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SPORTS
February 11, 2016 | By Bob Brookover, Inquirer Columnist
It was a dark day for Pete Mackanin. The Phillies had just finished a disappointing season with a .500 record, ending a run of five straight National League East titles. The misguided initial blame for the fantastic fall was placed on hitting coach Greg Gross, first base coach Sam Perlozzo and Mackanin, who was Charlie Manuel's bench coach that season. All three were immediately fired after the final game of the 2012 season in Washington. "It was disappointing, but I had been fired before for what I felt like was no good reason," Mackanin said last month during a Phillies winter banquet stop in Lakewood, N.J. Stick around baseball for 48 years and you are bound to be fired a time or two for no good reason.
SPORTS
February 9, 2016 | By Bob Brookover, Inquirer Columnist
Larry Bowa is 70 years old and proof that age is just a number. It's a number that makes a lot of us with vibrant memories of the fiery shortstop feel old, but it is still somewhat soothing to know that Bowa, at 70, is in the same place he was at 20. Well, not exactly the same place. At 20, after being signed as an undrafted player by Phillies scout Eddie Bockman, the Sacramento, Calif., native made his first trip to spring training in 1966. At the time, the Phillies' minor-leaguers trained in Leesburg, Fla., a two-hour drive from the big-league camp in Clearwater.
SPORTS
February 6, 2016 | Philly.com Staff
Seven former Phillies, including Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt, have been invited to serve as guest instructors for the team during spring training. Schmidt, an annual presence at camp, will be joined by Larry Andersen, Dave Hollins, Jim Kaat, Greg Luzinski, Charlie Manuel, and Matt Stairs. Manuel remains a front-office employee as a senior adviser to the general manager. Hollins is a special assignment scout for the Phillies. Andersen, Stairs and Schmidt are broadcasters during the season.
NEWS
February 2, 2016 | By Chris Brennan, Inquirer Columnist
History has shown us that chaos follows the fall of a strongman. A power vacuum sparks competition among the ambitious, who often lack the juice to adequately replace the deposed despot. Which brings us to the first floor of Philadelphia's City Hall, where the three elected officials who supervise the city's elections are enduring their own version of an Arab Spring. It has been four years since Margaret Tartaglione, a politician so well-known that you can still just say "Marge" and everyone in City Hall knows who you're talking about, ended her reign as chairwoman of the City Commissioners after losing her bid for a 10th term.
NEWS
January 31, 2016
The word is out: Reading is far from dead. Fully 571 million books were sold in 2015 - sold, do you hear? - 17 million more than in 2014, according to Nielsen BookScan. More, do you hear? And the paper book, so long taken for dead, rose up and declared, "I remain": Electronic books are a big part of the market, at 25 percent, but the growth of their market share has leveled off. And, anyway, they're welcome. Reading is reading. And since we're all reading, here are some of the best titles soon to spring upon us in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry.
NEWS
January 31, 2016
Musical theater loves Philly and vice versa. Here's a partial list of some of the big-name musicals rolling through town. Beauty and the Beast (Academy of Music, Feb. 16-21). The Mencken/Ashman/Rice stalwart and family favorite reminds everyone that beauty is, well, beautiful, no matter how it may look at first. Tuneful. (215-893-1999 or kimmelcenter.org) Pippin (Academy of Music, Feb. 23-28). The feckless son of Charlemagne bumbles musically along in this longtime favorite.
NEWS
January 31, 2016
This spring's gallery shows are neatly divided between local artists and out-of-towners. No particular mediums seem to be overwhelmingly favored by artists or galleries, as have photography, video, and installation over the last few years. Painting is as ubiquitous and diverse as ever; sculpture is less visible in galleries this season. Only one discernible trend stands out: The long-standing, persistent - some might say dogged - inclination among Philadelphia galleries, especially college galleries and nonprofit spaces, to bring offbeat, underrecognized artists to the fore.
NEWS
December 19, 2015 | By Linda Loyd, STAFF WRITER
Spirit Airlines announced Thursday it will begin a nonstop flight next spring to Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota, from Philadelphia International Airport. The daily flight will be seasonal, from April 14 through Nov. 9. Spirit now flies to five U.S. cities from Philadelphia, and in April will add nonstop routes to Los Angeles, Detroit, and Fort Lauderdale from here. The Florida-based airline touts itself as an "ultra low fare carrier" but charges extra for virtually everything including a carry-on bag. It has expanded in Philadelphia since 2013.
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