Stories from the Banks

10/20/2014 3:08pm
site admin

There is still time to see the new Boardwalk and beautiful fall foliage from the river on Schuylkill Banks Riverboat Tours, presented by SCA Americas! Discover the Hidden River on a Secrets of the Schuylkill tour, or take a Boat to Bartram's Garden to explore John Bartram's historic house and garden. 

There are only four tour dates left this season: Saturday, October 25; Sunday, October 26; Thursday, October 30; and Saturday, November 1

To learn more about these tours and to purchase tickets, click here. Our riverboat tours often sell out, so we encourage everyone to buy their tickets early.

10/8/2014 11:34am
site admin

October was a busy month on the Banks, with riverboat tours, several cleanup events, and the grand opening of the Boardwalk. Throughout the month, SRDC staff depended on many wonderful volunteers to make these events possible. Our MVP this month is Tom Roach.

A regular trail user, Tom had often seen SRDC’s maintenance team removing trash and graffiti and was eager to lend a hand. During October, he became an invaluable member of the team, helping to pick up trash and beautify the trail on a daily basis. His willingness to jump in and take on these less than glamorous tasks has been invaluable, and is very much appreciated.

Tom also played a big part in the success of the Boardwalk opening celebration on October 5th, helping to set up snacks and entertainment for hundreds of trail users, and staying to clean up at the end of the event. Tom’s laid back, positive attitude and solid work ethic has made him a great addition to the team.

Thanks for getting involved and making Schuylkill Banks a better place for everyone, Tom!

10/7/2014 9:18am
site admin

The Boardwalk is officially open! To celebrate this momentous occasion, SRDC partnered with the City on a series of festivities spread over three days, including a fun run (Oct. 1), formal ribbon cutting and dedication (Oct. 2) and community celebration (Oct. 5).

SRDC is elated to have the Boardwalk open and so favorably received by the public and by media across the region. This project has been nearly a decade in the making, and it is so great to see people out there enjoying it.

Click here to learn more about the Boardwalk opening festivities and to see photos from all three events.

10/4/2014 2:01pm
site admin

SRDC was thrilled to work with the Schuylkill River Greenway Association (SRGA) on special programming to celebrate the Schuylkill River being named River of the Year for 2014 by the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the PA Organization of Watersheds and Rivers. In addition to SRDC and SRGA's regular programming, fans of the Schuylkill were treated to a special bike ride and lecture series.

Pedaling through our National Parks highlighted several historic sites along our Revolutionary River. Participants met on September 20 to ride from the Hopewell Furnace Historic Site, to the SRGA Headquarters, through Valley Forge National Historic Park, down the Schuylkill River Trail to Schuylkill Banks for a lunchtime talk about the Washington-Rochambeau National Historic Trail, and across town to Independence Historic Park. 

The River of the Year lecture series ended with two keynote presentations by Beth Kephart, author of several books including "Flow: The Life and Times of Philadelphia's Schuylkill River." During the October 16 presentation at the Trinity Urban Life Center in Philadelphia, Kephart captivated the audience with a special presentation of "RIVER DREAMS: History, Hope, and the Imagination," which she developed specifically for the River of the Year celebration. Kephart spoke about the special place that the Schuylkill holds in her life and how the river has inspired her writing and teaching over the years before answering questions from the audience.

9/17/2014 11:08am
site admin

Riverboat Tours (presented by SCA Americas) - Discover the Hidden River on a Secrets of the Schuylkill tour, or take a Boat to Bartram's Garden to explore John Bartram's historic house and garden. Tours depart on select Saturday afternoons or evenings, Sunday afternoons, and Thursday evenings. To view a full list of tour dates and times and to purchase tickets, click here. Our riverboat tours often sell out, so we encourage everyone to buy their tickets early.

Kayak Tours - Hidden River Outfitters' professionally guided kayak tours have been a hit this summer - and there is still one more chance to explore the River of the Year by kayak. Tours depart from the Walnut Street Dock at noon and 2pm September 28. For more information, click here. Seats are selling out fast, so call us at 215-222-6030 x100 to reserve your spot today!

9/12/2014 11:27am
site admin

While biking the Schuylkill River Trail on her day off, Jocelyn Wilson began to wonder how she could get involved along the trail. She loved being near the river, and wanted to help to make Philadelphia a better place to live. Since starting in June, Jocelyn has become a valuable member of the SRDC volunteer team. “After just one day down there, meeting the staff and other volunteers, I knew I’d be back again and again,” she says.

Jocelyn commutes all the way from Wissinoming to help out with riverboat and kayak tours, movie nights and other special events. She always shows up smiling and ready to work, whether that means serving popcorn at movie nights, greeting people before boat tours or carrying kayaks down to the dock. On days when we have multiple events, Jocelyn is comfortable jumping in wherever needed; her flexibility has been crucial to the success of our programming season.

Thanks for all that you do to make Schuylkill Banks a better place, Jocelyn! We hope to have you on the team for many seasons to come.

9/10/2014 12:05pm
site admin

The 10th Annual Philly Fun Fishing Fest, held on Schuylkill Banks on Saturday, September 6, was a ton of fun, thanks to the Philadelphia Water Department, Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, PA Fish and Boat Commission, over 130 participants and many wonderful volunteers!

Click here to read more and see photos from the Fishing Fest. 

8/19/2014 10:41am
site admin

Movie Series (presented by CSX Transportation) - Tonight's showing of Pitch Perfect has been postponed due to threats of thunderstorms. We have several rain dates coming up over the next two weeks:

  • Pitch Perfect at Walnut Street on Tuesday, August 26
  • Despicable Me 2 at the Grays Ferry Crescent on Thursday, August 28
  • The Karate Kid at the Grays Ferry Crescent on Tuesday, September 2
  • Rocky at Walnut Street on Thursday, September 4.

As with all of our movie nights, free snacks and beverages will be provided before each of these movies. Click here for the full updated schedule. We hope to see you there!

Riverboat Tours (presented by SCA Americas) - Discover the Hidden River on a Secrets of the Schuylkill tour, or take a Boat to Bartram's Garden to explore John Bartram's historic house and garden. Tours depart on select Saturday afternoons or evenings, Sunday afternoons, and Thursday evenings. To view a full list of tour dates and times and to purchase tickets, click here. Our riverboat tours often sell out, so we encourage everyone to buy their tickets early.

Kayak Tours - Hop in a kayak and see the Schuylkill from a new perspective. Hidden River Outfitters' professionally guided Basic and Moonlight Kayak Tours depart from the Walnut Street Dock on select Saturdays, Sundays and Thursdays through September 28. We still have some space available on September 4 at 6:45pm, September 13 at 6pm and 8pm, and September 20 at 2pm. For a full list of dates and times, click here. Call us at 215-222-6030 x100 to reserve your spot today!

8/17/2014 3:05pm
site admin

Riverboat Tours (presented by SCA Americas) - Tours depart on select Saturday afternoons or evenings, Saturday afternoons, and Thursday evenings. To view a full list of tour dates and times and to purchase tickets, click here. Our riverboat tours often sell out, so we encourage everyone to buy their tickets early if you have a specific day and time that you prefer. Interested in discount tickets? Follow us on Facebook or Twitter to receive last-minute discount codes for use on select tour dates.

Kayak Tours - Hop in a kayak and see the Schuylkill from a new perspective. Hidden River Outfitters' professionally guided Basic and Moonlight Kayak Tours have returned to the Banks on select Saturdays, Sundays and Thursdays this summer. We still have some space available on June 24 and August 7 at 6:45 pm, August 16 at 6 and 8 pm, and August 23 at noon and 2 pm. For a full list of dates, times and information about how to purchase tickets, click here. Reserve your spot today!

Movie Series (presented by CSX Transportation) - Join us on July 24 near Walnut Street for Zoolander, July 31 at Paine's Park for Scott Pilgrim vs the World, on August 7 at Walnut Street for Princess Bride, and on August 14 at Grays Ferry Crescent for The Karate Kid (1984)! We also had to postpone showings of Despicable Me 2 and Rocky due to rain, so rain dates will be held on August 28 at Grays Ferry Crescent (Despicable Me 2) and September 4 at Walnut Street (Rocky). Click here for the full schedule and updated rain date info as the season progresses.

8/17/2014 2:00pm
site admin

To call Karen the “Volunteer of the Month” is a vast understatement. A Customer Care Specialist at Xerox, Karen is SRDC’s longest-standing volunteer. She has been contributing her many skills and passionate efforts to SRDC for almost a decade, and has been on SRDC’s Board of Directors since 2010.

Karen is always ready to leap into action, whether engaging a curious trail user, setting up for a movie night, or helping people into kayaks. When SRDC needs extra hands to help with trash and debris on the trail, Karen is always one of the first to offer assistance. Karen is also the Friends of Schuylkill Banks Board Liaison, helping to organize fundraising events for operations and maintenance on the trail. She is a shining example and a source of information for volunteers both new and old.

Karen’s knowledge of SRDC and Schuylkill Banks is invaluable. She is a vital part of the SRDC family, and Schuylkill Banks is a much better place because of her dedication through the years. Thank you, Karen. We can’t imagine Schuylkill Banks without you!