Giving Back 2017

Oh this year. Time to buckle down and do what I can to give back. Like last year, I'll be donating all of the profits from the map sales to local nonprofits from Thanksgiving through Giving Tuesday. That means that your purchase of a map will help to support all of the following organizations: Philadelphia Wooden Boat Factory, Marian Anderson Historical Society, SEAMAAC, Red Paw Relief and Students Run Philly Style (more about the nonprofits below). Last year we raised Read more

#whyilovephillyarts Launches

It's official, the first #whyilovephillyarts, featuring Sean Martorana, is now live! Check out the prints below and purchase one of the 30 limited edition prints online. This is the first collaboration that aims to build a body of Philly-specific art across a variety of mediums for people to purchase with 100% of the profits going to the artist (along with a full commissions and licensing Read more

Sean Martorana x Philly Love Notes

The best part about running Philly Love Notes and making maps is the opportunity to connect with, spotlight, and help build the Philly community (see Giving Back This Year -- news about 2017 soon, #whyilovephilly Twitter campaign, #whyilovephilly parties, Philly Love Letters). So... I'm very excited to announce the new project, #whyilovephillyarts, a series of collaborations aimed at showcasing the amazingly talented artists and makers we have here in the city.  The Concept - Commission a piece of art from a variety of painters, illustrators, graphic designers, Read more

Graduate Hospital

Love Note #289: More skyline porn

Jonah Martinson
Favorite Philly Place: South Street Bridge from Graduate Hospital to University City.
Neighborhood: Spanning Graduate Hospital and University City

I Am: A social media Community Manager for a local advertising agency who loves displaying the City of Brotherly Love on social.
Years in Philly: 3
Current Home: Society Hill

A photo posted by Conrad Benner (@streetsdept) on

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Love Notes #181 and #182: Mighty Writers is a rowhome turned-writing wonderland for Christian Precise and Kishwer Vikaas Barrica

Editors Note: This summer, Mighty Writers is opening a second site at 39th and Lancaster in West Philadelphia to reach even more children like Christan. To learn more or to donate, please click here.

Christian Precise
Favorite spot: Mighty Writers
Neighborhood: Graduate Hospital
Address: 1501 Christian Street, Philadelphia, PA 19146

I am: a cat-crazy, aspiring author whose hobbies include drawing manga and practicing martial arts.
Years in Philly: 13
Current Home: Graduate Hospital

Kishwer-and-Christian-Mighty-Writers-2

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When love notes work

Last week I posted a great poem by Linda Huss to Grace Tavern bartender Rees. I’m never sure if the Philly Love Notes reach their intended target, but I’m happy to report that this one did.

So please keep writing about your love for Philadelphia and I’ll keep posting.

Rees-screenshot

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Love Note #154: Linda Huss’ Ode to a Philly Guy

Linda Huss
Favorite Spot: Across the bar from Philly’s best ’tender
Neighborhood: Graduate Hospital
Address: 2229 Grays Ferry Avenue

I am: I’m a Downingtown-bred, Penn State-educated, and Philly-loving word nerd who works for the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation—known to you and yours as Visit Philly. Also, I’m the occasional writer of those other Philly love letters.
Years in Philly: 1 in Manayunk (don’t we all?) and 5 in Center City.
Current Home: Fitler Square or Graduate Hospital, depending who you ask.

Linda-Huss-Grace-Tavern-1

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Love Note #146: If it weren’t for Resurrection Ale House, Jenny Choplin wouldn’t be a chef

Jenny Choplin
Favorite Spot: Resurrection Ale House
Address: 2425 Grays Ferry Avenue
Neighborhood: Gradate Hospital

I am: A chef, writer, singer and Mom to the sweetest rescue kitty ever.
Years in Philly: Twelve years in Philly but still a proud Jersey girl.
Current Home: South Philly

Jenny-Choplin-Ressurection-1

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Mighty Writers: Layia’s Love Note to a Pink Door

Editors Note: In November, 2012, I taught a class at the Mighty Writers, a non-profit who’s mission is to “teach Philadelphia kids to think and write with clarity, so self-esteem grows and success is achieved at school, at work and in life.” I was curious how children would see and write about their experiences in Philadelphia. The first writer is Layia, who chose to write about a pink door she saw on a short walking tour of the MW’s Graduate Hospital neighborhood. 

Layia Araya, 3rd Grade

Pink-door-cropped copy
(photo by Layia)

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Love Note #128: Dear Loop, Do you know how much I love you? Susanne Johnson

Susanne Johnson
Favorite Spot: Loop Yarn
Neighborhood: Graduate Hospital
Address: 1914 South Street between 19th and 20th Streets

I am: a native Philadelphian, a nurse in West Philadelphia, a blogger, and a story-teller with a fierce love for all things homemade be they knit, sewn, or preserved.
Years in Philadelphia: 27
Current Home: Elkins Park

Susanne-Johnson-Loop-7

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Love Note #118: “Each standing facade offers a glimpse into our shared past” (Jill Weber)

Jill Weber
Favorite Spot: Old Store front at 18th and Fitzwater
Neighborhood: Graduate Hospital
Address: 18th and Fitzwater

I am: An archeologist married to an inventor, wine enthusiast and owner of JET Wine Bar and REX 1516 – both on South Street West
Years in Philly: From Michigan City, IN, but 20 years in Philly
Current Home: Fitler Square

Jill-Webber-18th-and-Bainbridge-2

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Love Note #82: Arthur Etchells winds down with oysters at Pub and Kitchen in Graduate Hospital

Arthur Etchells
Favorite Spot: Eating oysters outside of Pub and Kitchen during happy hour.
Neighborhood: Graduate Hospital
Address: 1946 Lombard Street

I am: Founder of Foobooz, and a Philadelphia native. The only food I won’t eat comes from McDonalds.
Years in Philly: Whole life.
Current home: Graduate Hospital

Arthur-Etchells-Pub-and-Kitchen-1

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Love Note #80: JoAnn Greco suggests spending your Saturday morning eating a petite dejuner at Cafe Lutecia in Fitler Square

JoAnn Greco
Favorite Spot: Cafe Lutecia
Neighborhood: Fitler Square
Address: 2301 Lombard St


I am: New York-born freelance journalist specializing in urban planning, architecture, design, and travel topics; regular contributor to Plan Philly
Years in Philly: 21
Current Home: Bella Vista


My love note: Sitting outside in the Saturday morning sunlight, enjoying the “petite dejuner” special here — a (top-notch) croissant, baguette with jam and beurre, orange juice and, for a $1 more, a cup of espresso — doesn’t make me feel like I’m in Paris, it makes me feel like I’m in a lively and congenial part of Philadelphia. I love the stately rowhome, painted in black, that perches catty-corner from the cafe. And I’m enticed by the glimpse of trees over Fitler Square down the block, where the umbrellas of its farmer’s market beckons. Eventually, lazily, I will myself to get up to explore the park’s offerings, and then, to wind my way back east.

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