Every Monday we round up a host of fun ways to get involved throughout the week to make your city better. Have ideas for upcoming events? Email tips here.
See the Soda Tax Debate
There are only a few more weeks left in City Council’s FY2017 budget hearing schedule, and this Wednesday, all eyes will be on them as they consider the hotly debated soda tax. The bill will come before the Committee of the Whole, which will either make a decision that day or hold it to the call of the Chair. (We’re told the latter is the likely result.) If you haven’t been keeping up, the Mayor Kenney’s proposal aims to raise $400 million over the next five years with a 3 cents per ounce tax on sugary beverages. A large part of the money raised would go toward universal pre-K, and community schools. A recent Citizen-sponsored poll says 58.7 percent of Philadelphians support the tax, but you can almost bet on a roomful of protesters who’d rather see the bill go down. Should be quite the show. Wednesday, May 11, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., City Hall, Room 400.
Get the SEXx Talk
A team of local sex-positive community leaders bring back SEXx 3.0, a TEDx-style conference featuring talks on sexuality-related topics. One of the organizers, Elicia Gonzales, says she began the event because “our society is so sex-negative and full of shame, fear, and secrecy. I want to be a part of helping our communities celebrate sexuality, be body positive, combat stigma, and engage in frank conversations.” Topics covered include one woman who found healing through sexuality during her battle with cancer and and a talk about embracing sexual freedom. Afterward, the group will head to Franky Bradley’s for some complementary performances. Wednesday, May 11, 7 p.m., $5-$20, William Way Community Center.
Browse Really Awesome Art
Starting this week, Asian Arts Initiative will play home to “The Really Awesome Art Show,” a Mural Arts-sponsored exhibition comprising artwork made by burgeoning Picassos and Van Goghs across the city. Stop in for Thursday’s opening reception to ogle the creations—everything from painting and sculpture to digital arts—made by local youth aged 10 to 22. The masterpieces within promise to touch on themes like personal identity, the environment, social responsibility and more. This exhibit will be on view through May 26th. Thursday, May 12, 4-7 p.m., free, Asian Arts Initiative.
Walk to Fight Hate
Lace up your tennies and hit the streets Saturday morning to stand up against hate in all its forms—whether it be racism, homophobia, whatever. Civil rights and human relations agency the Anti-Defamation League is hosting a two-mile charity walk punctuated with a diversity expo, kids’ zone for the little ones, lineup of food trucks and live performances by local drag troupe Drag Mafia and hip-hop up-and-comer Yazz the Greatest. So far $354,133 has been raised toward the ADL’s $600,000 goal, so if you can’t show up, at least consider giving to benefit the organization’s work to “fight all forms of bigotry, defend democratic ideals and protect civil rights for all through information, education, legislation, and advocacy.” Sunday, May 15, 9-11:30 a.m., Philadelphia Navy Yard.
Slurp Soup, Grow #PHLEd
PhilaSoup will be filling up soup bowls on Sunday afternoon for a brunch to benefit local educators with great ideas about how to make our schools better. Here’s how the event, called Spring Soup, works: While you’re slurping soup, educators will stand up and give a three-minute presentation on projects they hope to get funded, and then take some questions. When all spiels are spieled, attendees will vote on the project they would like to receive the largest amount of funding. Cash comes from the day’s ticket sales plus matching by PhilaSoup of up to $500. While one educator will receive the bulk of the earnings, everyone who presents will walk away with a portion of the funds. Sunday, May 15, 11 a.m., $15-25, Philadelphia Immigrant Innovation Hub.
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