May 20, 2010

Chestnut Hill Dining Guide

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CHA kids ‘thrilled’ at Local coverage

I want you to know how much I sincerely appreciate your interest and support of our students’ projects (“CHA kids blogging with teachers all over the world,” May 13). The boys, and their parents, are thrilled when they read things about themselves in the Local. It makes the learning experience even more exciting for them.

I also wanted to let you know that I have been in contact with Barbara Wybar. My son, Andrew, and I will be going to Uganda on July 15. CHA has offered to donate 10 good-condition used laptops loaded with some educational programs. I will be working with the Ugandan students and hopefully helping them set up an international blogging experience.

Kim Sivick
Chestnut Hill

A club no one wants to join

I want to thank Hugh Gilmore for sharing his story about his son, Colin (May 13 issue). At the age of 15, I lost my 18-year-old sister. Recently, a friend revealed that at 11-years-old his mother was killed by a drunk driver.

It’s a club none of us would have chosen to join, and yet we are all members. My father died on March 13 of this year after having been diagnosed with an aggressive form of multiple myeloma this past November.

My sensitivity to loss is again on high alert. The club sucks, but as Anne Lamott said in the book, “Bird By Bird”: “Writing and reading decrease our sense of isolation. They deepen and widen and expand our sense of life; they feed the soul.”

When writers make us shake our heads with the exactness of their prose and their truths, and even make us laugh about ourselves or life, our buoyancy is restored. We are given a shot at dancing with, or at least clapping along with, the absurdity of life, instead of being squashed by it over and over again.”

Jane Piecuch
Chestnut Hill


‘Move on’ – it’s easy for her to say

Meredith Sonderskov writes in her letter last week that we should all just forget about the whole Good Food Market disaster and “move on.”

That’s easy for her to say. She is not the one who lost many thousands of dollars, not to mention 24/7 workdays. Nor did she suffer unimaginable mental and psychological stress because of a campaign of harassment.

The Good Food Market owners are the ones who did have to suffer through, and for no legitimate reason. I’m sure Ms. Sonderskov did not spend sleepless nights because a certain group of people hates the CHCA so much, not because of anything that Good Food Market (which was beautiful) did wrong.

Ms. Sonderskov laments the loss of other businesses such as Borders, Limeburner’s amd Express and Intermission, and she lumps them together with Good Food Market.

 I also regret the loss of those businesses, but Ms. Sonderskov clearly overlooks one crucial difference – those other businesses were the victims of the national economy, and the Good Food Market owners were the victims of a small group of spiteful people in the community who did everything they could to destroy the business.

Lorraine Field
Chestnut Hill


Theater group brings light to Sedgwick

Last week we went to see “Measure for Measure” and witnessed Shakespeare at the Sedgwick. For us, this excellent performance by Quintessence Theatre Group was a dream come true.

We are very fortunate the two visitors who toured the Sedgwick more than a year ago returned this winter with a proposal. Alexander Burns, a native Mt. Airy man and a graduate of Germantown Friends School, and Pamela Reichen told us they have now created Quintessence Theatre Group, a professional repertory theater dedicated to the adaptation of classic works for contemporary audiences. And, they added, they believe this community is the perfect place and the Sedgwick is the perfect home for them.

We certainly agreed, so a few months ago, we welcomed Quintessence and its founders to the Sedgwick.

It is amazing what young people with a vision can do in a short period of time. They assembled an experienced, talented cast and set to work on a fresh interpretation of “Measure to Measure.” And they transformed the Sedgwick lobby into a theater that seems to have been waiting to happen, one that is graced with a thrust stage, a superb set and highly professional lighting. The aging beauty became a vibrant, energetic space that is once again pregnant with possibilities.

Quintessence raised a considerable amount of money for this first effort. If they are successful in May, they will make the Sedgwick their home beginning in the fall. They hope their success and the community’s values will encourage many people to buy tickets to this fine performance and to spread the word that the unique character of this block is now further enhanced by Quintessence Theatre Group. And, of course, they look forward to attracting many new donors to support their venture.

Quintessence presents “Measure for Measure” at the Sedgwick, 7137 Germantown Avenue, through May 30. We encourage everyone to come see the performance —Wednesday-Saturday, 8 p.m. and Sunday, 3 p.m. (Check for details at

David and Betty Ann Fellner
Owners, Sedgwick Theater
Mt. Airy


Give to teacher’s fund

Three years ago, I, along with a small group of former teachers, parents, administrators and community members, started the Mt. Airy Teacher’s Fund.  The fund was established to help Mt. Airy public school teachers, who do not have the financial resources available to buy teaching materials and supplies in and out of their classrooms, by providing small grants of $50 to $500. 

Mt. Airy teachers are either forced to pay for materials with their own personal funds or, worse yet, avoid purchasing these materials because of lack of approval and funding from the school district.  Mt. Airy public school teachers and the students they educate need and deserve our support.

I hope you will make a difference in the lives of our public school students by joining me this Sunday, May 23,  from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., at the Trolley Car Diner located at 7619 Germantown Ave. Come and give what you can to support our public school teachers and students! One hundred percent of the money raised at this event will be used to provide small grants to our public school teachers.

Checks in the amount of $50, $100 or $250 should be made payable to “Village of Mt. Airy and mailed to 5219 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia, PA  19144. All donations are tax deductible.

Ken Weinstein
Trolley Car Diner





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