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.”


Free Trees from the City!, and

About Creating Canopy
From the start of his administration, Mayor Michael Nutter declared his strong support for increasing the City’s tree canopy. It has a central place in his shared vision of Philadelphia becoming America’s greenest city and in Greenworks Philadelphia. Greenworks Philadelphia’s target of 300,000 new trees planted by 2015 in order to help increase the City’s tree cover toward 30% by 2025 is an ambitious goal.

To achieve this very ambitious target, the City will have to increase its own tree planting activities and work with numerous partners under a new tree planting model in which everyone has a role to play to help make Philadelphia the greenest city in America. This role includes citizens, neighborhoods, institutions, corporations, and the City government all coming together in innovative ways.

Michael DiBerardinis, Deputy Mayor for Environmental and Community Resources, approached us to consider a partnership between the City of Philadelphia and the University of Pennsylvania as an exciting first step in this model. The University is already a leader in promoting environmental sustainability, the importance of trees, green building, recycling, and development of public open space, so the synergy for taking this next step was palpable.

In Spring 2011, Penn is sponsoring, in partnership with Philadelphia Parks and Recreation and UC Green, a pilot structured “tree giveaway” event. After pre-registering and becoming educated about tree planting/care on campus, Penn faculty and staff living within the city limits would receive a free tree to plant on their own property.

In future years, we expect this initiative to grow, assuming the pilot is successful and there is interest. Our sponsorship of this program will make a great impact on our campus and city in expanding our environmental outreach and working towards our sustainability goals.

Creating Canopy with Penn Events
with Penn President Amy Gutmann & Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter
Thursday, March 31, 2011
1:00 – 3:00pm Tree Pick-Up
1:15pm Program and Remarks
College Green (rain location: Houston Hall, Hall of Flags)
All Penn community members are welcome. *NOTE: You must be a Penn faculty or staff member who owns a home in Philadelphia to be eligible for a free tree through this program to plant in your yard.

Saturday, April 2, 2011
10:00am – 1:00pm
Highline Field at The Left Bank, 31st & Chestnut Streets

How to Plant a Container Tree (PDF)


Please direct any inquiries to:

Philadelphia Parks & Recreation
Fairmount Park
Urban Forest & EcoSystem Management
One Parkway, 10th Floor
1515 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102
Phone: 215-683-0213

4th Annual Philly Spring Cleanup on April 2!

Greater Philadelphia Cares, in partnership with The City of Philadelphia, is offering great projects for the 4th Annual Philly Spring Cleanup on Saturday, April 2, 2011, from 9:00am to 2:00pm. And our Neighbors in Action Program is front and center! Contact Ray Gant to sign up at 215-964-7627 or for one of these great projects. Groups are welcome!

Saturday, April 2, 2011:

1. 400 N. 65th Street, West Philly 19151 – 9am to 2pm, 100 volunteers needed.

2. 200 N. Simpson Street, West Philly 19139 – 9am to 2pm, 100 volunteers needed.

3. 400 N.Simpson Street, West Philly 19151 – 9am to 2pm, 100 volunteers needed.

4. 1800 N. Etting Street, North Philly 19121 – 9am to 2pm, 100 volunteers needed.

5. H Street and Ontario Street, North Philly 19134 – 9am to 2pm, 150 volunteers needed.

6. 2200 and 2300 W. Thompson Street, North Philly 19124 -9am to 2pm, 100 volunteers needed

7. 5000 N. 3rd Street, North Philly 19120, 9am to 2pm, 100 volunteers needed.

8. 1800 Meadow Street, Frankford 19124, 9am to 2pm, 200 volunteers needed.

9. 3100 W. Tasker St., South Philly 19145, 10am -2pm, 100 volunteers needed.

10. 1500 N. 6th Street, North Philly 19122, 9am -2pm, 100 volunteers needed.

11. 2500 N. 28th Street, North Philly 19132, 9am to 2pm, 50 volunteers needed.

We’re out to put an end to litter and illegal dumping – permanently. Join us!

Greater Philadelphia Cares
100 South Broad Street, Suite 2200
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19110

Support Parkland Protection Bill on March 9

Public Hearing — Parks Ordinance
Wednesday, March 9, 1:30 to 3:30pm
City Hall, Room 400*=20

City Council’s Committee on Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs has scheduled a Public Hearing to hear testimony on Bill No. 110002 ( on* March 9 at 1:30 pm*. Click here to view the Public Hearing Notice ( No 110002.doc). The Bill was introduced by Council Members Reynolds Brown and O’Neill on January 27, 1011.

The hearing is the next step in a process begun by the Commission on Parks and Recreation in September 2010 when it released a draft Open Lands Protection Ordinance for public review and discussion. On January 19, 2011 the Commission voted to approve a revised Ordinance ( Lands Protection ORD Comm Final Draft 1.14.11.doc) reflecting many of the comments received from the public and key stakeholders.

The Parks Alliance is pleased to support the passage of the Council Bill as it was introduced. Click here to view the Parks Alliance’s comments ( Lands Prot Ord Revised Comments FINAL 1.20.11.doc) on the Commission’s final Ordinance which is identical to the Council Bill.

To sign up to give testimony at the March 9 City Council Hearing contact Katharine Gilmore at the office of Councilwoman Reynolds Brown at:

215-686-3438/9 or

Thank you for all that you do for Philadelphia’s parks and recreation,
The Philadelphia Parks Alliance

Summer 2011 Events Schedule Update

The FOCP Large Events Committee has submitted the following schedule of events to Parks and Recreation for permits. Because of the Park A reconstruction, all 2011 large events will be held in B or C park.

As we’ve reported before the permit process has not yet been settled in the new Parks and Rec department. All events have been entered into our Google Calendar (at right), and if there are any changes, we’ll post the news on this website.

April 16/23: Uhuru Flea Market
May 7: Spruce Hill May Fair
May 14: Uhuru Flea Market
June 11: Best Fest*
June 28: Uhuru Flea Market
June 25: Summer Solstice Festival
July 23: Uhuru Flea Market
August 20: Uhuru Flea Market
September 10: Woodland Avenue Reunion
September 17: Fall Equinox Festival
September 17: Uhuru Flea Market
(These two events will coordinate space-sharing)
September 24: Youth Soccer Fall Season
October 15: Uhuru Flea Market

*ADDENDUM: Erin Engelstad just informed us that there will not be a Best Fest this year.