News briefs


Making waves

WXPN fans already consider the radio station one of the region’s cultural resources. Now Public Radio International, the Minneapolis-based network that provides content to public radio stations, apparently agrees—it has given the 2005 Award for Innovation and Entrepreneurship to General Manager Roger LaMay and ’XPN founder and former GM Vinnie Curren. The award acknowledges the non-commercial station is an essential cultural resource in the community and recognizes LaMay and Curren for their creativitity, drive and willingness to take risks. For more information about WXPN, visit

Take a tour

At University City Trolley Day on May 14 you can ride the tracks free all day on a renovated 1930s-era Philadelphia trolley car. The trolleys will be making a continuous loop around the neighborhood from 10 am to 6 pm, stopping at restaurants, shops, parks, farmers markets and galleries. Though it’s free, you’ll need to pick up tickets in advance. Go to for ticket locations. Also on May 14 the University City Historical Society hosts a house tour from 1 to 5 pm, featuring Victorian townhouses, Edwardian mansions, Queen Anne twins, Jazz age condos and ’20s row houses. For more details, go to

Dig in

For the last decade the SEPTA portal at 39th and Baltimore Avenue has been developed as a botanical heritage garden. The Baltimore Avenue side features native plants from the 1783 list of William and John Bartram (of Bartram’s Garden). The Woodland Avenue side boasts exotic plants brought to West Philly by William Hamilton for the Woodlands mansion. May 14 is UC Green Community Gardening Day and the green-fingered folks who work to nurture University City’s green space invite you to join them for the day and help refresh the “portal beds.” For more details, call 215-573-4684 or email Amanda Benner at

Talk to us

The Penn Current is still looking for readers who would be interested in helping us as we look for ways to make the Current ever more useful and entertaining. We are in the process of organizing a focus group of Current readers to give us feedback on what we’re doing well, what we can do better and what we’re not doing at all. If you’d like to share your opinions with the Current staff, please contact us at 215-898-1423 or email us at

Originally published on May 12, 2005