hall in Fairmount Park, you are transported to another time. The massive centerpiece of our nation's centennial celebration, whose gargoyles form the base for a signature dome on the Beaux Arts structure, lends allure to some beautiful acreage that long has been neglected. Of course, museums are all about other times and how they relate to our present. The Please Touch Museum's possibly seeking much-needed new space in that vastly under-utilized architectural treasure in West Philadelphia is grounded in logic.
September 22, 1986 |
Everywhere you looked, there were shoulder pads. And basic black. There were a lot of knits and gravity-defying hairdos in electric hues. And that was just the visitors who crowded into Memorial Hall in Fairmount Park yesterday for the second annual Philadelphia Dresses the World exhibit. Onlookers seemed as intent upon making a fashion statement as the 103 local designers who showed off their wares this weekend in the city-sponsored international apparel mart. "I wasn't sure what to wear to come here, and I spent some time thinking about it," said Renee Gould, 34, of Camden, who was wearing a multicolored cotton skirt and a matching jacket in a stylish longer length.
March 19, 2003
AS THE architect for the proposed Civil War museum in Memorial Hall, I strongly support Mark Alan Hughes'proposal in his March 11 column ("Win-Win for Memorial Hall"). He and I prefer that the Civil War museum be located in Memorial Hall and that a piece of land nearby be given to the Please Touch Museum to build a new building. Memorial Hall was built to honor soldiers who died in battle in both the Civil War and the War of Independence and should be preserved as such for posterity.
March 8, 1992 |
High atop Memorial Hall, Jim Montgomery ducked into a small door and entered a brightly lit world of glass and iron. Overhead was a web of crisscrossing struts and beams, and hundreds of glass panes making up a colossal dome. At his feet lay an inner dome, like a giant bubble, 85 feet above the Great Hall. Here was a Philadelphia landmark that most people have seen only from the outside, rising above the treetops, sometimes miles away as they drive on the Schuylkill Expressway.
November 2, 1990 |
Antiques dealers from around the nation will gather at Memorial Hall in Fairmount Park this weekend for the second annual Fall Antiques Show to benefit the United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania. Collectors can expect to find a wide assortment of furniture, estate and antique jewelry, Oriental items, silver, fine art, African-American memorabilia and affordable collectibles. In other words, the event will have something for just about everyone. The show will run from 1 to 9 p.m. today, with a champagne reception from 6 to 9 in a room adjacent to the show.
February 11, 2003
IDON'T KNOW who stands to profit from the final destruction of Memorial Hall, but the Daily News suggestion of turning it into an indoor playground, serves neither the city nor the museum. I like the museum and have enjoyed the time spent there with my children. Nonetheless, it is a playground for preschoolers and frankly, Memorial Hall, the only remaining relic of the Centennial Exposition, deserves a better fate. This is where America celebrated its first 100 years, where the telephone became the seed for today's worldwide telecommunications network, where post-Civil War America celebrated itself on the verge of its coming industrial and economic greatness.
March 11, 2003 |
I LOVE THE Please Touch Museum. My two children have lived their whole lives within a stone's throw of the place, and my first child went to the museum almost every day until he was about three. They've both grown up with the staff and are in the background of more than their share of photos in the museum newsletter. Now that they're older, they visit rarely - but even these funky Center City 10- and 7-year-olds are eager for the new museum to open, having listened for years to the museum staff offer their exciting vision of an expanded and updated facility.
June 30, 1998 |
Tomorrow's Sunoco Welcome America! neighborhood arts festival in Parkside, cosponsored by the Daily News, promises live entertainment and participant activities both indoors and out. Entertainment includes five drill team performances, Will Newton & the E.T. Band, singer Ken Taylor, Bushfire Theater of the Performing Arts, CEC's jazz band, Gospel Unity Ward's AME Choir and Elder George & Rhythm Crusade Choir. The festival opens with a parade that starts at Belmont and Parkside avenues and ends at the Memorial Hall stage area.
September 4, 2002
OPEN ANY door of Memorial Hall and you expect to be hit with the image of Charles Dickens' creepy spinster Miss Havisham of "Great Expectations" sitting in the ruins. Chances are, you're more likely to be be hit with falling plaster and decaying walls, or drips of rain from a leaking ceiling. As symbols go, Memorial Hall is a brilliant mirror of the park system it represents: a magnificent gem neglected by the city for so long that it's now decrepit, decaying and dangerous.
September 22, 1989 |
What are those people in the deep end of the pool doing? It's not the butterfly or the crawl. It's certainly not the backstroke. Actually, they're practicing their prises de fer, their counter-riposte, their fleche and parry. Egad! The swimming pool is full of dashing, slashing swordsmen. The mass plunge of fencers into the empty indoor swimming pool at historic Memorial Hall in Fairmount Park has refreshed and rejuvenated the sport locally like nothing else in decades.