Tell Us How You Feel About Love

love-in-philly-bannerWe want to know your thoughts on relationships, sex, marriage, soul mates, and the state of love in Philadelphia right now. Results of this quick, anonymous poll will run in Philly Mag. So go ahead … tell us everything.*
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ThinkFest Preview: William Hite on Moving Philadelphia’s Schools Forward

School District of Philadelphia superintendent William Hite and Philadelphia magazine deputy editor Patrick Kerkstra.

School District of Philadelphia superintendent William Hite and Philadelphia magazine deputy editor Patrick Kerkstra.

He’s got the toughest job in Philadelphia, and more experience managing crises than FEMA. But Philadelphia schools superintendent William Hite didn’t move to the city two years ago to manage the district’s decline. When not extinguishing fires, Hite is working on a plan to drag urban education into the modern age. His goals are extraordinarily ambitious: 100 percent of kids reading at grade level by the 8th grade; 100 percent of students graduating, prepared for college or career.

But how? How to give schools autonomy, while ensuring they meet high standards? How to attract and retain the best teachers and principals amid labor strife and constrained resources? How can the district win the high-stakes match of three-dimensional chess with City Hall and Harrisburg? Above all, how can the district move forward? At ThinkFest, Hite will wrangle with these and other incisive questions posed by Philadelphia magazine’s Patrick Kerkstra.

Join us on November 14th at Drexel’s LeBow College of Business for a day of the city’s smartest people sharing their biggest ideas. Read all of our ThinkFest 2014 previews here, and watch the livestream, starting at 9 a.m. on Friday November 14th.

ThinkFest Preview: Amy Gutmann Discusses Penn’s Next Decade With Jim Gardner

University of Pennsylvania president Amy Gutmann and 6 ABC anchor Jim Gardner.

University of Pennsylvania president Amy Gutmann and 6 ABC anchor Jim Gardner.

Now in her 10th year as president of the University of Pennsylvania, Amy Gutmann has a decade of educational, institutional, and civic accomplishments behind her: the greater diversity of Penn’s student body through the expansion of financial aid, improved relations with the university’s West Philadelphia neighbors, the 2011 opening of Penn Park, and a record 2013 fundraising effort that brought $4.3 billion to the school. (She was even at Davos this year discussing women and leadership with U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill.)

But as Gutmann once said to Philadelphia magazine, “people and places should never rest on their laurels” — so we’ve invited 6 ABC’s Jim Gardner to interview her about the next decade at Penn. Hear what’s on the drawing board at one of the city’s largest employers and economic engines, from a far-reaching Compact 2020 plan that seeks to increase the university’s local and global impact to the latest on Penn Connects, the university’s development and urban design vision.

Join us on November 14th at Drexel’s LeBow College of Business for a day of the city’s smartest people sharing their biggest ideas. Read all of our ThinkFest 2014 previews here, and watch the livestream, starting at 9 a.m. on Friday November 14th.

Nathaniel Popkin and Diana Lind on Architecture

Nathaniel Popkin and Diana Lind at Penn's Fisher Fine Arts Library. Photograph by Justin James Muir

Nathaniel Popkin and Diana Lind at Penn’s Fisher Fine Arts Library. Photograph by Justin James Muir

NATHANIEL: The Athenaeum made both of our lists of favorite buildings in Philadelphia. What is it you like about it?

DIANA: The Athenaeum is like a bunch of other buildings in Philadelphia I adore: They’re set in time. They feel completely separate from what’s going on a couple blocks away on 8th and Market, which would be the total absence of feeling. When I compare the Athenaeum to a lot of architecture that we build today, I feel we’ve dumbed down the palette and created buildings intended to be timeless but that don’t transport you anywhere.

NATHANIEL: But contemporary architects have to deal with an extraordinary number of constraints. You have to satisfy the function of the building and contemporary aesthetic instinct — which is confusing because no one knows what that is. You also have to consider sustainability, budget, and maybe a site that’s difficult to work with. I think in many cases the architect is doing an admirable job trying to balance those things. Read more »

Best of Philly 2014 Preview: Arts and Culture

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Best Art Gallery: Fleisher/Ollman

This unassuming gallery near Chinatown is a gem for connoisseurs and nascent collectors alike, with a fantastically diverse selection that ranges from contemporary mixed-media pieces to the 20th-century masterworks that put the place on the map. Plus, prices are reasonable. 1216 Arch Street, Center City, 215-545-7562.

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Best of Philly 2014 Preview: Health and Fitness

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Best Gym: Haverford YMCA

This isn’t your grandma’s YMCA. The gorgeous 75,000-square-foot Haverford Y, on the old Swell Bubble Gum Factory campus, includes three indoor swimming pools (hello, water slides), an indoor track, palatial cardio and weight-training facilities, and more than 100 fitness classes a week. No wonder that in less than a year, it’s attracted 21,000 members and counting. 891 North Eagle Road, Havertown, 610-649-0700.

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Best of Philly 2014 Preview: LGBT Winners

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Gay Bar: U Bar

There isn’t a dance floor in the whole place, and drag-queen sightings are rare. But that’s exactly what’s so great about the bar formerly known as Uncles. (Well, that and the studly bartenders.) U Bar stands apart from other Gayborhood watering holes as a no-fuss, no-’tude, unpretentious spot to grab a strong drink or two and gab with friends. 1220 Locust Street, Midtown Village, 215-546-6660.

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Best of Philly 2014 Preview: Home Decor

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Best Furniture: Studio 882

Wander through his airy showroom, and you’ll feel like you’re in an Architectural Digest spread: Impeccably styled vignettes featuring top brands like Baker, Kindel and Julian Chicester rotate often, so the space is flush with inspiration. And the owners — expert interior designers in their own right — have the know-how to make it work in your non-­showroom house. 882 Baltimore Pike, Chadds Ford, 610-314-8820.

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Best of Philly 2014: The Best Philadelphians

Katherine Gajewski and Connor Barwin. / Photography by Joseph Balestra

Katherine Gajewski and Connor Barwin. / Photography by Joseph Balestra

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Best Athlete: Connor Barwin, 27

Six-foot-four, 264-pound linebackers don’t usually make headlines for their social consciousness, but Barwin is a different breed of football beast. The Detroit native has earned cheers off the field for his Make the World Better Foundation, aimed at bringing sports and arts to kids; a benefit concert he staged at Union Transfer in June raised $170,000 to revitalize a run-down South Philly park. He’s fearlessly outspoken (tweeting praise for marriage equality) and bleeds green in more ways than one — bicycling to work, driving an electric car and promoting SEPTA.

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