Stay Safe on Slippery Sidewalks: Walk Like a Penguin

The trick to balancing on slick sidewalks is to “walk like a penguin.”

At least, that’s the advice coming out of Little Baby’s Ice Cream in Northern Liberties.

Instinct tells us to do the opposite and center our weight mid-stride, which works on dry walkways.

However this tactic forces legs to split your body weight in half and rely on both feet to maintain balance — not the best idea for icy streets.

The local ice cream parlor posted a simple infographic on their blog to remind everyone to think of gravity and mimic penguins. Shifting one’s weight onto the front leg keeps people – and penguins – from slipping.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention backs up the penguin waddle claim, reminding people to also spread feet slightly to fortify the center of gravity.

With sidewalks freezing over Tuesday following the snow event Monday night, remember to stay smart and give yourself extra time to waddle to work.

Keep your hands out of your pockets and wear a puffy coat…so if you do fall, at least you can catch yourself and cushion your buns.

Story originally published on

Special Butterfly Discovered at Philly Museum, Ignites Awe

A magnificent rarity appeared at The Academy of Natural Science’s Butterflies! exhibit.

“I thought: ‘Somebody’s fooling with me. It’s just too perfect,’” said Chris Johnson, a volunteer at the museum. “Then I got goose bumps.”

Johnson found a beautiful specimen with the characteristics of both male and female butterflies. Each wing had different markings, splitting the butterfly in half with different genetic characteristics.

Johnson informed his supervisor, David Schloss, who promptly called a lepidopterist to confirm his suspicions.

Jason Weintraub, who specializes in butterfly collections, knew immediately that the insect needed to be collected and euthanized for research before being potentially injured or killed in the exhibit.

The butterfly had a condition called bilateral gynandromorphy, a genetic condition that primarily affects birds and butterflies.

“It can result from non-disjunction of sex chromosomes, an error that sometimes occurs during the division of chromosomes at a very early stage of development,” Weintraub said.

The “brush-footed” butterfly, Lexias paradalis, does not yet have a colloquial name. It is often found in Southeast Asia, according to museum officials.

The nameless butterfly originated in a farm in Malaysia before it was sent to the local exhibit.

“In most cases, such specimens are ‘discovered’ in museum collections by a researcher who is carefully examining reproductive organs of insects under the microscope and stumbles across a specimen with both male and female characteristics,” Weintraub said.

The miracle butterfly will be displayed at the Academy of Natural Science from Jan. 17 to Feb. 16.

New Laws Mean High Fines for Neglectful Pet Owners This Winter

A new ordinance in Philadelphia requires pet owners to step up and keep their pets protected from winter’s below-freezing weather conditions or face hefty fines.

When Philadelphia declares a code blue, code gray or code red advisory for extreme weather, pet owners now have no choice but to keep their furry friends sheltered or face fines up to $300.

“Keeping dogs safe and warm is a basic need,” Susan Cosby, executive director of the Animal Care and Control Team (ACCT). “Don’t risk fines by taking steps now to ensure your dog has protection from the elements.”

The new ordinance, introduced and supported by Congressman Kenyatta Johnson, relies on concerned neighbors to report animals left out in the cold by calling ACCT at 267-385-3800 or email

ACCT recommends that pet owners who normally keep their pets outdoors start moving their pets inside, or into a suitable form of shelter, before the bitter cold kicks in. The legislation outlines several requirements for pet owners, including standards for acceptable pet housing during extreme weather.

Code blue conditions are expected this week with snow and temperatures that feel as low as 10 degrees on Wednesday. Code blue refers to temperatures below 20 degrees, code gray refers to precipitation accompanied by temperatures below 32 degrees and code red refers to forecasts of 95 degrees or higher for three consecutive days. During all three conditions, pet owners will be required to move their pets indoors.

Neglectful pet owners will be subject to a fine of no less than $150, according to the ordinance.

Pet owners who want more information or help with the new ordinance can contact for tips on how to make the transition indoors easier.

A complete list of tips for pet owners can be found at

Originally published on

Ex-Phillies Star Jimmy Rollins to Maintain Philadelphia Fresh Food Initiative Despite Trade

Despite being traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers after 14 years on the Philadelphia Phillies, former MVP Jimmy Rollins will keep his foundation active in the Delaware Valley.

The Rollins Family Foundation, founded by Rollins and his wife, Johari, supports Philadelphia and surrounding communities by providing fresh food to families at risk.

“Fresh food shouldn’t be a luxury. Every family should have access to fruits and vegetables,” Rollins said.

While Rollins moved back to his home state, California, to play for the LA Dodgers, his nonprofit foundation continued to provide families with affordable, fresh food while continuing to empower youth to make healthy choices in the area he called home while becoming a star with the Phillies.

“We made great progress in 2014 and look to continue to build on that momentum,” Rollins said.

Going forward, The Rollins Family Foundation is considering an partnership with projects in Los Angeles while continuing to work with SHARE, the Food Trust and St. Christopher’s Foundation for Children-Farm to Families initiatives, said the foundation.

originally published on

Allentown to See Substantial Economic Change in 2015

Allentown is on the top 20 list of towns to see a jump in job growth in early 2015 – a huge boost for the city where 27.8 percent of residents live under the poverty line and 4.8 percent are unemployed.

Allentown shares the number 11 spot with Dallas, Texas; Jacksonville, Florida; Knoxville, Tennessee; San Antonio, Texas; and Wichita, Kansas. The towns are expected to see a 17 percent increase in employment during the first quarter of 2015, according to a comprehensive list by Manpower Group.

“Staffing plans are much stronger than quarter 4 when the net employment outlook was [7 percent],” said Manpower spokesman Michael Pinkasavage.

The increase in employment comes after a welcomed, steady decrease of unemployment in Pennsylvania.

Allentown’s mayor credits the city’s investment in the downtown with the rise in job growth.

“We have invested over a billion dollars worth of new development and millions in office space. We have close to a thousand new jobs that have been created here,” Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski said.  “So far this has been a dramatic change for the positive over the course of the last several years and we hope to see more to come.”

The survey included interviews more than 65,000 employers worldwide to gauge growth in 2015.

Employment in the Northeast has been more stagnant than other regions in the United States, according to data collected by the Manpower Group

While most industries report an increase in employment outlook, the Northeast reports the lowest percent of employers looking to increase staff and the highest percent of employers planning to decrease payroll in the first quarter.

Originally posted on