announcing the 13th annual tredyffrin historic house tour on september 23rd!

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Travel back in time … If you love history and architecture, you will not want to miss the much-anticipated 13th Annual Historic House Tour. The beautiful homes and gardens of seven historic homes featured on the 2017 Historic House Tour will be open from 12 Noon – 5 PM on Saturday, September 23 rain or shine.

Truthfully, I make absolutely NO secret of my delight and love of this September event put on by my dear friend Pattye Benson and the Tredyffrin Historic Preservation Trust 

With regard to this tour, and I am a Patron Sponsor. I also photographed the houses on the tour for Pattye for a few years. This tour is quite exclusive, and it is a manageable number of houses and historic structures, so you can indeed see everything!

 Party for Preservation’ Preview Party ~ Sunday, September 17, 2017  6 – 9 PM

13th Annual Historic House Tour ~ Saturday, September 23,  2017 – Noon – 5 PM

CLICK HERE TO RESERVE YOUR TICKETS TODAY!

 

The 2017 house tour features historic homes and gardens in Tredyffrin and Easttown Townships. As an added bonus, the Main Line Antiques Showis generously providing two tickets ($30 value) for its show on October 7 and 8, with each historic house tour ticket purchased. The only antiques show on Philadelphia’s Main Line, all proceeds benefit Surrey Services, which helps older adults to live with independence and dignity and to continue as active members of the community.

To celebrate historic preservation, the public is invited to attend Party for Preservation, the 13th Annual Historic House Tour Preview Party on Sunday, September 17, 6 PM – 9 PM  at the historic Duportail House in Chesterbrook.  An evening of fun with live music, food and drinks, join us to celebrate the homeowners and the homes featured on the tour and allow us to thank the generous individual and corporate sponsors who make the annual tour possible. Attendees will get a sneak preview of the beautiful homes featured on the 13th Annual Historic House Tour!

The annual historic house tour would not be possible without the generosity of individual and corporate sponsors.  Click 2017 House Tour Sponsor Packet for information about how you can be a sponsor and receive complimentary tickets to the house tour and the preview party.

This is a magical day always in Chester County and the preview party is a lot of fun!  I hope you join us!

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77th annual chester county day takes place saturday, october 7, 2017

It will be  a big year for Chester County Day, the longest running house tour in the United States, now in its 77th year. This year, the tour will honor the 125th anniversary of Chester County Hospital, which was founded in 1892. In recognition of the anniversary, the tour on October 7, 2017  at 10 am-5 pm will feature 12 homes around Marshall Square Park (where Chester County Hospital first stood at the north side of East Marshall Street) and 13 homes in the northwest quadrant of Chester County.

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This year, attendees will be able to tour a total of  25 homes and 4 public structures or sites in West Chester Borough and East Brandywine, Honey Brook, Wallace, East Nantmeal, West Nantmeal, and Warwick townships. House styles from the 18th to the 21st centuries will give tour goers an appreciation of architecture through the centuries. I will admit this is an ambitious house tour every year, so what I do is pick a reasonable amount of homes I wish to visit. It is a fabulous day, but it is a long day, so bring extra water and wear comfortable shoes or even sneakers!

The Day will begin with the pageantry and excitement of a long-standing Chester County Day tradition – a fox hunt. Dr. Addis’ Warwick Village Hounds and the Gable/Swisher Hounds will set off promptly at 9 am from Warwick County Park, 191 County Park Road, Pottstown.

Guests can begin this year’s house tour at 10 am at the location of their choice. A walking tour of the 12 homes around Marshall Square Park will include a VIP house, of which all three floors will be open to VIP ticket holders only. VIP pass holders will be provided a gourmet box lunch by Montesano Bros. Italian Market & Catering and a private tour of this home. (See VIP ticket info below for details.)

You can also start your tour outside the Borough, then Olde Bulltown Village, off Rt. 345 in the northwest quadrant, is a good place to see a brand new home that looks like it has been there for centuries.

Or, you can tour three homes on Warwick Furnace Road, featuring a house that dates back to the 18th century with a 20th century addition that is hard to distinguish from the original structure. Next door is a beautifully renovated, quaint stone cottage. Just down the street is a 1978 home that was lovingly built in traditional colonial style with authentic hardware and design.

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There is a barn converted to a contemporary home, complete with original wooden beams and rafters in East Nantmeal. While in the township, stop by an 18th century farmhouse built in two stages 40 years apart. Then tour a gorgeous estate on Rt. 401 that contains portions of periglacial marshlands supporting flora not typically seen in this area. A West Nantmeal home was expanded while retaining its three-story core, complete with wooden beams and original floors. While there, stop at St. Mark’s Church to view its beautiful stained glass windows and purchase a beverage or a few sweets. In nearby Honey Brook, see a charming home with a log-cabin core featuring a well in the kitchen floor, protected by a Plexiglas cover.

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Your tour still has more to offer if you proceed to Wallace and view a restored farmstead home, complete with pond and ducks. Down the road in East Brandywine, you’ll find several homes, including a solar design Shingle-style cottage that began life as a poorly designed contemporary. In the same township, you’ll tour a magnificent glass, stone, wood and steel house, which is a departure from traditional Chester County architecture. And finally, Upper Uwchlan offers a restored stone and stucco farmhouse that is worth visiting … perhaps this is where you will start your house tour journey

Refreshment stops, where pre-ordered gourmet boxed lunches by Arianna’s Gourmet Café will be available and found at Warwick County Park and Marshall Square Park in West Chester. Wyebrook Farms is offering a pre-ordered, pre-paid $20 per person buffet. If you do not pre-order, make sure you pack a picnic lunch.  You will have to ask the ladies and gents that put this fabulous day together where exactly you may eat your picnic lunches – if they have two parks included in the day, I imagine that is where, but do not know for sure.

With GPS coordinates and a Chester County Day map that you will receive when you purchase your ticket, the beautiful architecture and bucolic roads of Chester County are at your feet.

 

When: Saturday, October 7, 2017 from 10 am-5 pm Buy tickets off their Eventbrite page!

Where: Northwest Quadrant of Chester County & West Chester Borough

Tickets: On sale from August 15 online; September 5 by mail or at the satellite locations listed on our website.

  • $50 purchased via web, phone or in person
  • $100 VIP Tickets are available at all satellite locations, as well as via web and phone. VIP package includes a VIP Reception and Preview Cocktail party at French Creek Country Club on Sunday, September 24 and a private tour of a special VIP house with a gourmet boxed lunch served by Montesano Bros. Italian Market & Catering, (See ChesterCountyDay.com for details.)

Contact: 610-431-5328

This is an event I believe in supporting.  I am not given free tickets or special compensation for blogging about this event.  I write about it because it’s an absolutely glorious day of touring and I have been attending these tours since I was a child with my parents.

 

dilworthtown wine festival to crush cancer set for sunday october 15th, 2017

Fall events are popping up all over and the Dilworthtown Wine Festival is one of my absolute fall favorites! This is an event I attend, and I purchase tickets – I am not being compensated in any way for my opinion – I love this event! I would not miss it! I go to support the hospital, and because I am a cancer survivor too!

26th Annual Wine Festival at Dilworthtown Inn Sunday, October 15, 2017

On Sunday, October 15, more than 1,500 oenophiles will help The Brandywine and Greystone branches of The Women’s Auxiliary to Chester County Hospital uncork the cure to cancer as they celebrate the 26th Annual Wine Festival at Dilworthtown Inn.

As the county’s premier wine event, the festival features more than 100 wines, craft beers, sumptuous fare prepared by Dilworthtown Inn chefs and local food trucks, a silent auction, shopping opportunities in the Gallery of Artisan Vendors, live music, a Performance Car Show, and much more.

Proceeds from the wine festival benefit patients of The Abramson Cancer Center at Chester County Hospital and Neighborhood Health.

For friends and family members battling cancer, the cancer specialties at Chester County Hospital brings world class care of the Abramson Cancer Center close to home. As part of Penn Medicine, they offer the latest treatment protocols and cutting-edge technology. Their outstanding medical staff, clinical team, nurse navigators and hospital volunteers are known for providing the highest level of care and attention to the needs of their patients. And, they strive to give every patient every edge in their battle with cancer, including assistance for patients who are uninsured and underinsured. Outside of the hospital, patients continue to have access to the highest level of care through the services of Neighborhood Health (home health, hospice, private duty, and Senior HealthLink services).

The Wine Festival is organized by the Brandywine and Greystone Women’s Auxiliaries to the hospital. To attend, volunteer, sponsor or donate, visit www.2crushcancer.com     or call 610.431.5054.

Please go to their Eventbrite listing to purchase tickets.  I recommend the VIP admission and the thoughtful Designated Driver package.

This event is SO much fun! Casual great company, wine tasting, terrific food, great vendors and probably the best silent auction around!

Throughout 2017, Chester County Hospital is celebrating 125 years of dedication to the health and well-being of the people in Chester County and surrounding areas. Founded in 1892 as the county’s first hospital, the non-profit has grown into a 248-bed acute-care inpatient facility in West Chester. It also has outpatient services in Exton, West Goshen, New Garden, West Grove, Jennersville, and Kennett Square.

In 2013, Chester County Hospital became part of Penn Medicine, which is one of the world’s leading academic medical centers, dedicated to medical education, biomedical research, and excellent patient care. Learn more at ChesterCountyHospital.org.

slapp

19 July, 2017

Hello Dear Readers,

I am  writing today to let you know that I am at present a victim of what is known as a SLAPP suit (Strategic  Litigation Against Public Participation.)

 

Earlier this year, I was hit with a Cease and Desist in the form of something known in legal circles as a Writ of Summons.  It was issued on behalf of developer Brian O’Neill and Constitution Drive Partners over the Bishop Tube Site in Malvern/Frazer in East Whiteland Township.  It was sent to me by the West Chester and Chester County law firm of Lamb McErlane.

 

This whole thing also involves Maya van Rossum, who is The Delaware Riverkeeper , her non-profit The Delaware Riverkeeper Network, and people thus far referrred to as “John Does 1 -10”

 

Yes I know Maya.  I used to live not too far away from her before I moved to Chester County.  She lives in Radnor Township and I once lived in Lower Merion Township. As I have previously stated, Maya van Rossum is one of the most ethical, dedicated, and smart women I have ever met.  I am honored to know her.

 

I actually had not seen Maya van Rossum in a few years in person before I turned around at that February 27, 2017 East Whiteland Zoning Hearing Board Meeting because I heard a familiar voice – hers.  Others (unknown as to precisely who) had contacted her about this site.  And I also think the folks from Trout Unlimited were there, and have also been at meetings (I never even knew what that non-profit was until all of this.)

 

Within a couple of days of that February 27 meeting, I injured my knee seriously enough to require surgery.  My injury was to my right knee which meant I did not drive  or even truly walk again until quite recently and even now the distances are brief.  As I sat on the sidelines (which included NOT attending public or other meetings), many more public meetings happened. The whole debate of the Bishop Tube site in East Whiteland raged on (and continues to do so seemingly.)  The DEP has been weighing in, along with State Representative Duane Milne, State Senator Andy Dinniman, even East Whiteland Township Supervisors.

 

The residents of General Warren Village also banded together and began to advocate for themselves as they live adjacent to this site.  People from neighboring areas seemed to have joined them based on replays of public meetings I have watched over the past few months.  And the Delaware Riverkeeper has persisted. (See this section on their website.)

 

This is democracy in action.  When people take an interest in where they live, it is a powerful force. It is not easy for the residents involved, and it does take great courage,  I applaud them.

 

As I have sat on the sidelines watching, this whole SLAPP thing has persisted.  At its most basic, things like this are an affront to our inalienable rights to protest and speak.  Our very rights are at risk, including that thing called the First Amendment:

 

First Amendment (As reprinted by the ACLU)

 

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

 

I am not the only one experiencing this (even on this topic) but when you are faced with this it feels so very and truly personal.  Because in a way, it is.  It is a challenge to those aforementioned freedoms we as Americans (regardless of political and religious persuasion) hold dear and even at times…take for granted.

 

It is because of situations like this I believe municipalities need to do better by us as residents.  It is because of this that those we elect to the most basic of municipal levels, including the State House, State Senate, U.S. House and U.S. Senate need to do better by us.

 

As a perennial student of history, I have faith that the truth will indeed out.  And I do indeed have representation.  Mr. Samuel Stretton.  A gentleman whose career I have followed off and on for many years and now have the privilege of knowing.  Any questions may be directed to him.

 

I just thought it fair to let you my readers, neighbors, friends, and family know what was going on.

 

Thanks for stopping by

whose america are we living in?

When you see photos like this they just make you happy. Obviously in love, on their wedding day, their whole lives ahead of them. Until ICE (immigration) shows up like modern day Nazis at the Septa train station in Haverford and arrests the husband.

I used to live in Haverford.  I used to work near Haverford Train Station.  I grew up in Haverford.  I just can’t imagine the terror this man felt.  I learned about his plight when a friend posted on Facebook:

 

I thought this possibly couldn’t be true, then I remember conversations I have had with people even locally in Chester County about ICE going into schools, ICE raiding restaurants and other businesses country and city, ICE rounding people up off the streets and throwing them into vans, asking for papers at SEPTA stops in Philadelphia (a supposed “sanctuary city”), tales of immigrants with “go” bags packed by their front doors in case they have to run, and does this seem crazy that we are living in a country that allows this?

We are a nation formed of immigrants.  Give us your tired, your hungry, your poor.  I have friends who emigrated to this country.  I thank God that all of them are legal citizens.

Jonatan Palacios is his name.  His lovely wife Lillie Williams has a You Caring Page up. I don’t know them personally, but what is being done to them is a crazy horror show at the hands of the US Government.

I am going to let HER words tell THEIR story.  Lillie pardon me for copying and pasting your message, but your words have power:

The Story

My name is Lillie Williams and early yesterday morning, on May 11th, immigration ripped me away from my husband. 

We are working with a lawyer to get him out and get him back home to me as soon as possible, but we need help covering all of the expenses, fees, and loss of income as we work to do everything I can to get Jonatan out and back to his home and family.

Why did we get caught in this mess? Because we were going through proper legal motions. We submitted an I-130 spousal petition for him in October. We were working with the system to correct his legal status from his case when he entered as an unaccompanied minor at the age of 16. 

Jonatan is my best friend and soulmate. I appreciate any help and support that you can provide to help us through this difficult time. 

Background:

Jonatan and I had went on our first date the summer before my Junior year at Bryn Mawr College, on May 24th, 2010.

My roommate at the time had been dating Jonatan’s older brother for about a year before we started dating. Always thinking herself the matchmaker, she had made several attempts at getting Jonatan and I together before it finally happened. The final straw that brought the two of us together was a mishap one night, where my roommate had accidentally locked me out of the apartment in my pajamas when she was late to a date with Jonatan’s brother. I called my forgetful Italian friend to please turn around and let me back in, but instead she sent Jonatan to my rescue. He then had my number and asked if he could keep it.We started dating only a few months later and it was as if there was a magnetic force that brought us together. We were inseparable. Then, several hard events in my life happened which brought us even closer together. We both became each other’s home.

We were legally married at one one of our favorite restaurants in Philadelphia, Amada on October 11th, 2014 and a year later we had our religious wedding ceremony with friends and family at Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens on October 15th, 2015. 

The pastor from Jonatan’s church officiated with the service in Spanish and translated into English so that everyone there would understand. It was one of the happiest evenings of our lives.

When we were getting ready to get married, I learned about Jonatan’s case. I thought that it was something that we would be able to resolve with marriage– since I am a born United States Citizen and my ancestry goes back in the United States to colonial days I thought it would be a simple case of petitioning for him once we were married. I found out after that the case was a lot more complicated than either of us had thought.

It turns out that people don’t become citizens simply through marriage to a US Citizen Spouse. It is a long and difficult process and sometimes, if you are unlucky, things can go wrong with your case. 

More About the Issue:

If you would like to know more about the overall issue, there is a whole organization of families like mine that have gone through or are going through similar issues, American Families United. You can learn more by going to http://www.americanfamiliesunited.org/.

 

This is so unreal.  Their crime was being naïve and thinking they could trust the United States of America. They filed what they thought was the correct paperwork and instead of help, he gets arrested at the Septa station in Haverford with assistance by Lower Merion Police Department.  Ok, so let’s be fair, I am guessing Lower Merion Police Department did not have much choice in the matter when the Federal Government comes calling, but can you imagine the abject terror he must have felt along with anyone else who was around there on May 11th?

Ok so those of you who are die hard conservatives are getting ready to sharpen your keyboards and read me the riot act for this post, but please.

Don’t.

Stop and think about this for a moment.  This young couple were trying to right a wrong. They were not trying to be deceitful.  Now this guy is sitting in some jail facility in York, PA and do we even know if he has been able to see his wife? Or other family?  They were not hiding and they were punished anyway.

For every one of these stories I hear, the mental image of World War II come to mind.  The stories of Holocaust survivors and immigrants of another century telling the stories of Nazis demanding papers during World War II era Europe.  Tell me, how is this different? Because it is happening under the banner of the United States of America?

What is it that is carved on Lady Liberty? What is the exact figure of immigrants who came through Ellis Island and passed the Statue of Liberty between 1820 and 1920? 34 Million? This is the poem Lady Liberty wears:

“The New Colossus” by Emma Lazarus

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name Mother of Exiles.
From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“”Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!”” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

 

There is a vigil planned for Jonatan Palacios on June 8th.  There is a Facebook event set up

If you care to contribute to the young couple’s legal expenses (immigration lawyers are not cheap), please visit You Caring Help Jonatan Palacios be reunited with his wife and family!

I am the descendant of immigrants.  I am descended from three nationalities which were once discriminated against and disparaged against – Irish, German, Italian.  I grew up with many tales including “Irish need not apply” and WOP jokes and disparaging German comments . I fear for my legal US citizen friends who emigrated here because some still have the lingering traces of the countries they were born in.  What could be done to them in error because they don’t have your typical American accent?

Whether you know this couple or not, if you can peacefully or peaceably help, help.  Attend the vigil, write elected officials (including all 14 commissioners in Lower Merion Township to ask WTF??,  essentially.)

Whose America is this? Whose America are we living in?  I am not sure  and I am so sad at this latest turn of events.

anna maciejewska is still missing

I was asked by a friend who lives in Charlestown to post about Anna Maciejewska , who is still missing.  

According  to media and local reports she has not been seen since like April 2nd or April 10th (I have seen both dates in media reports and on social media, so I don’t know which one is correct. All I know is she has been missing for weeks at this point.)

I am guessing last person who saw her is her husband because well she is married and has a little boy named Andrew (do I have his name right?) who I think is like 4 or 5.  He must miss his mommy something fierce, so I figured I would put a post up in the hopes like all the media reports that someone somewhere has seen something.

Has anyone seen Anna Bronislawa Maciejewska?  The PA State Police want to hear from anyone who may have seen her. Call 911 or Embreeville barracks at 610-486-6280


Media reports continue to go out and the AP has picked up the story. 

It would be great if a national law and justice show like Nancy Grace could tell her story so please, if you are in the media or know media, pay it forward so Anna’s son  Andrew (?) doesn’t lose his mom.  Anna is Polish and I am also told that family in Poland is frantic.

Anna Maciejewska went missing from the Charlestown section of Malvern.  She was driving a blue Audi A4 she is 43 years old and 5′ 4″ and 150 pounds 
There is a Facebook page up for FINDING Anna Maciejewska.

She’s a mom. She’s not going to leave a little child like that. Please, if you have seen Anna Maciejewska, call the police.