East Falls Local

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DIG THIS: East Falls Squash Star Rises this Summer

From EFSA to New Zealand this summer — one Fallser’s rise in the ranks of this 140-year-old sport with deep roots in NW Philadelphia. 

Congratulations, Elisabeth Ross! This Penn Charter sophomore has been selected to play for the USA at the 2017 Junior World Championships in Tauranga, New Zealand this summer.

All-American in 2016, she won the National title last month at Harvard and is now ranked the #1 Girls Under 17 player in the United States — and soon, quite possibly, the world. After discovering her swing in little league at McDevitt, she’s now putting Philly back on the map as this kinetic sport makes a modern comeback.

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Spruce-ing up the neighborhood

Calumet couple helps beautify their block with a street tree.

Air purifier. Wildlife habitat. Privacy screen. Shade. Stormwater management. Beauty. So many reasons trees improve the neighborhood and the environment — hard to believe anyone wouldn’t want one.

But according to Tree Tenders, many East Falls homeowners Just Say No when offered a free street tree for the front of their home. So we tracked down two brave neighbors who took the plunge on an Ivory Silk Japanese Tree Lilac last year, for the full scoop on their hassles and pitfalls.

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A Fish Out of Order

Repairing the damage to an iconic East Falls art installation.

History buffs in the Falls might have noticed something missing on Kelly Drive beneath the Twin Bridges – the “Five Fishes” art installation, installed in 1995 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Falls Bridge, has been temporarily removed for repairs.

It was damaged in a fatal car accident in April 2016 that also destroyed the informational sign that stood in front of it.

Sculptor and metal fabricator Steve Sears, who created the original work, visited the Falls in mid February and removed the iron sculptures from the wall. He was amazed that after 20 years, the pieces were still so firmly anchored that some of the bolts had to be cut to remove them.

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Teaming Up for the Cleaning Up

Join your neighbors for fresh air, sunshine, and an awesome full-body workout! Free! Get a head-start on beach season while beautifying our community’s front door step. 

Mark your calendars: Philly Spring Clean-Up is Saturday April 8th (9am – 2pm). Meet at BuLogics for donuts & equipment, then join your neighbors in raking out & bagging up trash and debris along Ridge Avenue and lower Midvale.

“Last year we had enough people to clean up both sides of Ridge from Dunkin to the Twin Bridges,” block captain Felicite told members at a recent EFF meeting, “I’d love to have double the number of people and cover twice as much ground.”

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Huddle Up, East Falls!

Pennsylvania might’ve swung red this election, but Philadelphia’s a proud blue Sanctuary City. For many Fallsers, political action seems the next step — but how? Tactical, team-oriented strategies for local resistance. 

Sorry, guys, but journalistic “objectivity” is not our thing. You might as well know it: we disagree with the current White House administration — in particular their use of the phrase “alternative facts” with a straight face. That’s our defining line, at least. Yours may be gender equality or the Muslim ban or the Johnson Amendment

Whatever it is, experts have devised a plan with three targets & four tactics we can all employ to help fight against threats to justice, freedom, and the American way. Groups now meeting on Midvale!

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From East Falls With Love

Lovelights are here!  Now in its 18th year, the February tradition at McMichael Park celebrates loves of all kinds with Lovelight messages. Watch for the tree lighting on the evening of Feb. 14th when a tree will glow for all your loved ones. 

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Meeting with NewCourtland Has Tails Wagging

You don’t have to be a dog owner to appreciate this month’s East Falls Forward agenda — but it helps! NewCourtland leads the pack with news of an off-leash play area in their site plans. 

As NewCourtland’s plans move forward, dog park specs come into focus. We’ve got two questions we’re hoping to get answered at Thursday night’s East Falls Forward meeting:

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The Taxman Cometh

Time to think taxes! Our handy guide’s got links that could save you, or someone you love, some hassle and expense. 

With rising property values comes rising taxes. Fortunately, Philadelphia’s Dept of Revenue offers many programs that help Fallsers pay their real estate taxes and water bills…

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Who’s Who in Local Politics

EFDC, EFCC, EFF… OMG! What’s up with all the local governing bodies here? Who’s who in leadership — and how do different groups of neighbors influence our community? We’ve spent the last two years on this highly-personal summary of East Falls politics. 

As East Falls heads into 2017, we’d like to pounce on this opportunity to summarize our hyper-local political landscape. We offer these observations after studying & writing about East Falls history for about a year on EastFallsHouse.com, plus covering two years’ worth of meetings, characters, and events right here on this growing blog.

Here’s our run-down of movers & shakers for business, development, traffic/parking, and quality of life in the Falls.

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East Falls Twelfth Night

Mark your calendars. This January a multi-denominational faith-based event welcomes Falls newcomers.The holidays are over after New Years. The pressure of activities is finally slowing. But wait! Christmas is twelve days long! Remember the song! What happened to the rest of Christmas?

On the twelfth day of Christmas, Christians remember the visit of the Magi. It falls on January 6, but is often celebrated on the next weekend. So we’ll celebrate on Saturday, January 7.

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