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18th Ward endorses Gym

Democratic mayoral candidate Helen Gym has been endorsed by the 18th Democratic Ward, a high-turnout ward in the River Wards.

“I’m honored to receive the endorsement of the 18th Ward Democrats, representing a powerful, diverse and passionate cross-section of Philadelphians,” Gym said. “And I’m equally proud of the inclusive, democratic process through which the ward made this endorsement, which should be a model for wards across the city. This endorsement demonstrates what this campaign has long-believed: that running on the issues that matter to everyday people, including safety at home, dignity at work and a high-quality public education for every child, is a winning strategy. I look forward to working with residents of the 18th Ward to tackle the issues facing this city head on and transform Philadelphia into the best place in the country to live and raise a family.”

“Ward 18 is proud to endorse Helen Gym for mayor because we know she will continue to fight for working-class Philadelphians in our neighborhood and in every neighborhood across our city,” said Lauren Rinaldi, 18th Ward leader. “We know she will work tirelessly to support an equitable, vibrant and safer city for all of us.”

The announcement follows other endorsements garnered by Gym, including Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, American Federation of Teachers, UNITE HERE Philadelphia, AFSCME DC 47, Working Families Party, AFT Pennsylvania, Asian Pacific Islander Political Alliance, Teamsters Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees Division, Reclaim Philadelphia, One Pennsylvania, First Ward Democrats, Second Ward Democrats, Ward 39A Democrats, Make the Road Action, Amistad Movement Power, Philly Neighborhood Networks, Free the Ballot and Straight Ahead. ••

Register for mayoral forum

The Greater Northeast Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce will sponsor a mayoral forum on Tuesday, April 18, in the gym at Holy Family University, located in the Campus Center, close to the entrance at Frankford Avenue and Stevenson Lane. PHL17 will broadcast the forum from 7:30 to 9 p.m. The moderators will be Dan McElhatton, a lawyer, former city councilman and chair of the GNPCC’s government affairs committee; Northeast Times editor Tom Waring; and Jennifer Lewis-Hall, of PHL17. To register to attend, visit https://gnpcc.chambermaster.com/eventregistration/register/5106157. ••

Superfruit shop opens

Playa Bowls, a superfruit shop specializing in bowls such as acai and pitaya, oatmeal, chia, smoothies, juices and cold brew, opened Saturday at 807 N. 2nd St. in Northern Liberties.

The shop is operated by Rich Miller, Director of Operations, and franchise owners Stephen Sheriff and Jim and Sue Dale.

Playa Bowls can be made vegan and gluten free and can be adapted to integrate into Whole30, keto and paleo diets.

The new shop will be open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Follow the local shop @playabowlsnorthernliberties on Instagram. ••

Karaoke Happy Hour

Lutheran Settlement House Senior Center, 1340 Frankford Ave., will host a Karaoke Happy Hour on Friday, March 31, from 3-5 p.m.

The cost is $5. The event is open to anyone 55+. Snacks and non-alcoholic beverages provided. To register, contact Geneva Scafeat at 215-426-8610, Ext. 1206 or gscafe@lshphilly.org. ••

Endorsements for Council candidate

Jalon Alexander, a Democratic candidate for City Council at large, has been endorsed by three North Philadelphia ward leaders: the Rev. Lewis Nash Sr., Keith Harris and Jewell Williams.

Alexander, 30, a cybersecurity attorney, is campaigning on a Drone Force Philly plan to prevent crime.

The plan would deploy two drones in each of the city’s 21 police districts to respond to gun violence and other violent crime in real time. A 10-member unit will monitor and operate the drones. Unlike stationery cameras, drones can follow a suspect and provide a live video feed as they try to flee.

“I think Jalon will have the opportunity to put a fresh breath of air in the crime and violence issue we have in the city of Philadelphia,” said Williams, a former sheriff. ••

Jane Fonda endorses Helen Gym

Democratic mayoral candidate Helen Gym was endorsed by the Jane Fonda PAC, which is focused on electing climate champions at all levels of government.

“The fossil fuel industry continues to make billions in profits while polluting our atmosphere and poisoning our communities,” Fonda said. “Unfortunately, many elected leaders fail to take action due to the overwhelming influence fossil fuel money has on our political system. This is why I established the Jane Fonda Climate PAC to help elect candidates like Helen.”

“I am so grateful to have the endorsement of the Jane Fonda Climate PAC as we work to seize this historic opportunity and transition our city away from fossil fuels and build a just, green, sustainable city for all,” Gym said.

As mayor, Gym plans to lead on a Green New Deal agenda to transform Philadelphia’s toxic, dilapidated and long-neglected public schools into green, sustainable and safe places to learn and work.

The announcement follows other endorsements earned by Gym, including Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, American Federation of Teachers, UNITE HERE Philadelphia, AFSCME DC 47, Working Families Party, AFT Pennsylvania, Asian Pacific Islander Political Alliance, Teamsters Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees Division, Reclaim Philadelphia, One Pennsylvania, Make the Road Action, 18th Ward Democrats, First Ward Democrats, Second Ward Democrats, Ward 39A Democrats, Amistad Movement Power, Philly Neighborhood Networks, Free the Ballot and Straight Ahead. ••

Domb’s action plan

Democratic mayoral candidate Allan Domb released his Pledge to Philadelphia, a plan to provide high-quality, effective city services in every neighborhood.

Domb lays out action steps. Among others, he will:

• Improve 911 response times with a focus on ensuring ambulance response times are 10 minutes or fewer.

• Clean every street by expanding the street cleaning pilot program to every neighborhood from April through November.

• Plow every street, restoring a program started under the John Street administration.

• Keep libraries and rec centers open seven days a week and adjust operating hours to enable residents to better use these facilities.

• Open every pool full time during summer months.

• Replace burned out or broken street lights within 72 hours after an outage has been reported.

• Tow abandoned cars within 48 hours after being confirmed as abandoned.

• Fix potholes and create a Pothole Tracker to create public accountability for repair time.

• Create a real-time Garbage Truck Tracker, modeled on the city’s snow plow tracker, to enable residents to bring out trash before the trucks arrive.

• Clean and seal abandoned buildings and clean vacant lots to improve community safety, while providing wrap-around services to people found living in abandoned buildings.

• Fix broken sidewalks and curbs, ensuring that sidewalks and curbs are repaired as streets are resurfaced.

“It’s time to fix the things that we know are broken and get the government of Philadelphia working again,” Domb said. “Philadelphia is a first-class city, but the failure of leadership from the mayor’s office has left too many Philadelphians with second-class services.

“I’ve spent 40 years building a business from the ground up and solving problems, and I’ll bring that to the mayor’s office. My Pledge to Philadelphia plan will deliver accountability and get back to the basics of delivering results for Philadelphians. I will get the trash picked up, get the potholes filled, get the streets cleaned, responsibly manage our finances and prioritize the safety and well-being of every neighborhood. That’s what Philadelphians deserve from their mayor.” ••

Children’s programs at Richmond Library

Richmond Library, 2987 Almond St., is hosting children’s programs this month.

Preschool Storytime and Play Group is set for Wednesdays, March 22 and 29, at 10:30 a.m. Join Ms. Meghan for stories, songs and fun for ages 4 and under with caregivers. Stay after Storytime to play. Siblings welcome.

Read, Baby, Read Storytime and Play Group will meet on Thursdays, March 23 and 30, at 10:30 a.m. Join Ms. Meghan for lap time with stories, songs, rhymes and bounces for babies with caregivers. Stay after Storytime to play. Siblings welcome. The program is made possible by a grant from the William Penn Foundation.

Literacy Enrichment Afterschool Program meets Mondays through Thursdays, from 3-6 p.m., and Fridays, from 3-5 p.m. LEAP is a free, drop-in afterschool program that offers homework help and activities for students in grades K-12 every day after school.

Call 215-685-9992. ••

Library programs

Richmond Library, 2987 Almond St., is hosting programs in March.

Crochet Circle, for adults, will take place on Wednesdays, March 22 and 29, at 4 p.m.

Philadelphia Legal Assistance: Property Tax and Mortgage Issues will take place on Tuesday, March 28, from 3-5 p.m.

A free SAT Crash Course is set for Tuesday, March 28, from 4-7 p.m.

Call 215-685-9992. ••

Celebrating 100 years of SMT

St. Martin of Tours Parish invites all school alumni, current and past parishioners and friends to a 100th anniversary Mass in the upper church, 5450 Roosevelt Blvd., on Sunday, April 30, at noon. The Mass will be celebrated by Archbishop Edward Adams. Afterward, there will be a “Past & Present — Building Our Future” celebration at Cannstatter’s, 9130 Academy Road, from 2-6 p.m. Tickets cost $35 and include food, soft drinks, music and door prizes. The event is for ages 21-plus. Tickets must be purchased in advance in the rectory, after all Masses, through Venmo (@smotphilly) or with check to St. Martin of Tours Church, 5450 Roosevelt Blvd., Philadelphia, PA 19124, Attn: Centennial Celebration. Proceeds will benefit church improvements. ••

Sports Hall of Fame ceremony set

The City All Star Chapter Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame will hold its 29th awards banquet on Tuesday, April 18, at 5:30 p.m. at Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5, 11630 Caroline Road.

The class of 2023 consists of former North Catholic soccer coach Jerry Brindisi; former Northeast High football coach Harvey “Brew” Schumer; Frank “Roscoe” Natale, who has coached baseball and been athletic director at Southern and Bok and been football coach at Bok, Bartram and Southern; and former La Salle University and Archbishop Ryan baseball coach Mike Lake.

In addition, the class of 2020 will be recognized. The banquet honoring them was postponed due to COVID.

Those inductees are former La Salle University basketball player Craig Conlin; coach and youth league organizer Lou DeCree; retired longtime women’s college basketball official Dennis DeMayo; Division I football official Joe Griesser; Joe Hand, a leading TV distributor of closed-circuit and pay-per-view boxing; Mike Hawkins, the PIAA District 12 chairman and former football coach and athletic director at Germantown High School; Steve Kane, the longtime former boys basketball coach at University City who led the Jaguars to the 1995 Public League title; Mike Koplove, who pitched for the Arizona Diamondbacks and Cleveland Indians; Kathy Lonergan, a Division I women’s basketball referee; Dave Mastropietro, a baseball star at La Salle University; and Dr. Anthony Salem, a former minor league baseball player.

Tickets cost $75 in advance and $80 at the door. Tables of 10 cost $750.

Checks can be made payable to Philadelphia City All Star Chapter, and mailed to PAHOF, P.O. Box 672, Levittown, PA 19055-9998 (include email address and inductee name on check). No paper tickets will be issued. Instead, guests will go to a welcome table at the FOP to get their seat assignments.

Organizers are also looking for sponsors for an ad book.

For tickets or ads, contact Steve DiSangro at disangroref@aol.com or 215-421-7556. ••

North communion breakfast

The Northeast Catholic Alumni Communion Breakfast will take place on April 16 at Cannstatter’s, 9130 Academy Road. Register at www.northcatholicalumni.org. ••

North Catholic reunion

Northeast Catholic Class of 1969 will meet on May 13 at 2 p.m. at Port Richmond Pub, 2601 E. Venango St. (at Almond Street). There will be a cash bar and food. To RSVP, contact Jack Devine (Jdnorth69@gmail.com or 215-379-3303); Tom Jordon (fishmantom@comcast.net); or Leo Filewicz (215-292-7193). ••

Community and health fair

Lutheran Settlement House, 1340 Frankford Ave., will host a community and health fair on Tuesday, April 25, from noon to 3 p.m.

The event is free and open to all. Available services include hearing aid screenings, blood pressures, height and weight checks, senior services such as SEPTA card new or renewals and photos, mental health screenings and healthy cooking demo. Contact 215-426-8610 or mfinley@lshphilly.org for more information. ••

Sign up for senior softball

The Philadelphia Senior Softball League is looking for experienced players for their 59-and-over and 68-and-over leagues. The seasons start mid-April and will go until the end of September. There will be about 30 games, plus playoffs. No games are played in July. The 59-and-over games are Tuesdays and Thursdays. The 68-and-over games are Mondays and Fridays. All games are played at Crispin Field, Holme and Convent avenues. Games start at 10 a.m. For more information on the 59-and-over league, call John Troy at 215-292-1437. For more information on the 68-and-over league, call Marty King at 215-409-5021. ••

Concert at The Fillmore

R&B singer Bryson Tiller will bring his Back and I’m Better Tour to The Fillmore, 29 E. Allen St., on Sunday, May 21.

Tickets are available at ticketmaster.com. ••

Trip to Mackinac Island, Michigan

The Polish American Cultural Center Museum volunteers are sponsoring a 7-day, 6-night trip to Mackinac Island, Michigan from July 9-15. The trip consists of a ferry ride to Mackinac Island, two nights at the Grand Hotel, a horse-drawn carriage ride and visits to Bronner’s Christmas Wonderland, the Henry Ford Museum and the National Shrine of the Cross in the Woods. The price includes bus transportation, hotels, six breakfasts, six dinners, a buffet luncheon at the Grand Hotel, admission to all attractions, baggage handling, taxes and gratuities. Call Theresa Romanowski at 215-813-2780 or 215-922-1700. ••

Wildwood days in June

The Lutheran Settlement House Senior Center is sponsoring a trip to Wildwood from June 5-9.

The cost is $650 and includes round-trip transportation; four nights at Oceanfront Hotel; four full breakfasts and dinners; a visit to historic Smithville and Cape May; and a dolphin watch cruise.

The trip is for people 55 and older. Contact Geneva Scafe at gscafe@lshphilly.org or 215-426-8610, Ext. 1206. ••

Bingo 3 times a week

The Ukrainian Cathedral, at Brown and Franklin streets, hosts bingo every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Doors open at 4:30 p.m. Games start at 6:30. Call 215-829-8103. ••

Lane closure on Frankford Avenue

PennDOT announced that the Philadelphia Water Department has begun utility construction on Frankford Avenue.

Through Wednesday, May 31, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., a weekday lane closure is scheduled on Frankford Avenue between Lehigh Avenue and Somerset Street.

All scheduled activities are weather dependent. ••

Go see Mamma Mia!

The Star Players, of the city Department of Parks and Recreation, will present Mamma Mia! from June 2-4 at 7 p.m. at Venice Island Performing Arts Center, 7 Lock St. in Manayunk. Tickets cost $15 in advance and $20 at the door. Group rates are available. Tickets are available at Holmesburg Recreation Center, 4500 Rhawn St., or on Venmo @TheStarplayers. For more information, contact director Bill Arthur at 215-685-8714 or Starplayers2013@gmail.com. ••

Upcoming cruise

The Bristol Cultural and Historical Foundation is sponsoring a fully escorted Holy Lands & Aegean Majesty cruise that will sail Oct. 6-17, featuring 10 ports-of-call. Rates, including airfare, range from $4,198 to $7,998 per person, double occupancy. Call 215-788-9408 for information and reservations. ••

Cruise the Mediterranean

Norwegian Cruise Line will host a Mediterranean cruise from Rome to Venice on Oct. 10-19. The trip is all inclusive with round-trip airfare, a beverage package, all meals, three specialty dinners, taxes, transfers and all gratuities. The cost for a balcony sea view cabin is $3,511 per person. For more information, contact Fillmore Travel’s Kevin Fries at 215-498-8294 or fkevin910@comcast.net. ••

South Phila. HS class of ‘68 reunion

The South Philadelphia High School Class of 1968 will hold its 55th reunion on Saturday, Oct. 21, from noon to 4 p.m. at the Waterfall Room, 2015 S. Water St. Tickets cost $60 and include buffet dinner and open bar. For tickets and more information, call Arleen Liberi [609-922-2419], Maria Leati [856-287-3734] or Stephen Michielli [267-252-2740]. ••

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