Sora Pool Club Celebrates Summer

Today is almost like a reset for summer, it’s a cloudy, dreary day in the middle of the summer, a perfect day to celebrate the summer pool party I photographed a few weeks ago at the Sora Pool Club at Presidential City . The Post Brothers Presidential City apartment complex has always been one of my favorites. It’s in the City, not in congested Center City, but on the edge of Fairmount Park and MLK drive and 76, for quick access downtown. PLUS it’s the complex is in a park like setting, probably good bird watching too, A sprawling property resort, with a magnificent gym, spa, three distinct pools: a 75-foot lap pool for swimming, a central lounge pool that features both partly immersed lounge chairs and a dry seating enclosure, and a kid-friendly wading pool. There are also dog exercise tracks, a Zen garden, cabanas, poolside chaise lounges with complimentary towel service, several lounge seating areas, two hot tubs and two outdoor kitchens, each with four grilling stations.

This year, is a special year we’re all experiencing together. I’ve covered the Sora Summer Pool Party before but this year was extra special, some of the people I met were experiencing their first time out, socializing in a year. Nearly every event I’ve been to I’ve noticed the joy!!

I’ve also noticed people wearing bright colors, which is a dream come true for me. If you’re a long time reader, you know I’ve been asking folks to bring the color, and after a year like 2020 people are ready to live in color!!

The Post Brothers were really visionaries in their developments, with creating a fun, resort, atmosphere targeting a younger audience with community rooms, game rooms, and everyone one of their properties has a magnificent pool, most with multiple pools like this one, the one at the Piazza, and their new spot The Popular, which is a salt water pool as well.

This years theme for the Sora Summer party was “Hang Ten”, as in chillax here at Sora pool, it’s a relaxing vibe, says Kate Marlys, Philly Pr Girl, and the Post Brothers PR told me as she gave me a tour around the property.

Presidential City is accepting new residents, here’s where to go to get some INFO It’s not supposed to rain today, and with temps in the 70s, it’s definitely a good day for a walk around the block. See you tomorrow here!! Thanks so much for subscribing to PhillyChitChat, I see since June 1st we’ve gotten another 1,000 subscribers. I really appreciate you!!


Philadelphia Mimosa Crawl at Xfinity Live

The Mimosa Crawl is next Sunday August 15th, at Xfinity Live! l! Unfortunately it is sold out!! BUT don’t fret, you still have a chance to go as they’re having a contest. Before I give you the details, check out photos from their re opening party last month taken by PhillyChiChat team photographer…

Talya Hailey who celebrated her birthday yesterday. HAPPY BIRTHDAY. Here she is with her baby girl.

Xfinity Live! reopened in May after the pandemic closed it temporarily, and celebrated with an official party in July. The South Philadelphia bar and restaurant complex welcomed customers back with entertainment, popular bites from eateries like Geno’s Steaks, Chickie & Pete’s, Victory Beer Hall, Lorenzo & Sons Pizza and PBR Philly. The game watching experience that Xfinity is known for in the shadow of Philly’s sports stadiums plans to host many summer events at the complex.


Chance to win (2) tickets to Mimosa Crawl taking place on Sunday, August 15 at Xfinity Live! Enter before August 7!!


HughE Around Town…

Hello Friday. WOW the summer is unofficially half over since it’s the end of July. I’ve spent a great amount of time down the shore in June and July. Thanks to my family, and friend AJ for giving me a place to rest my head and really enjoy the sun, sand and water this Cancer/Leo craves. (BTW Please Remember to Subscribe to PhillyChitChat again, box is on the top left, as the old feedburner subscription is going to end soon. When you enter your email address if it’s a duplicative, they will tell you. Meaning you dont use the Feedburner one.)

I had a great birthday week, spent with friends and family, dined at favorite spots D’Angelo’s on 20th Street where owner Sal D’Angelo broke out his guitar and sang Happy Birthday. Then the following day Thanuja hosted had a birthday lunch with her parents, AJ and I at Aldo Lamberti in Cherry Hill,

before we all met up the next day at AJ’s house in Ventnor for a fun weekend which included dancing all night long at Memories of Margate with Joe Tordella, Miguel Martinez-Valle and Raymond Smeriglio.

Monday night we celebrated Geno Vento’s 50th Birthday at Joe Italiano’s Maplewood Hammonton. I had never heard of it, but everyone I mentioned it to raved about it, and it was delicious. I had seafood, which was delicious, but I wish I had the Chicken Parm which Mike had. What was I thinking at the best Italian place in South Jersey?

Tuesday I headed back down the shore to spend time with my mom and family. We went to the Harriet Tubman Museum, which is owned by the same owners of the Chalfonte Hotel where my family stayed, and my nephew works.

I had no idea that Cape May was part of the Underground Railway. Last summer I learned about Lancaster Pa being part of the Underground Railway as well. I am glad these stories are coming to light, as I was never taught this in school.

Last night I went to to Urban Village Brewing Company at the Piazza. It seems the Pennsylvania Horse Racing Association (PHRA) has joined forces with Philadelphia-based Urban Village Brewing Company to create a limited-edition PA Preferred® CHOMPING AT THE BIT IPA.

I guess I could have found a complete six pack but this will do

As part of the partnership, every six-pack of CHOMPING AT THE BIT IPA sold will support efforts to ethically ensure the proper care, rehoming, and training of retired horses at Turning for Home, a non-profit adoption program .

Then I headed to the 2300 Arena for the Tony Luke, Jr. album release party for his debut album “Strong In Broken Places” dedicated to his son. I will be doing a separate post on this event next week. Really proud of my long time friend who hasn’t had it easy. This album is dedicated to his son, Tony III who died of a heroin overdose 4 years ago. It was a chock full of fun this week.

I didn’t make it to my friend Vasiliki Tsiouris’ Big Beautiful Greek Wedding in Greece to her beau Vasilios Balis, but she was kind enough to send this joyous photo to me, and I was so happy so many of my friends made it to the wedding. Congratulations to a beautiful couple, love to you both forevermore…. have a great weekend friends.


Elyssa Friedland Book Signing & Nosh at The Borscht Belt

Last month Bucks County native Nick Liberato, star of Paramount Network’s Bar Rescue and, most recently, Netflix’s Restaurants on the Edge opened a restaurant with 618 Hospitality Group business partners, Michael Dalewitz (The Mindful Mentor), and Steve Lau (owner of Stockton Market where the deli is located) just across from New Hope, Pa, in the equally adorable Stockton, NJ.

I photographed the opening where friends, family and business associates in the community including nearby Greater Lambertville Chamber of Commerce, were on hand to celebrate the big day. Nick Liberato in his signature bowler hat, and Mike Dalewitz in blue cap cut the ribbon to The Borscht Belt at the Stockton Market June 18.

“Nick has the ability to not only raise the standard and get the quality high on the classics, but to create a whole new element into this genre of food,” Dalewitz said. “It hasn’t been done before, and it’s exciting what you can do when it’s really a top-tier chef coming in and focusing on this the same way you would focus on lamb chops.”

My Central New Jersey

There are just some sandwiches you need to add to your weekend agenda

What’s on your agenda tomorrow? How about a book signing with Award-Winning Novelist, Elyssa Friendland, showcases her new novel about the Catskills resorts at The Borscht Belt Delicatessen? Head to the Bucks County Herald for more in depth article on the new deli. Ticket Info Here If you can’t make that, definitely add the to your summer day trip…. ChitChat with you tomorrow.


Congrats Are In Order….Spotted Antoni and Paulina Porizkova in Philly

I think they’re Egret’s, at Ocean City Bird Rookery. (see below)

Thank you to all my readers, folks on the street, family, friends and especially Mike Toub for making my birthday so special. This year I hope to accomplish decade old bucket list items I never really attempted. One is to learn to cook, which means dinner parties, game nights, conversation and a clean house, LOL. AND knowing the names of the birds I’ve been shooting for fun the past few years. I went to my first Bird Meetup last week, and it was fun. I’ll write about it this week. Let’s see what our friends and neighbors are up to, so many well wishes to give…all photos which don’t concern me borrowed from subjects SM, if they want them removed just ask.

My Favs, Memories of Margate with Jerry Blavat and D’Angelo’s Restaurant where Sal serenaded the table with several songs.

Congratulations Brendan and Josh!! “It’s official!!! After our relationship surviving putting together many pieces of ikea furniture over the years without killing each other we decided to get married at a small gathering at our place. We never could have done this all without our families and friends! Thank you all!!! – Josh Michael

Congrats to Alex and Mike on their engagement, ironically coinciding with fellow Instagram influencer

@tusksandtails > Congrats Ashlee Favro and Josh Krantz on your engagement as well!!

Spotted in Rittenhouse Square Antoni Porowski on my birthday July 23, 2021, but surprisingly not here for me. He was attended wedding with his man Kevin Harrington.
In the meantime, my friend Nicole Michalik, aka Nik the Web Chick was on the case trying to figure out why he was in town. I mentioned to her that a reader of mine mentioned a wedding happening in Macy’s on Saturday and thought it’d be fun to shoot for PCC, (with a reception at night at the Crystal Tea Room) which I couldn’t make as I was down the shore for my family reunion. She headed there Saturday morning to sleuth it out with her bestie Joe McCollum. The dynamic duo was unable to uncover the mysterious nuptials.

Porowski’s boyfriend, Kevin Harrington, kevharrington noted on his Instagram…Harrington is from the area and it seems that a couple of his friends were married this weekend.

2 weddings, 1 weekend, 0 glasses of water before falling asleep last night so I am now a raisin @bern_fahey@sheagirl34 #philly#weddings

The Shea wedding took place last year, and on Saturday the reception was held at the place where she and her husband Alex Johnson met, the Manayunk Brewing Company.

Antoni Porowski and Kevin Harrington were in our area earlier this month spending the July 4th weekend in Sea Isle City, and last Christmas spent it with Harrington’s family in Bucks County. There they were spotted outside Bucks County Playhouse as well as shopping at Peddler’s Village.

Competing for height with the Philadelphia City Hall, a magnificent building , once the tallest structure in the world. It is still the tallest standing Masonic structure in the US. (Meaning it has no steel support beams.)
@cityofphiladelphia #phillycityhall (BTW City Hall Tours exterior tours happening now, interior tours star August 3, but the observation tower is not open yet.)

This morning I was watching everyone’s favorite news magazine show Fox 29’s Good Day, they mentioned model, Paulina Porizkova posted this shot of her standing in front of City Hall. As reported by us both a few weeks ago, Paulina, most famously lately of being left out of the will of her husbands Ric Ocasek (truly a case of beauty and the beast, the beast was a musical genius) after they separated a few years earlier, even though they remained close, and she took care of him in his last weeks of life. (BTW I have to admire the admiration of the Daily Mail, which has published at least one glowing article a week on Paulina) OK now to this latest spotting. I believe this was a photo dump, and taken a few weeks ago, even though this is one of her favorite dresses.

Photos in Philly June 11

Last night Paulina spent a beautiful night with her son and his family in LA. We’re glad Paulina loves Philly so much, and hope she will visit again soon.


The Philly POPS Christmas in July

We need a little Christmas, right this very moment:
Christmas in July marks the on-sale date for tickets to the POPS’ well-attended Christmas concert series at the Kimmel Center in December – Philadelphia’s favorite holiday tradition, this year featuring Broadway and West End Star Scarlett Strallen and Broadway legend and Philly native Hugh Panaro (Swoon, the Phantom, in the Opera). Additionally, The Philly POPS Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia will perform its annual one-night-only Christmas Celebration, featuring its traditional performance of The Harlem Nutcracker at Penn Live Arts on December 18, 2021.

For the seventh annual Christmas in July, The Philly POPS gave tablets to children of members of the military, PAL, and Philadelphia Fire Departments. The events of the past year made clear the need, and with these tablets, the POPS looks to make learning possible for students, wherever they are.

As part of this event, the POPS give away free tickets, including tickets to A Philly POPS Christmas and two full season subscriptions on the POPS website and social media platforms (starting 7/23/21, ending 7/30/21).

Christmas in July also serves to announce the eighth annual I’ll Be Home for Christmas: A Salute to the Military and First Responders concert on December 3. This invitation-only concert provides free tickets to the families of military, veterans, police officers and firefighters and honors their commitment to service and our nation’s traditions and values.

What are you doing this weekend? How about a little more Christmas in July in Chestnut Hill

Have a great weekend!!!


Coney Island Comes to Philly

Popular New York City Coney Shack has expanded to Philadelphia, bringing the taste of Coney Island to our area – in the company’s first expansion out of that market – with more Philly locations to come!

Chef, partner and founder Lawrence Mach (r) started as a small food cart in Coney Island, graduated to a food truck, then opened a brick and mortar, then opened a pod kitchen in partnership with Times Square Foundation. Then the pandemic set in, slashing his business, and several of his locations paused due to the pandemic, but he moved forward with the plans to open in Philadelphia. He’s partnered on this project with SET NoLibs’ owner Michael Tang to open his largest brick and mortar to date; his NYC business are slowly coming back on line.

Coney Shack is represented by Kory Aversa, Aversa Pr, who never seemed to pause during the pandemic.

Earlier this month Coney Shack held at media night tasting.

Coney Shack combines Mexican and American street food favorites, with a Southeast Asian twist.

One must-try dish is the Mach Dog, with Vietnamese caramelized pork, crispy onion strings, Mexican cheese melt, sweet chili spicy mayo, scallion and toasted sesame. The cheese is melted using a blow torch at the front of the open-air kitchen.

Coney Shack 3818 Chestnut St. opens 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. Delivery currently is available through Grubhub, and will be available through Uber Eats, Postmates, Caviar and Doordash starting next week.


Scene: Robert Irvine, Gigi Hadad and Good News

Good day PhillyChitChatters. I hope you are doing well, keeping cool, making memories. Summer is halfway over as happens in July, I’m torn over it. I do love the slower pace of summer, but I am eager to return to a sense of normalcy. Last week I attended the INDIE Confab: Philadelphia at the new PHS Pop Up Garden in Manayunk. I will be writing about that soon, I’m a little behind; the garden is beautiful, delicious food, spacious but parking on the street is atrocious, as is parking in Manayunk. They do have parking lots a few blocks away. It’s definitely worth the trip as a different scene.

Speaking of gardens, I’ve been spending a lot of time down the shore these past few weeks, and I do love the gardens near my sisters house in Longport. They remind me of the homes and gardens of Key West. We can see similar flowering in pots and window boxes through out Philly. Go out for a walk and see the beauty.

Thanks Ready Set Philly and Chatterblast for this fun clip

I caught up with Robert Irvine yesterday as he was in town filming a new show for Food Network/Cooking Channel.
On Tuesday he was at Dekes BBQ, I caught up with him as he headed into McGillans Olde Ale House and today he’s filming again but I told him I’d keep it mum. I’ll be photographing his charity event “Beats and Eats” for the 4th time this fall. The Announcement will be made soon. The Robert Irvine Foundation teamed up with Boston Market to create two new limited time menu items, fans can enjoy the new pulled pork sandwich or a quarter-chicken with smoked cheddar pork sausage platter until the end of July, and raise money for his foundation.

The Robert Irvine Foundation’s goal is to help “military (active and veterans), first responders, their families, and those in need through resiliency, health, and wellness programs, in addition to the financial support of top-rated military and responder organizations.” So, for Irvine, teaming up with Boston Market was a no-brainer, as he believes that food — as always — has the power of bringing people together.

Speaking of Boston Market, I stopped by to visit the Mandia/Honigman family over the weekend at the shore. Christie Mandia is the Marketing Director of Boston Market, and worked on the campaign with Justin Leonard of the Robert Irvine Foundation. Stay tuned for more projects with them.

Look 👀 #gigihadad Watched @candacebushnell one woman show #IsThereStillSexInTheCity The Bucks County Playhouse on its successful run which ended over the weekend. Radio icon Valerie Knight, Breeze 100.3, tells me it was enjoyable and funny. Next stop New York City….
This is what Candace wrote about Hadid’s visit: Beyond thrilled to have the girl of the moment @gigihadid in the audience at last night’s performance of #IsThereStillSexInTheCity. Thank you for coming Gigi! AND Thank you for stopping by PhillyChitChat today. See you tomorrow… or on Social Media, although I have run into quite a few of you who tell me that you get your news from my blog. I appreciate your long readership, and am so grateful. Thanks


Kids Gym Indoor Playground Opens

Owners of We Rock the Spectrum Kelly McAllister has a degree in business and marketing that she earned from Penn State University. Her husband, Sean, was born and raised in the neighborhood and most of their extended family still resides here as well. Kelly and Sean are extremely passionate about family and have three sons of their own: Logan (4), Jackson aka Jack-Jack (2), and Cameron. We Rock The Spectrum is exactly the kind of place they’d want their kids to enjoy, if they weren’t the owners.

Thanks to PhillyChitChat Team Member Andre Flewellen for shooting this event. Check out more photos and story in Metro Philly today.


‘The West Tower’ Groundbreaking

Brandywine Realty Trust and Drexel University marked the commencement of construction of 3025 JFK, the first vertical development within Schuylkill Yards – a $3.5 billion innovation neighborhood in University City – with a groundbreaking ceremony on June 24 featuring state and local dignitaries and project partners.
3025 John F. Kennedy Blvd., Philadelphia PA.

John Fry, appointed Drexel University’s 14th president in 2010 and Jerry Sweeney, CEO of Brandywine Realty Trust pose for a photo at the groundbreaking.
Dan Dirscherl ,Chris Scheiblein, Brian Eddis, Mike Eddis, and Mike Preston
Brian Stevenson, Stevenson Advocacy LLC , Jerry Gontz, Sheet Metal Workers Local 19, Mike Preston, and Chris Scheiblein, EAP Coordinator at Allied Trades Assistance Program
Colette Pete, Chief Counsel at PhilaPort and Joyce Smith, ambassador for her historic neighborhood of East Parkside since 2009 and a member and co-founder of the Viola Street Residents Association (VSRA).
Melissa Heller and Sid Smith
Vishaan Chakraborti, Alan Greenberger, Anne Papageorge Melissa Heller, and Lori Doyle
Vicki Koch, Adam Case, Ron Becker, Senior Vice President Operations & Sustainability at Brandywine Realty Trust and Jean Sitler, Senior Vice President, Portfolio Management at Brandywine Realty Trust
According to the press release: The 570,000 square foot mixed-use building dubbed The West Tower at Schuylkill Yards will add a mix of residential rental units, life science and innovation office space, retail, and indoor/outdoor amenity spaces to the master-planned neighborhood being developed by Brandywine Realty Trust, in partnership with Drexel University.

Schuylkill Yards is recognized as an exemplary model for inclusive development, with a record-breaking $16.4 million neighborhood engagement initiative. The multi-faceted program provides working capital to small and minority-owned businesses, a trades training program to create paths to family-sustaining jobs, a local sourcing initiative to establish new procurement channels for local businesses, a Community Development Corporation (CDC) Co-Development partnership to build capacity for neighborhood organizations, and a community fund to prioritize affordable housing, education, employment and more. As part of the initiative, Brandywine engaged Mount Vernon Manor, a Community Development Corporation partner for The West Tower.

“The momentum that Brandywine Realty Trust and Drexel University continue to create with Schuylkill Yards has remained a key component to the forward trajectory of Philadelphia’s economic growth and development and further strengthens our city’s position as a life sciences industry leader,” said Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney. “Following a challenging year, the groundbreaking of The West Tower at Schuylkill Yards marks a positive milestone for Philadelphia and the West Philadelphia community, and we are eager to watch as it takes shape.”