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Hello, West Chester,

Hello, 2019. Can you believe it? Wow. What a year. I started this year a little frustrated but with an idea. A vague, completely unthought through idea – find a way to be better informed.

I was constantly missing things happening in and around West Chester. So I got involved. I joined the West Chester Sustainability Advisory Committee but it didn’t make me feel more connected, actually the opposite. There was more going on than I ever knew and it seemed to be frustrating not only for me but for the people out there doing the things that people in the community should know about. So I figured there had to be a better way to share this information, but what exactly that was, I wasn’t sure.

First thing I learned, it wasn’t that these things weren’t out there in the universe, I was just missing them.  

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There are a lot of great stories coming out of and about the West Chester community. So many in fact, it is sometimes hard to stay on top of it all. So one of things I’m excited about is having a place where everything is all pulled together. I began with local Instagram accounts and it opened a Pandora’s box of interesting things happening all over town.

Roundup Posts:  18 Must Follow Local Instagram Accounts; 8 Amazing and Informative West Chester Blogs, Here We Grow Again; West Chester weekly news round up (which I publish every Friday and would like to rename).

Second, there is a lot going on and things on occasion are going to get missed.

Chester County WalkWorks program encourages residents to walk more

When there is something that’s happened that wasn’t covered elsewhere I’ve tried to share these stories with you.

News posts: The Borough Electric, West Chester’s New Walking Tour, OurBus Cancels West Chester Route, What Happens When the County Sprays for Mosquitoes?

Then there are the long held bits of knowledge that are not necessarily news worthy but really just good information to have.

Dub-C 4 Miler kids' race

When someone shares these with me I’ll share them with you. Here are a few I’ve collected so far.

Life here posts: West Chester’s 12 Parks, How to Get a Spot at the Library’s Popular Storytime, Best Places for Youth Soccer, 5 Iconic West Chester Runs, How to Pay a Parking Ticket

Thank you for taking a minute to check out the site. I hope you found something of use. My New Year’s resolution? Keep digging. Keep publishing. Keep trying to find a better way to spread the word so, we can all be a little bit better informed… (and get back to the gym.) If you have thoughts, comments, or ideas on how to do it better, please share and…

Please follow along…

It already looks like we are going to have a lot to discuss in 2019 (the start of a plastic ban, momentous changes to the downtown landscape, new restaurants, zoning changes, plus more events, road closures, and who knows what else…)

Thanks again, and a very happy New Year to you!

 

Hello, West Chester,

Have you ever noticed things seem to come in threes? I am not talking about celebrity deaths or strikes, I’m talking food restaurants to West Chester.

I remember reading about this new craze of places that served cookies hot and fresh from the oven. Then, we had three. There was the pizza place wave followed by a slew of new bakeries. Now it’s donut joints and acai bowls.

It’s funny because one day you’ll comment, “I can’t believe we don’t have a decent ice cream place,” and the next thing you know, there’s three.

When we first moved here my husband and I were walking through town and after passing a second hookah lounge, he commented, “Two hookah places? West Chester can support, two hookah places?”

Apparently, we couldn’t. Which is often the case we are the Darwinian equivalent of food trends, only the strongest survive.

New restaurants, vegan smoothies hand rolled ice cream

I’m ok with three. If there’s only one you have to be happy with what you get. When three of something comes to town you can try them all then settle in on the best and sometimes it leaves you with options. Gemilli and D’Ascenzo’s for example, two gelato places seems like a lot when most towns our size don’t even have one but when they are both homemade deliciousness, you can hardly complain.

It does sometimes make you wish we could stop at one and maybe try something new. Like I’m not complaining about all the new breweries but could someone throw me a wine bar? Or what about a seafood restaurant?  And don’t hate me but I’m still waiting on that perfect pizza place. But you know the craze I’d really like to come to town? The brewery and playground.

Lulu’s Casita brought us the indoor playground and coffeehouse retreat. Now, I’d like to see the night time version. We went to one at the beach and it was heaven. The kids were entertained. I got to have an uninterrupted conversation. A place that entertains the kids so I can enjoy a meal in peace. I’d even take three.

As far as I know, this is not in the works (yet) but you can find a recap of  all the places I do know of in Here We Grow Again.

Got the scoop on the latest development? Let me know and I’ll try to help spread the word.

Hello, West Chester,

I’m just going to say it, I miss the candy. I know there are safety concerns and of course, the kids don’t need it, but I kind of think the Halloween parade does.

There was just a little extra excitement when the candy hit the pavement and all the little superheroes and princesses, ghosts and ninjas went running. When there was candy, the parade seemed to have a purpose. The floats had a reason for being, a directive: throw out as much candy as you can. Take that away and the parade has dissolved into a forty minute ad for assorted local businesses.

Or maybe that’s what it always was, we were just distracted by the candy.

And it makes sense, you have a captive audience and there doesn’t appear to be an entry fee, so free advertising, I get it but if you are going to enter a Halloween parade – can you please enter a Halloween parade?

Put a little thought into it. Pick a theme. Organize your costumes (or at least wear a costume), maybe decorate a little (or a little more)?

Or maybe the Park and Rec can add a few requirements or at least suggestions (see above) to their registration form?

There was a gorilla fighting a dinosaur so, it wasn’t all bad. I just think we can do better.

West Chester Halloween Parade

Enough complaining. Here are a few other things I’m looking forward to this fall:

Oct. 26 : Library’s hosting a haunted escape room

Oct. 27: Chester County Historical Society Halloween Ball

Nov. 1: The Nocturne Stroll (This art walk sounds very cool.)

Nov. 3: Highland fall food and craft beer celebration (fun for both kids and grownups)

Nov. 10: Chester County color run  

Nov. 11: West Chester Cooperative Bake Off (yum)

Dec. 1: Holiday home tour (I really want to do this)

Hope we’ll see you out next Wednesday. We’ll swooping through town with a bat, a basketball player and our little Care Bear.

Hello, West Chester,

Is anyone else tired of talking about this rain? I’m going to pretend it’s not happening and focus all my attention on news that makes me happy, like:

Lulu's Casita West Chester
It’s coming!

Kildare’s has switched to paper straws.

French story time is returning to La Baguette Magique (aka the French bakery) for fall

Thursday will be swinging (for the last time this summer)

West Chester is sending first responders to Kentucky and Texas for pipeline readiness training (I don’t know if this makes me excited but it does make me feel a little more protected.)

All Seventh Graders in the county receive a free membership to the Y.

This story made me smile.

Lulu’s Casita is opening soon!

What are you up to this Labor Day weekend? We are taking the baby upstate to see her grandmother and celebrate surviving that first year.

Hope you have a great one!

Hello, West Chester,

What are you up to this weekend? We’ll be spending the last weekend before we are officially the parents of a school age child with some friends (and doing one last last-minute shopping trip) before school starts.

In case, like me, your week has whizzed by we can catch up together.  

Some things you may have missed:

Beware of buses on the morning commute. All area schools start Monday.

Several roads around the college with be closed, one way or backed up with double parked cars and all restaurants will be packed. WCU move in this weekend.

West Chester street festivals are in a battle with the borough over fees. A proposed fee hikes could put the festivals in jeopardy the Daily Local reports.

West Chester is the #1 college town in the country! Not sure who put out these rankings but enjoy the bragging rights at least until the next report come out.  

WCASD formed a School Safety Advocacy committee. Read their report and see their 6 priority areas.

Does West Chester need more donuts? Someone thinks the answer is yet. See who’s coming to town.

Plus, try something new this weekend courtesy of Town Dish: Caprese Salad with Pennsylvania Peaches

Enjoy your weekend, West Chester. We’ll be testing backpacks and hopefully, savoring some sunshine.

Hello, West Chester,

And hello, sunshine. It’s nice to see you again. I heard recently, there haven’t been three consecutive days of sunshine since the middle of June. I’m not sure if that is true but it definitely feels that way.

(In what is hopefully one last rain-soaked hurrah, the kids’ enjoying a very wet Twilight Cycling Classic downtown.)

West Chester Benchmark Twilight Cycling Classic

West Chester Benchmark Twilight Cycling Classic

And now that the sun is finally back, summer is running down. The kids are getting ready to go back to school and I’m realizing there is still so much I had hoped to do this summer (like this and this). And even more I HAVE to do (school supply list will you please order yourself?) I normally love the fall but this year I am in end of summer denial.

If you too are dragging your feet on fall, here are few links to help get you in the mood:

  • Since we didn’t get there this summer. Maybe we’ll get there for this?
  • The Chili Cook Off is always a favorite of fall.
  • As is cleated kids running off excess energy.
  • West Chester has a new bakery (with some seriously promising reviews) and
  • Thankfully, these fall clothes look a little more forgiving
  • And I don’t know if this is fall or summer but these food and beverage pairings are just too tempting not to share.

Just don’t go the the seasonal aisle of Giant, the Halloween candy’s out, I don’t think anyone’s ready for that.  

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