This Week: June 22, 2023

Editor – Barbara Halpern

Lead Writer – Richard Vaughn

Design/Layout and Writer – Travis Oliver

CCRA News and Events

Trash Initiative Update

You’ll recall that just after Memorial Day, CCRA rolled out its Trash Initiative. The City deployed an even dozen trash receptacles throughout the Fitler Square neighborhood at locations chosen by neighbors. CCRA hired an employee to empty and replace the bags on a weekly basis, funded entirely by CCRA member dues.

We received favorable media coverage regarding the initiative, and word of mouth and emails have been very positive. But it being a pilot program, there were some hiccups.


In a sense we were the victims of our own success, as the receptacles proved very popular and filled up more quickly than anticipated. While it was made clear that the receptacles are NOT meant for residential waste, nonetheless some were used for that purpose, and were also used for contractor waste. Additionally, people also put trash on top of already-filled receptacles. (That’s an obvious no-no; we would ask that folks use one of the many receptacles in the area that are not full.) Again, these are NOT for household waste. Stick to the regular weekly schedule for that, please!


CCRA welcomes your feedback and support. We continue to make adjustments designed to improve service. The only way this pilot will work is with your help.

 CCRA Public Zoning Committee

CCRA’s Public Zoning Committee Meeting is on Tuesday, June 27, 7pm via Zoom. Read the agenda here. The meeting will be recorded and will be posted to Youtube. If you would like to receive notice that the video is ready to watch, please subscribe to our Youtube Channel Center City Residents' Association - YouTube. The report will be posted on our website (Center City Residents' Association - Agendas & Reports). To join the meeting click here.


CCRA’s Merchant Partner program is a true Win-Win: It provides local businesses with complimentary advertising and exposure while giving CCRA members generous deals and discounts. This week we spotlight Schuylkill Banks Riverboat Tours.

Rollin’ On the (Schuylkill) River with Riverboat Tours

Think you know the Schuylkill? Ha! Bet you don’t! Let the newest CCRA Merchant Partner Schuylkill Banks Riverboat Tours settle the bet via one of their fun and educational riverboat tours featuring spectacular views of Philadelphia. Learn about the past, present, and future of the tidal Schuylkill River and its impact on Philadelphia. Tours run on select Thursdays and Sundays from May through September.

Private charters are available depending on the operator's schedule. CCRA members receive 10% off a riverboat tour of the tidal Schuylkill by calling 215-309-5523.

Clean, Safe and Green

How to Shop Both Smart and Sustainably in Philly

Put your money where your values are, as the saying goes, and if one of your values is sustainability, the good news is that there are plenty of ways to do just that, as our Friends at the Philadelphia Citizen amply display here.

Philly: The Most Walkable City in the US. Take that, DC and NYC!

According to a recent study, Philly is the most walkable city in the United States. The city's grid-like street layout, wide sidewalks, and bustling pedestrian-friendly neighborhoods make it easy for residents and visitors alike to get around on foot. One of the best things about walking in Philly is the city's rich history and architecture. With landmarks everywhere, there is always something interesting to see and explore. Plus, the city's many parks and green spaces offer a welcome respite from the hustle and bustle of urban life. 

Another great thing about walking in Philly is the food scene. From cheesesteaks to soft pretzels to craft beer, the city is famous for its delicious and diverse cuisine. And with so many walkable neighborhoods, it's easy to find a tasty bite on the go.

Speaking of Philly’s food scene, the city has recently made history as the first city beyond NYC and San Francisco to receive its own Michelin Green Guide. This prestigious publication is known for its comprehensive coverage of the world's top travel destinations, and Philly's inclusion is a testament to its rich history, vibrant culture, and diverse culinary scene.

One of the standout destinations featured in the guide is McGillin's Olde Ale House, the city's oldest Irish bar. Founded in 1860, this beloved institution has been a fixture in Philly's Midtown Village for over 160 years.

Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

A Juneteenth to be Proud Of

This past weekend, Philly made history once again by hosting the largest Juneteenth parade in the country. Thousands of people from all walks of life came together to celebrate the holiday, which commemorates the end of slavery in the United States.The parade kicked off in the morning and lasted well into the afternoon, featuring marching bands, dance troupes, and vibrant floats adorned with red, green, and black colors, which symbolize the African American flag. The atmosphere was electric, with music blasting from every corner and people dancing and cheering in the streets. The Juneteenth parade in Philadelphia commemorates the city's rich Black history and commitment to social justice. As the birthplace of American democracy, it’s fitting that Philly plays host to this monumental celebration of freedom and equality.

Your Chance to Make Herstory

On Tuesday, June 27 from 4-6pm, join PHILADELPHIA250 as local women powerhouses share their personal experiences and insight on the importance of leaving your own legacy. What? Another nonprofit you haven’t yet heard from? 

Here’s your intro: their focus is the 250th anniversary of our independence, (which will occur in 2026 (duh)). Their mission? “To ignite the passions of the people of Philadelphia with the revolutionary spirit of the Declaration of Independence—to create a commemoration that is truly by the people, for all people.” Check out their board…they all have LinkedIn profiles (just like most Philadelphians??). 

Back to the conference: It’s herstory, it’s free; it’s the past meeting the future. Register and check out the speakers here. 

Community News and Events

The Return of the Philadelphia Chinese Lantern Festival

Philadelphia is no stranger to hosting vibrant and culturally significant events, and the Chinese Lantern Festival is no exception. Held annually at Franklin Square, this festival celebrates the Chinese tradition of lighting lanterns to mark the end of the Lunar New Year. Their presentation is a feast for the senses, with brightly colored lanterns of all shapes and sizes lighting up the night sky. Visitors can explore the park's many installations, which include a 200-foot-long dragon, a giant panda, and a towering pagoda. Many of the lanterns are also interactive, allowing visitors to step inside and take photos. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit here.

Cheers! A Guide to the Latest Imbibing Options

Summer is officially here, and with it will come those hot-n-hazy days that practically beg for liquid refreshment. You’ve no doubt got your old standbys, but there are some more recent additions of note as well.

The Center City District “SIPS” program is in full swing. Bottoms-up here. “Parks on Tap” is coming to a park near you. Tipple here. And there’s a new pop-up cocktail garden – Walnut Garden – right in Rittenhouse. Knock it back here.

Irene Levy Baker Dishes Philly at the Library on Tuesday, July 11

Like any great city, Philadelphia has its known knowns but also its unknown unknowns. Best way we know to fill in those gaps is with “100 Things to Do in Philadelphia”, the authoritative go-to by our friend Irene Levy Baker. What’s new is that there is now a Second Edition, and Irene will be giving an Author Talk July 11 at the Philadelphia City Institute at 19th and Locust. All the details you need are here.

Fourth of July Starts Now!

WaWa now Welcomes America to Philadelphia for a multi-week Fourth of July celebration. And this festival is no “shortie”! Read carefully; one of the below events includes a FREE HOAGIE (ok, it’s just a Shortie, but still…..). Here’s the lineup, in WaWa speak:

H- Hispanic Fiesta at Penns Landing’s Great Plaza - music, food, live art, and fireworks: 6/24 & 6/25, 2-9 pm. 

O- OMG!! The Big One. Concert headlined by superstars Ludacris and Demi Lovato and fireworks on the Parkway (7/4 at 7 pm). 

A- A Free Day at tons of local museums, including our local Mütter (6/27); Barnes (7/2); Masonic Temple (6/24); Eastern State Pen (7/3).

G- Gospel Music Concert, commemorating the 160th Anniversary of the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. Independence Nat. His. Park, 7/1 at 6pm. 

I- Independence Day Parade! Old City (2nd and Market) to City Hall and up Broad, 11 am -7 pm. July 4th, of course!

E- Eat! Seven tons of hoagie giveaways, free, on 6/28 (noon) at Independence Hall, all while watching a hoagie smackdown! BYO coffee?

For locations, road closures, and other resident survival info, visit the city’s site here.

Useful links

Merchant Partners "Deals and Discounts" Program

Please support our local merchants and save money too. These local merchants will provide a deal or discount to any member who shows a current CCRA membership card and personal identification.

1600 Spruce St. Home, Design and Gift, 1600 Spruce St. (267-299-3350)

Philly Bike Tours, Inquire within (267-521-2150)

Mr FIX, 413 S. 20th St (215-261-5646)

PhotoLounge, 130 S.17th St (267-322-6651)

Rittenhouse Hardware, 2001 Pine St (215-735-6311)

Seafood Unlimited, 270 S. 20th St (215-732-3663)

The Bake Shop on 20th, 269 S. 20th St (215-644-9714)

The Philadelphia Orchestra, One S. Broad St (215-893-1955)

The River Boat Tours, Schuylkill River & Walnut St (215-309-5523)

The Rounds, internet only

Veda Modern Indian Bistro, 1920 Chestnut St (267-519-2001)

William Schwartz Jewelry, 1831 Chestnut St (215-665-8115)

12th Street Catering, 3312 Spring Garden St (215-386-8595)

Astral Artists, 1500 Walnut St. (215-735-6999)

Blue Sole Shoes, 1805 Chestnut St (215-496-9244)

City Fitness, 2101 South St & 1819 JFK Blvd (609-254-9048) 

Dom's Shoe Repair, 203 S. 20th St (215-972-0098)

Excursions from the Square, (215-732-8487, 215-738-4500)

Eye Candy Vision, 218 S. 20th St (215-568-3937)

FrameWorks Studio & Gallery, 2103 Walnut St (215-567-6800)

Kimmel Cultural Campus, 300 S. Broad St (215-893-1900)

Liberty Pet Vets, 265 S. 20th St (888-458-8587)

Loews Hotel Philadelphia, 1200 Market St (215-627-1200)

Sandcastle Fun Co., Inquire within (267-462-1680)

CCRA assumes no responsibility, and makes no representations or warranties, regarding any product and/or services sold by any Merchant Partner.

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