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Philadelphia

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This Is Us Films in Philly; Queer Eye Guy and Jason Segal Spotted – Yes they’re still here!!

Hey readers, you’re used to me doing my gossip column on Sunday’s but I’ve been slammed with work so I’m going to give you a whole bunch of chitchat to love today.

Unless you live under a rock, you at least know about the huge hit on NBC >> This is Us, which tells the story of the Pearson family in present, future and past tense, a momentous feat and great character development way to tell a story. The series is based in Pittsburgh where the main characters and their parents were born and raised. As adults, Kate lives in Los Angeles, Randall and his family are in New Jersey (and later Philadelphia) Kevin relocates from Los Angeles to New York City and back again.

Last year ‘This Is Us’ filmed scenes with Justin Hartley, who plays Kevin Pearson, at WHYY studios with Terry Gross. He was being interviewed by Gross. Here are a few of my photos from the shoot in the Inky last year. Well they’re back again this year to film a few scenes, but this time because one of the Pearsons moves to town. On Sunday (I tweeted on Sunday how sad I was to miss shooting them, but I was going to the Eagles game!!) but on Monday I was able to shoot them as they filmed scenes which will be shown in the 4th season which debuts Tuesday, September 24th on NBC. The first episode will likely kick off with The Big Three’s birthday says Good Housekeeping (just as it has in prior seasons) SPOILER ALERT, if you don’t want to know where and what Randall Pearson’s family does next, don’t read any further.

One of the biggest spoiler alerts was watching the trailer for the upcoming season. So many intriguing stories, and say what M. Night Shyamalan is joining the cast? I think I know why, and if you want to know click on the YouTube link as someone chitchats about it in the comments. OK let’s see what happened when This is Us came to town to film Sunday & Monday.

Randall Peason’s family is moving to Philadelphia, which we found out last season when Randall won a City Council seat in our City in the 12th District. (It’s a fictional show, just like Philly having a 12th District, we only have 10) The 12th District, where Randall lives, seems to be the Spring Garden area as that is where they filmed on Sunday, primarily in the 2000 block of Spring Garden. The entire family of actors Sterling K. Brown and Susan Kelechi with their TV kids were spotted walking along Spring Garden Street. Then filming at the Philadelphia Art Museum early Monday morning they were there as well. At one point as noted by Chef Cherryl reports Randall Pearson runs up the Rocky Stairs, which is a regular exercise routine in Philly. In this photo you can also see the Pearson family in pink and green. Philly we’re gonna have a whole new bunch of fans to see the Philadelphia Art Museum and Rocky Steps.

Monday afternoon Lyric Ross, who plays Déjà , a foster kid who was taken in by Randall and Beth Pearson, filmed on South Street. First near the Headhouse on 2nd Street. Then she and her friend grabbed a Rita’s Gelato in the 300 block of South Street, before heading to the Magic Garden at 10th and South. The scene looks to be a fall after school moment as both kids in the scene are wearing warm clothing, and carrying backpacks, but as a Philadelphian every season is the perfect season for a Rita’s treat. (I was kinda bummed I didn’t have my long lens when I got the tip about This is Us filming on South Street, as I was returning from Dr J’s Golf Classic in Atlantic City and I didn’t need it. But still happy about these shots.

UPDATE: WXTU’s Nicole Michalik (3pm to 7PM) has a story on their website about Sterling K Brown at the Art Museum and how this photo came about. Head on over to WXTU

Thanks Leah Ben who tipped me off to Bobby Berk, the interior guy from Queer Eye, filming a Rachel Ray segment at Washington Square last week. The guys are nearly done filming the season 5 of the popular Netflix series.

Actory/Director/Writer Jason Segel who’s been working on the AMC TV series Dispatches From Elsewhere has been filming all over town, and in the burbs. One of them more interesting shoots occurred at the Tower Theater right before Labor Day. An overnight shoot had an audience who was listening to cult leader Octavio eschew his spiel, combat protestors with nerf objects. I hear it was a wild shoot. This series shoots here through November. It premieres on AMC TV in the first quarter of 2020. Jason Segal was roaming around Old City, which seems to be the hot spot to live while filming in Philly, the Queer Eye guys are always spotted in the area as well, anyway Jason stopped in everyone’s favorite women’s shop The Geisha House 149 N 3rd St. Later this week I’ll write about my first trip to see the Eagles play at the Linc, I hear I’m a good luck charm now. #comebackkid; also the 2nd half of my LBWkdn trip, Dr. J Gala & Golf, and more PhillyGossip. Have a great day!!

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Road Closures, Transit Detours and Public Safety Information Announced for Biden Kick Off Rally

PHILADELPHIA — On Saturday, May 18, 2019, the Joe Biden presidential campaign will host a rally on Eakins Oval (2451 Benjamin Franklin Parkway). The event is open to the public, and guests are encouraged to register online using the campaign’s website.

To ensure the safety of participants and the public, road closures and parking restrictions will be implemented. Delays can be expected during the course of the event. Motorists are advised to avoid the area by using alternate routes and allow for extra driving time in areas near the event. Double-parking, which creates congestion, limits traffic flow and is illegal, will be strictly enforced.

Road Closures
The event will commence at 1:00 p.m., with gates opening to the public at 11:00 a.m.  It is scheduled to conclude at 2:30 p.m.

The following streets will be closed starting at 9:00 a.m. until approximately 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 18:

  • Benjamin Franklin Parkway between 20th Street and 22nd Street — center lanes only
  • Benjamin Franklin Parkway between 22nd Street and Eakins Oval — all lanes
  • 23rd Street between Pennsylvania Avenue and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
  • Spring Garden Street between Pennsylvania Avenue and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
  • Kelly Drive (outbound) from Benjamin Franklin Parkway to Fairmount Avenue
  • Kelly Drive (inbound) between 25th Street and Fairmount Avenue — local access maintained to Anne d’Harnoncourt Drive via 25th Street
  • Martin Luther King Drive between Eakins Oval and Sweetbriar Drive
  • Spring Garden Street Bridge at 31st Street — local access maintained to Anne d’Harnoncourt Drive

Starting at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday, May 18, inbound (eastbound) traffic on Kelly Drive must exit Kelly Drive at Fairmount Avenue due to the closure of the outer lanes on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Benjamin Franklin Parkway cross traffic will be permitted on numbered streets as conditions allow.

The Philadelphia Museum of Art and other Parkway institutions will remain OPEN for business on Saturday, May 18, 2019. Visitors are encouraged to check individual websites for hours of operation.

Those wishing to access the west side of the Philadelphia Museum of Art must turn right on Pennsylvania Avenue from Fairmount Avenue, turn right on 25th Street and continue onto Anne d’Harnoncourt Drive. Those wishing to access the Barnes Foundation should follow Fairmount Avenue to Pennsylvania Avenue and turn right, following Pennsylvania Avenue to 21st Street—then, turn right at 21st Street and make the first left onto Callowhill Street to access the Barnes Foundation parking lot.

Streets will be serviced and reopened as attendees disperse. It is expected that a number of the affected streets listed above will be opened to vehicular traffic prior to 4:00 p.m.

Attendees are advised to use caution when crossing streets, follow traffic signals, and obey instructions provided by the Philadelphia Police Department.

Parking Restrictions
The following streets will be posted as “Temporary No Parking” zones from 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 18:

  • Benjamin Franklin Parkway from 22nd Street to Eakins Oval — all lanes, both sides
  • 22nd Street between Pennsylvania Avenue and Winter Street — both sides
  • 2100-2200 Spring Garden Street — both sides

All “Temporary No Parking” signs must be obeyed. Vehicles parked in these locations during posted hours will be relocated.

Public Transportation
SEPTA bus routes will be detoured from their normal routes through the Benjamin Franklin Parkway area beginning at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday, May 18 through approximately 4:00 p.m. Detours will be posted, and specific route changes are available on the System Status page at septa.org.

It is recommended that guests utilize public transportation options for travel to and from the event. If driving into Center City is necessary, commercial off-street parking lots and garages are conveniently located near the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and Eakins Oval. Attendees should contact individual facilities in advance for rates and availability or visit the Philadelphia Parking Authority’s website at philapark.org for a list of parking options.

Entry Information and ADA Drop-Offs
The general admission entry gate to the rally will be located on the north side of Eakins Oval. Due to event-related road closures, it is recommended that guests with mobility issues arrange for drop-off in the area of Pennsylvania Avenue and Spring Garden Street. This will provide the most direct route to the rally location at Eakins Oval. After drop-off, proceed southwest on Spring Garden Street towards Eakins Oval, and volunteers will direct you to the closest entry gate.

Public Safety Information
Drones and any other small, unmanned aircraft are not permitted. The full list of prohibited items includes:

  • Purses or bags larger than 4’’x6’’
  • Backpacks (clear bags permitted)
  • Cinch bags
  • Briefcases
  • Coolers
  • Luggage of any kind
  • Placards
  • Homemade signs and banners
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Umbrellas
  • Flags
  • Drones/UAS
  • Weapons of any kind

Leave no bags or items unattended. In an emergency or to report a suspicious person, activity or item—such as a backpack, package or container—notify a police officer immediately or call 9-1-1. Do not try to open, move, cover or touch a suspicious item.

The public should expect congestion in the area. Individuals attending the event should make a plan regarding driving, public transit, parking, and supervision of children. Attendees should also be prepared to wait to enter and exit the event area. It is recommended that attendees wear comfortable, weather-appropriate attire.

Stay connected to important weather or emergency information from the City by signing up for free ReadyPhiladelphia text alerts. Simply text READYPHILA to 888-777 or customize your free email or text alerts by visiting the Office of Emergency Management’s website: phila.gov/ready.

Philadelphia

Mike Jerrick Suspended from Fox 29 over Bullshit, Video & Philly Gossip

Where Mike Jerrick is now: Taking care of his mental health.

https://www.facebook.com/MikeJerrickFox29/

 

Hey it’s Thursday so that means another Philly Gossip column for you. Friday I’ll post Maria Papadakis’ wedding photos, then Sunday it’s more Philly Gossip,  and Monday The Academy Ball Fashion Photos.

Mike Jerrick’s antics on Fox 29 have produced plenty of viral videos over the years. Who could forget his mimicking the Kardashian’s, or his hysterical Ryan Lochte interview with Shenielle Jones a 4 years ago, which became very popular again this past summer during the Olympics. Well no one was laughing at Fox on Monday when he accidentally said the word bullshit live on Good Day. (Although millions of people in the USA were cheering Right On Mike when the video went viral)

According to the national news site FT LIVE Fox29’s Philly Anchor Mike Jerrick has been suspended for a week by the parent company Fox after he said Kellyanne Conway is a good bullshitter accidentally on air Monday morning; and honestly she is; Kellyanne told Chuck Todd on Sunday’s Meet The Press that Spicer’s take on the supposed record breaking inauguration crowds was “Alternative Facts”, she even crack a shit eating grin herself, so calling her out was a natural response, but you’re probably not allowed to accidentally curse on TV.

Thursday President Trump will be in town at the Republican Retreat in Philly.

Call Fox National in support of Mike Jerrick 1 (888) 369-4762 to complain, not local Fox 29. The decision was made by parent company. And please don’t boycott Fox 29, they’re great people. I only reported on this because people make mistakes, he apologized. it’s my biggest fear to accidentally curse when I’m on TV. Even Fox News’ Mike Wallace hammered away at Trump’s Communications Director the other night, calling Trump a liar. I was impressed.

Check out the GOP Retreat agenda at PhillyMag.com
(FTLIVE)

Jerrick

Another scary dude in town Bryan Cranston ie Breaking Bad’s Walter White. He’s filming a movie, Untouchable, with Nicole Kidman and Kevin Hart. Remember Friday night Untouchable is filming car chase scenes on JFK and Market Street after 7PM until the wee hours of the morning. What I’ve read said the principle actors aren’t going to be there, but they are in town so I think they might pop in.

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Kevin Hart’s been spotting around town. Today he worked out at City Fitness in the Graduate Hospital Area, which ironically no longer has a hospital in the area; last night he was at the Sixers game, with a million of my instagram friends it seems.

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It was “M. Night Shyamalan Night,” at the Sixers’ game last night, in honor of his new movie “Split”, which opened last Friday with a stunning box-office comeback, earning $40.2 million over its opening weekend, giving it the No. 1 spot at the box office. That’s more money than “The Sixth Sense” made in its debut weekend ($26.7 million) and marks one of Shyamalan’s best openings — though it doesn’t quite match the impressive $60.1 million “Signs” took in over its 2002 opening weekend. Split stars James McAvoy and my friend in my head Betty Buckley, and filmed in Philly last year. At the Sixers game last night Night rang the Sixers’ ceremonial Liberty Bell. His daughter Saleka sang the National Anthem. Above is his wife, Bhavna Vaswani came out to support. (Thanks Sixers for the photos) BTW Saleka’s quite an artist as well, In the Sixth Sense, the artwork in the book about extraterrestrials was done by her.Jerrick

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Thanks Flyers for sending my niece Nicole, who was born and lives in Charlotte and is recovering from Non Hodgkins Lymphoma, a nice care package. You made her day.

 
Philadelphia

Whole Foods Center City is everything and More. Photos from today’s opening, plus SALES

Oh so excited for Whole Foods to open. It’s one of my favorite food places to shop, oh I love them all;

Whole Foods

and by the looks of the crowd waiting to get into the new store at 2101 Pennsylvania Ave I’m in good company.

 

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Whole Foods held their “ribbon cutting” opening this morning about 9AM. hd1_3546-custom

Bob and Betty who either waited 4 hrs to be first in line, or drove 4 hrs, helped officials “break bread” to open the store, as they don’t cut ribbons. hd1_3549-custom

I told you it was a long line. I hear everyone of the 172 parking spots in the grocery stores garage was taken.

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Here are officials toasting the new store in the Cafe. They sell wine and beer at the new Whole Foods.
The store and cafe are open until 11PM

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When you first enter the store you come to the coffee bar. There is counter seating, window seating, and tables. Lots
of space and free wifi, with an amazing view of the skyline.

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To get into the store, there are stairs on both sides of coffee bar

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and two elevators next to the stairs. These escalators go to the parking garage.
See the guy with the cap, he runs the cart escalator. So you can get your groceries to the
car, your cart goes down an escalator by itself, and you get it at the bottom.

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Avocados were only $.99, hurry I hear they’re going up in price

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Vegetarians turn away. OMG they have a butcher.

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Lot’s of salad bars

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Here is the seating in the one cafe. See those windows above.

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There’s a hideaway nook

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     This is a good place to work

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Beers featured at the barhd1_3573-custom

Pizza is kinda pricey, but for 2 slices it’s a deal. They are large slices.hd1_3577-custom

Local cut pasta

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Nice aisles, not as huge as Mom’s Organic, which is opening near 12th and Market next year. Those are 12 feet wide.hd1_3581-custom

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Please don’t pull from the bottomhd1_3585-custom

Yes they sell wine

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There are 4 “eateries” inside the Whole Foodshd1_3588-custom

Please don’t bring your cart in the eatery section, there’s not a lot of room. I did see a women try and take this shortcut, it was a nightmare

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Hey

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For opening week they have some stellar sales. Chicken is $5.99 this weekend, and if you buy $50 worth of meat, you get
$10 off at the cashier. This weeks Sales are Here

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Sushihd1_3616-custom

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Cheese department was packedhd1_3620-custom hd1_3622-custom hd1_3628-custom

A juice barhd1_3629-custom

Cute gifts for you and others. Now these are great hostess gifts.

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For more details check out Michael Klein’s column in the Inky.

Philadelphia

Info: Walk For Suicide Awareness and Prevention October 2 at Phila Art Museum

Thousands Walk to Prevent Suicide  ***  2016 Philadelphia Out of the Darkness Community Walk  Benefiting American Foundation for Suicide Prevention  Philadelphia, Pa., (September 21, 2016) –

Walk

The 12 th Annual Philadelphia Out of the  Darkness Community Walk takes place Sunday, October 2, 2015, at the Philadelphia  Museum of Art on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m., and  the walk begins at 9 a.m.  The Walk is hosted by the Greater Philadelphia Chapter of the American Foundation  for Suicide Prevention (AFSP). More than $500,000 was raised in 2015. An expected  5,000 participants from across the Greater Philadelphia area will attend.  AFSP Philadelphia Board President Jan Evans announced that the AFSP  Philadelphia “Buck in a Bucket” Suicide Prevention Program will be launched at  the walk. “Buckets will be a vehicle for fundraising but more importantly – the risk  factors of suicide will be printed on the buckets for people to see and understand,”  Evans said. “Our fundraising focuses on delivering community based programs that  help eliminate the loss of life from suicide by delivering innovative prevention  programs and educating the public on the risk factors associated with suicide.”  It is estimated that each year, nearly 1 million Americans make a suicide attempt, more  than 38,000 die by suicide, and more than 20 million suffer from depression; which is a  precursor to suicide. Suicide is the third leading cause of death among teens and young  adults and the second leading cause of death for college students. Additionally, older  Americans over the age of 65 account for 16 percent of all suicide deaths.  To register for the walk, go to www.afsp.org/philadelphia.

 

Philadelphia

Philadelphia Naked Bike Ride 2016 Fashion, Fun & OMG’s

Philadelphia Naked Bike Ride 2016 Fashion, Fun & OMG’s

Photos from the 2016 Philly Naked Bike Ride.  The ride is meant to highlight body positivity and bring awareness towards fuel consumption. It was held Saturday, September 10 throughout downtown Philadelphia starting near the Art Museum, swinging by City Hall, down Chestnut Street passed Independence Hall, up Market Street to JFK into West Philly, down Chestnut Street to 19th, around Rittenhouse Square, down Locust to South Street and several after parties. I photographed them at 4 locations and at each one their was a healthy crowd there to cheer them on. Did I mention they had a police escort, yes they did. People always ask me did anyone get arrested, no.

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Ultimately, one of the goals of the Philly Naked Bike Ride is to desexualize nudity and to encourage everyone to embrace nudity as a normal, enjoyable way of life. Following this policy will help further this goal and teach all of us how to be better people in general. naked

I purposely didn’t publish and very overtly naked folks. You might ask how did I determine that…

naked naked

OK well I did publish this one, he seemed to understand I had a camera or was he saying “Get the hell out of here?”hd1_2905-custom

Oh she was definitely saying Get The Hell Out of Here. hd1_2915-custom

This is impressivenaked

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Oh I love these swag bags and could only be pre-ordered. They’re so cute.

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Yes Indego – Philly’s Bike Share were rented for the #PNBR16, some people were completely naked on the bikes toohd1_2940-custom

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Phone home

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Tourist on a Duck Boat got an eyeful, and all had a different experience

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#Selfie timehd1_2983-custom naked naked naked

Heading to West Philly on JFK

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I have no idea who his friend ishd1_3061-custom

Do you see the crowds waiting at Rittenhouse Squarehd1_3092-custom

Oh the new Target at 19th and Chestnut is coming along nicelynaked

Toppers Spahd1_3113-custom

People were hanging out their windows to get a glimpsenaked

V Street, I hear they’re opening another vegan concept next door too

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Indego Bike Rider

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Hey it’s author Carol Saline, she’s most notable for writing the Mother/Daughter photo books.

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The End

Philadelphia

Diner en Blanc Has A Charity Component – Now Shut Up

I know harsh title, but after going to events yesterday and people asking me why Diner en Blanc didn’t have a charity component, and then yes I was sad about the negative articles that came out about Diner en Blanc from people who never attended, and the one poor sad sap who didn’t have the gonads to tell his girlfriend he found the whole thing boring, but one posting on FB where a publisher of a magazine wanted to know where the money went, is the one that really affected me (surprised he doesn’t know how much it costs to run an event, it’s not free.)  I am biased, I love the event, they are my clients, and I also donate time to the event.  All I really know about life is we are here for a short time, I really want people to live and love, and I don’t understand negativity. I posted a little thing on FB. I got a feedback, good, disagreeable but not nasty, which is really the way it should be – C’est la vie. Oh wait there was one negative response from a Trump supporter who was mad I maligned him. We’re still friends though, it’s only the hypocrites I can’t stand. Near the end is where the Natanya DiBona statement on the charity work Philly Diner en Blanc does through out the year, and the volunteer hours that go into putting on an event as large as Diner en Blanc, with its 5,000 attendees this year:  My favorite response was Yo Philly, is more like Oy Philly

Here goes

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I included a few responses to my posts

 

Alexandra Golaszewska I’ve never gone to Dîner en Blanc, mainly I don’t want to haul my own furniture and plates to a dinner. But I don’t get why so many people are saying it needs to be fundraiser. I understand that they’re using public space, but so are all of the restaurants that have sidewalk tables, and I don’t hear the same criticism of them.

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Cassie Hepler I said the same thing Hugh E Dillon as in why not get all uppity about the Eagles not donating to charity? Certainly those tickets and salaries are ridiculously overinflated as in millions not just $200K.

HughE: Although all the sports teams do a lot of charity, the ticket holder is not getting a charity deduction for the price of the ticket, so that

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Jacqueline Peccina Kelly Hugh E Dillon I have to agree 100% with what you said – I am disappointed in these naysayers. Is it because it is 2 women who are in charge? Or is it because they are jealous? Ignorance? I applaud Natanya and Kayli for orchestrating, what I think has been the party of the year. They brought 5000 strangers together who became friends for a night – no violence, nothing stolen, and a good time was had by all!

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Brigid McGrath Stasen First allow me to say that I am not a “schlepper”. I like to sit at tables donning white tablecloths and linen napkins with the best of them. Truth be told, I don’t even like buffets. If I’m going out to dinner I enjoy being served. That being said, I think the concept of Diner en Blanc is fun and fabulous. Did I want to go? No. Did I feel a bit of FOMO last night as I watched the videos and enjoyed the photos everyone was posting on FB? Yes. It looked like so much fun and I loved seeing all of my friends that were there enjoying themselves. Unfortunately, the trash etc… left behind is surely not worse than any number of parades in our fine city. If DEB folks paid for the clean up. Good for them. They should. Would it be nice to know if there was a charity angle? Absolutely. It’s a creative and fun event that allows all whom wish to participate to have a wonderful evening under the stars. Loved seeing everyone dressed in their white finery, their fabulous table settings, fun hats and ensembles. Will I be going to DEB 2017? No. Will I again have FOMO? Yes. But that’s okay. My friends had a blast.

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Sarah Doheny We’ve gone the first two years they both were magical evenings. The first year will was by far the best, all the sparklers lite at the same time, napkins waving …the fountain ..
It’s a choice and not everyone will be pleased and not everyone wishes to schlep…

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Mary Anne Keenan McDevitt I love DEB and I have carted my table, chairs, food and drink up and down subway steps, walked miles and ate dinner in the rain and will continue to attend for many years to come. Our group, last night, met across from the Franklin Institute and we walked to the Art Museum. The police stopped traffic as we started our trek, but for the remainder of the walk we obeyed traffic signals and only crossed the street on green. I can not comment on the mess that is left. I know that when we broke down our tables and chairs, last night, there was nothing left behind. (Have you ever seen the parking lot after a Kenny Chesney Concert?) We enjoy the evening and look forward to it.

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Bernnie Visalli How can anyone say something negative about a civil party all dressed in white with sparklers. Saw some coverage of that and it looked amazing.
People complain about everything now.

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Gregory Seitter Unfortunately, you will have a lot of naysayers. Diner en Blanc helps make Philadelphia a first class city. Plus, the event drives revenue in the city. Seems like a win-win for me.
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Christopher: The haters of this awesome event are probably the same people who hate every amazing event of grand scale this city should encourage. If we want to be a great city, a world class city, we should encourage more creative events like this. There is no downside to Diner en Blanc, is there? Bringing so many joyous people together makes our city stronger and more fun
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Karen Toole-Ebbert Amen Hugh E Dillon! I cannot understand why the push for a charity component in the 1st place. Even if it was a total for profit event it is no ones freaking business!! I host events every month and it is time consuming along with expenses.

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Monique Crawford Totally agree. Leave it to opportunists to take a European tradition for the people who just want to celebrate life, food, fun, and friends and try to taint it for their own self promoting reasons. It’s Dîner En Blanc people, relax, just don’t go and get back to focusing on your self.
Matt Sullivan I see zero moral difference between using your money to buy tickets to this event and using your money to buy Eagles tickets. Except Eagles tickets are three times as expensive. So I guess Eagles fans care about the poor three times less than these people.
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Josh Kruger I drafted a paragraph-long comment several times before settling on, “Can we all just let each other live our dang lives?”
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Michelle Leonard  (name removed) I don’t think I know you. I am republican and most people know it. I know that Hugh E Dillon definitely knows it. And I consider HughE to be a close friend. He is one of the kindest most thoughtful and generous people I know. He is always fair and reasonable.
Second of all do you entertain? First of all Natanya DiBona and her friend Kayli do an amazing job planning and coordinating such a memorable evening. Do you realize what all of the buses entertainment and all of the other things go into creating this special evening. I don’t know if you went or not but it was a night to remember. Philadelphia is so lucky to have such talented people like Natanya and Kory Aversa putting together this amazing night.
Philadelphians should be thanking them for their generosity to helping to keep Philadelphia the world class city that it is.
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Carmena Ayo-Davies You know I love you, I think DEB is beautifully organized, I’m lazy and like to be pampered, so all the extra Ish, is just not my cup of tea. I live in a two bedroom and I have a cleaning lady, I know I’m not toting my meal, table and chair anywhere in white. Just my opinion, I think people should definitely support, all the pictures look beautiful
Amy Z. Quinn It’s legal to get a permit and close down streets for an event, it happens all the time. It’s not my thing but
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Marjilyn Murray I dont mind people making fun a bit ( i have attended for 4 years including this one) some of my friends make fun for having to carry chairs/tables/bring your own dinner lol. but such real nastyness from people…mostly who have never attended…i feel is uncalled for. It is a night where so many different people from all walks of life eat together, share food and drink, and peacefully have a wonderful time. We have met so many friends who we may have not met otherwise. Our table was a mix of all ages, races, orientation, and people from all over. We had a ball! How often do we all get that opportunity to go out and meet all different types of people (especially as a parent who doesnt get out too much lol?)
charity

 

It may not go to charity but if me and my husband choose to go to dinner and spend $100 to eat at a restaurant with sidewalk seating…what is the difference? I dont see people yelling and accusing others of anything nasty (such as not caring about other world issues) because they went to dinner anywhere else.

You seem like a super nice person hugh…people are nasty and jealous and mean. Keep on being you and dont let the naysayers get you down:)

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Karina Sellhorn I have never attended, I want to. I respect all opinions… But I don’t understand why every event in the city has to be a fundraiser? To each it’s own. People pay to tour the city; I would pay to get to have that experience.
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Shoshana Suzanne Schiller Well, let’s compare apples to apples. DEB does not supply food, alcohol, servers, linens, centerpieces, etc. (Note – my view is DEB is not my thing but others like it and it’s one night of the year when traffic is affected so stop whining and let people who want to pay for the privilege to attend enjoy their night)
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Victor Fiorillo My band The Martha Graham Cracker Cabaret played it last year and I was surprised we didn’t get any crap for doing so. It was a great experience for us. I was a major eye roller but not a harsh critic of DEB prior to that event and after doing it, I came away with mostly positive feelings. I personally would never spend the money to be there, but I don’t fault others for doing the same or for DEB doing the event without a charity component. I disagree with your assertion that they can’t possibly add a charity component — why couldn’t they do a food drive at the event or allow a non profit to set up a table soliciting donations — but there are plenty of events in Philly that are dining oriented that don’t also try to feed the homeless. Not everything has to be everything to everybody and in the end, people are going to continue to sell out DEB regardless.

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Hugh E Dillon A can good is a great idea, but then someone would complain we asked them to carry one more thing. I Know Natanya and kayli would add a charity component if they could. At least to quiet the noise.
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Natanya DiBona While we are unable to officially partner with a particular charity, we have given MANY free tickets to non-profits throughout the years (with a wide range of missions- from red cross to fringe arts and the vetri foundation) to auction off, we raised funds for Fairmount Park Conservancy through an event this year in honor of our first location, Logan Circle, we’ve auctioned off paintings done at the 2014 event to benefit PAFA and the Avenue of the Arts and we had 65 of our volunteers assist with #popupphilly, the first pop-up dinner party for the homeless. And actually, Hugh E Dillon, while i do understand what you are saying and I appreciate the sentiment, we would not do anything just to quiet noise- I believe we are authentic and genuine in everything we have done since 2012. 

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Kayli, myself and an 8 person team dedicate 4 months planning this event unpaid and this year we were assisted by another 155 volunteers who helped us execute it….all for the love of planning a great event in the city we love. The city is the beneficiary of all of those thousands of hours we donate of our time to make this event happen (as a small example of the time it takes, threading each of the wristbands that our participants wore took 52 man hours- just imagine what went into planning the whole event). Everyone else does get paid though…the venue (“public space” does not mean free), the city, police officers, street cleaners, portapotties sound and lighting professionals, tent companies, insurance providers, bus companies, Septa, and yes, performers like the fabulous Martha Graham Cracker Cabaret, Victor Fiorillo. The very reasonable ticket price makes all of that possible.

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JW: You should know by now that Philadelphians hating on anything positive that goes on in Philadelphia is the most Philadelphian thing you can do. I think it’s up there with the citywide special — $3 PBR and a shot of Jim Bean — as quintessential Philly.

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Q&A: We ask Diner en Blanc’s organizers to explain themselves

Philadelphia

Gwen Stefani Spent The Day in Philly with her Kids

Gwen Stefani Spent The Day With Her Kids in Philly
I may be late in posting today (Tuesday, 3:30PM), but I have a good reason. Did some columns, shot one of my pro-bono charity gigs then waited for the lovely Gwen Stefani.

Gwen

A shot I took of Gwen w/family leaving Morimoto in 2009

The Throwback Tour of the Summer is happening, and tonight it’s in Philly as Gwen Stefani and Eve are playing the BT&T Pavillion in Camden.   Stefani, who has a hot hit right now with her beau Blake Shelton, is bringing Philly’s own Eve along on the road for the This Is What the Truth Feels Like Tour, which kicked off on July 12 and wraps up with a show in Los Angeles on October 15.

Gwen

Sunday night she and Blake performed their duet “Go Ahead and Break My Heart,” at Jiffy Lube Live in Bristow, VA. But don’t expect to see him tonight cause when she checked into her hotel,  The Ritz on Monday, all she brought were a lot of Toys R Us bags, while wheeling in a box with a kids blow up pool, yes really.

Gwen

I remember in 2009 when I chatted about Gwen and family in Philly on my Fox 29 celeb segment, her son Kingston was spotted riding his big wheel down the halls of the Ritz Carlton. I can’t imagine what it was like to have a kids pool in the room last night, do you think they filled it to the top?

Gwen

@NicoleisNik from   tweeted she saw Gwen’s kids on her plane from LA yesterday afternoon. They were all reunited at The Ritz that afternoon, and spent quality mom time, where Gwen said in a Charlotte Observer interview, that it was back to reality time and her being a mom for a bit.

Gwen

After play time Gwen, and her tour manager headed to Estia (1405 Locust St) for dinner. I heard they dined on Langoustines

How cute is that dress – it’s by Bernie Dexter

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Up early Tuesday, Gwen and the kids headed to the Please Touch Museum for a little fun before heading to the BT&T Pavilion for tonight’s concert.

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Here’s some of their luggage being loaded onto the tour bus, they also brought out the toys, some in bags, some lose, no sign of the pool, did they leave it behind? That’s Gwen’s assistant, pretty in pink, and tour director. Eve entertained friends and family at her hotel at the Sofitel (120 S 17th St,), and was seen leaving with bags at 230PM

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Speaking of throwbacks: Yes that was Mark McGrath from Sugar Ray fame eating lunch at Ruby Tuesdays at Shops of Liberty Place yesterday. They’re playing in Bethlehem Pa Wed.

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BTW I was at the Shops of Liberty Place today and saw that the renovations were done at Kiehl’s and it looks like it’s opening soon.

 

Philadelphia

Art-Reach Gala at the Franklin Institute

Art-Reach enriches lives by connecting underserved audiences with cultural experiences so that they may enjoy and benefit from the transformative power of the arts. Last month they had a gala at the Franklin Institute and my friend Joshua Torrisi sent me a few photos of the event.

Art-Reach

The Cultural Access Awards were hosted by Art Reach on APRIL 5th, from 6 – 9 pm at The Franklin Institute. Art-Reach is a Philadelphia-based non-profit devoted to connecting underserved audiences with cultural experiences so that they may enjoy the transformative power of the arts.   Art-Reach is on pace to serve over 72,000 people with disabilities and those from low-income communities in our current program year.

Art-Reach

Verbal description tour of The Brain Exhibit to help give guests a sense for how low-vision and blind individuals can experience exhibits thanks to Art Reach

Art-Reach

The night was filled with cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, an award ceremony and a fully accessible verbal description tour of The Brain Exhibit to help give guests a sense for how low-vision and blind individuals can experience exhibits thanks to Art Reach​. They also featured an exciting pop-up performance from the Pennsylvania Ballet!

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Executive Director, John Orr Awarding the work of Mimi Kenney Smith,

Each year the award ceremony acts as an annual fundraiser for Art-Reach, providing essential support to continue their work in mobilizing thousands of individuals to engage with the vibrant arts and culture in the Philadelphia Region.  Art-Reach

Founded in 1986, Art-Reach increases access to the arts for traditionally underserved audiences, including people with disabilities, at-risk youth, the economically disadvantaged, and the elderly in need. Art-Reach partners with over 170 arts and cultural organizations and 160 human service agencies throughout the Delaware Valley, including southeastern Pennsylvania, Delaware, and southern New Jersey. Each year Art-Reach provides arts and cultural opportunities to over 45,000 individuals who would not normally have access to the arts.

Art-Reach

Lead Sponsor Frank Olivieri, Jr., owner of Pat’s King of Steaks