Top 8 stories of the week in Northwest Philly

 Hans Haines Horsfield, a beloved Wyck House tortoise, went missing early last week. (Photo courtesy of Christina Moresi)

Hans Haines Horsfield, a beloved Wyck House tortoise, went missing early last week. (Photo courtesy of Christina Moresi)

Here are the stories you may have missed in Northwest Philadelphia this week …

1. Beloved tortoise missing from Germantown’s Wyck farm

Hans Haines Horsfield, a male Russian tortoise and beloved fixture Wyck’s historic Germantown property, disappeared during a routine romp around the farm, one of his last before heading inside for the winter. His absence has many people concerned.

2. Plans for renovation of Mt. Airy’s Lovett Library one step closer to reality

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At a community meeting on Monday, the Friends of Lovett Memorial Library provided an update on the 21st Century Libraries Initiative, a citywide and multi-phase project that will breathe modern life into the Free Library of Philadelphia’s Beaux-Arts Parkway Central Library and neighborhood branches.

3. A guide to private school open houses in and around Northwest Philly

It’s fall, and that means Philadelphia parents are thinking about school options. So, we’ve compiled a list of open-house dates for many schools in Northwest Philly.

4. Eight of 12 ironworkers to plead guilty in Philly racketeering case

Eight of the 12 members of Ironworkers Local 401 who were charged in a Philadelphia racketeering case in February have agreed to plead guilty, according to federal prosecutors. The other four, including the union’s longtime leader, business manager Joseph Dougherty, will face trial in January.

5. Community group scrambles to file charter-school application for GHS property

A grassroots group in Northwest Philadelphia wants to transform Germantown High School into an independent charter school serving neighborhood students. Germantown High School Coalition members voted to submit a charter-school application to the Philadelphia School District by the Nov. 15 deadline.

6. Manayunk bookstore hosts inaugural ‘Authors Brunch’ at Pretzel Park

The inaugural Authors Brunch event, organized by The Spiral Bookcase owner Ann Tetreault in conjunction with Philly Maker Week, saw 10 writers from across the Philadelphia literary scene reading at Pretzel Park.

7. 12 students suspended after brawl at MLK High

Twelve students from Martin Luther King High School were suspended for three to 10 days after a brawl inside the Stenton Avenue school that was captured on cellphone video recently.

8. Council to D.C.: Just rename the VA Hospital after war hero from West Oak Lane already

In Nov. 1968, Army Cpl. Michael J. Crescenz died while bravely defending his peers in Vietnam. Two years later, he was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor by President Richard Nixon. City Councilman David Oh, U.S. Sen. Patrick Toomey and U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah are among those who want to honor the war hero by renaming the VA Medical Center on Woodland Ave. in his honor. So, why hasn’t that happened yet?

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