WATCH: That Time Ed Bacon Skateboarded Across LOVE Park

On Friday I wrote about how skateboarders turned LOVE Park into a great public place. The park is now being overhauled with a new design, and it was re-opened to skateboarders for five days before major construction begins.

All weekend, hundreds of people braved cold temperatures to skate at the park; on Friday night they were even shoveling snow. In case you wondered just how Philly this was, there were two flaming barrels at LOVE yesterday.

But I didn’t write about the time when a 92-year-old Ed Bacon, the city planner responsible for LOVE Park, skated across it in 2002 in defiance of Mayor John Street and City Council’s skateboarding ban. It was awesome, and you can watch it above. Read more »

PHOTOS: Skateboarders Take Final Spins, Spills at LOVE Park

This week Mayor Jim Kenney announced that skating would be allowed at LOVE Park one last time before it’s closed for a massive overhaul. Dan McQuade wrote about why all Philadelphians should mourn the loss of the space as a skating mecca, calling LOVE “an under-utilized city park turned into something great by skaters.” Photographer Jeff Fusco braved the cold to capture the scene as many skaters take their final spins.

love park skaters B80E5724 More of Jeff Fusco’s photos after the jump »

A Farewell: LOVE Park, Skateboard Mecca

love park skaters B80E5948

Skateboarders at LOVE Park on Friday, February 12th. Photo | Jeff Fusco

In some ways, it seemed like a mean joke.

Jim Kenney’s announcement that skateboarding was legal at LOVE Park was a great idea. It was well intentioned, too; he certainly didn’t have to open the park to skateboarders before it’s overhauled with a new design. But it’s also kind of hilarious: Yo, skateboarders: You’re finally allowed to skate in LOVE Park … for five days… during the coldest week of winter. I’m surprised John Street and Michael Nutter didn’t come out and break skateboards over their knees at the end of the announcement.

But Philly area skateboarders did not let the cold hold them back. Maybe 50 skaters were there around lunchtime Friday, braving 25-degree temperatures to give it one last go. (See more of Jeff Fusco’s photos here.) They grinded on the granite benches and did kickflips down the stairs. They all attempted to land a serious jump — from the top near the sculpture all the way into the empty fountain. It made me feel like a kid again. Read more »

Survey: Today’s College Freshmen Are Leftist, Altruistic, Money-Hungry and Very Likely to Protest

 

15 Now protesters - Broad Street - $15 minimum wage

Protesters march up Broad Street on their way to Temple president Neil Theobold’s office. (Photo: Dan McQuade)

If it seems like every time you look, those crazy kids at Penn and Princeton and Swarthmore and Temple are protesting something … they are. (Not the kids at Ursinus, though; they’re not feeling well.) A newly released survey of college freshpersons by the Higher Education Research Institute at UCLA (see the full results below) shows nearly nine percent say the chances are “very good” that they’ll take part in a protest during their college years. That’s a leap over the 5.6 percent who said so in the 2014 survey, and the highest percentage since the annual survey began in 1967. That’s right: More kids are up in arms now than at the height of the Vietnam War. Read more »

WATCH: Cory J. Popp’s Breathtaking “Blizzard in Philadelphia”

A few weekends ago, thick blankets of snow brought Philly to a screeching halt. It shut down schools and transportation, and forced most people to stay inside. But local video producer Cory J. Popp set out to capture the city’s beauty, and how Philadelphians interacted with it as the flakes fluttered down.

“What I wanted to show was the bright side of Philly’s winter weather, what Philadelphians were doing when the snow was still falling, and how they were enjoying it,” Popp told Philly Mag. “I was surprised, but there were actually a ton of people outside despite the weather warnings, and everyone I saw was having a blast, which is really evident in the video.” Read more »

Art Museum Painting Removed from Facebook for “Suggestive Content”

Collection of Serge Goisse, Belgium

Collection of Serge Goisse, Belgium

The Philadelphia Museum of Art’s International Pop exhibition starts on February 24th. To promote it, an Art Museum staffer posted the image above — Belgian artist Evelyne Axell’s 1964 painting “Ice Cream” — on Facebook. It’s on loan to the PMA from the Collection of Serge Goisse.

Per the Art Museum, it was removed from the site for “containing excessive amounts of skin or suggestive content.” The Art Museum has since reposted the painting with a note. Read more »

Penn Vet Students to Star in New Animal Planet Series, Penn Vet

Photo | Penn Vet

Photo | Penn Vet

The next time your new kitty won’t eat and keeps coughing up hairballs, you might want to check the mirror before you rush her off to Penn Vet. Animal Planet just announced a new series featuring “the first-ever behind-the-scenes look at the University of Pennsylvania’s highly competitive veterinary school.” Taking advantage of what it promises is “unprecedented access,” the series, titled (duh) Penn Vet, will shadow students in their fourth and final year as they’re taught and mentored by Penn’s renowned animal docs. Read more »

5 Furry Philly Groundhog Day Alternatives to Punxsutawney Phil

There is nothing wrong with Punxsutawney Phil.

In fact, for a groundhog, the little guy is pretty cute. Getting a bit chubby in the cheeks, perhaps, but by February, who isn’t. Maybe he really can predict the weather, or maybe he only emerges from his cozy winter burrow for the same reason we all eventually do. Either way, he’s a good-natured Groundhog Day MC, and for that we should be grateful — especially since he forecasted an early spring this morning.

But growing up in the city, I can’t say that I’ve ever actually seen a groundhog, much less a groundhog meteorologist.

What I did see on Saturday afternoon was the world’s mangiest sparrow struggling to carry a Cheetos Crunchy Flamin’ Hot down Second Street. As my dogs and I approached, he fluffed up what were left of his post-blizzard feathers and teetered toward us, one wiry little foot at a time, as if to say, “Come one step closer and you’ll be sorry, lady — and your little dogs, too.” We backed off, and eventually he was able to secure his cargo, flying away to enjoy it in the safety of my neighbor’s gutter.

Did this mean that we’re looking at six more weeks of Cheetos-hoarding weather? Who knows, but I’d trust my little orange-dusted friend to know what’s up in Philadelphia over a backwoodsy groundhog. (No offense, Phil — you did good this morning, and I’d love to believe you.) I’d trust these guys, too. Read more »

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