All residents are invited to come and get acquainted with the new principal of the Penn Alexander School at this fall’s annual meeting of the Spruce Hill Community Association.

Michael Farrell took over as principal this fall. He was the founding principal of Mastery Charter‘s Thomas Elementary School in South Philadelphia, and was named in July to succeed Sheila Sydnor.

Besides agreeing to share his thoughts with the community, he’s graciously agreed to host the meeting in PAS’s own cafeteria. (PAS is at 43rd and Locust St.).

Due to a conflict with Election Day, SHCA’s annual meeting is a week later than usual this year — it will be on Tuesday, Nov. 15, at 7:30 p.m. Light snacks and refreshments will be served at 7:00 p.m.

There will also be updates on SHCA’s finances, activities over the last year and election of officers and board members. The current president, Eric Santoro, is unopposed for a second one-year term. Four other officers and 10 board members will be chosen, with bios of all the candidates available at the meeting.

Membership in SHCA is open to all. There will be an opportunity at the meeting to renew a membership or join for the first time. Dues are $20 a year.

Trick-or-Treat at Spruce Hill Center

Be sure your trick-or-treating route includes the Spruce Hill Center, 257 S 45th St (5-8pm), where long time neighbor and SHCA board member Jackie Waiters will continue the enduring Mel-Lo TownWatch tradition of delighting trick-or-treaters with hand assembled goody bags.


Spruce Hill Community Center Location

Halloween Tot Parade 2016

We are gearing up for the Annual Halloween Tot Parade!

The annual Little Tot Halloween Parade is a favorite among families in Spruce Hill. Kids in costume will trick-or-treat through a few short blocks and end up at the 4200 block of Osage Ave, where refreshments are served. Read More


October 31st, 4:30 pm -7:00 pm

Parade Start Location: 45th & Baltimore Ave (Milk & Honey) – Gather after 4:00, Parade starts at 4:30 sharp.

Parade Ending Location: 4200 Block Osage Ave (Little Osage)

Check out our Facebook event page for the latest information.

The Dirt Factory

The Dirt Factory is a community composting facility for University City located at 4308 Market St. The mission of The Dirt Factory is to keep fallen leaves out of the waste stream, provide a location for the University City community to sustainably dispose of its food scraps and other organic waste, and generate high quality organic compost to be used in local gardens. The Dirt Factory is also a community education center, featuring residential scale composting equipment, where community members can learn more about composting at home, and gardening using compost.

The Dirt Factory is open for drop-offs from 5:00pm – 6:00pm every Wednesday, and from 10:30am – 11:30am on Saturdays, at which time residents can drop off up to 5 gallons of organic food waste per week. Do you have bagged leaves or wood chips? Contact [email protected] to arrange pickup, or if you are interested in obtaining finished compost.

Find more information, including a list of compostable materials at:

Penn Alexander School Principal Search

Dear Neighbors,

The Spruce Hill Community Association invites surrounding community members to join in the conversation regarding a national search for a new Principal at the Penn Alexander School. After many years of dedicated service to our neighborhood’s children, Principal Sheila Sydnor will retire at the end of this school year. We invite you to attend a meeting with the Consultative Committee that has been formed to aid in the national search for a new Principal. The Committee is chaired by Mr. Sean Conley, Assistant Superintendent for Neighborhood Network Two of the School District of Philadelphia, and Dr. Pam Grossman, Dean of the Penn Graduate School of Education. To inform the Principal search, the Committee is holding a series of outreach meetings with key stakeholders. Don’t miss this important opportunity for community members to learn about the search process and to voice perspectives and ideas!

When: Wednesday, March 9th, 7-8pm
Where: Penn Alexander School Cafeteria; Enter on 43rd street (between Locust and Spruce)

Looking forward to seeing everyone on the 9th!

The SHCA Education Committee

The Enterprise Center CDC Neighborhood Advisory Committee

The NAC program is funded by the City of Philadelphia Office of Housing and Community Development, which designates service areas by census tracts. The NAC program places a particular emphasis on assisting low-to-moderate income residents, with a focus on:
  • Connecting residents to a variety of housing and home repair resources
  • Helping communities address blight and development issues
  • Disseminating timely information to residents about resources and services
  • Communicating resident feedback to city officials
The Enterprise Center CDC NAC Manager serves as a liaison between service area residents and the city and assists residents in accessing resources and achieving community goals.
For more information, contact NAC Manager Jesse Blitzstein at
[email protected]
or 215-895-4075
or visit The Enterprise Center at 4548 Market Street on weekdays between 8:30 AM and 5:00 PM
The Enterprise Center NAC Map