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Tonight’s Franklin Institute Awards continue a legacy of science, innovation


It’s safe to say that Benjamin Franklin is Philadelphia’s most renowned adopted son. While born in Boston, good ol’ BF has done more for this city than he’s given crdit. Sure, the discovery of electricity and the invention of bifocals were important in their own right. But it is the driving force of curiosity that Franklin was known for—and oh, how his legacy continues today.

From its inception as an actual institute—designed to inspire and educate future scientists, artisans and mechanics on their roads to discovery—to its shift to one of the premiere science museums in the country, the Franklin Institute is more than just a stop on the Parkway. Many famous scientists have demonstrated groundbreaking new technology at the Franklin Institute. Nikola Tesla, for example, established the principle of wireless telegraphy there in 1893. Later, in spite of the Great Depression, Philo Taylor Farnsworth gave the world’s first public demonstration of an all-electronic television system. A veritable incubator for scientific ingenuity, the Institute also gives credit where credit is due.

Founded in 1824, along with the Institute itself, The Franklin Institute’s Awards Program has long been recognized as the oldest, most comprehensive science and technology honor bestowed in the country and around the world. In 1874, the all-volunteer Franklin Institute Committee on Science and the Arts began selecting Franklin Institute Award recipients. The Committee continues its work to this day, recognizing the fields of chemistry, computer and cognitive sciences, earth and environmental science, engineering, life science and physics through the Benjamin Franklin Medals. Among the oldest and most prestigious science awards in the world, the winners are recognized for their formidable and ground-breaking contributions to science with a week-long event dedicated to their achievements and culminating in an elegant black-tie dinner and award ceremony. Past recipients include the impressive likes of Thomas Edison, Marie and Pierre Curie, Albert Einstein, Jane Goodall, Orville Wright, Stephen Hawking, Jacques Cousteau and Bill Gates. Tonight, a new slate of geniuses will be awarded, and they do its namesake proud.

To put a bow on this gift of knowledge, the day after the award ceremony marks the beginning of the Philadelphia Science Festival, tacking another week onto this celebration of science, technology, innovation and discovery. With Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey still on the air, this trend of celebrating advancements and excellence in science promises to be more than just a passing fad.

Here’s a list of the 2014 Franklin Institute Awards Laureates:

2014 BOWER AWARD AND PRIZE FOR ACHIEVEMENT IN SCIENCE: Edmund M. Clarke, Ph.D., Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
2014 BOWER AWARD FOR BUSINESS LEADERSHIP: William W. George, Harvard Business School, Boston, MA.
2014 BENJAMIN FRANKLIN MEDAL IN CHEMISTRY: Christopher T. Walsh, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.
Tohoku Institute of Technology, Sendai, Japan.
2014 BENJAMIN FRANKLIN MEDAL IN ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING: Mark Kryder, Ph.D., Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA.
2014 BENJAMIN FRANKLIN MEDAL IN EARTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE: Lisa Tauxe, Ph.D., Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego La Jolla, CA.
2014 BENJAMIN FRANKLIN MEDAL IN LIFE SCIENCE: Joachim Frank, Ph.D., Columbia University, New York, NY.
2014 BENJAMIN FRANKLIN MEDAL IN MECHANICAL ENGINEERING: Ali H. Nayfeh, Ph.D., Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA.
2014 BENJAMIN FRANKLIN MEDAL IN PHYSICS: Daniel Kleppner, Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA.

Congratulations to all!

See Pulitzer Prize-winning pics in “Capture the Moment” at the National Constitution Center


(photos by J.R. Blackwell)

Photographs enable us to convey thought without words—to capture important occurrences and share them across the globe. Capture the Moment: Pulitzer Prize Photography, on exhibit now at the National Constitution Center, brings to town the most comprehensive display of Pulitzer Prize-winning photographs ever compiled.

ncc3 The Pulitzer Prize, named for Hungarian-born newspaper publisher Joseph Pulitzer, is the ultimate symbol for excellence in photojournalism. Capture the Moment includes each recipient of the award since the category for photography began in 1942, up to and including the 2013 winning photographs. These iconic images, from the raising of the flag at Iwo Jima to the World Trade Center tragedy, may be familiar with most audiences, but the exhibit also features some of the lesser known photos. Unique to the exhibit are blurbs by the photographers to accompany their pictures, giving visitors the “full story,” enabling them to develop a new perspective on some of the most influential images in history.

Through equal conveyance of the extremities within the global community, Capture the Moment is an excellent example of one of the most important tenets of—and amendments to—the Constitution: Freedom of speech, and its Freedom of the Press clause. This exhibit also explores the responsibility these freedoms encompass, the obligation to tell the entire truth to the best of one’s journalistic ability. It includes imagery from photojournalists who died trying to uphold this integrity, this mission to tell the whole story. Powerful photographs of children being rescued from a fire, coupled with a family running to meet their uniform-clad father returning from the Vietnam War line the halls of Capture the Moment, enabling audiences to see photos that have influenced our thinking and inspired civil action.


Curated by Tony- and Emmy Award-winning producer, director and writer Cyma Rubin, this is the 33rd installation of Capture the Moment. After producing the first American exhibition in 2000, the show has been traveling for 13 years and has been seen by 3 million people. After that sort of track record, Rubin cites this installation as the “most powerful,” crediting the staff at the National Constitution Center for their dedication and hard work during the set-up process. The exhibit will last through the duration of the year, offering special programs throughout the upcoming months and promising to continue to inspire “We the People.”

Capture the Moment: Pulitzer Prize Photography. Runs through 12.31.13. Prices vary. National Constitution Center, 525 Arch Street.

The 2013 Made In America Lineup Is Being Announced This Afternoon Via Spotify And, Well, It’s Not Bad


Sweet baby Jesus, Nine Inch Nails. Beyonce. Kendrick. Phoenix. BEYONCE. Wait, Public Enemy!?!

We knew the lineup was being unveiled today, but didn’t realize that it was painfully slowly via a Spotify playlist. Interesting technique, Jay. Not mad. By tomorrow, I’m sure all the deets will be solidified.

Wanna get mad? Read Dan McQuade’s PhillyMag blog post entitled “The Made in America Festival Is Going to Be Lame Again: It’s a Big Corporate Music Fest, but it doesn’t have to feel that way. Here’s how to make it fun for Philadelphians.” It’s one really maddening piece of. Something.

Nine Inch Nails
The Gaslight Anthem
Emeli Sande
Schoolboy Q (and maybe A$AP Rocky)*
Walk the Moon
Jesse Rose
Kendrick Lamar (and maybe Drake)
Fitz and the Tantrums
Wolfgang Gartner
Wiz Khalifa
Ab Soul
Feed Me
Imagine Dragons
Calvin Harris
2 Chainz
Queens of the Stone Age
Public Enemy

This Month, It’s All About The Ladies

Daring dames, First Ladies, riot grrrls, famous Philly females—all are front and center this month as the city celebrates the talents and achievements of awesome women both past and present in honor of Women’s History Month. Here’s a few female-centric happenings local ladies should definitely consider marking down on their calendars.


Ladyfest Philly Benefit

In conjunction with their current multimedia event Create Chaos!, tonight, Permanent Wave Philly will be hosting a special dance party to raise money for the 10th annual activism, music and arts festival, Ladyfest Philly. Going down June 7-9, each year, the festival honors the artistic, organizational and political work of women, trans, genderqueer, intersex, and queer people with a weekend of workshops, musical performances, discussion groups and other events. If you can’t make it out tonight, no worries—PWP still has plenty of things lined up this month including a feminist photo shoot/live sketch this Saturday and skill share/craft session on March 24. (Fri/8, 9pm. $5-$7. Eris Temple Arts, 602 S. 52nd St.)


13th Annual Womynsfest

The sweet scent of estrogen and creativity will continue to permeate West Philly on Saturday as Vitamin D Productions once again hosts its free all-ages, all-female arts festival showcasing an eclectic group of artists. Using her signature fusion of movement and sound, local physical theater artist, Mira Treatman will be presenting a humorous yet thought-provoking performance piece while the art/music duo, Blown Away will be combining melodic harmonies and projected drawings to create an aural-visual spectacle. Covering the musical portion of evening are New York pop/rock/soul songstress, Lachi; Brooklyn-based poet/rapper, Sam LaRoche and West Philly’s experimental teenage twosome, The Barking Spiders. As always, there will be a deeper message at the core of the event, with this year’s speakers and performers tackling issues relating to abuse and bullying. (Sat/9, 7pm. Free. The Rotunda, 4014 Walnut St.)


First Person Arts StorySlam: Girl Power

Though Philly’s hugely popular storytelling competition always seems to a pretty interesting theme each month, this one might be the best yet. Host Katonya Mosely will open the mic to ladies who’ve got something to say and demand to be heard, regaling the audience with real-life tales of female empowerment. If you yourself have an experience you want to share, feel free to throw your name in the hat. Otherwise, just sit back and let some fascinating women entertain you. (Mon/11, 8:30pm. $8-$10. World Café Live, 3025 Walnut St.)


Women’s History Month @ The Constitution Center

Although typically the best place to learn about a bunch of old affluent white men, this month, the Center is carving out a space for the women who have helped shaped this great nation yet rarely get the credit they deserve in history books. Programming for the exhibit includes a 20-minute interactive show focusing on remarkable women that have called this city home and some of Philly’s “famous female firsts.” Guests can also learn some pretty interesting facts about America’s First Ladies and the role that women played in the Prohibition era. (Daily through March 30. $13-$14. National Constitution Center, 525 Arch St.)

12 Unique Local Valentine’s Day Events

badcupidI’ve been getting a steady stream of emails since the beginning of January about all the different Valentine’s-related happenings going on around town. And while I ignored most, I did hold on to the ones that sounded particularly interesting, quirky or just flat out eccentric.

Here’s the 12 events I was left with…

Bad Cupid: An Anti-Valentine’s Cabaret: For everyone who can’t get down a greeting card isle this time of the year without wanting to puke, Diversion Productions is bringing back their raunchy 2011 hit show with new songs and characters to shit all over the same lame holiday. Rich Lee reprises his role of the jaded, chain-smoking, binge-drinking and porn-loving cherub of love. Wed/13, 8pm. $15. L2, 2201 South St.

Robot-Human Theater: That’s right, this innovative performance by internationally acclaimed playwright and director Oriza Hirata features acting robots. And given that the production’s two-night run is so close to V-Day, the folks behind Live Arts/Fringe festival are offering a special “CupidBot” package, which includes not only two tickets, but gourmet chocolates, a rose and two glasses of champagne. Fri/15, 8pm. $75. Christ Church, 20 N. American St.

Valentine Craft Sunday: If you’re attached, give your Valentine a handmade shout out, on T Mom’s “Wall of Sweethearts.” If you’re single and bitter, partake in a little revenge crafting and showcase your evil ex on their “Wall of Broken Hearts.” Either way, you’ll enjoy half priced drafts from 5-7 p.m and 10-11 p.m. Sun/10, 12pm-2am. Free. Tattooed Mom, 530 South St.

Phreak N Queer Valentine Karaoke Fundrasier: Whether it’s a solo or duet, host Sara Sherr of Sing Your Life Karaoke just wants you to come out and sing and help her raise some cash for the Phreak N Queer Art and Music Festival going down in August. Admission includes a free drink and the following night, Tabu will also be hosting a “Love Hangover” dance party. Thurs/14, 8-10pm. $5. Tabu Lounge & Sports Bar, 200 S. 12th St.

Blow Me A Kiss!: Sure to leave lovers feeling a little raunchy, Philly’s premiere neo-burlesque troupe, Peek-A-Boo Revue twirls their tassels with some of their tried and true crowd pleasers as well as a few brand new treats. Fri/8, 8pm. $20. The Troc, 1003 Arch St.

cupid_undie_runCupid’s Undie Run 2013: A bunch of people strip down to their skivvies and take roughly a mile-long jog around the Art Museum for a good cause: The Children’s Tumor Foundation. Afterwards, everyone puts their clothes back on and seeks shelter inside one of the many fine watering-holes along Fairmount Avenue. Sat/9, 2pm. $30. Urban Saloon, 2120 Fairmount Ave.

Til Death Do Us Part: The Love Stories of Laurel Hill: During this hour-long walking tour, you’ll hear tales of undying romances as well as sorted stories of betrayal. When all is said and done, you and your mate can cozy up fireside and enjoy wine, hot chocolate and d’oeuvres. Sat/9, 1pm. $18-$20. Laurel Hill Cemetery, 3822 Ridge Ave.

A Valentine’s Day MixMassacre: Perfect for punk-rocking pairs of all ages, this deafening music showcase has five underground bands on the bill including, Man World Order, The Final Statement, Of Dukes & Capulets, Here & Gone and Seany Hags & Spark Up Music. Thurs/14, 7pm. $8-$10. The Troc, 1003 Arch St.

Second Stories Presents: Love is a Battlefield: Really, you can’t ask for a more romantic setting than the intimate, smoky second floor bar at The Dive. And just incase the various doodles of male and female genitalia covering the walls don’t get ya in the mood, several funny locals are going to tell you true stories of great romantic victory and defeat. Tues/12, 7pm. Free. The Dive, 947 E. Passyunk Ave.

wagner1pOrnithnology: The Birds and the Bees and the Bees: Have you ever wondered what bird foreplay is like? Well, George Armistead from the American Birding Association is going to tell you. In fact, you’ll learn all sorts of interesting things about the unusual mating rituals of various bird species. Should you and your own mate be looking to spice things in the bedroom, perhaps you’ll learn a few new tricks. Wed/13, 5:30-7pm. Free. The Wagner Free Institute of Science, 1700 W. Montgomery Ave.

Valen-Zine Reading: Should you be seeking a more creative V-Day outing, four talented local zinesters will be discussing the things, people and places that they love the most. The featured zines include “Tazewell’s Favorite Eccentric” by Sarah Rose and “Beer Jawn” by Bibliophile which traces his experience learning about different beers as an atypical Philly beer drinker. Thurs/14, 6pm. Free. Wooden Shoe Books, 624 South St.

Moonshine & Valentine’s: Recreating the sultry vibe of a 1920s speakeasy, the center will be serving up whisky cocktails, beer and a decant dinner menu followed by equally decadent desserts like red velvet cupcakes and chocolate-covered strawberries. As for the evening’s entertainment, besides gaining access to the center’s current Prohibition exhibit, guests will be treated to live jazz music and special cabaret performances featuring hits from Broadway’s Chicago. Come dressed for the occasion as you and your mate will also have a chance to strike a pose in front of a 20s-era backdrop. Thurs/14, 5:30-8:30pm. $30-$35. Constitution Center, 525 Arch St.

Gifts For Him (Under $50)

For the first installment of PW Style’s 2012 Gift Guide, I figured I’d start with the fellas for a change. Most of the featured items are local with a few non-local items thrown into the mix for the sake of convenience (you know you’re going to probably wait till the last minute anyway).

I tried to take dudes of all types and ages into consideration, so whether you’re shopping for sports-loving father, your rocker boyfriend or you nerdy brother, here’s a few affordable gifts to consider.

Gifts For The Fellas (Under $50)



Harry K Men’s Tee

Beatles Monopoly Board Game

Cyberoptix Aw Shoot Tie


Star belt


Vinyl Record Coasters

Bike Chain Frame

Holiday Happenings This Week

NOTE: This only includes events going down Tuesday-Thursday. The weekend is a whole other separate beast, one that I will wait till Friday to tackle. That said, spend your money wisely.


The 12 Cans of Christmas

This may just be the most Philly-appropriate holiday celebration I’ve heard of. During each of these 12 straight “jolly happy hours,” locals will enjoy a different, half-priced seasonal brew as well as complimentary bar snacks before discarding their empties on the “Percy Street Beer Can Xmas Tree.” Once you’ve had enough to drink, you’re invited to take a photo on Santa’s lap—and by “Santa,” I mean a disguised representative from the night’s featured brewery. Return on the 12th day to see how their booze tree sparkles during a special ceremony with live music and even more festive beers. Daily through Dec. 12 from 5-7pm. Percy Street Barbecue, 900 South St.


Bits & Baubles

For one night, Bus Stop’s incredible selection of unique designer shoes will take a slight back seat as the boutique becomes an emporium of oh-so adorable gifts and stocking stuffers from an eclectic mix of local, national and international designers. This includes wristlets and men’s wallets from the UK brand Cheap Monday, the trendy jewelry of Betsy & Iya and the very fashion-forward socks of the Hong Kong-based line Da-Sein Socks (Bus Stop is currently the only store in America where you can find them). Guests will also be treated to cocktails and bites and whether you decided to purchase a small gift and/or a pair of shoes, you’ll receive 15 percent off your purchase. Weds., 6-9pm. Free. Bus Stop Boutique, 727 S. Fourth St.


Shop on the Square

For this special craft show, benefit sale and auction, the second floor galleries at the Philadelphia Art Alliance will be transformed into an upscale retail shop, featuring an array of handmade items—tableware, toys, jewelry, sculpture, etc.—from over 35 carefully selected artists. For any Rittenhouse nannies who happen to be reading this, the PAA is offering special family-friendly activities every afternoon including several origami workshops and a “Bring Your Stroller” guided tour. Tues., 12-7pm. Through Dec. 9. Free. Philadelphia Art Alliance, 251 S. 18th St.


Kembrel Holiday Gifts Trunk Show

If all these massive local holiday craft shows are too intense for you, here’s a chance to shop locally-hand-made gifts in a more intimate setting. Party with the Kembrel crew and patronize with some local designers while checking some folks off your Xmas list. Some of the designers confirmed so far include Armstrong & Wilson (men’s accessories), bombom jewelry and De Jong Design (wooden home goods). Finally, as always, drinks and snacks will be provided. Thurs., 5-9pm. Free. Kembrel, 1822 Chestnut St.


Penn Museum Holiday Sale

With the apocalypse now allegedly less than a month away, not only is this a good time to finally go check out the Penn Museum’s MAYA 2012: Lords of Time exhibit if you haven’t already, but given the inevitable slew of apocalypse parties, now also seem like a good time to stock up on some fun doomsday novelty items. For the next five days, the museum will be offering shoppers 10 percent off their purchase (15 percent if you’re a Penn student or faculty member; 20 percent if you’re a member). Besides their usual selection of unique gifts from around the world, their store currently has a special “Party Like It’s” gift collection featuring everything from shot glasses to t-shirts. Daily through Dec. 9. Various times. Penn Museum, 3260 South St.

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