Northeast Times

The greener side of Fishtown and Kensington

Philly young people in­ter­ested in sus­tain­able pro­jects will take a walk­ing tour this Sat­urday of loc­al green build­ings, com­munity gar­dens and urb­an farms in Fishtown and Kens­ing­ton through Young In­volved Phil­adelphia.

Young In­volved Phil­adelphia is ex­actly what it sounds like — it’s a 12-year-old or­gan­iz­a­tion that strives to get young people in the city in­volved in such vi­tal causes as the eco­nomy, edu­ca­tion and sus­tain­ab­il­ity.

The group has ini­ti­ated part of its third an­nu­al State of Young Phil­adelphia (SOYP) event series in Fishtown and parts of Kens­ing­ton this year.

This year’s sus­tain­ab­il­ity track will bring a large tour group through the neigh­bor­hoods this Sat­urday, Oct. 6, for a walk­ing tour high­light­ing loc­al green build­ings, com­munity gar­dens and urb­an farms.

You might be sur­prised at how many there are.

“The sus­tain­ab­il­ity move­ment isn’t lim­ited to a few ma­jor in­sti­tu­tions in Cen­ter City,” said Rusy Flesh­er, YIP board mem­ber and area res­id­ent. “This is a great op­por­tun­ity for people to con­nect to a new neigh­bor­hood, or get more pas­sion­ate and in­volved in a hy­per-loc­al way if they already live here.”

The tour be­gins at 1 p.m. at the 2000 block of Frank­ford Ave. The tour will end around 4 p.m. with a party at Mem­ph­is Tap­room at 2331 E. Cum­ber­land St.

Jason Wolf­son, YIP board mem­ber and pro­gram­ming dir­ect­or, said SOYP began Sept. 27 with vari­ous events throughout the city which fo­cused on each of the three causes. The en­tire event series will cul­min­ate Oct. 13.

Last year’s walk­ing tour took place in Cen­ter City and the Ritten­house Square area.

“There’s amaz­ing things on the sus­tain­ab­il­ity front,” Wolf­son said. “The people mov­ing in­to the neigh­bor­hood are young­er. They are more pas­sion­ate about mak­ing sure there are more sus­tain­able pro­jects.”

YIP and SOYP events are geared toured young people in the 25- to 35-year-old range, but Wolf­son said the group is ini­ti­at­ing out­reach to col­lege stu­dents as well.

Josh Warner, YIP com­mit­tee mem­ber and lead­er of SOYP’s sus­tain­ab­il­ity track, said there will be a short present­a­tion at each loc­a­tion to de­scribe its unique com­pon­ents and sus­tain­able at­trib­utes.

Stops on the tour are: ex­tern­al and in­tern­al tours of green houses built by Post­green Homes, in­clud­ing a tour of the Av­ant Gar­age pro­ject at 401-411 Mem­ph­is St.; Nor­ris Square Neigh­bor­hood Pro­ject’s “Las Par­celas” neigh­bor­hood garden; Em­er­ald Street Urb­an Farm at Dauph­in and Em­er­ald streets, and sev­er­al row homes re­stored us­ing re­used and re­claimed ma­ter­i­als.

Warner said SOYP co­ordin­at­ors reached out to com­munity groups like NK­CDC, EKNA and the Nor­ris Square Neigh­bor­hood Pro­ject to plan the stops on the tour.

“Most of these pro­jects are some­what new in nature and they are either tucked away phys­ic­ally or most young folks in Phil­adelphia don’t travel to the res­id­en­tial parts of oth­er neigh­bor­hoods,” Warner said.

The goal, he ad­ded, is to high­light the sus­tain­able pro­jects in the Fishtown and Kens­ing­ton areas and bring about an un­der­stand­ing of the places.

Warner ex­plained that SOYP hopes that the tour will en­cour­age par­ti­cipants to get in­volved in the sus­tain­ab­il­ity ef­forts in the area in vari­ous ways.

They could, he said, reach out to area com­munity groups, vo­lun­teer their time or donate to the pro­jects.

Most im­port­ant, he said, is get­ting people out to the areas.

“If you don’t un­der­stand a place, you’re not go­ing to go vis­it a place,” he said. “If you’re go­ing out to a pizza place or a bar on Frank­ford Ave., know that there are some cool gar­dens not three blocks from there.”

The tour is free, but par­ti­cipants should re­gister at:

ht­tp://ima­gin­ing­phillys­fu­ture.tick­etleap.com/soyp-2012-sus­tain­ab­il­ity-tour/de­tails.

More event de­tails can be found at: www.stateofyoung­philly.com/sched­ule.

Star Man­aging Ed­it­or Mi­kala Jam­is­on can be reached at 215-354-3113 or mjam­is­on@bsmphilly.com.

You can reach at mjamison@bsmphilly.com.

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