West Chester Weekly News Roundup

fall flowers
While it’s starting to look and feel like fall now, Monday makes it official

With so much going on around town. Catch up on what you may have missed. 

It’s Friday, September 20. Two more armed robberies and a super-sketchy Uber-ride reported in the borough. Should I be concerned? Plus, Melton Center’s affordable housing project gets more money, the results of the School District’s school start time survey and a new playground for Everhart Park. This week’s got some good, some bad and definitely some ugly. Let’s get started. 

union st
400 block of W. Union St.

Should we be concerned about these armed robberies? Last month West Chester Police were looking for two suspects wanted for two separate instances of armed home invasion in the borough. Then this past week two more were reported. One Saturday night when the suspect entered a home at 20 South Walnut and shot the victim in the torso according to the police report and another on Monday night where to men approached two victims on the 400 block of W. Union Street and robbed them at gunpoint. In the last two incidents the suspects were apprehended but this is a few too many armed robberies to make me comfortable. 

To recap: 

  • Aug. 16: Two armed men entered a home on the 500 block of South Matlack street and ransacked it at gunpoint. Little was reported missing. Suspects at large. 
  • Aug. 16: Same two men entered a home on South Walnut and again little was reported missing. Suspects at large.  
  • Sept 14: Man entered a home on South Matlack St in a reported invasion robbery. Victim shot. Suspect apprehended. 
  • Sept 16: Two victims robbed at gunpoint on the 400 block of Union Street. Suspect apprehended.  

Do you mind if I crash at your place? West Chester is getting more money for low-income housing. Chester County has earmarked $850,000 in funds to support the affordable housing project underway at the Melton Center. The Center is planning to build ten townhouses and a four-story apartment building on its Market Street location. This money is in addition to the 1.075 million pledged by the state. It’s a good start but still a long way off from the 14 million needed to complete the project. 

everhart_playground3
Will the fire engine make the cut? Now, I’m getting a little nostalgic.

Who’s ready for something new? The Friends of Everhart Park and the Borough are combing to bring a new playground to Everhart Park. They are working with custom playground design house, Play-by-Design, to find a solution that best meets the needs of the site, the community and of course, the budget. They are also looking for your input. Learn more here.   

Now this we did see this coming. On Wednesday Borough Council voted to censure fellow member William (Bill) Scott after it was reported he made racially insensitive remarks to an actress in the theater production of West Chester-set Mud Row. In the somewhat pointless ritual, the Council called Scott out publically for his comments.He has also been stripped of his chairmanship on the public safety, events and quality of life committee committee. Borough Council has no authority to remove Scott from his role, although all members, Mayor and many residents and community leaders have asked that he resign.

henderson
So far the West Chester Area School District has found strong support for moving back start times.

“I’d say the positive to negative is 10 to 1.”

-John Sanville, superintendent of the Unionville-Chadds Ford School District, on his districts decision to move the high school start time. 

Just five more minutes. The West Chester Area School District has found strong support for moving back high school start times. At community meetings this week, the District shared some of the findings of its spring outreach surveys. The results showed overwhelming support for moving start times. Parents, students and teachers are all in favor of the move. Although interestingly parents most favored the move at 79 percent;  teachers the least at 61 percent; and students fell somewhere in the middle at 71 percent.

The warnings. Stay alert to your surroundings especially when using a rideshare. Two women had to jump out of a moving Uber after the driver went off course and refused to follow the directions to their destination or stop the car. The women were able to flag down Officer Samantha Long of the West Chester Police Department and the driver was arrested and taken into custody. The women were using the service to travel between destinations in the borough.   

“Heisman Trophy of the collegiate band world.”

The accolades. A standing ovation for West Chester University’s marching band which recently won the prestigious Sudler trophy, the Heisman Trophy of the collegiate band world. WCU is the first division II school to win the award. The Golden Rams will receive the award this Saturday at a presentation during halftime of the football game. The band will also be featured in an upcoming episode of the documentary ‘Take the Field’. When you’re good, you’re good.   

Also, our sincerest gratitude to John Theilacker, Christopher McDowell and Mason Grohoski, who were all recognized by the Mayor last week for their lasting contributions to our community. They also each received a key to the city, so we know who to call when we get locked out.

Finally, congratulations to future neighbor, Stove and Tap, on being selected by Philadelphia Magazine as one of the best burgers in the suburbs. 

Names to know. Mike Perrone. After a tumultuous couple of years at the position of borough manager, it seems the town may have settled on their man.  This week Borough Council reviewed extending a three-year employment contract between the Borough of West Chester and the Borough Manager, effective January 1, 2020. 

Give back. (Reminder, in case like me you’ve been driving around with powdered lemonade rolling around in your car for a week.) Safe Harbor of West Chester is in need of a few items: coffee (regular and decaf), powdered lemonade and powdered iced tea. Add them to your shopping list if you can, and call Melissa (610-340-1183) to arrange a drop off time.  

fall walk
Where are you headed this weekend?

The freakin’ weekend. What are you up to this weekend? We have the usual some soccer, some errands, then I plan on checking out the Recycled Art Event the Friends of Everhart Park are hosting. Have you seen the collection of works they gathered? It looks amazing. Then I am also hoping to take the kids to the International Peace Day march they are meeting at the Courthouse steps at 2 p.m. They have Isaac Harte, the 12-year old from the Friends School that sparked the plastic bag ban, scheduled to speak. I thought it might be good for the kids to see. 

Finally, we have a rare date night on Saturday. Where should we go? I’m thinking we should try here. Thoughts? 

Mark your calendars: 

  • Unite for Her 5K, Downtown West Chester, Sept. 21
  • Recycled Art Sale, Chester County Art Association, Sept. 21
  • Treehouse building workshop, Treehouse World, Sept. 21- Sept. 22
  • Criterions Jazz Ensemble & Honor Jazz Combo, Madeleine Wing Adler Theatre WCU, Sept. 27
  • Fall Block Party, E. Lafayette St., Sept. 28
  • Oktoberfest, Thornbury Farm, Sept. 28
  • Chester County Color 5K, Everhart Park, Oct. 5
  • Haunted Helicopters, Helicopter Museum, Oct. 26

That’s it. We are done here. Hope everyone has a great week. Next time we meet it will officially be fall. Wow. If you’ve got the fall-binging bug, here is a local group you’ll definitely want to know. Plus, last week’s Roundup, if you need it. I’ll see you all next week and don’t forget sign up for the blog for all the latest updates.

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