Features

Fully staged opera returns to Academy of Vocal Arts

In one of the most encouraging signs that the world of the performing arts is returning to its old pre-pandemic self, Philadelphia’s Academy of Vocal Arts has announced a full season.

Mt. Airy baker's career is on the rise

Romona Mercer never attended culinary school or enrolled in cooking classes, but today the Mt. Airy resident is head baker and CEO of her own company, Aunt Verlea's Pound Cake Experience.

Exercise can turn back the clock on feeling your age

Even with 70 being the new 50, many seniors experienced a setback in their energy level as a result of the pandemic.

Son’s death inspires mom to share her grief and rap

Marge Sexton couldn’t imagine how she would survive after her 47-year-old son Ron committed suicide in 2015.

Mt. Airy’s Supper Sessions return to crowds hungry for summer fun

In a summer marked by the return of pre-pandemic festivities, the Go Mt. Airy Supper Sessions are set to transform the community’s busy commercial strip.

Mt. Airy will have you in stitches

A pandemic-inspired surge in entrepreneurship bubbling on Germantown Avenue has led to the opening of, not one, but two quilting shops on Mt. Airy’s main commercial strip. 
Local Calendar
Community Feature

The women's basketball program at University of the Sciences has come to an end, but some alumni athletes have kept on going, winning the college summer league championship for the second year in a row.

More News
East Mt. Airy Neighbors will host a community meeting at 7 p.m., Aug. 16, via Zoom, to discuss the townhouse development now being planned for the former site of Fred’s Mt. Airy Motors.
When Kathi Clayton first became president of the Chestnut Hill Community Association’s board in August 2020, Chestnut Hill looked a lot different than usual. In fact, the whole world did.
Howard Watson, who died June 17 at the age of 93, was a nationally recognized watercolorist and illustrator. He was appointed artist-in-residence at the White House for former President Jimmy Carter.
The Local is recruiting board members.
Business
New city requirements for lead testing has landlords across Philadelphia falling behind on renewing their rental licenses, some community advocates say.
Crime

Crime Report: May 16 to June 6

The following crime report is for crimes reported in Chestnut Hill and Mt. Airy for the period from May 16 to June 6. 

Homes and Gardens

The best of both worlds: Elements of a successful space

In researching successful interior projects, I came across this photo.

Window dressing: historic treatments vs current trends

Windows are an integral part of any piece of architecture.

Traditionalism’s cozier spaces are making a comeback

Today’s living rooms are providing us with much more than a place to put guests after a family meal. Whether you call it a drawing room, sitting room, living room or family room, the “heart of the home,” as it is so often called, is now receiving wider decorative attention than ever. 

Man on a mission to rescue strangled trees

Nicolas Troyano is on a mission to remove the invasive ivy that is strangling so many huge trees in Chestnut Hill.

Architecture is best when it serves humans, not stars

Christopher Alexander believed that ordinary people, not just trained architects, should have a hand in designing their own houses, neighborhoods and cities.

Sports

Area soccer players win Under-17 national championship

The Philadelphia Soccer Club's Coppa Rage team, which includes five players from area schools, won the Under-17 U.S. Youth Soccer national championship last month.

GA hoopsters finish undefeated in summer league

The summer basketball league reached the end of its schedule last week, with the host Patriots emerging with a 10-0 record.

Finals set in college summer basketball league

In six basketball games over the course of two nights last week, the playoff field in the college summer league was whittled down to two finalists.

In a return to summer basketball league action, Germantown Academy had little trouble winning back-to-back games last Monday.

Last week's basketball action in the College summer league set the stage for the playoff quarterfinals.
Chestnut Hill College's Team Red raised its own profile and impacted the overall standings last week.
More than 100 five- to 15-year-olds from Mt. Airy to Willow Grove turned up at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy last week for the school’s 5th annual youth football camp.
After meeting a degree of resistance from Bensalem High School in the first of its summer league basketball games last week, Germantown Academy took control of its second contest very quickly.
Schools

Recent discussions about Chestnut Hill College’s ambitious plans for their expanded SugarLoaf Campus have led Our Town to look back at the history of that tract of land and its houses.

The last week of college summer league play before the July 4 break brought one major shake-up on Thursday, when the USciences alumni squad, Team Heather Maroon, suffered its first loss.

Area graduates brimmed with optimism and gratitude to parents and teachers, though they addressed issues such as COVID, social unrest and war.

Obituaries
Mt. Airy lawyer, a warrior for justice, dies at 96
Many people are often derisive of lawyers until they need one.
Beloved lifelong Hiller, famed photographer, dies at 57
More than 600 people crowded into St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Chestnut Hill on Friday, July 15, for a memorial service to say goodbye to Wendy Romig Concannon, a mother, wife, sister, artist, …
Fearless journalist, religious leader, entrepreneur dies at 80
Fred Donaldson, a fearless newspaper reporter, editor and beloved religious leader who served as president of the Beth Tikvah B'nai Jeshurun synagogue in Erdenheim, died May 31 of coronary artery disease while on a cruise in Ocean Cay, Bahamas.
Hill neurosurgeon and classic car enthusiast dies at 86
Dr. Frederick Simeone, who created one of the world's most outstanding collections of classic sports cars, died Saturday, June 11, at Pennsylvania Hospital, where he had been a surgical legend. He was 86.
Professor, author and social justice champion dies at 86
In the mid-1960s, when I was a graduate student in English Literature at Temple University, I met a communications professor there named Herb Simons.
Opinion & letters
Editorials
Depending on whether you read your Local online or in print, you may or may not be aware that we recently launched a new, more robust events calendar on chestnuthilllocal.com. 
Letters to the editor
About Chestnut Hill
Neighbors see some progress on street light concerns; harsh glare is still a problem
In response to neighborhood complaints about glare caused by the city’s new LED street lights, Deputy Streets Commissioner Richard Montanez has agreed to replace all the high intensity lamps.
Fed arrests for check fraud don't appear to include Chestnut Hill victims.
The indictment doesn’t mention checks being stolen from the 19118 or 19119 zip codes. The indictment does cite outdoor mailboxes in Lansdowne, Folsom, Southwest Philadelphia and Ellicott City, Md., as the four locations where checks were stolen.
Hill residents: New lights get it wrong
An overwhelming majority of Chestnut Hill residents dislike the color and the brightness of the neighborhood’s new LED streetlights.
Mt. Airy Day Cancelled
Mt. Airy Day, the annual festival celebrating the Northwest Philadelphia neighborhood, has been cancelled because of weather forecasts predicting rain and thunderstorms this weekend.
Bass commits to funding more pickleball courts
City Councilmember Cindy Bass committed to contributing capital funding to move pickleball courts from the Water Tower Recreation Center during a Monday night meeting and said that her office would work to create more pickleball courts across the 8th Councilmanic District.