Philly Love Notes Gift Guide

Hello friends and Philly-lovers, Time for the first Philly Love Letters Gift Guide! With some help from you, I put together a completely non-comprehensive list of amazing things being done right here in the city (or right outside). This only scratches the surface of the cool stuff being made here. There are always tons of great markets and small businesses to support (like Amalgam Comics, Philadelphia Independents, Yowie, and Omoi Zakka). And of course, one of the best gifts of all -- donating money, time, Read more

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

Gate Lane

Love Note #30: Get lost in the French village on Gate Lane in W. Mt. Airy

Favorite Spot: Gate Lane
Neighborhood: W. Mt. Airy 
Address: Gate Lane runs parallel to Allens Lane, between Elbow Lane and Emlen St. The turnoff is hard to see save for the stone arches on either end.
My love note: I spent my childhood summers attending a small camp run out of a friend’s house that was nestled at the end of W. Mt. Airy Ave and surrounded by Wissahickon Park. We spent our days running around the 200-year old property, swimming, hiking to Devils Pool and catching sunfish out of the creek.  It was my dream, starting at seven years old, to one day live in Mt. Airy.  I achieved that goal six years ago. 

Mt. Airy was as beautiful as I remembered, and I continued to do the things that I had done there as a kid, with the addition of owning a home, going out to eat and drink, and running errands. On my days off, I wandered the streets and trails from Germantown to Chestnut Hill, absorbing the beauty of the neighborhoods.

On one such walk, I happened upon this lane tucked away behind overgrown trees and huge stones arches. Its discrete location and rutted road makes driving down it nearly impossible, so a stroll is uninterrupted by cars. The houses line one side of the street, connected by a low stonewall behind which lies a small grassy valley and stream. While each house is distinct, there are shared characteristics that make the houses flow into one another. They were designed with a French village in mind, and walking down this lane is like being transported to another country. Once I pass under the arch and leave Gate Lane behind, I realize that there are many more of these hidden places waiting to be discovered in the city.

Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Mt. Airy 4 Comments