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Frankford Parks Group Update

wilmot park

Jason Dawkins, Anthony Smith, Maria Quinones-Sanchez and Kim Washington

By: Kimberly Washington, Esq.
Executive Director
Frankford Community Development Corporation

Thanks to everyone who came out to volunteer on Saturday for the 8th Annual Philly Spring Cleanup.  We were able to clean both Wilmot and Hedge Street Park and we cleaned out the community garden on Wilmot and Tackawanna in preparation for our May planting event.  Some of the bulbs that we planted in the fall have started to bloom in the garden, in the planters on Frankford Avenue and even at the Frankford CDC office.  Stop by and take a look when you have a chance.
Also, I would like to put everyone on notice, that our President, Anthony Smith, will be recognized by TTF as a Watershed Champion for his work down at Womrath Park on May 13th.  The awards ceremony will be held at TTF in the Globe Dye works building at 4500 Worth Street from 5:30 – 7:30PM.  Hopefully you all will come out and support Tony.  He has been faithfully volunteering for the parks group since we begin our journey and continues to volunteer and take on leadership roles when it comes to our parks and shared green spaces.  Join us as we acknowledge him for his service to the Frankford Community.
Lastly, please keep John Loftus in your prayers as he recovers from brain surgery.  Also, please keep Phil Robinson in your prayers as well, he was hospitalized last week.  Our next parks group meeting will be held on April 26th at 6:00PM so we can discuss Love Your Park Week events.  I hope to see you all there.
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Annual Trip to Longwood Gardens

Dear Garden Club Members and Friends,

You are invited to join the Frankford Garden Club and the Frankford Parks Group for a Holiday Trip to Longwood Gardens on Saturday, December 7th.
We will leave from Wissinoming Park (Cheltenham Ave Parking lot) at 2:00 PM  to arrive at Longwood by 3:30. The bus will depart from Longwood Gardens at 7:00 PM to return to Wissinoming at 8:30.
Ticket Prices:
$15 for Frankford Garden Club Members
$25 for General Public
Annual Frankford Garden Club Membership Prices :
$10 Individual
$15 Family
Regular and Electric Wheelchairs are available at Longwood Gardens for a rental fee, on a first come, first served basis. The Garden Club will help with the extra cost.
Janet E. BernsteinLongwood Gardens Trip Flyer 2013
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Controversy About Hedge Street Park Proposal

A proposal for upgraded facilities at Hedge Street Park, (Hedge and Orthodox Sts.) is receiving push back from a community group called the Concerned Citizens for a Better Frankford.

A suggestion to create a skate park at Hedge Street park, already the site of basketball court, was announced at the Frankford Parks meeting on August hedge street park27th according to Nashib Edwards, CEO of the group.  While they are pleased that improvements are being considered, the group believes that a skate park in not something the community wants.  There is an existing skate park at Torresdale Ave. and Wakeling Street in use now.  A survey of the neighbors which the Parks Group had said was to be made has not been done.

The group has circulated a petition to protest the skate park which has been signed by 98% of the neighbors.  It is the preference of the group, and apparently the majority of the local neighbors, to refurbish the already existing basketball court along with adding a playground and a workout area for adults.

A Frankford Parks Group representative has stated that the proposal was just in the early stages and that there are no firm plans for the skate park.  Funding improvements of this kind is difficult under the current fiscal climate in the city.  The skate park concept was made with the thinking that private funds might be available for that kind project.



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Frankford Gazette Marks Five Years

 History of Philadelphia, 1609-1884, Volume 3

By John Thomas Scharf, Thompson Westcott

The Frankford Gazette formerly the Holmesburg Gazette was commenced in the spring of 1868 by William F Knott who continued to publish it until Oct 1 1883 when he disposed of his interest to James France The Gazette was commenced and continued to remain as a thoroughly independent local paper The originator of the enterprise commenced publishing the paper without one cent of capital borrowing enough to purchase the white paper for the first issue renting type etc and doing the entire work connected with its publication for the first six months himself The Gazette is published every Friday at the southwest corner of Main and Church Streets Frankford.

That is quite an illustrious history.  The original Frankford Gazette ended publication sometime in the 1930s.   It resumed on May 25th of 2007 when I wrote our first post which was about the Historical Society of Frankford new web site.

The genesis of the idea came the day when my son Jim told me to stop sending him emails about Frankford and to start blogging about it.  I had heard about blogging but didn’t get the point.  Then I found and started thinking about the possibilities.  There was nothing to lose in trying it out and so we did.  And thus the Frankford Gazette was resurrected.

I had no idea what to do except that I was tired of reading and hearing all about what was wrong with Frankford from people who knew little or nothing about the people who live here.  My plan was only to balance out the story by making sure that some of the positive got covered.  That is what we started to do.

We have evolved a bit along the way.  At first it was all words and then we tried to get graphic with pictures.  We have done a lot of video in the last two years.  Our YouTube channel has over 14,000 views.  Last Summer we began a collaboration that lead to a monthly print edition that is distributed along the Frankford Avenue business corridor.

What started out as my voice alone has now morphed into a group of collaborators.  My wife Pat is a specialist in education and has written extensively on the schools and childcare.  My son Jim finds things of interest that I do not even see coming (as well as being our web master and technical expert).  He sniffed out the Globe Dye works long before I knew anything about it.  The Frankford CDC is a major contributor mainly about the Frankford Avenue business corridor.  Our special interest collaborators like the parks and Garden club are welcome additions.  We have some new people coming along in the next few months from other parts of this large community that will give voice to a greater number of people.

Thanks to all who have contributed.  This would be nothing but some old guy talking to himself without you.  It has been an interesting five years.