May 5-7: Jane’s Walk Through Philadelphia

Looking for something fun to do on May 5th, 6th or 7th, 2017? Check out a new Philadelphia neighborhood with Jane’s Walk, a global movement of free, citizen-led walking tours inspired by Jane Jacobs to get people to tell stories about their communities, explore their cities, and connect with their neighbors. PlanPhilly is organizing four tours in Philadelphia. Check out full details at: http://janeswalk.org/united-states/philadelphia/

Jane’s Mt. Airy Day Walk
Mt. Airy is all about beauty: the natural beauty of the Wissahickon, the wide range in architectural beauty, the beauty of a population recognized for its diversity and inclusiveness across race, gender, and sexual preference. This walk ties all of these together, and it ends at Mt. Airy Day, the 47th annual celebration of all things Mt. Airy.

Ridge Avenue Stroll Through Philly’s Jazz History

In the wake of the Great Migration, the demographics of the Sharswood neighborhood changed. The new residents fueled the growth of commercial operations that catered to African Americans. From the Blue Note (15th Street) to Irene’s Café (22nd Street), Ridge Avenue was an entertainment district where jazz giants such as Pearl Bailey, Billie Holiday, John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Duke Ellington and Charlie Parker roamed. Ridge Avenue was also a safe haven from the indignities of racial segregation. On our walk, we will explore how the entertainment district was transformed into a safe space for African American entertainers and ordinary travelers. Black entertainers performed in Center City at, among other places, the Earle Theater and Palumbo’s Restaurant, but they were not allowed to stay in downtown hotels. The “Negro Motorist Green Book” helped African American travelers navigate Jim Crow segregation in the South and racial discrimination in the North. Published from 1936 to 1964, the “Green Book” listed hotels, restaurants, night clubs, beauty parlors and other services to empower African Americans to “vacation without humiliation.”

Under the El: Fishtown’s Emerging Third Commercial Corridor
Who would want to hang out underneath the El? A whole lot of businesses, it turns out! From the nationally-acclaimed restaurant Wm. Mulherin’s Sons; to Honeygrow’s new offices; to a growing roster of brewpubs and bars, Front Street is increasingly seen as an opportunity-rich destination for new businesses. There are also major challenges with making the area underneath the El a more human and inviting space. Our tour will take us from the Girard Avenue El stop at Front and Girard up past the Berks El station to Berks and Norris. In between, we’ll see new businesses like Play Arts (a children’s play space in a restored bath house), Wm. Mulherin’s Sons, Front St Cafe, Evil Genius Beer Co.; several ongoing and completed (re)development projects of note, including Oxford Mills and the new City Fitness, and several noteworthy murals, including the Kurt Vile mural, a huge pigeon, and other curiosities. After the walk, we’ll head to the new Evil Genius Brewpub near Front and Palmer.

South Street Love – East

South Street takes all kinds. We’ll talk about art, history, retail, litter critters, gardens, and pedestrian spaces. This is part one of two walks that will explore South Street’s character end-to-end.

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