Monthly Archives

March 2015


The Watercooler: Mustard Greens, Gaslight Opens – Free Drinks, American Sardine and DD’s

Recently, and I probably told you this, I’ve come across a few people who told me they don’t use SM, or they miss what I put out there, but they read my blog every day. So I’m going to return to writing some of what I put on SM on my blog, as well as add additional blurbs of info you might chat around the watercooler. These gossipy/tidbit/pop culture hits will always post around 2PMish as my 2nd email of the day goes out about 3PM, or just check it by 3PM it’ll be there. Thanks!!

Last night I photographed a press conference at Olde Grande (I know I should have eaten there), then headed to South Street to follow up on a story. Met up with Kory who wanted to try this place that Craig LaBan mentioned in his column recently – Mustard Greens. I asked the waiter which dish did Craig like and it was the Shrimp with Shitake Mushrooms only $12.75. It was delicious. We also had the dumplings, and I had hot and sour soup. It was really good. The whole meal was $57, and we ordered a lot.
622 S 2nd St, Philadelphia, PA 19147

 Top Chef alum Jason Cichonski reopened his Gaslight restaurant and bar, after it was shuttered for a month resulting from a flood from above. I’m sure a lot of people doubted that story as many a fine restaurant has closed on that rumor, but Jason, a man of his word opened his year old establishment, and with a new chef, Chef Jordan Sauter (Previously of  Philadelphia Bar & Restaurant,     Modo Mio Restaurant,  Casona of Collingswood)

To celebrate The Gaslight (120 Market Street ) is hosting a complimentary happy hour on Wednesday, April 8. From 5–7 PM, guests will enjoy cocktails courtesy of Bluecoat American Dry Gin and Bluecoat Barrel Finished Gin.
I haven’t been here for a bit, but I took this (and the above Gaslight shot from Chef Scott Shroeder’s instagram) Grilled hanger, sweet pepper mustarda, blue cheese butter at AmericanSardine. I was checking it out cause I’m wondering what’s going on with his new project in Bella Vista. Rumor has it it’s not a pizza place after all, but more of an ….

He does have the best instagram in Philly on Food too it’s a mouthwatering delight.

I saw the Double D’s on the door where Steaks on South Street (308 South St) used to be, that could only mean one thing – Dunkin’ Donuts is moving in.


TEAL BUTTERFLY CHALLENGE – Will You Take The Challenge?- ‪#‎tealbutterflychallenge‬

My sister Janine (l) is an extraordinary women. She has really picked up the baton on getting Ovarian Cancer Awareness out in her town of Charlotte, NC. Getting involved and starting organizations that help women, and raise awareness of this dreadful disease which took the life of our sister, Judy Wilkins. (center)

(Margaret would probably like you to know that she
lives the Paleo way of life and this photo no longer represents her,
although she still likes the color red)

This spring Janine has started the TEAL BUTTERFLY CHALLENGE For Ovarian Cancer Awareness Spring 2015 in honor of my sister Judy Wilkins who passed away in 2009 of the disease.

It’s simple:

*Paint your nails TEAL
*Make a butterfly symbol by interlocking your thumbs (see attached photo)
*Take a photo or a video and post on social media (#tealbutterflychallenge #ovariancancerawareness) on Twitter or FB. We will look for them and capture them. We should probably start a FB page too.
*Challenge 10 of your friends to do the same

Ovarian cancer is the most deadly of all the “women’s” cancers.
This year in the U.S., about 22,000 new cases of ovarian cancer will
be diagnosed and about 15,000 women will die from this disease.

Because the symptoms are very subtle and there is no screening test,
75-80% of ovarian cancer is detected in late stages when treatment is less effective and the survival rate is low.
All women should know the symptoms of this very deadly disease!
Knowing the symptoms results in earlier detection … and earlier detection means that lives are saved!

The most common symptoms are:
•Pelvic or abdominal pain
•Difficulty eating or feeling full quickly
•Urinary symptoms (urgency or frequency) 

Thank you Janine, for saving lives … I love you..

To find out more info on the symptoms of Ovarian Cancer go to :


Press Release: CITY OF PHILADELPHIA ANNOUNCES Bike Share launch date

Pricing, membership web site, Preview Day and discounts courtesy of Independence Blue Cross

Philadelphia, March 30, 2015
–Mayor Michael A. Nutter announced that the launch of the Indego bike share system will take place at noon on Thursday, April 23rd
at Eakins Oval. Members of the public are welcome
to join the festive kick-off event, which will feature music, brief
remarks, and a ceremonial ride on the new bikes by members of Indego.
The docking stations where Indego bikes will be parked will operate 24
hours a day all year at 70 locations in neighborhoods
from Point Breeze, Passyunk and Center City to Yorktown, Olde
Kensington, Francisville and Spruce Hill. Bike share users can access
bikes at any station by using member cards or credit/debit cards and
return them to any other station. 

“I am thrilled that we
are launching Indego in less than 30 days. Great cities provide
residents, commuters, and visitors with great transportation and
recreation options. Indego adds another option to get around,
stay healthy, and experience our wonderful City,” said Mayor Nutter. 

membership options

Beginning today, memberships are available from
. Users are encouraged to sign up before the April 23rd
launch.  System members will receive a key that allows to access a bike
at any Indego station.  Indego30 is a 30-day membership plan that
provides members unlimited one-hour
rides.  It is priced at just $15 per month and is available with credit
card, debit card, and cash payment options. For credit card customers,
the membership will renew automatically and can be cancelled at any
time. Cash payments will be facilitated by PayNearMe,
an electronic cash payment system that allows consumers to make cash
payments at local stores. After signing up for membership via the Indego
website, PayNearMe will send each consumer a bar code by text message
or email. Consumers then take that bar code
to participating 7-Eleven or Family Dollar stores and pay for the
Indego membership in cash.

All Indego members will get 10 percent off bicycle helmets at select bike shops and athletic stores around Philadelphia.
Membership discounts for Independence Blue Cross Members and Dollar Days for everyone
As the official sponsor
of Indego bike share, Independence Blue Cross supports the health and
wellness of all Philadelphians by encouraging everyone to integrate
physical activity into our daily lives. Through
September 30, 2015, Independence Blue Cross members can enjoy their
first 30 days of an Indego30 membership for just $5. Additionally, on
twelve Independence Dollar Days throughout the year, beginning with the
May 15 Bike to Work Day, everyone can try Indego
for just $1 for the first half hour.
“We believe Indego will
inspire people to get outside and get active, and that will strengthen
the well-being of Philadelphia,” said Daniel J. Hilferty, Independence
Blue Cross president and CEO. “That’s why we
will give our members a 75 percent discount off the first month of
membership and why we’ve arranged for 12 Dollar Days throughout the year
when anyone in our community can ride an Indego bike for just one
Indego is the first large bike share system in North America to offer:
A 30-day membership that will renew automatically and can be cancelled at anytime;
A pay-as-you-ride membership, in which you pay only for the rides you take;
Membership options that include 60 minutes of  ride time before users incur additional fees; and
A cash payment option for 30-day memberships.
“We are proud that
Indego will be America’s most accessible bike share program. Our pricing
structure provides great value, puts customers in control of how much
they spend, and is easy to understand. With options
that allow members to take trips that last up to 60 minutes, we’ve made
Indego a great option for getting around or just taking a ride to enjoy
the city and get some exercise. For tourists, jumping on an Indego bike
using our flat half-hour rate makes the
decision to try Indego easy,” said Andrew Stober, Chief of Staff in the
Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities.
Indego Preview Event
Indego will hold a
preview event on Thursday, April 2 from noon to 2 PM at Paine Plaza
across from City Hall. During the event, a docking station and bikes
will be on display, and visitors can try the system,
find out about membership options, and purchase memberships.
More about bikes, stations and staying in the know
All Indego bikes will be equipped with a bell and front and rear lights.
Each bike will also be inscribed with a safety message that encourages
helmet use and cautions riders to yield to pedestrians, avoid riding on
sidewalks, ride with traffic, and obey all
traffic lights and signs.
“As a Philadelphia-based company, we are so
proud to help make this amazing system a reality,” said Alison Cohen,
President and CEO of Bike Transit. “Bike share is such an efficient,
fun, and convenient way to get around. From promotion
and to customer service to maintenance of the world class BCycle bikes,
Indego is powered by Philadelphians for Philadelphians. We couldn’t be
more excited to have such a positive impact on the City.”
Over the past eight
months, officials from the City of Philadelphia have conducted public
outreach, attended community meetings and invited Philadelphians to vote
on station locations online, via text-message
and paper surveys. More than 5,600 Philadelphians provided nearly
11,000 comments on station locations.  The City has placed stations
where they will be useful, convenient and compatible with the
surrounding environment.
For more information on
Indego, the station locations, and updates on the program, including
membership registration and docking station map, visit Philadelphia’s
bike share program website:



Take Two: Philly Pop Culture News: Weddings, Engagements, Philly Peeps with Celebrities, Brunch

Let’s take two minutes and see what our fellow Philadelphian’s are up to…

 University of Penn grad, and the guy who introduced me to Maria Papadakis, Andrew Rosenthal got married to Jennifer Fatalevich, who he introduced me to a few years ago. The wedding was in San Francisco where they both live, and I hear it was beautiful as the couple is.

 Congrats to Anthony Henderson and his husband Marcelino Strong on their marriage this past weekend. The couple have been together for nearly a decade, they have a son and decided to make it official. Kudos kids!
 NBC10 Reporter Christine Maddela said yes to long time boyfriend Christopher Goss, GM Morton’s KOP question. He popped the question back in Nashville, TN, in Centennial Park, where they had their first date. So happy for them both.
I saw this in the NY Times Archives as I was looking up something. 

 My cousin in law, and high school classmate, Bob Fitzgerald ran into Derek Jeter in the airport in Melbourne, Austrailia; in case you were wondering where either of them have been.
Eagles Long Snapper Jon Dorenbos has been spending his off season traveling and now hanging in LA with friendS here he is last night at the I Heart Radio Awards, backstage with Snoop Dogg.

Brunch was at Palladino’s on East Passyunk this week. It was delicious. I had the famed WTF Waffle. It is delicious, decadent and different. Egg, Fois Gras, Maple Mustard syrup. OMG more like it. $19 and well worth it. 

I did not drink this Bloody Mary but Kory Aversa did. It was pretty though don’t ya think. I had bacon and Oyster Rockefeller. Very good. Brunch on Sunday’s at Palladino’s. Congrats to them on their 3 bells from Craig LaBan, well deserved.


Dirty Dancing With Seth Williams and A Proposal on Stage at Dirty Dancing

Happy 3700 post to me today:
The Crystal Tea Room was hot, hot, hot this month with so many events including the Independence Mission Schools Dancing for Our Future Stars. Twelve of Philly’s biggest stars teamed up with some of the area’s finest dance professionals to take a bigger shot at glory, all to benefit Independence Mission Schools. (This is not to be confused with Dancing With The Philadelphia Stars for Sickle Cell which seems to have skipped a year.)

 I was kinda late getting there because I had a few other things to shoot ie LLS Gala and well that big crane that had me fascinated last week; I thought the dancing part of the evening would be last, but it was first. Opps. And sorry this is tardy as I was waiting for the video, which I just got Thursday. It was worth the wait, it’s the Seth Williams dance, and it’s at the bottom. The stars told me they put in a lot of hours to participate in the first year of this dancing competition.

  • John Baron – Winning Captain for Mummer Parade Hegeman String Band and Head Basketball Coach for Gwynedd Mercy University, dancing with Pro Deirdre Finnegan, Philly stage star and director.
  • Katelyn McCabe – Associate Producer at QVC, dancing with Pro off-Broadway actor Michael Scibilia, star of ‘Jesus Christ Superstar.’
  • Philadelphia Eagles Cheerleader Malia Makaila – dancing with Pro Hector Serrano, owner and director of Fuego Dance Studio, Philly.
  • Bob Shannon – President, Philadelphia New Years Shooters and Mummers Association, dancing with Pro Renee Chambers-Liciaga, a Philly native who has worked with Andrew Lloyd Webber and Michael Jackson.
  • Javier Suarez – Executive Producer of the Hispanic Choice Awards, dancing with Pro Camille Moten, director of enrollment at IMS The DePaul Catholic School, who has degree in dance from Temple University and is former dancer for Ashle Dawson’s Latin Fusion Dance Company.
Melissa Magee – Meteorologist for 6 ABC and Co-host of FYI Philly, dancing with Pro Roger Lee, Adjunct Professor of Dance at Temple University.
Roger Lee, Wendy 6ABC Producer, Annie McCormack, Melissa, Guest, Alicia Vitarelli and Justin Pizzi

 Joey “Joltin” DeMalavez – Golden Glove Boxer to the Stars, dancing with Pro Christine DiFilippis, creator of the Red Hot Dance Fitness program.
  • Seth Williams –Philadelphia District Attorney, with Pro dancer Katie Miccarelli, Director of Dance at Renaissance Academy Charter School as well as founder of CoEXISTdance, Inc.
 Philadelphia Eagles Cheerleader Malia Makaila – dancing with Pro Hector Serrano, owner and director of Fuego Dance Studio, Philly.
 Congressman Chaka Fattah, Nino Tinari and Carol Tinari
 Heather Baumgartner and Michelle Miller


 The gala night will featured a VIP cocktail party with the stars and judges, hors d’oeuvres and dinner, the dance competition, and presentation of the trophy to the winning couple. 
Awards will be given for both the most votes received, and the most money raised. The evening continued with dancing for all to the sounds of the fabulous Philly Party Band.Then it was time to calculate the votes, and tally up the money raised for each candidate!!

 The winner:
  • Nino Tinari – Criminal Defense Lawyer, dancing with  Renee DeJohn Renzi
    Renee DeJohn Renzi and Nino Tinari
2nd Place:

 Winner of most money raised: Mary Lou Quinlan – Award-winning Women’s Marketing Expert, New York Times Bestselling Author, Off-Broadway Performer, dancing with Pro Kosta Trifunovic, an American Open Professional National Nine Dance Finalist.

One of the highlights of the night had to be when  Seth Williams –Philadelphia District Attorney, with Pro dancer Katie Miccarelli, Director of Dance at Renaissance Academy Charter School as well as founder of CoEXISTdance, Inc.
they danced the mambo to “I had the Time of My Life” from Dirty Dancing, which reminds me

Malik Murray propose to Alissa Chase at the finale of
Dirty Dancing Thursday night at the Academy of Music (It’s playing there thru April 5).

Malik arranged it all from LA, where he
lives. (Malik was hiding backstage during the performance)

He and
Alissa met 15 years ago at Penn State, then 3 years ago reconnected and
began their long distance relationship. He has family in this area so
he would fly home often.

Dirty Dancing is Alissa Chase’s
favorite movie, and when Malik heard it was in town secured tickets for
her to go. He arranged with the Kimmel Center ahead
of time to appear on stage and call her up, where he proposed to her.
She said YES!!