January 21st we celebrate Martin Luther King Day.  It is a beacon day, whose light slices through all the jibber-jabber of our times and illuminates the fact that King, a Baptist minister and a civil rights activist, elevated and forever changed life in America. What's more, he continues to change lives.

Hundreds of thousands of people freely turn a vacation day, into a service day — volunteering their time, dollars and hearts to help others.  We encourage you to do the same by choosing to volunteer at a local non-profit organization, or by participating in one of these celebratory local events:

Sunday, January 20th:  Media Fellowship House will hold its 30th annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Celebration on Sunday, January 20, 2019. In addition to the traditional music and a keynote address by distinguished guest Anita Friday on Suspicion…Why and What Cost?, two additions will be made to last year's honor role of 12 Spirit Award Winners. Nominations are listed online whom which will be selected 2 honorees. Voting will end on January 9th, 2019. bios of nominees and to vote, visit /www.mediafellowshiphouse.org.

Monday, January 21st:  Since 2002 Haverford College Coach, Bobbi Morgan has spearheaded a  basketball clinic for kids in first through eighth grades. Proceeds benefit families in need of shelter, services, and day care facilities.  All donations, including non-perishable foods, support the Community Action Agency of Delaware County's Life Center. To register call 610-446-9397 or email bmorgan@haverford.edu.  The clinics are 9:30am to noon.  Registration is $30 per child (and $20 for each sibling after that).

Monday, January 21st: 8 to 9:30am at the Drexelbrook Catering & Special Event Center
This breakfast honors the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with mingling, great food and the awarding of student essays. Delaware County Community College President, Dr. L. Joy Gates Black will be the keynote speaker and music will be provided by the Bible Union Fellowship Choir. Guests are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items or toiletries to donate to the County's  shelter and food bank. It is hosted by the Community YMCA of Eastern Delaware County, the Delaware County Chamber of Commerce, Upper Darby Community Outreach Corporation, as well as local churches and area schools.

It’s widely known that one of  King's biggest inspirations in his belief in non-violent activism was Mahatma Gandhi.
But who inspires you?

Here are 3 Delaware County residents who have achieved great things. 

Tina Fey, portrait by local artist George Rothacker
You are never too young or too old to explore your inner performer.  Tina Fey began her career as a young child performing at the Upper Darby Performing Arts Center...and at 48 years old, she’s just hitting her stride!

Tina Fey is a hugely successful writer, actress & producer who 
was born and raised in Upper Darby.  She attended Cardinton Stonehurst Elementary School, Beverly Hills Middle School, and graduated from Upper Darby High School. 

With more than a dozen Emmy nominations, Tina has already won 3 Emmy Awards for Outstanding Writing and Acting, and performed on what has been called 'one of the greatest TV series of all time,' 30 Rock. Her charity work is also inspiring, supporting the Alliance for Children's Rights, the Alzheimer's Association, Autism Speaks and the Children's Health Fund.

Impact the lives of people in our own community, like Thomas Garrett did in the 18th Century...his bravery helped change history.

Thomas Garrett, portrait by local artist George Rothacker
Thomas Garrett, born in 1789, was an American abolitionist and leader in the Underground Railroad movement before the American Civil War. The family home, Thornfield, where he lived until 1822, still stands in Drexel Hill and is recorded on the national Register of Historic Places.

In a Quaker family already inclined towards abolitionism, Thomas became especially dedicated after a family servant was kidnapped by a man who planned to sell the woman as a slave in the South. While building a prosperous iron and hardware business, he also served as stationmaster on the last stop of the Underground Railroad, the pathway to the North for blacks seeking freedom from slavery. Facing heavy fines for his activities, Garrett continued his mission until the Civil War ended. He is known for having assisted 2500 slaves to freedom.

If you love gardens, and the arts...you've been touched by the life of  Philanthropist, Dorrance (DoDo) Hill Hamilton.   

Wayne's Dorrance Hill Hamilton,
portrait by local artist George Rothacker
Here's an example of how  volunteers, land and garden organizations, and residents helped save our newest garden in Wayne:

After an unprecedented six-month-long battle, Stoneleigh: A Natural Garden is no longer at risk of being developed. Last year this stunning 42-acre public garden in Villanova was rescued by the Natural Lands Organization, our massive garden community of volunteers and staff, plus local residents who fought off an attempt to seize the Garden via eminent domain, and develop it for other purposes.

If this inspires you to support environmental projects, then Dorrance would be very pleased. She, like Stoneleigh Gardens, resided in Wayne. A huge supporter of local gardens and horticulture, she was an annual participant in the Philadelphia Flower Show, and fostered the horticulture program at Williamson College of the Trades, in Media.

Read more about these and 50 other inspiring local residents on our website: Celebrated People of Delaware County

Hedgerow Theatre is proud to present three weekends that celebrate famous women.

JANUARY 5th & 6th Jennifer Summerfield and Jessica DalCanton portray...MARY SHELLEY and VIRGINIA WOOLF!

Act 1 – Mary Shelley: On the final day of Mary Shelley’s life, she solicits her daughter in law’s help to preserve her memory and legacy… and discovers that there may be more than one way to tell the truth.

Act 2 – Virginia Woolf: Virginia Woolf was a woman ahead of her time,  a feminist and radical artist who managed to capture the muses’ butterflies and preserve them between the pages of her books. This 30 minute solo performance by Jessica DalCanton crackles with warmth and contemporary insight on Virginia Woolf’s life through the lens of “A Room of One’s Own.”
Left to right: Jennifere Summerfield as Mary Shelley, Jessica DalCanton as Virginia Woolf,
Susan Wefel as Shirley Valentine, Meredith Beck as Mary Martin and Sarah Gafgen as Ethel Merman.

JANUARY 11th, 12th and 13th Susan Wefel presents SHIRLEY VALENTINE!
Shirley Valentine is the fictional main character in the award-winning 1989 British romantic comedy-drama film bearing her name. Hedgerow’s own Susan Wefel portrays this ordinary middle class English housewife, who, as she prepares chips and egg for dinner, ruminates on her life, her husband, her children, her past, and an invitation from a girlfriend to join her on holiday in Greece to seek romance and adventure. Does she go?  Find out for yourself.

JANUARY 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th Meredith Beck and Sarah Gafgen recreate MARY MARTIN and ETHEL MERMAN in Together Off-Broadway!
Together Off-Broadway pays homage to Broadway’s iconic Leading Ladies -- Mary Martin & Ethel Merman portrayed by Philadelphia Artists, Meredith Beck & Sarah Gafgen who explore their  legendary careers through song, while sharing stories about their lives & devoted friendship.

Enjoy show stoppers such as: I Got Rhythm, Neverland, Sun in the Morning, Cockeyed Optimist, There’s No Business Like Show Business, Hello Dolly, The Sound of Music… & their medley of old American standards performed on the Fords Fiftieth Anniversary Television Special  back in 1953!
Together Off-Broadway was conceived and compiled by Beck & Gafgen thanks to the generosity of the Philadelphia Womens’ Theatre Festival.

Get Tickets Here:
Listen to Video from the original sound trace from Ford's 50th Anniversary Special

64 Rose Valley Rd, Media, PA 19063
(610) 565-4211

January is all about Orchids at Longwood Gardens!  But how much do you really know about this little beauties? Here's a short true/false quiz to test your knowledge:
  • There are  over 25,000 documented orchid species in the world.
  • Orchids grow on every continent except Antarctica.
  • Orchids have the tiniest seeds in the world...up to 3 million in a seedpod!
  • Orchid plants can live to be 100 year old.
If you answered 'true' to all of the above, then you truly are an Orchid "cognoscente!"
(a Latin term for an expert!)

Longwood's Annual Orchid Festival kicks off on January 19th and no one should miss one of the most beautiful and fragrant events of the year.

Experience an indoor winter wonderland filled with vibrant, artfully designed  arrangements. Lavish Cymbidium orchids dramatically spill from basins, grand Phalaenopsis orchids float overhead, and tiny orchid species make a big impact, among other show-stopping displays.

Then take a quiet stroll through the outdoor gardens and enjoy the true beauty of winter.
1001 Longwood Road,
Kennett Square, PA 19348

“Cowards die many times before their deaths. The valiant never taste of death but once.”  
Julius Caesar, Act II, Scene II.

Julius Caesar is one of the most famous plays by William Shakespeare and it contains some of his most quoted lines.  Caesar's words above have played a larger role in my own life, than I'd like.  They remind us to be brave in the face of fear...a lesson I learned on a cold winter's night when I was 7 years old:

I sneaked our German Shepherd, Fritz, into dad's art studio to stay warm. In the morning he was covered in more colors than a rainbow, and so was dad's studio. I'm not even going to mention the extra little gifts he left behind!  The consequences suffered by my 7-year-old self were almost as historic as those in this play :(

Actions have consequences.
Julius Caesar has returned to Rome, triumphant from the war against Pompey. The Republic is prepared to give him additional honors, causing concern among some Senators unwilling to cede so much power to one man.  Cassius plots his conspiracy to murder Caesar and asks for the support of the highly respected Brutus.  Brutus is conflicted but is finally persuaded to do what is best for the Republic.  These decision have repercussions, and if you don't know the story, we won't spoil it for you.  But this show is an epic tale of both courage and fear, respect and revenge.  Don't miss this amazing production!

Get tickets here

104 E State St, Media, PA 19063
(610) 891-0100
Media Theatre Website

You will not see an actual person, place, or thing in the painting above...but each of you viewing it at the Community Art Center in Wallingford will see something different.

It is a stunning abstract piece by Debs Bleicher where the color, shapes, brushstrokes, size and even the artist's process itself, are both the focus and the subject of the artwork.

On January 13th from 2 to 4pm, meet 4 talented artists displaying a variety of art styles at the Community Arts Center in Wallingford. This beautiful building will feature exhibits of Abstract, Ceramic, Watercolor and 2D/3D art works.
  • In the Duke Gallery —Abstraction, the Art of Community Arts Center’s Abstract Studio Artists
  • In the BeaDazzle Gallery —Explore the Ceramic works of Maggi DeBaecke
  • In the Lounge Gallery —3D Work of instructor Effie Brenner and 2D watercolor instructor Alice Meyer-Walker
  • In the Stairwell Gallery — See the 3D and 2D student work of instructors Effie Brenner and Alice Meyer-Wallace
Sign up for Winter Adult and Children's classes!
There are adult classes in painting, drawing, ceramics, sculpture, jewelry, and photography - plus children can register for the Art Start Pre-School, Lucky Charms afternoon arts enrichment, After-School and Weekend ART Adventures, and Teen Workshops. 
For more information and registration, call the office at 610-566-1713. 

414 Plush Mill Rd., Wallingford, PA 19086

The Wayne Art Center encourages you to learn about a very old and important creative process called "CAST" ...this is where materials (art and objects) are formed using a mold.

Through January 26th The Wayne Art Center invites you to an exhibit by more than 70 artists that reminds us of the significance of the art form. This curated invitational exhibition displays a selection of cast art and objects continuing and building on the theme of the award-winning book, CAST: Art and Objects Made Using Humanity’s Most Transformational Process, by Jen Townsend and RenĂ©e Zettle-Sterling (Schiffer Publishing, 2017.)

In addition to works by contemporary artists and craftspeople, the exhibition includes both historical and everyday objects. 

413 Maplewood Ave., Wayne, PA 19087
HOURS: M-F 9am to 5pm
Sat 9am to 4pm
Closed Sundays
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia
Stephen Hawking never made it into space.  He is pictured above in a NASA Zero Gravity Chamber.  He died in March, but left behind a legacy of courage, knowledge and the ability to communicate without being able to speak.

He looked outward into the universe and wrote papers on Particle Creation by Black Holes, The Large Scale Structure of Space, Wave Function of the Universe, and many more that were born of gazing upwards.

On Monday, January 28th from 6:30 to 7:30 pm you can go stargazing at Widener University's Observatory.  Look through their 16 inch Meade Cassegrain reflecting telescope and reflect on some of Hawking's brilliant thoughts...
  • “It surprises me how disinterested we are today about things like physics, space, the universe and philosophy of our existence, our purpose, our final destination. It’s a crazy world out there. Be curious.”
  • “My goal is simple. It is a complete understanding of the universe, why it is as it is and why it exists at all.” 
  • “One, remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Two, never give up work. Work gives you meaning and purpose, and life is empty without it. Three, if you are lucky enough to find love, remember it is there and don’t throw it away.”
  • “One of the basic rules of the universe is that nothing is perfect. Perfection simply doesn’t exist.... Without imperfection, neither you nor I would exist.” 
Read more quotes and a full story at this Newsweek Web Page

Considered by many to be a once in a generation genius, Hawking never won a Nobel Prize.

Widener University, Main Campus
One University Place
Chester PA 19013
Carry your family fun into the New Year with a Wintery Night Hike and a Family CAMP IN!

Bundle up for a Wintery Night Hike on January 19th, 6:30 to 8pm that includes a campfire and treats.
How is nature different after dark? Do humans have the ability to adapt without light?
Explore your senses and the Arboretum by the light of the moon during this nighttime sensory hike. End the night warming up around a campfire with a delicious treat!
Bring a flashlight and dress warmly. Suitable for teens and adults.  FREE for members, $15 non-members.
Read more about the Wintery Walk

Check out this inside photo of the newly renovated Barn
at Tyler Arboretum! Photo by Tom Crane.
Pitch your tent in Tyler's beautiful redesigned Barn Loft from January 26th at 4pm to the 27th at 10am! Join Tyler for their Family Camp In weekend adventure.

Stay overnight at the Arboretum! Set up your tent in the renovated Barn loft and dinner, s’mores, and breakfast will be cooked over a campfire. Bring your own camping gear. Plus  Explore Tyler at night with an evening hike.
Suitable for ages 5 and up.

Members: $30 per child, $40 per adult; Non-members: $40 per child, $50 per adult.
Read more about the Family Camp-In

Tyler Arboretum, 515 Painter Road, Media, PA 19063
Tyler Arboretum Website

The Upper Darby Performing Arts Center has been host to one of the finest youth music and theatre programs in the state. 

For 43 years, it has hosted a summer theatre program for young community members.  Summer Stage alumni include artists such as Tina Fey, Josh Young, and Marcus Stevens, plus countless others who continue to embody the motto of Filling the World With Love.

On Saturday, January 19th at 3pm the Upper Darby Arts and Education Foundation holds its annual Fundraising Gala...and this year's event is titled "The Greatest Show" and is under the direction of Barbara Benglian, UDHS Choral Director and recipient of the prestigious PA Teach of the Year. Please purchase tickets for your family and friends to attend this outstanding event that benefits local youth throughout the county!

The event has helped fund the awarding of over $2,000,000.00 in grants to benefit innovative classroom and district projects, music, the arts, robotics, after-prom, academic scholarships, Upper Darby Summer Stage and the K-2 Literacy Initiative.

Tickets are  $15 to $60 depending on your seating choice.
Choose your seating and get tickets here

601 N Lansdowne Ave, Drexel Hill, PA 19026
610) 622-1189
Scott Arboretum offers exciting tours, educational workshops, and seminars throughout the year, and 2019 kicks off with 3 unique and interesting events:

Take a free Guided Winter Highlights Tour on January 17th or 29th from noon to 1pm. 
If you ate too many cookies over the holidays, a brisk lunchtime walk through the Winter Garden is a great way to kick off your 'get ready for bathing suits' regimen!

Beginners and experts alike will enjoy this winter tour led by Arboretum staff. It begins in the Scott Arboretum offices and is free and open to the public. In case of inclement weather, the tour will be canceled. For more information, call the Scott Arboretum offices at 610-328-8025.

On January 31st, from 1 to 2pm, let the Arboretum whisk you off to 3 Sunny Southern California Public Gardens.

This Wanderings at One event is free and open to the public.  Attendees will tour 3 gardens through staff experiences, photos, food, architecture and customs.  This is a fun event where questions are encouraged!  It is held in the Lang Performing Arts Center Cinema at Swarthmore College. 

GARDENS FEATURED WILL BE: South Coast Botanical Garden, Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden, and The Huntington with Mary Tipping, Plant Recorder and Curator of the Scott Arboretum.

Take part in the Arboretum's Tu b’Shevat Celebration and Reception January 24th from 4:30 to 6pm
Learn how the Jewish faith celebrates the importance of trees in Tu b'Shevat, a celebration of the Jewish New Year of the Trees, in anticipation of spring.  There will be holiday activities including a nature walk, Seder (a participatory Jewish ritual appreciating plants and exploring their spiritual teachings), planting of herbs and dates, and a reception.  It is free and open to the public. This program is co-sponsored by Scott Arboretum of Swarthmore College, Swarthmore College Interfaith Center, and the Kehilah Board. Register by calling 610-328-8025.

Read more at the Scott Arboretum Website

500 College Ave.
Swarthmore, 19081 PA

January 8th is Elvis Presley's birthday. Still referred to as "The King of Rock and Roll," his Graceland home is one of the nation's most popular 'home' attractions, drawing more than 700,000 visitors a year.  In fact, only the White House welcomes more!

So it seemed only fitting that we honor him this month by using his songs to encourage you to go dining, touring and exploring in Delco this month...

With so much turkey and ham over the holidays, you may be 'longing' for something Italian...like long luscious strands of spaghetti?  Here's an excuse to take the family out for dinner! January 4th is National Spaghetti Day!  Here are just a few Italian restaurants with a 4 STAR or better rating on Yelp: Fellini Cafe and Spasso Italian Grill in Media, Johnny Paisano's in Springfield, Il Granaio in Glen Mills, Trieste Italian Restaurant in Prospect Park, Pica's Restaurant in Upper Darby, Teca in Newtown Square, Taste Budz Cafe in Aston, Talluto's Authentic Italian in Ridley Park and Anthony's at Paxon Hollow Country Club in Broomall...

The sweetest 'tweets' can be heard at the John Heinz National Wildlife RefugeJanuary 5th is National Bird Day so why not take a fun 'bird' tour this month or just grab your binoculars and head out on your own.  There's no admission fee and the Refuge is open sunrise to sunset.  Read more: John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge Website

One of the lines in this song goes, "Let me be around you every night, run your fingers through my hair and cuddle me real tight..."  Well guess what? January 14th is National Dress up Your Pet Day - so get the family together and dress up your pet in something stylish and Facebook worthy?  Have a blast bringing out your pet's inner fashionista. THEN REWARD THEM WITH COOL TREATS AND WINTER WEAR from pet stores like these:

  • Giggy Bites in Chadds Ford offers hand crafted & fresh baked dog treats! Voted Best Pet Bakery in Philly, they feature over 15 varieties of baked treats, fresh foods, holiday meals, birthday cakes, a dozen store-made jerky products, and more. Read more about Giggybites
  • And like people, cats and dogs do mind the cold weather! Braxton's Animal Works as been serving the county for more than 75 years, offering pet winter wear, dog licensing, traditional and organic foods and more.  Read more about Braxton's

January 29th is National Popcorn Day so get "all shook up" and head for one of Delco's many movie theaters. From the AMC's in Springfield and Media, to the Regal Cinema in Edgemont or the very cool vintage Anthony Wayne Theater in Wayne, the best (and possibly worst-for-us) popcorn is still found at the movies!  And if you like your popcorn homemade, shake up a few bags and do an Elvis Movie Marathon Night!

January 23rd is National Pie Day:  Minellas' Diner in Wayne makes a mean Blueberry pie.  You can check out their full menu at  Minella's Diner Website.  And if you've never had the Strawberry Pie at Hank's Place in Chadds Ford, you better hurry.  This huge favorite is going fast!  If you miss it, they also offer tasty Cherry and Apple Pies. Click here for more:  Hank's Place Restaurant

January is National Skating Month...so head for IceWorks Skating Complex in Aston where 'falling' is not only permissible, but probable!  Public Skating hours are offered almost daily. Read more at: IceWorks website