PAL Kids Celebrated Christmas in July with The Philly POPS
Dozens of PAL kids celebrated Christmas in July with The Philly POPS on July 21st. Youngsters gathered at The Kimmel Center in Philadelphia with their PAL Center Directors, representatives from The Philly POPS, and other members from the Philadelphia Police, fire fighters and military.
Guests were treated to a red carpet entrance and a Philly POPS Quintet performance before receiving brand new bicycles and helmets. One hundred bikes and helmets were waiting for the excited children under beautifully adorned trees. Attendees enjoyed snowflake sugar cookies and candy cane-shaped pretzels after they tested out their new rides.
PAL thanks The Philly POPS and Friends of the POPS for their generous donation to kids in Philadelphia.
View more information and photos from the Metro.
PAL and Walmart Team Up for Youth Baseball
On June 26th, more than 150 PAL baseball players spent the day at the fields at Belmont Plateau swinging for the fences. Boys and girls who participate in city-wide and in-house baseball leagues showed up at the fields ready to win the annual competition. This event, which kicks off the Walmart Citywide Baseball season, is collaboration between PAL, Walmart and the Phillies Home Run Derby team.
Participants from PAL centers across Philadelphia took turns at home plate to hit as many balls out of the park as possible. Encouragement from coaches, friends and teammates made this event extra special. Following a lunch break, winners were awarded plaques in different age groups, and a few children were even invited to participate in the next round of the Phillies Home Run Derby Competition.
Walmart generously donates crucial funding to PAL’s Baseball Program year after year, which allows children to learn about the fundamentals of the game while also staying physically active and learning about teamwork and cooperation. PAL thanks Walmart for their continued support.
PAL Scholarship Recipients Honored at Annual Luncheon
On June 18th, PAL Scholarship recipients enjoyed lunch at the Union League of Philadelphia with their scholarship sponsors and fellow students. Hosted by Alicia Vitarelli from 6abc, the program honored nearly 200 deserving scholars pursuing higher education. In order to qualify for a PAL scholarship, applicants must demonstrate academic achievement and an exemplary record of community service.
Attendees enjoyed remarks from noteworthy guest speakers including Philadelphia City Representative and Mayor’s Director of Communication Desiree Peterkin-Bell, Deputy Police Commissioner Kevin Bethel and Rizzo PAL alumna and former scholarship recipient Samantha Kelly. Each speaker shared inspiring messages and encouraged guests to always push themselves through school, work, or extracurricular activities.
The Anne Krancer Memorial Scholarship was awarded to Allison Lackman from Tacony PAL to pursue a Doctorate of Physical Therapy at Widener University. Allison’s achievements through school and her personal endeavors as well as her desire to utilize her education to help others reflects Anne’s kind spirit, giving nature, and love for education. The Eliot C. Nisenbaum Memorial Scholarship was awarded to Brandon Alston from Cozen PAL to pursue a Master’s in Business Management at Wake Forest University. Brandon’s leadership throughout his undergraduate studies and professional endeavors showcases Eliot’s passion for hard work. One additional special scholarship was awarded to Julia Halbherr from Gibbons PAL. This scholarship, sponsored by Comcast SportsNet in memory of long-time PAL Board Member Sam Schroeder, also includes a shadowing opportunity at Comcast SportsNet.
PAL thanks this year’s luncheon guests and all scholarship sponsors, including, Dr. and Mrs. Andrew and Anne Abel, Patricia Kind, Ronald Krancer, Dr. & Mrs. Harvey and Sylvia Nisenbaum, Verizon and Athole G. Jacobi, M.D., who have all collectively contributed more than $100,000 in scholarships over the span of two decades. Congratulations and good luck to all scholars!
Talented Performers Showcased at 6th Annual PAL Night of the Arts
More than 50 PAL members showed off their singing, dancing, and musical abilities at PAL Night of the Arts on June 16th. Excited families, friends and PAL supporters gathered at the Cozen PAL center in the Fairmount neighborhood for an evening of fun and entertainment.
The audience was captivated by singers, dancers, artists, and musicians who enjoyed their five minutes in the spotlight. The young performers practiced for several weeks leading up to the show. This event often serves as the culmination of many of PAL’s year-long dance and cheerleading programs.
Guests were treated to a special percussion performance by accomplished artists from ArtWell, a Philadelphia-based organization that engages young people in self-reflection and creative expression to discover and honor their strengths and those of others. With the help of PAL supporters, Anne and Andrew Abel, trained artists from ArtWell have worked with North Penn PAL youngsters for the past year, helping kids collaborate through percussion.
PAL congratulates all performers for having the courage to share their talents on stage.
Roaring into Summer with PECO PAL Day at the Zoo
More than 200 PAL members enjoyed a day at the Philadelphia Zoo on June 22nd compliments of PECO and PAL Board Member, Michael Innocenzo. This trip has been a great way to kick off summer programs for the past 14 years.
Attendees received color-changing PECO water bottles and festive “PAL Day at the Zoo” shirts. They enjoyed a healthy lunch with volunteers from PECO in the Peacock Pavilion, where many participants has their faces painted and challenged their friends to a jumbo Connect 4 game. A lucky few even won animal-themed prizes.
Everyone enjoyed all that the Philadelphia Zoo had to offer, including the playful polar bears, wandering peacocks, excited primates, and much more. They were astonished to see animals walk above their heads’ in the newest attraction, Zoo360 Animal Exploration Trails. Youngsters also took part in KidsZooU where they fed ducks, brushed sheep, and climbed through a specially-designed jungle gym like mountain goats.
PAL thanks PECO and Michael Innocenzo for another great PECO PAL Day at the Zoo.
PAL Recognizes Dedicated Volunteers during Fun Celebration
More than 80 PAL volunteers, support staff members, and officers came together on June 10th for an exciting evening of food, fun, and appreciation at South Philly’s new South Bowl. Volunteers and support staff dedicate hundreds of hours each year to enhance PAL’s mission through positive youth development programming. Without their help, many crucial programs would not exist.
PAL named Richard Washington the 2015 Volunteer of the Year. Richard has dedicated more than a decade to Logan PAL, supporting programs and personally mentoring many children to become productive young men and women. Additionally, PAL named Lily Reyes the 2015 Support Staff Member of the Year. Lily far exceeds expectations of her roles in Homework Club and Positive Images at Harrowgate PAL. She has contributed to the success of all programs at the center and is adored by everyone who attends. Both recipients graciously accepted the awards and look forward to many more years of service.
PAL also recognized several volunteers and support staff that continuously go above and beyond the call of duty, including Mariah Carroll of Wissinoming PAL who has made it her personal mission to educate the kids at her center about anti-bullying and diversity; Chantel Jones of Fairhill PAL who serves as Center Director P/O Marcus Allen’s “right hand” for all programs at the center; Siani Velazquez who coaches the cheerleading squad and helps children with their homework at Lighthouse PAL; Ms. Loretta Washington who has enriched the lives of participants at Logan PAL for more than 19 years; Donte Meares who has been a role model to Tacony PAL members for ten years; Emanuel Stanton from Paley PAL who always puts PAL first and helps with whatever the center needs; Gianna Bradley who has led many daily operations at Rizzo PAL for the past two years and even coached the center’s soccer team to a second place finish in the Citywide league; Migdalia Feltio who has been a part of every activity at Harrowgate PAL since the center opened four years ago; and Ryan Elliott who supports Tacony PAL and his Center Director P/O Bill Schneider during all of his free time. All volunteers enjoyed bowling, dinner, and free massages at the event.
PAL thanks all volunteers and officers for their commitment to improving the lives of youth throughout the City.
Wissinoming PAL Prepares Teens for Work
On June 4th, more than 50 teens from Wissinoming PAL joined representatives from family support organization, Turning Points for Children and local businesses for an educational evening. Attendees learned what steps to take to be successful in their quest for summer employment.
Guest speakers encouraged attendees to pay attention to their appearances as well as their manners anytime they’re interacting with potential employers or colleagues. They also stressed the importance of being prepared and on time. Turning Points for Children provided applications for work permits and tips for interviewing. The PAL teens were also able to have informational interviews with businesses such as Citizens Bank and ShopRite.
PAL thanks Turning Points for Children and all community representatives for providing such beneficial information to Wissinoming PAL members.