Pretty plantings.

The easiest way to be in the know.

It’s Friday, June 16:  I have vacation brain, but before I leave you to yourselves for a week – Updates on the new 181-unit apartment complex planned for Mitch’s Gym. Concerns were raised over the design and could this location be the answer to our urban grocery store prayers? The Planning Commission wants to at least consider it. Plus, West Chester is dealing with an ongoing sewer leak, and the school district ends its open campus policy for upper-classmen – fortunately, there’s a new tequila bar.

Who’s ready? Let’s catch up.

Why the Mitch’s Apartment Proposal May Not Be a Done Deal

In the very last days of May, developers Eli Kahn and Gary Toll presented to the West Chester Planning Commission their plans for a 181-unit apartment building on the corner of Wayne and Market Streets. The proposal involved the consolidation of four separate lots – where currently sits a littering of empty buildings from the hefty former home of Mitch’s Gym to the perhaps motor-oiled-soaked remnants of Al’s Automotive and Avis Rent-a-Car. 

While the Planning Commission applauded the developers on their investment in the Borough, they raised concerns about the building’s size, design, and durability. The design, they conceded, aligns pretty well with the current zoning code. 

“You get what you zone for,” Planning Commission member Thomas Doughtery told me in a separate discussion on the topic. The current zoning code mandates a minimum lot size but not a maximum. This makes it easier to consolidate parcels into one massive lot than it does to subdivide them into the small lot sizes found throughout much of the historic district. 

Despite the large size, developers vowed to connect the new building with the rest of downtown by using “the guiding principles” set forth by West Chester’s Historic District. This includes integrating design details such as “brick soldier courses,” “corbeled brick patterns, “accent bands,” and “cast stone window sills.” 

The Planning Commission also picked up on this connection to West Chester’s historic district. “The architectural design is supposed to follow HARB guidelines, and this design doesn’t,” Planning Commission Chair Jason Birl told developers. 

HARB is West Chester’s Historical & Architectural Review Board which, according to the Borough’s website, is tasked with advising Borough Council on applications to demolish, renovate and alter buildings in the Borough’s Historic District. Considering development plan approval deadlines, it is not clear how the review process would work should the project need HARB approval.  

Mr. Birl also noted that, per zoning requirements, the building should have a retail component. Developers have been using what is called “amenity space,” aka your pool, gyms, dog washing centers, in lieu of retail. In some cases, such as Chestnut Square, the Planning Commission has agreed this is acceptable. Mr. Birl, however, wanted developers to understand this is not a given and suggested in this case, something like an urban grocery might be considered. 

Trader Joe’s, perhaps? 

10 Things I Learned at This Week’s Borough Meetings

West Chester voting ward maps were denied. How to best integrate WCU students remains a challenge.

Once a month the various committees of West Chester’s Borough Council meet to discuss a whole variety of issues. The topics range from how we should spend our money (approved – $19,000 for a new sewer camera tractor) to who can have a handicapped parking space (yes to 610 S. High St.) to just about everything in between. If you haven’t had a chance to listen to these meetings, they are often informative and (sometimes) entertaining (in that Starr’s Hollow “I can’t believe this is how government runs” sort of way.) 

Here’s a list of random things I learned this week: 

Public Works officials cleaning sewage from storm water.
  1. It’s back to the drawing board on West Chester’s voting ward maps. For about a year now, West Chester has been trying to update its voting wards to bring them in compliance with new census data. This week we learned that PA courts denied the Borough’s new Voting Ward boundaries. The new ward boundaries don’t coincide with Municipal District Justice boundaries meaning residents within the proposed wards would vote in different judicial elections. That is something not allowed by the state. Borough Council will now explore new options including leaving them as is. Either way, nothing will change before next year’s primary. 
  2. The West Chester Parking Department spent last week repairing jammed parking meters. Apparently, those quarters are causing quite a few issues. Also, did you know, there’s a link on the West Chester website where you can notify Parking Services of a broken meter – and dispute a ticket?    
  3. West Chester offers a “business” parking permit that allows you to park anywhere in the Borough for $50/year. You just need a business card and a reasonable explanation for why you may have regular business in the Borough.  It was created for those with meandering business needs – say a plumber or home health worker – but in a Borough with limited parking it is ripe for abuse. Recently, one company pulled nine permits for nine different cars using a single business address. The policy is now under review.  
  4. Public Works assisted in the cleanup of “illicit discharges” into the Borough’s storm sewer system. Did anyone hear anything about this? Last week, the Borough discovered a “relatively small, ongoing sewage discharge” into the storm sewer system near the intersection of W. Washington and Hannum Avenue. (FYI – this diagram illustrates the difference between “storm sewer” and “sanitary sewer.” I found it helpful.) Fortunately, it seems to be greywater, say from a washing machine or bath. “We have no evidence this is bathroom waste,” Public Works Director Don Edwards told Council. Well, that’s reassuring. Unfortunately, they have not yet identified the source of the leak. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and the Fish and Wildlife Service have been notified.
  5. The Story Walk is back on at Hoopes Park. After losing out on the first grant they were seeking, the West Chester Public Library got a grant from the Chester County Health Department to construct the picture-lined walk. For their first story, they are proposing Senorita Mariposa by Ben Gundersheimer, a bilingual story that describes the Monarch butterfly’s journey from Canada to Mexico. The walk will hopefully be ready by fall. 
  6. Community gardens are not allowed in residential areas of the Borough. Reverend Dayna Spence wanted to install a Community Garden in a vacant lot on S. Poplar Street but according to the West Chester Zoning Code, the practice is considered “agriculture” and banned. This week West Chester Green Team member Nathaniel Smith lobbied for a change in definition. “It seems me to be an easy tweak,” he said. Community gardens are already allowed on private property.
  7. Legal fees to fight WCU’s challenge to the Stream Protection fee are coming out of the Stream Protection fee. I guess you have to spend money to make money. Appeal arguments are due July 13. 
  8. Darlington Ridge properties in East Bradford have not paid the Borough for sewage for two years. The cost of that oversight is $96,000. A bill has now been sent to Aqua. (This error shouldn’t affect residents in the development as the Borough bills Aqua directly for its services.) 
  9. There’s a new donut shop coming to 22 N. Darlington St. The shop will be called Rose’s Little Donuts – and their shop sign will be teal and coral on an off-white background. 
  10. Volunteer firefighters and EMTs who own a house in the Borough should receive significant relief on their real estate taxes. How much exactly will be worked out at next week’s Borough Council Meeting but an amount of $1000 was proposed by the committee. Originally, the firefighters were also seeking an earned income tax credit, but the logistics proved too complicated. It is believed 16 individuals will qualify if approved.


Studio Recording vs. Home Setup: Elevating Your Podcast Experience 

When it comes to podcasting, choosing between a studio and a home setup is a crucial decision. While recording at home may seem convenient, opting for a professional studio offers distinct advantages:

  1. Superior Sound Quality: Studios are acoustically treated, ensuring crisp and professional-grade sound, free from background noise and echo.
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  4. Expert Guidance: Studios often have sound engineers who can provide valuable assistance with microphone techniques, editing, and optimization.
  5. Networking Opportunities: Studios attract industry professionals, fostering collaborations and expanding your podcast’s reach.

Investing in a studio space for your podcast demonstrates your commitment to quality, leveraging professional equipment and support. For more information, help with your podcast strategy or to book the studio contact us at Main Line Studios


Kildare’s during the calm hours of early evening.

Assaults are on the rise in the Borough. This week, Police Chief James Morehead informed Borough Council members Part I, or serious, crime was up in the Borough last month. The main reason for the increase was a doubling of assaults over 2022. A majority of these incidents have occurred in the downtown business district, usually outside a bar in the early morning hours. In response, Chief Morehead said, additional officers are being dispatched to these areas at closing time. On the plus side, Part II, or nuisance, crime was down.

Keep those mosquito populations down, or you will be sprayed. This week the Chester County Health Department stopped by the Borough’s Public Works meeting to share its Mosquito-Borne Disease program. Last year 1,126 cases of West Nile Virus were reported in Pennsylvania. While the program does rely heavily on prevention or the reduction of larva populations, the County’s Environmental Health Specialist estimated roughly 5 to 10 percent of remediation activities involve adult populations. The distinction is important because treatment of mosquito larva can be done by non-toxic methods; by adulthood chemical pesticides are required. If you are concerned about chemical spraying in your area make sure you are registered with the ReadyChesCo alert system. Chester County will issue an alert no less than 48 hours before a treatment – and keep dumping that water

Bat boxes to the rescue. This week a couple of residents petitioned the Borough to make it easier to add bat boxes to the Borough parks and other approved public locations. The gist of the idea was to pre-approve a list of designs and locations to help fast-track their creation and placement. Bats are an excellent form of insect control. Nothing is ever quite that easy, but Park and Rec Director Keith Kurawski has agreed to come back with a bat plan.  

Don’t drink that water. This week Aqua began resident outreach regarding its Lead Line Replacement program. The program is a proactive infrastructure project that aims to replace more than 18,000 feet of customer-owned service lines containing lead or galvanized pipes in the West Chester service area. The utility is replacing the lines at no cost to the customer with a safer material. If you believe you have a lead line on your property or that your lead levels are elevated, you can be added to the program at no cost and Aqua will provide you with an approved water filter for use until the replacement is complete.

Life is fragile. One-dead in early morning East Bradford crash


This week high fives to your West Chester Firefighters. This all-volunteer force just accomplished something few can claim – a top-three score on the Public Protection Certification. The PPC is an objective national standard that rates a community’s fire protection services. Departments are rated on a scale from one to 10 with one being the best (and extremely hard to achieve). After this year’s evaluation, WCFD announced it had improved its score to a three putting it among the top 12 percent of departments in the state. 

Not only is this achievement good for your safety, it could also be good for your wallet. It is estimated 75 percent of insurance carriers provide a discount for a lower PPC rating. So, if you see a firefighter congratulate them and check with your provider to see if savings are in your future.

Also, achieving great things, D’Anscenzo’s Gelato which was recently recognized by the Philadelphia Inquirer as one of the best gelaterias in the region.   

Lastly, congratulations to the Rustin Boys Lacrosse team on going where no previous Rustin Lacrosse team has gone before – namely, the state tournament and it was a solid showing too. The boys grabbed wins in the first two rounds advancing to the semi-finals where they met a vengeful Marple Newtown team. The Golden Knights first met up with the Tigers in the District Championships – which they won. The second time, however, was not a charm. Marple Newtown won 6 – 10 ousting Rustin one game short of its goal. 

“Things will hurt for a while but this is a season and team that this program will never forget,” Rustinlax shared on Instagram.  

These two teams also met in the District Championship last season. I’m sensing a rivalry brewing here.  

And finally, finally, keep an eye out for Westtown’s Zahra King. The rising 5’ 9” senior guard is among the country’s best according to ESPN.


The Tequila Bar at Saloon 151

Just in time for summer, Saloon 151 has opened its highly anticipated new tequila bar aptly named “The Tequila Bar at Saloon 151.” The bar which sits in the former home of Star of India is essentially an extension of the main Gay Street establishment but it has its own drink menu and a very different feel. 

“We want it to feel like two different entities,” said bartender and manager Kara Johnson who describes the space as having a modern, open feel with an exposed brick wall and pops of neon.      

Also, different are the drinks which are all mezcal based in contrast to Saloon’s whiskey focus.

“I was trying not to just have margaritas,” said Kara who designed the drink menu. So she created tequila or mezcal interpretations of other summer favorites like a Mezcal Old Fashioned and a Tequila Colada which, with its coconut rim, has proven to be quite popular. 

But there will be margaritas. Good margaritas.

“We are doing everything fresh,” said Kara, who reported squeezing lime juice at 1 a.m. last night. “Which sucks for me but we do everything fresh.”

The Tequila Bar is now open from Thursday to Sunday. A grand opening is planned for June 25 with specials, live music, and your typical hoopla. Follow Saloon 151 on social for details.

Also, this week we welcome a new yoga studio. Inward Bound is a new yoga and wellness studio from identical twins Jamie Cappelletti and Leah Whyte. The duo are pursuing a calling “to spread light and love within the community.” What community couldn’t use more of that? 

If you are interested in some light and love, the studio is located at 520 S. Bradford Ave and offers classes in Hatha, Vinyasa, and Restorative Yoga. 

Finally, say, hello to Mike’s Automotive. Mike Edwards was the long-time lead mechanic at Al’s Automotive on N. Wayne St. He has now opened his own shop at 316 E. Market Street – right next to Oil Lube Express.  


Also, graduating with the class of 2023, the District’s open campus policy.

Last week, West Chester rising juniors and seniors got what was surely disappointing news, West Chester Area School District is ending its open campus policy. In a letter that went out to parents of high school students, the district cited safety as the reason for its termination. 

“While this practice has been available to students at each of our high schools in recent years, we live in a constantly evolving world, and it is our responsibility as an educational institution to adapt to the challenges and ensure the utmost safety for our students and staff members. By restricting off-campus privileges, we can better mitigate potential risks, supervise student activities, and provide a more secure environment within the school premises,” the letter read.

The policy had allowed juniors and seniors to leave campus at lunch to grab something to eat or just leave but reports are the midday exodus could get crazy. 

“Allowing students to leave campus throughout the day made it much more difficult to effectively keep track of when students were or were not on campus,” Molly Schwemler, Manager of District Communication said in a statement. “Additionally, our staff and safety officers raised concerns about the challenges this policy caused in the school’s parking lots.” 

It seems the policy came under additional strain this past school year with the introduction of the new high school schedule. The new schedule added a midday “support period” to ensure students had enough time for critical functions, like eating lunch. However, in doing so some students were left with an almost 2-hour midday break. 

“One concern I think parents may have is that, with the new high school schedules implemented this past year, many students (like mine) had long breaks in the middle of the day. If they are keeping the same schedule format next year, students like mine will have useless long breaks in the middle of the day when they could be home eating lunch, spending time outdoors, and helping around the house (all of which mine did when they came home on their breaks),” one parent shared with me.

The current high school schedule will remain in place and students will be responsible for using that time productively. “Our staff are available to assist any students that may be unsure of how to make that time beneficial to their learning experience,” Molly said. Students that have study hall during the first or last period of the day will still be permitted to arrive to school late or leave early with parental permission. 

“This review determined that [an open campus] should be discontinued before it became too established among our community as it was not beneficial,” said Molly. So, goodbye to that.

Also, last week we learned of a sad goodbye, Lori Ann Zytowicz, proprietor of Faunbrook Bed and Breakfast passed away. She was 51 years old. According to her LinkedIn page, she took ownership of the B&B in 2008, handling the management and day-to-day operations of the nineteenth-century seven guest-room retreat. It was said her favorite part of being an innkeeper was cooking farm-to-table breakfasts for her guests.

“We will remember Lori fondly for her strong spirit, kindness, and dedication to giving back to the community,” the Greater West Chester Chamber of Commerce shared on social media. 

Relatives and friends are invited to Lori’s Life Celebration on Saturday, June 24, at 11:00 am, at LuLu Temple in Plymouth Meeting, PA. Interment will be held privately at the family’s request.

Finally, after a two-week run, Price Street is saying goodbye to its speed sign. The new digital speed sign was placed on the street after neighbors began a persistent push to do something about the street’s fast-moving traffic. 

“We are not giving up on Price Street,” resident Patty Stanton told members of the Public Safety Committee on Wednesday. 

Ideally, they would like to see a stop sign installed at the corner of Price and Brandywine Streets but it turns out that is not as easy to do as one would think. So, in the meantime, West Chester Police set up its new digital speed sign at the western end of the street. The sign was proving to be effective. Going eastbound, traffic speeds decreased by 32 percent when motorists saw the sign; westbound they were reduced by 38 percent. 

“The sign works. People do recognize it,” said West Chester Police Chief Morehead. That said the reductions are likely temporary.  “Without the sign there, it probably does go back to normal,” he said  

The sign is now visiting three other traffic hot spots in the Borough but it is expected back on Price Street sometime later this summer. 

Pay it forward.

The Chester County History Center is hosting a Reminder Day Tea Dance on June 24

Lest we forget, June is Pride month and West Chester has had a tumultuous relationship with the topic as of late. Last year, after basically ignoring the event in June, we overcompensated with some Outfest drama – which did, in fact, end with a nice, albeit, not-as-planned event. Well, this is a new year and West Chester has a new approach.

First, we are back in June, and this time we are commemorating a couple of historically significant events “Reminder Day” and “tea dances” – both of which were new to me. 

Reminder Day was a yearly July 4 demonstration to remind the world that homosexual individuals were being denied the basic civil rights granted to other individuals. The demonstrations were held outside Independence Hall from 1965 to 1969. 

Tea Dances, on the other hand, were social events where gay singles could meet without the threat of police intervention (it was illegal at the time to sell alcohol to individuals known to be gay.)

The West Chester event which will be held on June 24, from 2 – 5 p.m. on the grounds of the Chester County History Center aims to commemorate both.  

A Lenape different summer program. This year the West Chester Green team is expanding its children’s summer program with the introduction of an 8-week series of educational gatherings for families. The classes which start on June 24, will center around the Lenape. The Lenape Tribe called Chester County home before European settlers arrived. Some planned activities include canoe rides on the Brandywine River (Wawaset River to the Lenape) and Westtown Lake (not sure what they called that). There will also be crafts, games, a stream study, and an exploration of native dress and tools. 

The cost to participate is $10/person or $15 for a family of up to four. Canoe excursions cost an additional $60/per canoe. Lessons take place on weekends at various locations around Chester County. Times and dates vary by activity. Registration information and gathering details are available on the Green Team website

The freakin’ weekend.

Looks like we made it… (whew.)

What are you up to this weekend? We are preparing for our first vacation of the summer. We are traveling down to the Outer Banks to meet up with my family from Indiana.  We have never been. I’ve heard mixed things but the kids are excited to have cousins to play with (and we’re pretty excited for them)  – so we are cautiously optimistic!

There will be no Round up next week so I am sure we will have plenty to catch up on when I get back. In the meantime, if you’re hanging around town, don’t forget this is the start of Juneteenth celebrations. You can find a complete list of activities here. Also, if you haven’t yet, be sure to see the Seventeen Men exhibit at the Chester County History Center before it leaves in July. This fascinating exhibit tells the stories of 17 U.S. Colored Troops in the Civil War based on 2” photographs of the men found in a tiny photo album of their officer, Capt. William A. Prickitt. 

And a special thank you to this week’s Community Sponsor, The Lorgus Company. The Lorgus Company manages a 19-suite, five-floor office building conveniently located at the corner of High and Miner Streets. The charming brick building features historical details like exposed plaster on the ground floor showing a drawing made by a workman and the date “1847.”

The Lorgus Company manages the beautiful Greek Revival building at 103 S. High Street – home to 19 office suites and, once, 19th-century impressionist artist Mary Cassatt. As you enter you are greeted by a mural from Welsh artist Janet Reed. The mural was rescued from 120 N. Church Street before its recent renovation.

View the full list of our amazing Community Sponsors here. Want to get your business out in front of this wonderful community? I don’t blame you. Community Sponsorships are full but limited ad space remains in June and July. Send me an email if you are interested and I’ll send you details.

Enjoy getting these updates each week? Enjoying not having to click down a dozen annoying pop-up ads just to read? Me too! I figure if all readers paid just $1/month I could keep this going and ads limited. (That is waaay less than a cup of coffee these days.)


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Mark your calendars:

  • June 16 – 18 – Underground Railroad Tour, Chester County History Center, 5:30 p.m. Explore the sites that serve as a backdrop as enslaved men, women, and children passed through West Chester on their journeys toward freedom. Tickets are $10/adult; $5/student. This is part of planned Juneteenth activities.
  • June 16 – 18 – Uptown West Chester Tour, Chester County History Center, 6:00 p.m. Explore town center through the experiences of early 20th century African American leaders like entrepreneur James Spence and civil rights leader Bayard Rustin.Tickets are $10/adult; $5/student. This is part of planned Juneteenth activities.
  • June 16 – 20 – “Journey Towards Freedom” Quilt Exhibition, Chester County Art Association, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. This is part of planned Juneteenth activities.
  • June 17 – A Celebration of Bayard Rustin & African American History, Chester County History Center, 6- 8 p.m. An in-person program celebrating the life, work, and legacy of Bayard Rustin and how his work and the Civil Rights Movement impacted African American History. Registration is required. This is part of planned Juneteenth activities.
  • June 17 – An Ecological Landscaping Tour, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. This tour of native planting technique begins at Barclay Friends and continues to Birmingham Friends on Birmingham Road in West Chester and ends at Kendal at Longwood in Kennett. Directions to each location is provided. Registration is encouraged but not required.
  • June 17 – Yoga in the Street, Gay Street (near the Post Office), 9 – 10 a.m. No registration required. Just bring a mat and $5 entrance fee (cash only!)
  • June 17 – Swing Dance Lessons, West Chester Public Library courtyard, 2 -4 p.m. Lessons are followed by a free dance period. This is a free event presented by the library and Rittenhop Dance.
  • June 18 – Sail On – the Beachboys Tribute, Uptown Theater, 7:30 p.m. Performing all of the classic hits, plus some from the extended catalog, Sail On faithfully recreates the soundtrack to an Endless Summer, live and in rich detail. Tickets: $35/40/45 in advance, $40/45/50 at the door.
  • June 19 – Juneteenth Freedom Festival, Melton Center, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Celebrate “black excellence” with food trucks, dance performances, choir performances, and games. Festivities begin with a flag recogntion ceremony at 10 a.m.
  • June 19 – $5 Movie Monday – Jaws, Uptown Theater, 7:00 p.m. Includes free popcorn!
  • June 20 – WOW Collective: Women’s Meetup Event, Mayday Coffee, 6:30 -8:30 p.m. Inaugural event of the “Wow Collective,” a series of events designed to help women connect with each other from WOW Beverage Company. Cost to attend is $20 and includes drinks (of course) and snacks.
  • June 21 – 3rd Wednesday Book Discussion, West Chester Public Library, 1 – 2 p.m. Bring a brown bag lunch; enjoy a lively book discussion. No registration necessary. This month’s book: Birdsong, Sebastian Faulks.
  • June 21 – World Music Day, Downtown West Chester, 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. Musicians are scheduled to play at 20 different locations downtown. I counted 61 separate performances – and a lot of your Porchfest favorites! Check out the map for a complete list of locations and performance times.
  • June 22 – Concert in the Park, Hoopes Park, 6:30 p.m. This is a free Borough event.
  • June 22 – Kid Craft Time, Monkey Fish Toys, 10 – 11 a.m. Free craft time. Come in anytime between 10 and 11 a.m. Good for kids 3+.
  • June 23 – Beer & Wine Garden Party, 234 E. Biddle St. 6 – 9 p.m. Lawn music, live music, and great food! All proceeds go to support West Chester Green Team. Tickets $45 includes food and drink. Kids are free.
  • June 24 – Touch a Truck, 255 W. Uwchlan Ave., Downingtown, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. HWC Community Sponsor Miller Insurance is hosting a Touch a Truck day at their offices!
  • June 24 – Reminder Day-Tea Dance Celebration, Chester County History Center, 2 p.m. The public is invited to the free commemoration of PRIDE Month and to support the LGBTQIA Community. This family-friendly event is planned for the alley between the two CCHC buildings.
  • June 24 – Community Day, East Goshen Park, 5 p.m. – fireworks. Free event includes live music, face painting, petting zoo, pony rides, food trucks, and, according to their post – “the best fireworks display in Chester County!” Rain date: June 25
  • June 24 – Green River CCR Tribute, Uptown Theater, 7:30 p.m. The #1 Nationally Touring Creedence Clearwater Revival/John Fogerty Tribute Show. Tickets $40/advance; $45 at the door
  • June 25 – West Goshen Summer Concert Series, Hagerty Amphitheater, West Goshen Park, 6:30 p.m. In event of rain, concerts will be moved to Fugett Middle School Auditorium. A donation for the West Chester Food Cupboard is encouraged. Music: The Fabulous Greaseband
  • June 26 – $5 Movie Monday – 101 Dalmations, Uptown Theater, 7:00 p.m. Includes free popcorn!
  • June 29 – Kid Craft Time, Monkey Fish Toys, 10 – 11 a.m. Free craft time. Come in anytime between 10 and 11 a.m. Good for kids 3+.
  • June 29 – East Bradford Summer Concert Series, East Bradford Park, 7 p.m. Music: West Chester Community Band

Psst. Like to plan ahead? Check out the new Summer Event Guide full of photos and videos from West Chester’s favorite summer events or visit the Calendar page for events through September!

That’s it. Stay safe, stay healthy and remember there will be no Roundup next week. See you in two!

One thought on “West Chester Weekly News Roundup: June 16, 2023

  1. Thanks for posting about community gardens! Just to clarify: West Chester Borough currently allows community gardens on residential property where there is an extant structure. The issue at stake is that current zoning considers a community garden on a vacant lot to be “agriculture,” which is not allowed in residential neighborhoods.

    Borough Council will now consider the mentioned “tweak” so that future community gardens will not need to go through the expensive and confusing hearing process that was required for residents to vegetables in a vacant lot donated by Habitat for Humanity on Poplar St.

    We all should welcome community gardens as they allow people to raise healthy food near their own homes, reinforce community spirit, and educate children about environmental and sustainable values.

    The Borough already has quite a few community gardens on residential, institutional and public property, and there is space and need for more!

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