January 3, 2015 |
Shortly after 10:30 a.m., with the pretzel-eating spectators jammed four deep in front of the Union League, there was an only-in-Philly moment. The Oregon wench brigade was marching up Broad Street from South Philadelphia - a squadron of burly fellows who, despite the pastel frocks, were not really going for the feminine look. Headed the other direction was the LGBT Liaison Committee, which included a half-dozen glittery drag queens - or, as some prefer to be called, female impersonators.
January 2, 2015
The 115th edition of the "official," city-overseen Mummers Parade (it had been spontaneous and disorganized before that) yesterday returned to its disorganized roots, which left a lot of people - Mummers, fans and city officials alike - wondering, "How did that happen?" For the first time in 115 years the Mummers broke with tradition and marched south on Broad, starting with judging at City Hall, and ending with a performance at Carpenter, which turned out to be the best place to see the parade.
January 1, 2015 |
When I moved to Philadelphia in 1999, I knew I had a great deal to learn: how to navigate from Pashunk to the Skookl, the Boulevard to the Parkway; the right way to order a Yuengling (a lager); and the correct usage of jawn (OK, that I still don't really understand). Now that I've been here, on and off, for 15 years, I'm starting to wonder: Am I a true Phuluffyan yet? Given that I still sometimes order a sub at a hoagie shop, the answer seems to be, "Not quite. " So, 2015 is the year I'll aim to make it official.
December 31, 2014 |
CONSIDERING the supersonic pace of change in today's world, it's comforting that some local traditions endure, especially those indigenous to this time of year. The holiday light show at Macy's in Center City. The Penn's Landing fireworks at 6 p.m. and midnight on New Year's Eve. And, of course, the Mummers march up Broad Street. Well, at least we still have Macy's and the fireworks. But for 2015, our signature New Year's Day extravaganza is moving in a new direction. After more than a century heading north on Broad Street - with but five years of exceptions - the annual cakewalk has changed course.
December 29, 2014 |
Joseph Kaminski is broken up. He couldn't keep Trilby on the street, and the oldest name in Mummery is on the brink. The Original Trilby String Band, a troupe that has strummed and strutted annually on New Year's Day since 1898, will not march in this year's Mummers Parade because of a shortage of cash, members, and miracles. "I don't even have words," said Kaminski, 48, who as club captain told members this month he was pulling the plug. There was no chance, he concluded, of mounting a show with unfinished music, no costumes, too few musicians, and but a few props.
December 27, 2014 |
Doug Hoffman had wondered what it would be like to be part of the Mummers Parade. On New Year's Day, he watched the live coverage of Mummers strutting up Broad Street, and marveled at the pageantry - the joyous music and choreography, comic performances, the elaborate suits with their glitter and sequins. Hoffman never thought he'd actually have a chance to actually join in. But as a resident of the Bancroft Lakeside Campus in Mullica Hill, where he's in a program for autistic adults, he met a retired member of the Golden Sunrise Fancy Club and posed a question: "Can you make me a Mummer?"
December 21, 2014 |
There were fireworks, Mummers, and loads of good cheer despite the cold. Given that was all packed into a 30-minute news conference within the City Hall Courtyard on Friday, imagine what the extended version will look like as the year turns Jan. 1. The New Year's highlights, as presented by city officials, include a refigured route for the Mummers Parade and two sets of fireworks on New Year's Eve - one early, one late - to accommodate the...
December 19, 2014 |
Broad Street's sequined strutters will be flapping their feathers toward Main Street come February. Just days before their annual New Year's Day parade along a shortened route in central Philadelphia, the Mummers announced Wednesday that they would hold yet another parade a few weeks later - through Manayunk, in a Mardi Gras celebration they hope to turn into an annual affair that can double as a fund-raiser. It will be the first time the Mummers will mount a parade beyond the New Year's spectacle that is to many Philadelphians what the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade is to New Yorkers.
December 12, 2014
THEY FLOATED in like driftwood, coming to shore in the subterranean hall of the Mummers Museum, the art deco depository of Mummers lore, law and love. Many wore colorful windbreakers adorned with the names of their storied clubs - Quaker City, Duffy, Woodland, Murray. Wednesday was the night of the annual Roundup, where Mummers get "The Word" from "The City" about plans for "The Parade. " It began with handshakes and half hugs as the families came together for a sit-down - the four divisions, the 29 clubs, the thousands they represent.
November 4, 2014 |
MUMMERS aren't exactly known for self-restraint, so perhaps it's not surprising that a former Fancy Brigade captain and his daughter might want to deal with certain matters personally . Why call the cops when you got a baseball bat and a gun right here? Police say Carmen "Butch" D'Amato, 62, former leader of the South Philly Vikings, and his daughter Rita, 36, attacked a 36-year-old homeless man on Oct. 25 in Queen Village. They were arrested Friday. "You know what you did, you son of a bitch," one of the D'Amatos allegedly said before the early-morning attack, possibly a reference to a recent string of car break-ins.