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Do Something: Defend the Free Press

This week, stand with students against gun violence, farm in Center City, discuss the free press and more!

Every Monday we round up a handful of ways to get involved throughout the week to make your city better and have fun doing it. Have ideas for upcoming events? Email us tips! Then, discover more evergreen ways to stay engaged in our handy Do Something guide.

Stand with Students Against Gun Violence

For the third year in a row, Parkway High School students and fellow Philadelphians are gathering at the Philadelphia Museum of Art to highlight the prevalent gun violence impacting their neighborhoods and other neighborhoods throughout America. As The Philadelphia Inquirer reported, a total of 60 percent of Parkway 9th graders have suffered the loss of a relative due to gun violence, but their pain commonly goes unnoticed in the national discussions surrounding the legislation of weapons. Bring signs, friends, and compassion, and stand for those who have lost their lives or the lives of their loved ones to gun violence. Monday, June 11, 1 pm, Free, Philadelphia Museum of Art Steps, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway

Defend the Free Press

Participate in engaging conversation about the current state of journalism in America. The Citizen’s own Larry Platt will host a panel of esteemed journalistsMSNBC’s Ali Velshi, The Washington Post’s Ashley Parker, and The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jonathan Tamarifor a night of thought-provoking discussion regarding how the landscape of contemporary American politics informs journalism. The event, in conjunction with the Lenfest Institute for Journalism and the University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg School for Communication, will focus on sharing solutions to the frustrations both journalists and their audiences share about the relativity of facts in a heated political context. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to hear from four distinguished minds and think about bringing national solutions home to Philadelphia. Tuesday, June 12, 6:30 pm-8 pm, Tickets $30 General Admission/$15 Member/$8 Student, University of Pennsylvania School of Law, Michael A. Fitts Auditorium, 3501 Sansom Street

Celebrate the Magic Garden's Inspirations

Isaiah Zagar, the muralist behind Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens (PMG), honors the artists who influenced his own work in the opening of PMG’s newest exhibition. Zagar’s work has long decorated over 200 walls of Philadelphia buildings, and provided a space for introspection among the hustle and bustle of the city. Zagar compiles his signature mosaics out of found items such as pieces of broken glass, spare bike tires, or burnt-out lightbulbs. At this one-time opening reception, learn more about the origins of Zagar’s eclectic murals and his relationship with artists Clarence Schmidt, Picasso, Jean Debuffet, and others, who inspired the visual art along streets of Philly. Wednesday, June 13, 6 pm-9 pm, Pay-What-You-Wish, Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens, 1020 South Street

Visit Philly's Newest Park

Philadelphia’s new Rail Park will open its gates this Thursday, thanks to the efforts of Friends of the Rail Park and the Center City District. This first phase of the elevated park will span a quarter mile area beginning at Broad Street. Similar to New York City’s High Line, the completed park will replace the three mile track of abandoned railroad tracks north of Center City, conveniently connecting 10 distinctive neighborhoods for pedestrians and bicyclists. For now, the elevated park features plenty of seating and swings for visitors to rest and take in the beautiful natural scenery, city skyline, and local art that Rail Park has to offer. Thursday, June 14, 11 am, Free, Rail Park, 13th and Noble Streets.

Farm Fresh Vegetables Right in Center City

Explore the intersections between agriculture and artistic expression at the opening of this interactive exhibit and functioning urban farm. The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s Farm for the City will occupy Thomas Paine Plaza across from City Hall until September, serving as a way to beautify the area, produce an estimated 1,000 pounds of produce for Broad Street Ministry, and facilitate discussions about the socially-patterned ways that food is made (or not made) available to communities within the city. The farm will act as a space to hold free public events throughout the summer, fostering opportunities for creative arts, education, workshops, and collective growth among community members. Come enjoy the greenery and the warm June weather on the exhibition’s opening day!  Friday, June 15, Thomas Paine Plaza, All Day, Free 1401 John F Kennedy Boulevard

Dine Globally For Good!

Photo: Flickr

Spend your Saturday dining on the Schuylkill! Join Bartram’s Garden, Nosey Palate, The Education Culture Opportunity Foundation, and Verbal Connections for a festival featuring international wine and food tastings, accompanied by international visual arts and other games and activities. This event serves as a fantastic opportunity to create a sense of community among participants and promote conversations about different forms of art and culture. Your contributions will raise money to benefit young people in Philadelphia and young women in Kenya. Click here to register and enjoy an evening of delicious food, fun, and connection. Saturday, June 16, 3 pm-8 pm, $30, Bartram’s Garden, 5400 Lindbergh Boulevard.

Learn from Experts of Journalism and Religion

Rethink the way you consume journalism on religion in today’s political climate. The National Museum of American Jewish History will host moderator Ari Goldman from Columbia University, a specialist in religion and spiritual life in journalism. He will be joined by Yoni Appelbaum of The Atlantic, Dahlia Lithwick of Slate, and Jen Rubin of The Washington Post to explore how Judaism has impacted their professional life and informed how they approach covering the turbulence of the American politics. Click here to register and take this exceptional opportunity to participate in the Academic Council of the American Jewish Historical Society’s annual conference. Sunday, June 17, 7:30 pm, $15 Non-Members/$10 Members, National Museum of American Jewish History, 101 South Independence Mall East

The Philadelphia Citizen will only publish thoughtful, civil posts. We want to be a communal space. But that doesn’t mean you have a First Amendment right to be an idiot. Send us an insulting, offensive and/or wildly off-topic comment and not only will we refrain from posting it -- we will laugh at you before we hit delete.

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