With one of the coldest winters in recent memory finally over, people all over the city of Philadelphia are looking for ways to enjoy the spring sunshine before the summer heat sets in.
In the Northeast, for those seeking family friendly options or activities for those over 21, the choices are plentiful.
Fox Chase Recreation Center
One place to bring children of all ages is the Fox Chase Recreation Center (above). The rec center is located at the intersection of Ridgeway Street and Rockwell Avenue. In addition to a playground, this facility is home to a swimming pool, basketball court and numerous open fields. Many local sports teams use its sports fields for their games.
Fox Chase Branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia
Just down the street from the recreation center, at the intersection of Rockwell and Rhawn Street, is the Fox Chase Branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia.
“Not many libraries have an outdoor courtyard like this one,” said Paul Daka, branch manager and children’s librarian.
In addition to offering book and DVD rentals, the library advertises dozens of community events, or classes such as Tae-Bo, which can be found on their website or on multiple bulletin boards in the building.
At the intersection of Oxford, Loney and Pine streets is a small park maintained by the Northeast Philadelphia Lions Club. Although it does not feature any playground equipment, the park is a quiet location in the middle of three busy streets.
“I come here every day,” said Jim Friskey (pictured above), as he was waited for his wife at a hairdressing appointment.
Most days, he enjoys sitting at the park and watching the people and streets around him.
Hop Angel Brauhaus
Just steps away from the park, at 7980 Oxford Avenue, is the Hop Angel Brauhaus. Old photographs and information on the restaurant walls speaks to its claim to fame being one of the oldest buildings in Fox Chase, dating back to the 1600s.
Joseph Rodriguez, an employee at the Hop Angel, said that the restaurant should be a landmark. Rodriguez explained that the building was originally an inn, which was then converted to a merchant’s shop, and finally to a series of restaurants leading up to the current one.
Although it has a fireplace for the warmer months, the restaurant’s outdoor beer garden is an excellent option for spring and summer.
For those who enjoy nature rather than simply being outdoors, the Pennypack Park and its environmental center (with multiple entrances situated along Verree Road) are an obvious choice in the Northeast. Nature walks and a bird blind are located near the main building, and the park plays host to a variety of educational and community activities.
-Text and images by Alyssa Luchette and Casey Kallen.