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Do Something: Look Out for Pop-Up Poetry

Poet Laureate Yolanda Wisher's Outbound Poetry Festival features pop-up poetry performances every weekday through April 21. Plus, four more ways to get civically engaged this week.

Every Monday we round up a handful of fun ways to get involved throughout the week to make your city better. Have ideas for upcoming events? Email tips here. And find more evergreen ways to get engaged—from helping local schools and fighting homelessness to greening up your neighborhood—in our Do Something guides.

Take in Some Pop-Up Poetry

Photo: Mark Palacio

April is National Poetry Month, and Philadelphia is gearing up to celebrate, thanks to a two-week program created by our Poet Laureate Yolanda Wisher. Done in collaboration with Philadelphia Contemporary, The Outbound Poetry Festival is Wisher’s signature project in her job as poet laureate. It comprises 10 pop-up poetry performances taking place at 30th Street Station from April 10-21. Stop by 30th Street’s South Waiting Room every weekday at precisely 4:52 p.m. to take in recitations from some of the city’s most renowned wordsmiths, including former Poet Laureate Frank Sherlock (April 14), Philly-born Virginia Poet Laureate Tim Seibles (April 13), fiery queer poet Denice Frohman (April 17) and the phenomenal Ursula Rucker (April 20). Poetry meets jazz on Saturday, April 15 at 2:35 p.m. in a special program that meshes poets with local musicians. That includes a performance by Wisher and the other half of her poetry and bass duo, Mark Palacio. For the full list of performances, go here. April 10-21, free, 30th Street Station’s South Waiting Room, 2955 Market St. 

Meet Your DA Candidates

All eight candidates running to replace Seth Williams as Philadelphia’s District Attorney come together again for a town hall focused on millennial issues. Hosted by Philly Set Go and a host of other local millennial-focused organizations, the night will include a rundown of the role of district attorney in Philadelphia, feedback from candidates about how they would engage millennials in their position, and a Q&A session with attendees. Bring some good questions about the issues that are most important to you—like maybe what they would do to make Philadelphia a less corrupt city, or how they would handle cases of juvenile life without parole. If you can’t make the event, follow along on Twitter with the hashtag #DAforPHL. And remember, primary election day is May 16. Wednesday, April 12, 6-8 p.m., free, Plays & Players, 1714 Delancey Street. 

Get the Real Facts About Refugees in the U.S.

There are a lot of hot topics being bandied about these days, but perhaps none so scorching as immigration. In a lot of respects, that’s a great thing: A light is shining on the issue maybe more now than it ever has, and regular citizens are forced to take notice. But are we getting all the right information? It isn’t likely. To help clear the air, Action Collective is holding a town hall to debunk all the “alternative facts” surrounding immigration and the plight of refugees in America. Guest speakers Sarah Krause, deputy director for Immigration and Refugee Programs at Church World Service, and Debbie Landis, technical advisor for Child Protection in Emergencies at Save the Children, will cover a handful of topics, answering questions like: What is refugee resettlement and why it is necessary? How have recent policies by the U.S. government impacted the situation of refugees both here and abroad? And perhaps most importantly, What are some ways U.S. citizens can speak up, and take action? (We have about 11 answers to that question here.) Thursday, April 13, 6-8 p.m., free, WeWork Walnut, 1430 Walnut Street. 

Drink Lemonade, Fight Childhood Cancer

Childhood cancer-fighting charity organization Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF) kicks off its summer events season (look for lemonade stands on a corner near you soon) with a massive family-friendly hoopla at the National Constitution Center (NCC) Saturday. The indoor-outdoor Spring Family Festival is free for anyone 18 and under, and features all kinds of colonial-era activities for kids—both inside NCC and spilling out onto the expansive front grounds. There’s plenty of fun for grownups, too. The adult $14.50 ticket (half of which benefits ALSF) not only grants you access to NCC exhibits, but live music, food and more lemonade than you can shake a stirrer at. To find out about more ALSF’s summer activity schedule, go hereSaturday, April 15, 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m., $14.50 (adults 18 and up), 525 Arch Street. 

Tell Trump to Release His Taxes

A rally in Center City Saturday morning, aka Tax Day, calls on President Donald Trump to release his tax returns—all of them. Hosted by Philadelphia Jobs with Justice, organizers stress that “the march isn’t about papers, it’s about economic justice.” And they’re fed up that “the super rich and corporations get more influence than We The People—especially people of color, women, immigrants, the queer/LGBT-identified.” There are Tax Marches being held in cities across the country. This Philly version starts at Thomas Paine Plaza and goes to People’s Plaza in Independence Park. So take a little break from TurboTax, if you’re so inclined, to raise your voice for the cause. Saturday, April 15, free, 10 a.m.-1 p.m., free, Thomas Paine Plaza, 1401 JFK Boulevard. 

Header photo by Kara Milstein

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