Women For Greater Philadelphia Newsletter

2015 - 2016 Winter Newsletter

President’s Message:
Women for Greater Philadelphia is celebrating 40 years of community service and stewardship of Laurel Hill Mansion in East Fairmount Park. And this year Women’s History Month event is to honor 10 of founding members who are still with the group today. These amazing women are Enid Adler Esq., Dr Trudy Brown, Dolores Fenlon, Gloria Penn Easton, Dr Ruth Horwitz, Alma Jacobs, Sylvia Kauders, Sylvia Myers, Alice Nugent and Dolores Seiberlich. It has been my privilege to meet, talk and know these extraordinary women. The Women’s History month event is March 20th at 2 pm. Please attend and hear stories from the founders about the organization, the mansion and some fascinating careers of these amazing women. To make reservations for this free event, please call 215-535-2441 or email info@laurelhillmansion.org

There are some new and exciting events at the Mansion. First, on Sunday April 3rd from 3 to 5 pm is our “Girls Night In”, an afternoon of fun, food and shopping to help preserve Laurel Hill Mansion.. At this free event we will have various vendors displaying wonderful jewelry, scarves, bags, skin products and food items for sale. Check out our website www.laurelhillmansion.org for more information.

The second annual Fairmount Park sponsored “Rooms in Bloom” will be April 16th & 17th. Fairmount Park will be offering through the parkcharms.com website park passes for this event. You will be able to see all 6 historic houses decorated with floral designs and blooms in each room for $35. The Fairmount Park Conservancy and Philadelphia Parks and Recreation has joined forces with the Historic Mansions to hold more activities as a group to promote our wonderful houses and history. Watch for additional sponsored events to come from this collaboration.

The future is bright for the organization when it comes to music performances. Mark your calendar! Saturday April 23rd -- Women for Greater Philadelphia first ever Latin Music Concert featuring Magdaliz and Her Latin Ensemble Crisol at 4pm. CRISOL, Spanish for melting pot, is an ensemble that has been performing in the Philadelphia and surrounding areas since the fall of 1997. The ensemble is dedicated to the interpretation of a variety of folk and traditional music genres from Cuba, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Colombia, Venezuela, and other parts of Latin America and the Caribbean; performing romantic Puerto Rican Boleros, energetic Mexican Mariachi music, feisty Cuban Sones, sensuous Colombian Cumbias, contagious Dominican Merengues, jazzy Brazilian Bossa Novas, and much more. A reception will follow the performance. Tickets are only $20.00 per person. You can purchase online on the web or contact Barbara Frankl at 215-643-7923. Space is limited so make your reservations early! For years Barbara Frankl helped Alice Nugent run the music program. Today, Barb chair’s the music program. She is committed to the future of program and to honoring the past. This year’s Concerts by Candlelight is a delightful mix of new and longtime performers featuring Lance Wiseman (forte piano), Federal Winds (woodwinds quartet), Wister Quartet, La Fiocco and Allen Krantz. The word is out that Laurel Hill Mansion is a wonderful venue for small performances and Barbara has been contacted by various performers from many genres who would like to perform at the mansion. We are considering some small jazz groups for future events. So watch the web for updates about the Candlelight and other concerts coming to Laurel Hill Mansion.

Keeping with tradition, Sunday May 1st is our Annual Spring Tea from 2 to 4pm. For this year’s entertainment we will have some Gilbert & Sullivan songs during the tea. Contact me at 215-535-2441 or check the website for more information. Still just $25 per person and parking is always free for mansion events. And again get your reservations in early due to limited space.

Annual Love Your Park Day is Saturday, May 7th. Get your family and friends together and make it a fun day at Laurel Hill Mansion. Help Women for Greater Philadelphia spruce up our grounds. For more information visit the website www.laurelhillmansion.org or email info@laurelhillmansion.org.

Hope to see you at some of our events!
Karen F Phinney
President, Women for Greater Philadelphia,
Stewards of Laurel Hill Mansion, East Fairmount Park.



Our Concerts by Candlelight 40th Anniversary Season is underway. June 28th 2015 Principally Harps performed to a sold out audience. This was their first performance at Laurel Hill. Also this was our first sell out of the first concert in many years. Tickets are still available for the remaining concerts. July 12 Dolce Suono Ensemble, July 26 the Wister Quartet, August 9 La Fiocco and August 23 Allen Krantz. Check the website for more information. Our wonderful dedicated volunteers greet the guest, hand out programs and set and supply the light refreshments at the end of the concert. The performers will mingle and converse with the guests during the reception on our back porch.

This past fall Fairmount Park started a lecture series in the Historic Mansions. On Sunday July 19th at 2pm Laurel Hill Mansion will host Edward Pettit; his lecture will be “George and Edgar”, the story of George Lippard and Edgar Allen Poe working in Philadelphia. Then on Sunday August 16th at 2pm Jack McCarthy will present “Music of Antebellum Philadelphia” a lecture on music in Philadelphia from 1820 to 1860. This was a special request from Women for Greater Philadelphia; we wanted to hear what would have been played in our very own Octagonal Music Room. For more details see our website.

Since 2011, Women for Greater Philadelphia has hosted a “Symposium on the Constitution” partnership with the 7th and 8th grade students from Holy Cross School in Mt. Airy and the Rawle & Henderson law firm (which was founded as the Rawle Law Office in 1783 by William Rawle, portrait hangs in the Octagonal Room). This spring the event was held at Holy Cross. I was able to attend and witness lawyer Scott Griffiths from Rawle & Henderson engage the students from Holy Cross on the Amendments of the Constitution. I was thrilled to be back at my grade school alma mater. I found the program very fascinating. At the end of the program Rawle and Henderson donated to each student a copy of “The United States Constitution what it says, what it means, a hip pocket guide”. Huge thanks to Bette Young for her tireless dedication to the program.

The mansion was a flurry of activities this springtime. We started our season off with a Women’s History Month event and our theme was Women of Nonprofit. Our spring tea had a visit by Rebecca Rawle Shoemaker (our very own Barbara Frankl). Jason Lovelace played the 1808 Broadwood Fortepiano. The Love Your Park event had a small group of volunteers helping to fight the battle of the weeds and ivy. A new program from the Park ”Rooms in Bloom” in May, had floral designs and paintings in all of the park houses. Some of the designs represented items on display in the mansions. Our roses and laurel bushes bloomed in time for the event. It was almost as colorful in the gardens as it was in the mansion. Women for Greater Philadelphia is very grateful to the “Community Garden Club at Wayne” for the arrangements, painting and watercolors that were displayed in the mansion. Also, I want to thank them for their continued support and holiday decorations. For the garden club’s hard work I wish more guests could have seen their displays. I hope the park continues the program next year.

A large tree in the back of the mansion was removed due to the tree being compromised by lightening. We at the mansion requested a couple more trees to be removed beyond the property line that would enhance the view of the river. The park was not able to fulfill our request; however, Mother Nature knocked down one of the unsightly trees. We will see what happens next.

With many new enthusiastic volunteers and board members, Women for Greater Philadelphia is expanding its programming. Also, we are planning our fall fundraiser. If there is an activity or event that you think is a good match for the mansion, please send emails to info@laurelhillmansion.org Visit us on our website at www.laurelhillmansion.org. We are in the process of rebuilding our Facebook account so please like us on Facebook and share with your friends. See the back page for membership and volunteering positions.
Karen F. Phinney
President, Women For Greater Philadelphia


As I approach my first full year as President of Women For Greater Philadelphia, I would like to thank all of my fellow members for helping me adjust to my new role. Also, a big thank you to Alma Jacobs for her guidance and for her continued work on behalf of Women For Greater Philadelphia as our Chairman of the Board. Volunteering here at Laurel Hill has given me great memories and much happiness. Have you ever considered being a volunteer? Unlike other organizations, we have no mandatory hours of service and our volunteers choose which activities they want to participate in such as gardening, education, music, or holiday tours. Our members / volunteers are a diverse group of individuals, from many walks of life who all enjoy being part of this historic Mansion. All are welcome! Note our new website will be live in mid April. Please visit the site for tour information, to learn about upcoming events or to read the bios of musical performers this summer. We will host our 4th Constitution program in May with the 7th and 8th grade students from Holy Cross School and one of the Lawyers from Rawle & Henderson LLC. We have contacts from several new schools and Home School students to visit in May.

President Karen F. Phinney




June 29th MC3 (violin, viola, forte piano)   July 13th Mimi Stillman (flute and vocalist {TBA})
July 27th Wister String Quartet   August 10th Alan Krantz (guitar)
August 24th La Fiocco (baroque instruments)

CHRISTMAS TOURS will start December 4th. PLEASE NOTE: Laurel Hill Mansion is open for public tours April 17th through mid-December, Thursday through Sunday 10 AM – 4 PM Laurel Hill is also open for special events and private tours by calling 215-235-1776 for an appointment. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- FOR MEMBERSHIP, CONCERT SERIES OR INFORMATION ON BEING A VOLUNTEER: PLEASE PRINT YOUR COMPLETE ADDRESS AND INFORMATION. TEAR THE BOTTOM PART OFF AND LEAVE IN THE BASKET BY THE DOOR OR MAIL TO THE ADDRESS SHOWN BELOW. Volunteers are important to the growth of our organization and programs!
NAME: _________________________________________________________________________
ADDRESS: ______________________________________________________________________
HOME PHONE: ___________________ MOBILE PHONE: ___________________
EMAIL ADDRESS: ___________________________________
Women for Greater Philadelphia, Inc.
510 Walnut Street, 16th Fl.
Philadelphia, PA 19106
Telephone #: (215)235-1776 Women For Greater Philadelphia and Laurel Hill Mansion:

Notes on the 2014 Spring Tea

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