Thanks for support of Book Festival

Because the Chestnut Hill Community Fund has so many donors throughout this extraordinary region and community, there is probably no way to thank all the participants of the Chestnut Hill Community Fund for awarding grants to the Chestnut Hill Book Festival and Speaker Series as well as our sponsor, Musehouse Center for the Literary Arts.

We can, of course, thank the Chestnut Hill Community Association’s board and staff who make the Fund possible and also the Fund Committee. Raising the funds and disseminating them is no easy job. Because of their hard work, we are a community well served by nonprofits who are always elated to receive any support they can garner. Best of all we are a community and region of very generous residents and businesses.

So with a big smile and and much appreciation, we do thank you all and hope you will join us for our many local author events.

Do we need a Chestnut Hill Book Festival? Not really. Are we a better community for it? Absolutely! Go books!

Chestnut Hill Book Festival and Speaker Series Committee

Marie Lachat, chair

Kathy Bonanno, Musehouse Center for the Literary Arts

Kate O’Neill, Chestnut Hill Business Association

Greg Welsh, Chestnut Hill Business Association and Chestnut Grill

Hugh Gilmore, author and Local columnist


MALT thanks tour homeowners

On behalf of the Mt. Airy Learning Tree, I want to thank our eight hosts who opened up their homes and personal oases to over 240 friends and neighbors on June 2 for our annual Hidden Gardens Tour.

This year’s tour celebrated an especially glorious spring with a wonderful collection of eight gardens in Northwest Philadelphia ,from homes in the Awbury Arboretum to Wyndmoor, with the Mt. Airy Village and Chestnut Hill gardens in between.

Eric Sternfels, MALT’s tour coordinator, was pleased with the wide variety of stately private home gardens as well as uniquely rich gardens of foliage tapestries, mixed veggies and flora, and botanical exotica. MALT extends its deep appreciation to Eric for finding these special gems in the neighborhood. He commented on each gardener’s passion and their open, welcoming manner, helping to make this year’s tour thoroughly enjoyable. Enthusiasm is already building for next year’s tour!

Judy Weinstein

Executive Director

Mt. Airy Learning Tree

6601 Greene Street

Philadelphia, PA



Speaking out

In a recent incident of adverse use in the Wissahickon, I found myself on the wrong end of the stick. It was suggested that I should just keep quiet about such incidents and to stop relating them to the public.

I was told that if I didn’t, people would start to roll their eyes or just ignore me because, as she said, I would be, “just like those people who write to the Chestnut Hill Local.” She said you always know what these people have to say. They are ignored and readers just hum and blow them off when they write in to the Local about their issues. I think she was concerned that people would not take me seriously or be contemptuous if I continued to speak out.

She made it sound like a fate worse than death.

Then I recalled my late father-in -law who taught physical education at a local private school. He believed not only in teaching sports and games but also how to play with integrity and not to take yourself too seriously.

One story I heard about him was that when his school had a faculty talent show, the other staff did things like sing arias or play piano sonatas. He showcased his talent by singing “Chattanooga Choo Choo” while doing a head stand.

I think the fate worse than death is to be afraid to tell the emperor that he has no clothes. If people want to disrespect you or talk scornfully about you when you express concerns, well, I think it reflects more on the “emperor” than it does on you. So, I say kudos to people who are not afraid of the risks of speaking out whenever they see or hear things that strike them as being wrong.

Carmella Paulmier



Suggestions for hazardous waste

As I begin the challenging task of weeding out things-I-might-need-someday, I find, as I’m sure most area residents do, remnants of previous efforts at home maintenance: half empty paint cans, empty or non-functional spray cans, no-longer-usable gasoline containers, dead batteries, burnt out fluorescent tubes, etc. Now I know these items should never be discarded in regular trash. And I’m betting, so do a fair number of community residents.

However, I would hazard (there’s that word) a guess that 90 plus percent of the local population has no idea where the hazardous waste disposal sites are, much less the specific dates when such objects may be deposited. All posted online, but who goes there?

That leads me to another statistical estimate: 99 percent simply dump said items into regular trash (thence to landfill, thence into the subsoil and underground aquifers, etc.). It seems to me the Local and the Chestnut Hill Community Association might render a distinct service to the public (especially those with a conscience) by:

1. Doing a feature article outlining the problem.

2. Informing residents of current options (time and place for hazardous waste disposal).

3. Given that the present sites are far distant from our community (read: inconvenience is a certain prelude to non-compliance), the CHCA should address this problem with the proper authorities and petition for accessible and frequent (at least 4x per annum) collection days and so inform the community through a triumphant announcement in the Local.

I note that a good job of establishing a “weird waste” disposable program has been accomplished. Obviously that runs a close parallel to what I’m proposing for the waste classified as “hazardous.” So, it would seem doable.

Burton A. Fleming, M.D.

Chestnut Hill


The 4th of July at the Water Tower

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Chestnut Hill Bocce club for its tireless efforts in producing a 4th of July celebration that would rival any 4th celebration anywhere.

No matter how big or how small, and last, but certainly not least, thebeautiful rendition honoring “The Land of the Free, The Home of the Brave” (our national anthem) sung by Andrea Giovinazzo.

Looking forward to the 4th at the Watertower in 2014.

Tom Woodruff