Monthly Archives

May 2015


The Devon Horse Show Grand Prix Night – Today is the Last Day for You To Check out The Horse Show

In 1896, the Devon Horse Show started as a one-day show. Now, years
later, it has become the oldest and largest outdoor multi-breed
competition in the United States. It is internationally recognized,
USEF-rated 6* Jumpers/Premier Hunters, and one of the most exciting
events to happen in our area. While it draws top competitors from around
the world, the show continues to reflect the local traditions and
lifestyles of the Philadelphia Main Line.

 I went on Thursday night for the Grand Prixe
 It’s a fancy dress night too.

 There were peeps with hats on
 and serious spreads.

 a lot of the “boxes” in the grandstand are passed down through the family. Or you can buy in when someone gives the box up. Even if you’re fav horse loses a few seasons, the boxes remain sold out.
 The best jockey of the night was also the youngest ever, a 17 yr old girl from Colorado.
 Even the photographers are dressesd nicely

 I ran into a handful of Fox 29 viewers. Hi!!
The Devon Horse Show is more than just horses, there’s shopping and a carnival with rides too. It’s really a fun place to go, and if you’re not in a “box” you can dress a little more casually and fit right in.
Thanks to Michelle “The Hat Lady” Leonard for inviting us to her box party. It’s the 2nd time I’ve been there and she’s always the hostess with the mostess.

Griesing Law 5th Anniversary Party and Art Show “City Bites”

Recently Griesing Law
celebrated its fifth anniversary with a party themed “fashion, food and
spirits.” More than 200 of their friends, clients and supporters came
to the firm’s offices to celebrate. Guests enjoyed specialty cocktails, a
buffet which included treats from Zama, and Federal Donuts. Denise Fike
was on hand to personally sketch each guest. 
The exhibit kicked off with an invite only combination 5th Anniversary
party at the firm which featured a giant ice sculpture created by
Frank’s Ice.  Bartenders poured the signature cocktail—The Griesing
Gimlet made of  vodka & Yuzu juice through the 6 foot tall ice
luge.  Food reflective of the artwork was served in a grand buffet
style.  Channel 6 shot a 6ABC Loves The Arts segment that aired last
weekend and over 200 guests were in attendance.
Now through August 31st you can view and purchase paintings by Mike Geno
and photography by Michael Persico. Both artist’s work is created with
the inspiration of Philadelphia chefs, restaurants and bakeries
including  Zama, Federal Donuts, Vedge and Metropolitan Bakery.
Kate Legge (earlier this year Kate was honored to be selected as a 40 Under 40 Philadelphia Business Journal May 2015) and Joel Stern.
Ashley Shea and Megan Salehli.
Donna Teitelman poses with
her drawing by artist Denise Fike.

Mara Yanni and Ariel

Bill Decker and Dina Leytes.

Michelle Boyles, Regional Editor: Region’s Business, Philadelphia / Owner: South Philly Fashionista and Dr. Jennifer Caudle
Elissa Bloom, Executive Director The Philadelphia Fashion Incubator, Rafael Perez, The Business Route and Do It Better Wellness
and Julia Blaukopf, Social Photography for Architecture and Design.

Rob Graff and Mike Donnini.

 Denise Fike doing her magic
Rafael Perez, Fran Griesing, Fran Griesing, founder of Griesing Law, LLC, has over thirty years of
experience representing clients in complex business transactions, high
stakes litigation and alternate dispute resolution matters.
and Antonio Plati.

Cheryl Gaston and Elizabeth Livingston
Sam Patel, Dr. Jennifer Caudle, and Ian Michael Crumm.
Kristin Detterline, editor of Philly Style Magazine and Sheryl Raskin, Out There Creative Media.
Steve Rosard, Laurie Rosard, and Jackie Needleman
Fran Griesing, Griesing Law, LLC, ; Holland White,
Izzy Harper, and Emily Griesing.

The Griesing Law Team:
Jessica Mazzeo, Fran Griesing, Kate Legge, Dina Leytes, and Ashley Shea.

Visit  City Bites at Griesing Law, by appointment. Call 215.618.3720. 1717 Arch Street, Suite 3630.

Tiffany’s Bakery Philadelphia to Give Away 1,000 Free Cupcakes at Grand Opening at Jefferson Station

Remember when I told you back in February that the Gallery was closing to be remodeled, but don’t fret Tiffany’s Bakery would find a new home at the western end of the famed shopping center. Good news, they’re finally ready to open their new place. Also good news, it looks like this entrance to Market East will remain open too, so you can cross over to get to the El Train and there’s easy access to Market Street and Center City. Well Tiffany’s is celebrating thier new place in a big, sweet way.

Center City family owned & operated bakery celebrates brand new modern storefront with free cupcakes!

PHILADELPHIA – May 28, 2015 – The
first week of June will bring fun and excitement for Tiffany’s Bakery
Philadelphia. The family owned and operated bakery – known for high
quality cakes cupcakes, their specialty strawberry shortcake, cookies,
and other baked goods – are relocating
from their current address in The Gallery at Market East to their new
state-of-the-art storefront adjacent to the main entrance of Jefferson
Station. To celebrate this exciting occasion, on Friday June 5, starting
at 9 a.m. the first 1,000 customers will receive a free cupcake!  
new storefront boasts state-of-the-art digital signage, natural wood + stone finishes, and an 85″ television featuring the bakery’s
original content as well as the SEPTA train timetable. The relocation to
the commuter corridor has also prompted a new line of breakfast items,
including gourmet egg sandwiches, yogurt parfaits, freshly baked
pastries, and freshly brewed La Colombe coffee, another Philadelphia
favorite. A fresh and delicious breakfast is something owner Frank
wished to provide as an added benefit to regional rail
customers; a homemade taste with quick service and convenience.
are thrilled to be relocating to a beautiful new storefront right near
the main entrance of Jefferson Station,” said Pantazopoulos. “Tiffany’s
Bakery will continue to offer the same great quality items our customers
have grown to love, and the larger space allows us to expand our
options to include even more baked-fresh-daily products. We encourage
everyone to stop by to see our new features and menu items, meet our
staff, and celebrate this exciting move with us!”
Bakery was a founding tenant of The Gallery back in the 70’s, and has
consistently grown its following over the years. The new location will
be adjacent to the main entrance of Jefferson Station, with the closest
street access at the 10th Street entrance in the Northwest Corner. For
more information, please visit

About Tiffany’s Bakery
Bakery Philadelphia is a second-generation family owned and operated
business that has been providing their Philadelphia customers with
high-quality baked goods at a great value since 1977. Their product line
is filled with cupcakes, cakes, strawberry shortcake, cookies, and
other fresh-baked goods as well as breakfast items for commuters. The
hands-on ownership brings care and connection to their products and the
attention to detail is consistent in the quality of every order. They
have taken pride in serving generations of Philadelphia families and are
excited to continue serving to many more.

Our Mini Vacation to the Appalachians and Virgina Safari Park

Mike and I celebrated our first anniversary of our marriage on Sunday. About mid day we decided to go away for Memorial Day Weekend, even though the weekend was more than half over and we both had a lot of work to do. A few years ago we went to Virginia Safari Park. It had all the elements that we love when we are on vacation, forests, and wildlife. (Even when we go to the shore, we seek out the wildlife preserves as we’re not beach people.)

 We decided to drive down Skyline Drive, which highlights the Shenandoah Valley part of the Appalachians. We stopped at this visitors center to pick up info and a map.

 Shortly after leaving the Dickey Ridge Visitor Center, we came upon several cars stoped and people out on the road and hill with cameras.
 High up in the tree was a cute bear cub
 and below was his watchful mom. Eventually the Park Rangers came along and moved us, which was a relief as a few people were about to be bear dinner as they had gotten so close.
 Mike and I are not hiking people, but we love to drive through the forest, and we love to just pull over and enjoy the vistas.
 We never make hotel reservations on trips, unless it’s somewhere like Montana, Las Vegas, or Atlantic City, we just go to a town that looks interesting, then we check
rates on the internet, then we go to whichever hotel meets are criteria
of stars, cleanliness and price, and ask at the front desk. Sunday night we went to Harrisonburg, Va. Home of James Madison University. I always wanted to see campus where my friend Kathy Slentz went to college. We stayed at the Fairfield Inn. It was nice room, friendly and they had a free breakfast. $107

 Mike and I had been to Virginia Safari Park  drive thru park, once before, and always knew we’d go back. How we found this area is it’s a mid-point between Philly and Charlotte, NC where my mom, and 2 sisters live. Usually people take 95S, but we have no patience for the traffic near Baltimore and DC. The I81 highway is so much prettier too. I take lots of photos of the roadside attractions, none of which I have in this post, maybe in August when I go to Charlotte for my summer trip. The entrance fee is $18 a person, cheaper for kids, and a bucket of food for the animals is $3.50 or 4 for $12. Mike really likes this part of the safari park and he bought 6 buckets. If you don’t want to drive your car through you can ride the shuttle, which you can see in the top of this photo.

  They’re taunting Mike cause well he didn’t have quite a good grip on his bucket
 Don’t feed the zebra’s, they get aggressive and might kick out your window. PS that must be a new rule as the last time we fed them.

No feeding these guys either cause they’re always trying to put their heads into your car window.

The most beautiful eyelashes you don’t have to buy.
They seem so friendly, and hungry

A video posted by Philly ChitChat (@phillychitchat) on May 25, 2015 at 12:44pm PDT
 Mike will be cleaning camel slobber, and kibble & bits out of the car for weeks.

 In the distance you can see the Blue Ridge Mountains.

 Smile. The drive thru takes about 90 minutes, and you can drive through it as many times as you’d like. In between trips you can go to the kids petting zoo which is behind the red gate you see in the background. It’s included in the admission.
 You can pet giraffe’s and feed them too.
  No petting the turtles, but they are photogenic.
Inside the zoo, there’s a cool exhibit where you can walk thru into the bird sanctuary.

  Mike getting a selfie with his new friend. You can buy these Popsicle sticks that have bird seed on them.

 We were worried that he wouldn’t be able to get his head back through the fence, but he did.
 At some point in our trip a friend mentioned that we had to stop by the restaurant at

Peaks of Otter Lodge: Blue Ridge Parkway Lodging

We decided to see if they had rooms, and they did. We got a 2nd floor w/balcony for only $140, as it was after the holiday weekend.

 The food is good, the view is spectacular, and the ladies at the front desk are very nice.

 Loved the rooms too. Mike like the balcony. It’s like that new thing, glamping, it’s rustic but not camping and nature is right at your door, and sometimes inside. Expect to find insects crawling about, flies coming in if you don’t shut the door, and well nature, you’ll be fine.
 There’s a mile path around Abbott Lake and we  decided to take a sunset stroll. That’s the lodge across the way.
 Mike’s new happy place.

 I saw a deer. I was happy. I know some of you reading this are saying come out to my house if you want to see a deer, I’ve seen them in the neighborhoods, but I’m still a big fan. What I didn’t see was Canadian Geese, I should have asked them how they got so lucky.
 Another thing I don’t see much of, the gorgeous star lit night.
 In the morning I woke up to this view from my balcony. The birds were chirping, the bull frogs croaking and the fish were splashing. Peaks of Otter Lodging is about 6 hrs from Philly. There’s no cell coverage, but they have Wifi, so you can send emails, surf the web and post photos to FB

 Then we headed back to Philly, but we drove for about 2 hours on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

 There’s a guy fishing right above this word
We saw a lot of solo bikers on the highways, motorcycles too.
And a few long distance hikers like this guy.
 Next time when I have more time I’m going to stop at some of these quaint towns.


 I was glad we went in May to see Spring in the mountains.
We hope to go back in the Fall. Hope you can make it out there some time soon. It’s really beautiful, and peaceful.

Vacation Day 4 But Here’s A Few Pixs

Mike and I are car hiking in the Appalachians. That means we stop at a lot of pull offs to enjoy the scenery and don‘t get ticks or chased by bears. Although we did see one on Sunday, with her cub. Adorable. I’ll do that post on Wednesday when I get back. I can’t wait to tell you about this trip to Virginia, you can do over a weekend, and the kids or the kid in you will love it. 


The Boyd and Pearl Properties Towering Apartment Building Update

You’ll recall I broke this story in 2013 after hearing Little Pete sold his building to Pearl Properties. Then I just put it together cause I knew Pearl owned the vacant lot next to Little Pete’s.  Today I’m going to tell you what seems to be the final story of this new Pearl Property.
I have a friend that just moved into the William Penn House on Chestnut Street.

The William Penn House is set back from Chestnut Street, and is accessed by a walkway. The new Pearl Building is planning to do a similar walkway to their new property.

 This the plan for the Pearl Properties (from Plan Philly) Without the details I’m about to tell you.

 Recently they had a building meeting where they discussed the latest development with the Pearl Properties/Boyd across the street from them. Things have changed from the last flurry of publishing’s.

This is what the Boyd Theater looked like on Sunday when I photographed it.
This is a good overview of the property (rooftops are ugly)
This is the outline of the property now.

What I understand my friend, and his neighbor telling me is, the neighborhood blocked any plans for the building to be built near the proximity of 19th and Chestnut Street. This was successful as there is zoning in place restricting the height of a building. Now it looks like Pearl is going to build their 29 story building where the Boyd Auditorium used to be, which I would make sense as that is a huge property, and create a walkway (see crude white arrow) which will lead to the main structure, see the red 29 story area. Update: Opps it’s going to be 27 stories.

As you know they are not allowed to demolish the building on the corner, which was once a QDoba, and is historically significant because a Civil Rights leader, Raymond Pace Alexander, Esq., who’s office was located there  (see Hidden Philly for a great article on Alexander.)

It’s a shame the Pearl Properties folks couldn’t see this beforehand and just gone after the Boyd property in the first place. Maybe they didn’t want to be the bad guys that were going to tear down the Boyd, and since it was in IPic’s plans, they got the heat, I mean the ball rolling on that and it seemed feasible to do. The reason the walkway is on 19th Street, was to avoid more congestion on Chestnut Street, but residents will also be able to enter the building on Sansom St which is where most of the new building will front.

I was wondering why they couldn’t put the walkway heading out to 20th Street, but they’d have to get a “right of way” through this parking lot. Sadly my friends view of Rittenhouse Square will be blocked by the new building, but he took it in stride saying that’s what progress is all about, and this design is a win/win for the rest of the building.

 Here is what the space is going to look like, and there’s much more detail over on
Philly Mag’s Property.


Election Night May 2015 – The Parties, and the People

Last night I decided to check out a few of the people I supported this election and see who else was on the team.

 First stop was Allan Domb’s Victory Party, which was held at Smith & Wollensky, or as I like to call it, Stephen Starr’s next restaurant. (PS Domb is partner’s with Starr in all his business’)
I ran into Eric Kassoway and Arielle Kevstein.
 Nicole Faux, Team – Allan Domb, Darwin Beauvais, Zarwin Baum, Carol Tamburino
 Masako Featherman, John Featherman and Diane Lucidi
 Lauren Colabelli, John Colabelli, Philly Style Mag Publisher and Carol Tamburino
 Guests, Nina Tinari and Michael Schulson
 The man of the hour, Allan Domb walks in. And I needed to head out.
 To the Kenney party at Vie. I had no idea when I arrived at 9:15PM that they would already call the election. I heard Kenney was going to take the podium at 10PM so I had a few moments to capture the room.
You know these two are going to be BUSY in the next 18 months:  Angela Val Deputy Executive Director at Philadelphia 2016 Host Committee for the Democratic National Convention and Kevin Washo, ‎Executive Director at Pennsylvania Democratic Party
 Sheila Hess, IBX was so excited when it was announced Kenney had won, that she burst out in tears.
 Lou Galdo, ‎President at Galdo Catering and Entertainment, Emilio Matticoli, Chief of Staff for Foundations and Mark Rago, Philadelphia Funeral Director
 Nellie Fitzpatrick, Director, Office of LGBT Affairs at City of Philadelphia Government, Fran Price and
 Beth Miskovsky and Mike Penna
 Reporters gotta do what they gotta do to get the story
 Greg Whiting and Jenny DeHuff, Philly Gossip DN
 Ronald R. Donatucci, Sr & Jr
 Tom Donatucci and Marie Donatucci
Patriotically dressed Al “Mr Philadelphia” Lee and J. Nathan Bazzel, American actor, known particularly for his portrayal of Thomas Jefferson.

 Mel Heifetz and Jim Duggan
President Fred Wright, AFSCME District 47 and Stephanie Phipps
 Mike Sheridian, Temple University and Jim Werner, Visit Philly
Marian Tasco, Darryl Clarke, Sen Vincent Hughes, Dwight Evans and Marie Donatucci
Kenney takes the stage
 The crowd strains to get a glimpse

There’s Brian Sims

These two shots are from Mike Toub (Happy 1 Year Anniversary already, on Sunday.)

Councilman Mark F. Squilla and wife Brigid.
 Heading out to greet the crowd Kenney descends the stage

 Kenny Meets the Press
 I then head over to the Belgium Cafe, a few blocks away, to see how Helen Gym is doing.
Her team is stressing out over the close race
Hillary Linardopoulos, of the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, Helen Gym, former Notebook editor and a co-founder of Parents United for Public Education (and now City Council Member) and Jerry Jordan, President of Philadelphia Federation of Teachers
Husband Brett Flaherty and friend Chuck Goodwin, are confident in the win. PS I worked with Brett and Chuck in my former life as a paralegal, at Kohn Swift; they used to loan me out to Berger Montague to work on cases where these two attorney’s worked.
Word came that Helen was in the lead,
 a few news outlets were calling for her win.
 She was optomistic and grateful,
but didn’t want to own the victory until all the precincts had come through.


 Inside the Belgium Cafe her supporters wait for the returns.
I left shortly after midnight as Helen addressed her supporters and told them, until the last 3 precincts are counted, I’m not going to declare victory. This morning, Helen Gym is a council person. Congrats!!