Community Grant Opportunities Announced for Clark Park

For Immediate Release
Contact: Mark Christman, Communications Manager, 215-243-0555 or

Community Grant Opportunities Announced for West Philadelphia’s Clark Park

2nd annual program to support and sustain the neighborhood jewel

(Philadelphia, PA) – University City District (UCD) and the Clark Park Partnership, a consortium that oversees park maintenance, events, policies and capital projects, have announced the 2nd annual Clark Park Community Grants. Up to $3000 for one or more projects that enhance Clark Park will be awarded. Eligible projects will include planting, mulching, maintenance, signage, park cleanup, or other permanent improvements to the park. (Educational or cultural programs are not eligible.) Projects awarded last year included the installation of the first commercial-grade special needs swing in Clark Park playground, and the watering and maintenance of 30 Clark Park trees by the skilled UC Green Corps.

University City community groups are invited to submit proposals for projects that will improve the park. Individuals are eligible to submit proposals if they are endorsed by a community group. Proposals will be reviewed by a committee including representatives from Friends of Clark Park, Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, the City of Philadelphia Department of Parks and Recreation, University of the Sciences, and UCD. The winning projects will be announced on Saturday, June 16 at a public celebration in Clark Park.

For this round, proposed projects must take place in the B (Baltimore to Kingsessing, 43rd to 45th) or C (Kingsessing to Woodland 43rd to 45th) section of the Park. (Any project proposed for the C section of the Park must be approved prior to submission by University of the Sciences. To obtain this approval, contact USP’s Mary Kate McGinty at Projects must be completed no later than June 30, 2012. Please note: Due to construction no projects will be allowed in the A (Baltimore to Chester, 43rd to HMS Border) section of the park in this grant year.

Clark Park, a heavily used 9-acre park in West Philadelphia, is home to the popular Clark Park Farmers’ Market, music festivals, youth soccer, and many other neighborhood events throughout the year. It is located in the heart of University City’s Streetcar Suburb and National Register Historic District and serves a racially and socio-economically diverse population of residents, students, University City employees and visitors.

Important Dates

March 21, 2011 Guidelines and application released at
May 2, 2011 Applications completed and sent to:

Clark Park Community Grant Program
c/o University City District
3940 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104

This is a receipt date. Applications can be sent via the U.S. Mail or hand-delivered. Applications will not be accepted via hand delivery after 4:30 p.m. on this date. Applications can also be emailed to

May 15, 2011 Winners notified
June 16, 2011 Public announcement of first Clark Park Community Grants at
a free public celebration in Clark Park
June 30, 2012 Grant-funded projects must be completed

Questions about this program can be directed to: Ann Mintz
University City District


The Clark Park Partnership meets monthly to address a range of topics relating to the park including park maintenance, events, policies and capital projects. The Partnership is chaired by Tammy Leigh DeMent of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society and includes stakeholders such as Friend of Clark Park, UC Green, University of the Sciences in Philadelphia, the City Department of Parks and Recreation, the Philadelphia Water Department, City Office of Capital Projects, and University City District.

Anyone looking for a great opportunity to play in the park every Saturday?

We’ve signed up a record number of kids for the Clark Park Youth Soccer League and need a few more coaches to work with the 8-11 year old kids. You don’t have to have mad soccer skills — just know a little bit about the game and enjoy spending time with kids. It’s great exercise, a lot of fun, and you get a really cool t-shirt!

If you’re interested, just email us at

Farmers’ Market is Back in Force in Spring!

Jon Glyn of the Food Trust has sent us the following announcement:

“I guess I’d just like to remind everybody that the market is still there. We survived the winter. And we’ve even got green stuff on the tables. One of the first signs of spring is the arrival of Brogue Hydroponics. They can be found right next to Honest Tom’s Taco truck.

Thanks to their incredible system of hydroponic greenhouses, Brogue Hydroponics is always the first to market with lettuce and herbs. They are famous for their butterhead lettuce. And their herbs are unbelievable. Ask to nibble on a little mint leaf and it’ll taste like you put a whole pack of gum in your mouth. They also supply many restaurants with their produce, including all of the Hershey restaurants. Yes, even the fancy, famous Hershey Inn. Scott, the Brogue farmer, who comes to Clark Park is great to talk to if you have any questions.

Kick-off day for the Spring soccer season is Saturday!

Registration/sign-in will be in Griffith Hall (across 43rd St. from the park, see Griffith Hall Map) starting at 10:30. Teams are still filling up, but we’ll take as many walk-in registrations as we can. You can download forms at to speed-up the registration process.

If it’s too rainy to play Saturday morning, we’ll still be doing registration!

Parks Alliance makes progress on Parkland Protection

We recently received the following announcement from the Parks Alliance:


The Philadelphia Parks Alliance has long advocated for the creation of guidelines concerning the protection and use of parkland and resources.

Yesterday afternoon City Council’s Committee on Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs adopted Bill No. 110002, concerning the protection of parkland.

The Bill, which contained a minor amendment, was voted out of committee for first reading at City Council’s session today. We will keep you informed about next steps as we learn more. Click here to read the Bill. For additional information on the Open Lands Protection Ordinance, visit the Parks Alliance’s website at:

The leadership of Councilmembers Reynolds Brown and Clarke along with that of Mayor Nutter, has laid the groundwork for this legislation. This Bill is the outgrowth of a broad-based reform initiative that has included robust dialogue between City Council, the Administration, the Commission on Parks and Recreation, department staff, park and recreation advocates and the people of Philadelphia.

The Parks Alliance thanks the members of the Commission on Parks and Recreation, specifically Debra Wolf Goldstein and Nancy Goldenberg for their enormous effort in creating an ordinance that reflects best practices while balancing the input, experience and concerns of citizens; government officials; the City’s Law Department; and key stakeholders.

Thank you to you as well for all that you do for Philadelphia’s parks and recreation,

The Parks Alliance

Clark Park Festival Seeks Interns!

Clark Park Festivals seeks interns for their 2011’s festivals on Saturday June 25th (Summer Solstice) and Saturday September 17th (Fall Equinox). This year will mark the festival’s 41st year. This makes the festival one of the longest running festivals in Philadelphia. We usually have 40 vendors and 8-10 bands performing at each festival. The Festival traditionally happens on the Saturday closest to the Summer Solstice and Fall Equinox annually. The festival is time to celebrate West Philly generally and includes both rock and non-rock acts, kids activities, arts and crafts and vendors.

A Little Bit of History

Since 1970, the Clark Park Music and Arts Festival has been a neighborhood tradition at 43rd and Chester Ave. The Festivals provide an excellent forum for residents to meet their neighbors and benefit from the artistic wealth of Philadelphia. Responding to the needs of a changing community, the Festival has grown in scope. Today the Festival includes children’s events and activities, arts and crafts vending, a greater diversity of performances to include all kinds of music, dance and theater, and a chance for non profit organizations to reach out to the neighborhood about all sorts of issues. Volunteers of all kinds from anywhere are encouraged to participate.

Past performances have included The Dead Milkmen, The Goats, Prowler and many others. We are seeking out interns for this year’s festival. The responsibility of the intern(s) is to work closely with the music director of the festival in gathering information for Press Releases, Flyering, handling media affairs, planning and attending benefit concerts and assisting the music director the day of the festival. Please direct all inquiries with a brief description of why you want to be involved. Please email if interested!

Electrical Work Commences on Park A

This week, Hyde Electrics has been installing the new systems for Park A. The new power box has been installed at the midpoint of Chester Avenue. Weather permitting, they expect to start installing the new light poles on Wednesday, and have the job finished this week at the earliest. (Rain will delay the work; not only is it dangerous to install outdoor electricals in the rain, but bringing seven 600-lb light poles in over heavy mud would be difficult.)

New South Wales had a Dickens statue all along!

The NSW Dickens Society, with the recently-restored Dickens statue.

Our statue of Charles Dickens may be unique in many ways, but it isn’t the only one in the world. On February 7, 2011, The Dickens Fellowship of New South Wales, Australia unveiled a restored marble statue of the novelist, commissioned by Sir Henry Parkes, as one of eleven statues to celebrate the 1888 centennial of European settlement in Australia. The statue had stood in Centennial Park for almost eighty years before vandals beheaded it. This prompted authorities to put it into storage around 1970. The storage company went bankrupt, and the statue eventually wound up on a private estate. The restoration process required sculpting a new head out of carefully chosen Carerra marble.

Here are three news items about the statue’s recent rededication.


Funeral arrangements for Paul Brooks

The funeral for Paul Brooks, our friend and neighbor, lawyer for Community Legal Services, and founder of the Clark Park Youth Soccer League, who died on February 5th, will take place on Saturday, March 12th at the Iron Gate Theater, 37th & Chestnut Streets.

The schedule of events is:

10 AM Family will receive callers at the Iron Gate Theater

11 AM Funeral at the Iron Gate Theater followed by burial at the Woodlands Cemetery

In lieu of flowers, contributions are requested for the Paul Brooks Youth Soccer Scholarship Fund. Please make checks payable to the “Friends of Clark Park” with “Paul Brooks Soccer Fund” on the memo line.

Checks can be mailed to or dropped off at: Paul Brooks Soccer Fund, c/o Frank Innes, 4522 Regent Street, Philadelphia, PA 19143-3723.

ADDENDUM:L Joan Halbert has informed us that contributions can also be given to the St. Francis deSales School ( and Philadelphia Community Legal Services Legal Resources Fund ( “Paul was not a church goer (or Catholic) but he was a great fan of Sister Constance and Sister Jeannette and their tireless work for the children at deSales School, and the Legal Resources Fund at CLS (where Paul worked for many years) was an idea he had expressed to me in the weeks before his death.”