Despite the fact that the American Dream has changed, and no longer necessarily signifies the white picket fence and 2.5 children living in the ’burbs, a Census report that was recently released includes Philadelphia and Montgomery County in the top 25 “pairs of counties with the largest number of people moving from the origin to the destination, minus people moving in the other direction,” according to Business Insider. (Net annual population flow from Philadelphia County to Montco between 2007 and 2011: 5,236.)
This means that large numbers of Philly residents left the city between 2007 and 2011 specifically to live in Montgomery County.
The end of Sugar Mom’s marked it: The bars of my youth are gone. The places I haunted as a 20-something are closed. Alfa, Sugar Mom’s, Bar Noir, Mad River, Lucy’s Hat Shop — kaput. Add Khyber Pass to that list, too, because while Khyber today is a very nice restaurant, it looks nothing like it did 10 years ago: a grimy club bar with writing on the bathroom walls and a second floor that shook when the band played too loud — which was always.
Philadelphia was not the same back then, either, not when I got my ticket to drink legally in 2001. No one was trying to re-brand the Gayborhood for marketing purposes. The dining scene was Le Bec Fin — period. No one was trying to convert everything into a condo. Of course this was before the domination of Facebook and Twitter, but we’d never have created a hashtag to make ourselves feel better for choosing Philadelphia. We were not city snobs. We didn’t need to tell people why we hung out in the city, or scream for validation. We just did.
Restaurants of Philadelphia, sometimes just being a great restaurant isn’t enough to get publicity for your restaurant. In some cases, you need to buy a publisher and her whole family dinner on Christmas Eve. Read more »
It’s 9 p.m. on a Saturday night, and my boyfriend and I are driving toward the Philadelphia skyline. We’ve had a lovely evening visiting friends who just bought a house in Ambler. We giggled at old photos, had burgers and beers on the deck, and played board games in a room with track lighting and Yankee Candles. Then we headed back home to Fishtown to begin our evening
“Let’s never move to the suburbs,” my boyfriend says as we sip lagers at our neighborhood dive bar. “I just think we’d be so … boring.”
He’s not alone. For many millennials, suburbia’s white picket fences are looking more and more like cages. In August, Leigh Gallagher, author of the new book The End of the Suburbs, told this magazine, “Millennials don’t really have any interest in this kind of cul-de-sac life. They’re not saying they hate suburbs entirely, but they want to be someplace where they can walk everywhere.” Read more »
Philadelphia native, journalist, and self proclaimed suburbologist, Leigh Gallagher, gives an informative talk about the major changes happening to the suburbs.
The American dream is at a pivotal point of change, as families abandon long commutes from their white picket fence suburban communities to move closer to the city. Thoughts from the public on suburban living from the public such as “dying slowly, one day at a time”, do seem a little dramatic—but it’s not all bad. “It’s not really the end of the suburbs, it’s really the beginning of something new, and there are more options.”
Big names in construction are beginning to notice this changing trend, and are now trying to deliver the best of both city and suburban living.
Huge news on the Bucks Co. retail scene: It looks like Anthropologie is opening an outpost in Newtown. The township will welcome the chain to its Promenade development, according to the Bucks County Courier Times. The developer, Jim Worthington (who also owns the Newtown Athletic Club), noted that they need to deal with a sewer issue first, and then construction will begin.
For a town that’s long been surprisingly light on retail, especially apparel (I should know, I live there), this is a major gain. Hopefully it’ll increase traffic to the few smaller boutiques in the area, and drive more independents to come to the township. After all, a stylish suburban town can’t survive on Gap Body and the mall alone.
Nearly thirty years ago, the Hooters opened Live Aid, Philadelphia’s greatest concert event of all time. (Sorry, Made In America). And on Saturday night, the band opened Ardmore Music Hall, which was filled to its 600-person capacity for the sold out show. (Technically, Ardmore Music Hall opened on Friday, but Saturday night was the big deal opening.)
I usually find something to complain about in any situation, but I have to say that the band was tight, the sound was crystal clear from my position on the floor, and the staff was friendly, accommodating and expeditious. And the fact that I was in a music venue where I could get a pint of beer for $3 didn’t hurt a bit. (Take note, Trocadero).
If the folks behind the Ardmore Music Hall can bring in the right acts for the grown up suburban crowd (look for Fountains of Wayne, Soul Asylum, Johnny Winter and Rusted Root in the coming weeks and months) and keep the concert experience so pleasant and stress free, World Cafe Live is going to have to run for cover.
Below, some photos from the night.
Dozens of people waiting in line during Saturday night’s drizzle outside the Ardmore Music Hall:
The Hooters’ set list at Ardmore Music Hall:
WMMR’s Pierre Robert introduces the Hooters at Ardmore Music Hall:
The Hooters’ Eric Bazilian on guitar at Ardmore Music Hall:
The Hooters’ John Lilley feels the spirit at Ardmore Music Hall:
The Hooters’ David Uosikkinen (it’s Finnish) behind the drums at Ardmore Music Hall:
Two Pennsylvania and one New Jersey suburb have been named in the “America’s 50 Best Small Towns” list compiled by CNN Money roundup, one of them even making the top 10.
West Goshen, in Chester County, was named the 10th-best small town to live in, with its “lush, suburban feel, quiet, tree-shaded residential areas, lovely parks, and a full slate of community activities.” Hillsborough, N.J., was named 17th, and Horsham, Pa. came in at 34th.
Looking for larger-scale entertainment? The King of Prussia Mall, America’s largest shopping center, is only 20 minutes away. Surrounding the town is store- and restaurant-packed West Chester, a hamlet that serves as the area’s unofficial downtown.
West Goshen also boasts an array of local employers, including Comcast and QVC, and is an easy commute to the economic hubs of Philadelphia and Wilmington, Del. If your heart’s set on moving into a brand-new house, keep in mind that some newer residential developments lack personality and are expensive compared with older homes.
It’s true. The King of Prussia Mall makes everything better.