May 20, 2015 |
Installation of scaffolding began Monday in preparation for repairs to the roof, skylights, gutters, and stone facade of the Frank Furness-designed Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts building on North Broad Street. Academy officials said that slate on the mansard roof of the 1876 National Historic Landmark needed replacement, and that deteriorating flat roof surfaces, skylights, and gutters also needed repair. Some leakage into the interior has occurred, leading to plaster ceiling damage above the central stairwell.
February 20, 2015 |
Sen. Bob Casey urged Amtrak to spruce up 30th Street Station to welcome visitors for the papal visit this fall and the Democratic National Convention in 2016. The Pennsylvania Democrat said Wednesday he wanted more retail and dining options and nicer restrooms. No new federal money is likely to be available to speed up improvements, Casey acknowledged in a news conference at the station, but he said he hoped private funding could fill the bill. He had no estimates on costs, specifics on renovations, or possible private contributors.
October 17, 2014 |
By the time the guests of the 90th-anniversary gala for Friends of the Wissahickon (FOW) descend on the Valley Green Inn on Oct. 25, the makeover will be complete. Walls will have been painted, art recurated, floors varnished, lighting installed, bathrooms renovated - all in all, a welcome update for the most cherished landmark of the Wissahickon Valley. It was an obvious choice for the organization to focus its anniversary efforts on the inn, says Maura McCarthy, FOW's executive director, because the inn has always been a focal point of the park.
August 9, 2014 |
You don't have to go to the Shore to hit the beach. Families can enjoy a custom-built beach, boardwalk, and more at Penn's Landing Marina's new Spruce Street Harbor Park from now through Aug. 31. Visitors can stroll along an imported oceanfront boardwalk with concession stands, a shuffleboard game course, arcades, and more. Get a seat-side view on the Harbor Park's Urban Beach, with umbrellas and lounge chairs and beachlike pebble sand. On the west side of the park, stretch out and sway in the wind on oversized hammocks in the midst of trees.
June 28, 2014 |
Last summer, landscape architect David Fierabend was tasked with turning a vacant lot on Broad Street into a peaceful pop-up garden for the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society. The best indication that his woodland garden - shaded by a copse of graceful honey locusts - had succeeded? How little visitors noticed his handiwork. "People would come in and say, 'David, you're really lucky these trees were here,' because they seemed like they belonged," said Avram Hornik of Four Corners Management, which worked on the pop-up.
June 26, 2014 |
THREE hundred LED light strips rain colors upon grass. Dozens of rainbow-hued hammocks dangle from sweet gum trees. Seventeen-foot-tall metal sculptures send mist onto passers-by. A boardwalk offers concessions and classic arcade games. Hydrangea and coneflowers sprout from bean-shaped floating gardens. Six-by-10-foot net pods cantilever over the Delaware River, awaiting people brave enough to climb in and hang out. There's a faux pebble beach with umbrellas and old-fashioned, Atlantic City-style sling-back chairs.
May 13, 2014 |
OF COURSE Tom McCusker believes he has one of the best, if not the best, Mexican eateries this side of the Rio Grande. What he didn't know, however, was that a good number of his Spruce Hill neighbors also agreed. Honest Tom's Taco Shop was named "most favorite site" in that bucolic West Philadelphia neighborhood, according to a just-released retail survey conducted by the Spruce Hill Community Association Business Attraction Committee. "I couldn't be happier about it," McCusker said of the cozy house shop on 44th Street near Spruce.
December 20, 2013 |
The holiday season brings out the sort of specialty cheeses one rarely finds during spring or summer, and this time of year, all of my favorite cheeses have something to do with bark, booze, or flames. It's the season of Vacherin Mont d'Or and its American cousin, Rush Creek Reserve - two bark-bound cheeses that appear only in winter. Both are best heated gently, then turned into plunge pools for new potatoes. Then there are boozy winter finds, like Grand Marnier-infused Brie and craggy Pecorino packed in whiskey-soaked barley.
October 26, 2013 |
As the oldest surviving botanic garden in North America, Bartram's Garden has seen more change than most. With more to come. As part of a three-year plan designed to reinvigorate its historic mission, bring back Bartram-era plants, and attract a wider audience, the 285-year-old garden on the Schuylkill in Southwest Philadelphia has embarked on the restoration of the Carr Garden, a small piece of the larger garden that, over time, devolved from...
August 2, 2013 |
MOMENTS AFTER his birth, Gary Chilutti was left for dead. Fifty-seven years later, the sadness of that fact pales in comparison to what happened next: He was found, he was loved instantly and he was wanted desperately by two wonderful couples before finally being adopted by a third wonderful couple. "I hit the jackpot with my parents," says Chilutti. "I couldn't have asked for better people. But learning about all this," he says, sifting through photos of one of the couples who'd hoped to adopt him long ago, "is just incredible.