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Citizens Bank named one of the best ballparks for craft beer

The Phillies' home stadium came in No. 6 in a list of the country's best ballparks for craft beer. (In fact, a local microbrew will run you the same cost as a Miller Lite.)

It comes as no surprise that two Pennsylvania cities (the only two with major league teams) made it into the top five. The state is well represented by a number of great breweries and both stadiums felt it only right to serve that amazing beer. At Citizens Bank, Phillies fans drink beer from Tröegs Brewing, Victory Brewing, Flying Fish (in nearby New Jersey), Sly Fox, Yards Brewery, Prism Brewing, and Philadelphia Brewing. The list continues with several out-of-state breweries, like Goose Island, Long Trail, Otter Creek, Allagash, Anchor, Dogfish Head, Lagunitas, Ommegang, Samuel Adams, 21st Amendment, Oskar Blues, and Sierra Nevada.

Original source: The Daily Meal
Read the complete list here.

SEPTA mulls extending subway service to 3 a.m. on weekends

SEPTA is considering a return to late-night service on the Broad Street and Market-Frankford lines.

Because of increasing nightlife and residential activity in Center City, SEPTA may continue service after midnight, when subways now are replaced by "night owl" buses, general manager Joseph Casey said.

The service might continue until 3 a.m., officials said. Initially, it would be limited to Friday and Saturday nights, in a pilot program to test the response.

Chief financial officer Richard Burnfield said his staff was still assessing the costs - for security, operators, cashiers, and maintenance - to determine if a resumption of some late-night subway service would be included in the agency's proposed budget that will be released next month.

SEPTA halted late-night subway service in the early 1990s because of security and cost concerns. About 3,600 riders a day were forced to shift to nighttime buses.

Original source: The Philadelphia Inquirer
Read the complete story here.

Huffington Post lists reasons Philly is 'most underrated city in America'

The Huffington Post has put together a list of the reasons Philadelphia is "the most underrated city in America." Sure, it's click-bait, but it's also kinda great -- soft pretzels, Eastern State, beer! And even a couple of things to snark about -- the Citywide Special is actually $5.

Original source: The Huffington Post
Read the complete list here.

Philadelphia's German-inspired Christmas Village is up-and-running

The grand tradition of lights and booths and hot drinks has once again arrived at City Hall.

The seasonal bouquet permeates the air of the Christmas Villages in Baltimore and Philadelphia, a pair of German-inflected colonies featuring crafts, local and Deutschland foods, toe-warming beverages and decorative lights as bright as a diamond tiara. The special events, which run through Christmas Eve and New Year’s Day, respectively, transport the glee — and the glühwein — of the German Christmas markets to the East Coast.

"It’s the spirit of the traditional Christkindlesmarkt," said founder Thomas Bauer, a native of Nuremberg, which holds one of the largest and most celebrated markets in Germany.

Over Thanksgiving weekend, Christkind the Christmas Angel even flew in from Nuremberg to officiate over the festivities, which are in their sixth year for Philadelphia and the first for Baltimore. Bauer chose the City of Brotherly Love as his original site because of the region’s German heritage and significant Amish population...In Philadelphia, the elfin structures occupied by more than 60 retailers encircle the 38-foot-tall Christmas tree in Love Park.

Original source: The Washington Post
Read the complete story here.

Philadelphia's cultural boom has led to expensive upkeep

Philadelphia spent time, money and effort transforming downtown into a hub for culture and the arts, complete with stunning institutions. All those assets require upkeep -- hence the city's next challenge.

Thanks to the arts, Philadelphia feels different today. But now that the building boom of new facilities is over, the question is whether the city and its benefactors can muster the support to become savior to the arts.

With operating costs up and philanthropy and ticket sales failing to keep pace, stress cracks are appearing in institutions all over town. Some groups, saddled with debt payments, are adjusting offerings to become more commercial. Others have declared bankruptcy or are contemplating it.

Original source: The Philadelphia Inquirer
Read the complete story here.

Two Philly bars make national "Bucket List"

A compilation of the bars you gotta visit before you die features two local legends: City Tavern and McGillin's Olde Ale House:

Their motto--and we'll admit it's a good one--is that they opened their doors the year Lincoln was elected. If you're not sure of the date it's 1860.

Opened by Irish immigrant William McGillin and originally called the Bell in Hand, this place has a legacy all unto itself. Not only has it survived 150 years, it is still one of the most popular watering holes in Philly.

Original source: Bucket List Bars
Read the complete list here; read the McGillin's entry here.

Cira Centre's 'Pong' transformation garners national attention

As part of Philly Tech Week, the north-facing wall of the Cira Centre will be transformed into a massive, functional version of the classic arcade game Pong. MTV has the scoop.

Dr. Frank Lee, a teaching professor in Drexel University's College of Engineering and co-founder of the Drexel Game Design Program, is the man behind the event. He'll be turning the building into his own personal game console thanks 1,514 LEDs lights that were installed on the building during its construction in 2005. He's also getting some help from Technically Philly (who founded Philly Tech Week), Brandywine Realty Trust, the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Knight Foundation.

"This is something I’ve been envisioning for quite a while," Lee said. "Not only is this something that’s just fun for anyone who’s ever played a video game, but it’s also a uniquely interactive art installation. One of the main goals of this event is to inspire wonder and creativity in anyone who sees it, especially kids."

Original source: MTV
Read the complete story here, and stay tuned for more Philly Tech Week coverage from Flying Kite.

Momofuku hosts Zahav for pop-up dinner

Middle East meets East as Philly chef Michael Solomonov takes Zahav's modern Israeli cuisine to Momofuku Ssam bar for a late-night dinner.

After teasing us earlier this week, we now have confirmation: Momofuku Ssäm Bar will be hosting Zahav for the first in a quarterly late night dinner series at the East Village hot spot. Tickets are $85 per person for the 11 PM dinner, inclusive of food, drink and gratuity. No word on menu yet, but looks like at least some of the drinks will come from Singapore brewery Tiger Beer. Reservations are available via e-mail only, and the likelihood is they’ll sell out quickly (if they haven’t already).

Eater Philly had more details:

Solomonov said that David Chang & Co. requested an all-Zahav menu, so they're going all out with the "Mesibah" option that includes his legendary lamb shoulder (which is almost as famous as Solomonov himself). As for dessert, the Federal Donuts crew is whipping up a special fancy doughnut created specifically for the event, as well.
Original source: Zagat
Read the complete post here.

Developers vie for Philly's second casino license

Developers are pulling out all the stops, feverishly vying for the city's second casino license. It remains to be seen what kind of impact a second gambling facility would have on the city -- of course these folks are making big promises.

Last week marked the kickoff of the second coming of the city's second gambling emporium: six developers vying to win the golden license, sort of a Mr. Philly Casino pageant. If you have a weakness for hyperbole and neon, the season's best show took place at the Convention Center, fitting given that the place was a huge gamble. It was a pitchfest on steroids.

Original source: Philadelphia Inquirer
Read full story here.

Foobooz names Philly's top 50 bars

Local food-centric blog Foobooz releases its annual list of the city's best bars. It's no surpise that the top ten are dominated by spots with serious beer programs—top-shelf suds have become Philly's calling card. Pub & Kitchen takes top honors, up from no. 10 last year.

If you want to be number one on the Foobooz Top 50 Bars list you had better bring it every day. And Pub & Kitchen does just that, with excellent food, a well curated beverage program plus excellent and dare we say, attractive service.

Source: Foobooz

Check out the full list here

GQ: Philly is top-5 beer city and home to the perfect pub crawl

GQ makes a pretty decent run at a perfect pub crawl in Philadelphia, which it identified as one of the top five beer cities in the U.S.
1. The Beer-Bar Brunch
Memphis Taproom 
Wake up with microbrews and delicious bar grub at this Kensington standby. The mellow front dining room is fine if you're a slow starter, but things are much livelier outside by the picnic tables and the former ice cream truck that's now a bar. 
Original source: GQ
Read the full story here.

NY Times undresses Live Arts Festival

A New York Times theater critic peeps skin, among other things, at the Live Arts Festival, which wrapped on Sunday.
Self-indulgence of a rather livelier, albeit self-destructive kind was a definite problem for the characters in “27,” from the Philadelphia company New Paradise Laboratories. This stylish-looking production imagines the afterlives of the famous rock figures who died at the age given in the title, the victims of booze, drugs and the pressures of celebrity. With the exception of Jimi Hendrix they are pretty much all here: Janis Joplin (Allison Caw), Amy Winehouse (Julia Frey), Jim Morrison (Kevin Meehan) and Kurt Cobain (Matteo Scammell).
Original source: The New York Times
Read the full story here.

Toronto's love song for Philadelphia's art scene

The Toronto Globe & Mail absolutely gushes about Philadelphia and it's proximity, affordability, easy-to-navigate grid and art attractions.

A friend had told us not to miss the massive mural in the Curtis Center building. Luckily, the doors were still open so we stepped into the deserted foyer to soak in Dream Garden – 100,000 pieces of hand-blown glass that were installed in 1916 by by Louis Comfort Tiffany, who based the design on a painting by Philadelphia-born Maxfield Parrish.
We were almost back to our hotel on Rittenhouse Square when we found Parc, a French bistro with sidewalk tables, and couldn’t resist stopping for a kir royale and some people-watching before turning in.
Original source: Toronto Globe & Mail
Read the full story here.

Frugal travel: Philadelphia as a midweek deal

The Washington Post writes about a city that "more or less belonged to" its travel section as it went in search of some midweek travel deals.
We found ourselves alone in a museum, befriended bartenders and shopkeepers who had nothing better to do than share their life stories with us, stumbled upon some sweet weekday-only deals and happenings, and never waited for a drink or a table. Our only regret: that we hadn’t also been there for Monday and Tuesday.
Original source: The Washington Post
Read the full story here.

Esquire declares Philly 'late-night capital'

Good brew and food for hungry fellas in the wee hours puts Philadelphia on Esquire's radar as the late-night capital of the U.S.
Once referred to as the "workshop of the world," the great factory city of Philadelphia still has a third-shift appetite: It gets hungry after midnight. And it doesn't hurt that the local love for microbrewing, dating to the late 1600s, shows up on beer lists so intricately compiled they'd be described as curated in more pretentious cities. (Yes, Brooklyn, I mean you.) Epic jukeboxes and random dartboards, roasted meat and melted cheese, super-hard-to-find beers and whiskey neat — all served up without judgment in an American stronghold for going big into the wee hours: Welcome to the dark side.
Original source: Esquire
Read the full story here.
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