Archive March 2009

Tony’s Place opens expansion in Mayfair because of Devon Theater 0


Enjoying a tasty tomato pie from Tony's. Photo by John Suder

By Christopher Wink

Tony’s Place wasn’t always on Frankford Avenue, technically speaking.

When the pizza landmark opened in Mayfair in 1951, Tony’s originally promoted itself as being at Barnett and Sackett streets, the same location it has today.

“But no one ever heard of Sackett when we opened,” said Joe Mallamaci, who took over the shop from his father Dominic and brother Tony in 1976. So, in time, they took on the 6300 Frankford Ave. address that most know today.

The shop, famed for its tomato pies, has grown at least three fold since then, and sudden buzz comes in no small part because of last week’s much celebrated reopening of the Devon Theater across the street.

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Unknown suspects wanted in paintball attacks 1


By Shannon McDonald

12s-paintball-gunTwo paintball attacked occurred within four hours of each other between Friday night and Saturday morning.

At 11:30 p.m. Friday, a 17-year-old male was struck in the face at Castor and Magee when one of three suspects fired a paintball gun from the rear passenger window of a dark-colored minivan. Then, on early Saturday morning, another 17-year-old male was riding his bike at Frankford and Knorr when he noticed a similar looking vehicle. Though he saw nothing, he felt a sharp pain in his left eye as the van drove by, and saw green paint on his clothes. He was transported to Frankford Hospital.

The first victim received lacerations, swelling and bruising, but the second victim’s injuries are considered severe.  It is believed he will lose his left eye as a result of the injury.

The suspects have not been caught, and anyone with information is urged to call Northeast Detectives at 215-686-3153.

Attacks on elderly women in Lawncrest and Lawndale 1


By Shannon McDonald

UPDATE: Christopher Russell was arrested yesterday in connection with the attacks. His possible accomplice has not been named or arrested.

Courtesy of KYW

Courtesy of KYW

Police say 33-year-old Christopher Russell is responsible for at least seven attacks against elderly women in the Lawndale and Lawncrests neighborhoods.

The attacks began September 2008, and have been increasing in frequency, the most recent one occurring just last week. Russell follows elderly women on their way home from shopping and assualts them as they enter their homes. Victims have reported being thrown to the ground, and some were punched repeatedly. Police say Russell has a gun, but has not used it thus far. All of the victims were between 61 and 83 years old.

Elderly women are being encouraged to be aware of the surroundings, avoid traveling alone and report suspicious activity.

You can view the list of the attacks on

A Woman’s View: pro-life vs. pro-choice 6



By Donna Ward

Please note: The women who gave comments and stated personal opinions in this article in no way had the intention of attacking or influencing any individuals’ decisions. (Some names have been altered for privacy.) This article was intended to give an objective view and does not reflect the views of or any of its contributors.

An age-old question: Are you pro–choice or pro-life? A very tough, ominous question that creates vast controversy, and generates many different opinions brought forward with passion.

On a poll taken of NEast women about the sensitive subject, 13 out of 20 said they felt pro-life was the correct option for them. Of the 13 women, nine said they felt each woman had the right to decide for herself which direction she should take depending on her unique situation.
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Real NEastate: Morrell Park home disclosures 1



Q:  I am planning on selling my home in Morrell Park. I have done numerous repairs on the home in the 12 years I’ve lived here. My agent wants me to fill out a disclosure about the home. Do they really need to know about plumbing, etc., that’s been repaired? Why would I tell things that might hurt the sale of the home?

A:  YES, you MUST disclose everything you know! It is illegal to lie about the history of the home. If you’ve had something repaired, it shouldn’t hurt the sale of the home. Not disclosing something you know could hurt you in the sale or in the future.

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Take a tour of the Devon Theater, to reopen Friday in Mayfair 4


The Devon Theater in Mayfair has seen a renaissance. It reopens this Friday.

By Christopher Wink

The Devon hasn’t gotten this much attention in generations. Perhaps neither has Mayfair.

But now that the Frankford Avenue institution has made the long transition back to prominence, opening this weekend as the Devon Center for Performing Arts. It will mark another measure in the long transition from 1946 first-run movie theater to adult-film movieplex in the 1970s to second-run theater and to abandoned eyesore.

After a gala and private screening on Friday, with a possible appearance by Mayor Michael Nutter, the Devon opens on Saturday with a sold-out performance of Nunsense, a musical comedy.

“We’re in an Irish-Catholic neighborhood,” said Michael Pickering, the Devon’s artistic director. “Nunsense was a no-brainer.”

But don’t be fooled by the Devon’s location, far from the glitz of Center City’s Avenue of the Arts or the established arts scene of Old City. The Northeast is about to get its first professional performing arts center, by way of a decidedly working-class neighborhood.

The Devon is an all-union house, including its paid, professional actors, some from Philadelphia’s growing dramatic community. Still, its long-term strategy for success in the Northeast is heavy on community.

Read more, see video and other photos after the jump.

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Right NEast/Wrong NEast: Inqy confuses avenue and street 2


By Shannon McDonald

Outside media don’t care about the Northeast. We have all seen them misuse, misspell and mistake our neighborhoods and our streets, so we at NEast mag wanted to do something about it. When they get it wrong, we set it right in a segment we like to call Right NEast/Wrong NEast.

In an article about the death of two local firefighters, Inquirer staff writer Robert Moran listed Loretto Avenue as Loretto Street when mentioning Ladder Company 28 in his report. If only major newspapers had access to the Internet. And if only they took the time to care about the NEast. I don’t see the Inqy confusing Girard Avenue with Girard Street.

Heard on the radio: WYSP looking for attracive NEast ladies 0


bigboomboxBy Shannon McDonald

In an ongoing contest that radio station 94.1 WYSP is hosting, Northeast Philly ladies are being encouraged to send photos of themelves to the station.

The top 10 will be chosen, and a winner from each Philly region will be announced next week.

Tune into 94.1 FM for more details, and make the NEast proud!

Arthur Kade: Why the Rhawnhurst native left a lucrative career for acting 6


By Shannon McDonald

He’s been featured on Gawker and Street Talkin’, Philebrity loves to mess with him, and Country of Cretins make it its personal philosophy to mock him. But Arthur Kade doesn’t care.

He left his career as a successful financial planner to pursue his dream of acting, and Kade recently opened up to about his life growing up in Rhawnhurst and how the Northeast has influenced his acting career. You mention predominantly on your site that you’re from Northeast Philadelphia. What neighborhood did you grow up in? Where did you go to school?
Arthur Kade: I grew up in Rhawnhurst on Algon and Borbeck, and went to Northeast High School. Class of ’96.

NP: Where do you live now? Do you still have ties to the Northeast?
AK: I live in Center City Philadelphia – Rittenhouse Square – and am constantly traveling to New York for acting work, and will be heading to LA each month to work with my acting coach.

Continue reading to find out how much Arthur made as a financial planner, see a picture of him as a teenager and some videos of him.

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NEast History: Oxford Avenue in 1919 0


Looking north on Oxford Avenue from Bridge Street on Sept. 18, 1919. Photo by Charles P. Mills, and courtesy of

Every Friday, will bring you NEast History, a historical photograph, story or account from the storied past of Northeast Philadelphia. See others here.

See what it looks like today, below.
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