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Do Something: Study at Trash Academy

Meet the leaders of an innovative garbage "collaboratory" at a mini festival on Thursday. Plus: Slurp soup for schools, see Fairmout Park glow and more ways to get involved with your city 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.

Follow the Lights

Photo: Albert Yee

Every fall for the past five years, Fairmount Park Conservancy has made an effort to literally highlight Philly’s amazing public park system at their GLOW in Fairmount Park event. Gather along the Parkway as FPC lights up the Palazzo, an elegant 1930s sculpture created by Charles Z. Klauder. Tickets for the event benefit FPC’s efforts to raise awareness and public interest in caring for and maintaining our local parks. Entertainment and perks come in the form of a live performance by West Philadelphia Orchestra, food, an open bar and more. Wednesday, October 19, $45-$75, The Palazzo, 22nd and Winter streets.

Keep the Lights On

Afterschool programs can play a vital role in the development of our kids, providing extra opportunities to learn and engage with peers outside the more-formal classroom setting. Unfortunately, not all schools have the resources or manpower to make them a reality. To promote the development of more of these kinds of programs in Southeast Philadelphia schools, United Communities‘ Out of School (OST) department is throwing a “Lights On Afterschool Community Pep Rally” in picturesque Mifflin Square Park. In true pep rally fashion, Furness High School OST Band will provide the tunes while kids and parents keep busy with arts and crafts, STEM learning hubs, snack areas and a visit from the Free Library Book Bike. October 20, 3:30-5:30 p.m., free, Mifflin Square Park, 5th and Wolf streets.

Get Trashed

Photo: Kat Kendon for Mural Arts Philadelphia

Mural Arts Philadelphia has teamed up with local artist Margaret Kearney, LandHealth Institute and a group of dedicated South Philly residents for a program called Trash Academy. The initiative aims to find innovative and inventive solutions to the trash epidemic in Southeast Philadelphia—everything from art projects and cleanups to hosting big vision brainstorm sessions. Meet with members of the “collaboratory” to get a sample of the work they’re doing at an event this week called “What’s in Your Trash?” Part of October’s Mural Arts Month lineup, the mini festival welcomes Clean Air Action‘s Maurice Sampson for a “hands-on trash sort,” a visit from the TrashMobile and a demonstration by the Recycled Artist in Residency (RAIR) program, which challenged our notions of refuse as art when they created an art instillation out of a massive trash heap at Revolution Recovery. Thursday, October 20, 5-8 p.m., free 10th and Wolf streets.

Slurp Soup for Schools

On Sunday afternoon, join PhilaSoup for its annual Fall Soup luncheon. The event, which raises funds for local teacher projects in need of funding, is being put on in partnership with Keep Philadelphia Beautiful (KPB), an organization that works to make our neighborhoods greener through a mix of community-based initiatives and educational programs. While guests lap up their soup, they can listen in on a discussion by KPB about their in-school programming initiative that brings to local classrooms presentations on everything from recycling and composting to the effects of littering. Sunday, October 23, $15-$25, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Industrious, 230 S. Broad Street.

Be the Catalyst

In Chinatown Sunday, organizers from Catalyst Project, the MOVE Organization and Youth United for Change gather for an insightful panel about the work they do locally to empowerment local black working class communities in Philly and organize against state violence. Called “Black Liberation Strategies Then and Now,” the panelists will share their collective experiences while touching on everything from “building up independent economic institutions to fighting for community control of schools to ending the imprisonment of our movement leaders.” This is the first event in Catalyst Project’s “Philly Anne Braden Anti-racist Organizer Training Program.” Created specifically for white social justice activists, the program comprises three four-day workshop weekends “in an effort to deepen support for racial justice in white communities and help build powerful multiracial movements for collective liberation.” Sunday, October 23, 2-4:30 p.m., sliding scale $0-$15, Asian Arts Initiative, 1219 Vine Street.

Kat Kendon for Mural Arts Philadelphia

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