My Annual Philly Love Note 2015 Edition

Emma Fried-Cassorla
Favorite Place: Delaware River Waterfront (but I’m biased)

I am: A lover of the waterfront, blogger, Philly-girl, twin, friend, giver of good gifts, closeted romantic, biker.
Years in Philly: 32 minus 5
Current Home: S. Philly (even farther South than last year)

IMG_1034My Love Note (this is written as Philly Love Notes and not as the Communications Manager for the waterfront):

To the Delaware River Waterfront,

Traditionally, my annual Philly Love Note has been tinged with a hint of sadness and confusion – lost loves, job indecisiveness, loneliness. This year it’s not that. This year, I got to make my Philly Love Note a reality.

After two years of working for the Delaware River Waterfront Corp (DRWC), I’ve finally hit my stride, and I think we as an organization have as well. My desire to change how we perceive our city is now tangible in the work that I do. And let me give credit where’s it’s due: Spruce Street Harbor Park (SSHP), Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest (BCRR Winterfest), Washington Avenue Pier, the upcoming Pier 68, the Race Street Pier, and more exist because of an incredibly hard working group of individuals who have dedicated their lives to making the waterfront better, and thereby making Philly better. We are a non-profit, not the city, though we have their full support and help, and it is an organization that I am so proud to work for. Most of the people who work at DRWC don’t normally get the credit and recognition they deserve, so I wanted to call them out, because THEY are the reason #whyilovephilly and why great things are happening here:

Karen and Lizzie are our two planners. Yes, these two women tackle ALL of our waterfront development projects from new bike trails to the overhaul of Penn’s Landing. I am lucky to call them my coworkers and to see all their projects come to fruition.

Shelvia, Christine, Sharon (and me) comprise the programming side of the organization. We somehow manage to pull off almost 50 events throughout the summer, while helping to develop and program SSHP, the Race Street Pier, BCRR Winterfest and more. Without them, my beloved parks would not exist, and not be nearly as fun to attend.

Dave and Jackie are the manager and assistant manager of BCRR Winterfest, SSHP, AND food and beverage for the entire waterfront. Yes. They do it all, and without them our waterfront wouldn’t function. They work tirelessly throughout the year and deserve credit for what they do.

Our site operations, security, stage hands and parking teams oversee not just Penn’s Landing, but all along the six miles of the Central Delaware. We could not have 50,000 people come to fireworks, or build new parks down in the Southern section of the waterfront without Lavelle, Punch, Tyrell, Ben, Timmy and all of the other guys and women who work in these teams. SSHP and BCRR Winterfest were built by them and every time I see people enjoying the parks, I like to remember the role they played and continue to play on a daily basis.

Angela, Rinku, Gina and Yolanda keep the organization functioning. They are the bones without which we’d be a mess.

Joe, Jodie, Tom and our Board helm the organization. Without them nothing on the waterfront would get done. It’s that simple.

As I write this, I’m getting ready to freeze my butt off at BCRR Winterfest tonight for the Valentine’s Day Sweetheart Skates, and you know what? I’m excited. If you want to feel how Philly is changing, come to the waterfront. Maybe I’ll buy you a beer.

With love,

This is my third annual Valentine’s Day tradition of reminiscing about the year in love note form.
See 2014’s here
See 2013’s here

IMG_1053Karen-thompson-waterfront-9on a train

(I weirdly have no photos of me at the waterfront — or none that I like — so here’s one from an epic cross country train trip last summer)

Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Delaware River 3 Comments

3 Responses to My Annual Philly Love Note 2015 Edition

  1. Sunny

    Love this! You and the DRWC sure make Philly – especially the waterfront, a go-to place for tourists and Philadelphians alike. I’m really looking forward to SSHP 2015 because, like a bad Philadelphian, I never went to experience it. Thanks for all you do for Philly, and shoutout to the DRWC as well!

  2. Mike Narcowich

    Great one, and nice perspective Emma. The light fixture looks like it’s sprouting.

  3. Martha

    Loved your letter, mu


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