NewsWorks’ best photos of 2011 for Northwest Philadelphia

This past year marked the first full year for WHYY’s online project to cover Northwest Philadelphia’s neighborhoods in-depth under the name NewsWorks. It is a project funded in part by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to broaden how the public radio and TV audience gets its news.

This past year included some pretty memorable scenes for residents in East Falls, Manayunk, Roxborough, Chestnut Hill, Mt. Airy, West Oak Lane and Germantown. Our collection was edited by Bas Slabbers.

Some highlights

The snowy start

January kicked off with more powerful snowstorms that later led Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell to call for Federal disaster relief. When we asked for readers to offer six-words of how they were feeling about all this snow, here are just few examples of what we got: Pajamas three days in a row, Seven days later — it’s still here! and my greedy company opened, dangerous commute. So this is where our photo album begins with a photo from Jan 26 of Lincoln Drive covered in white.

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Eighth District Primary

By springtime, the Democratic Primary race for the Eighth District Council was heating up. Seven Democrats qualified to be on the May 17 ballot, and Republicans were MIA on the ballot.  That meant the winner of the Primary was the likely winner in November. Cindy Bass won the primary and won in November. She replaces Democrat Donna Reed Miller when Council returns in January. We have included three photos that for us captured some key moments in the race. You will see a photo of when Mayor Nutter endorsed Cindy Bass, Greg Paulmier making his case at the April 27 NewsWorks candidates debate and Cindy Bass not long after receiving the news that she had won the seven-way Primary. If you want a real trip down memory lane take a look at the Eighth District blog that chronicled everything from the 12 Democrats who launched campaigns, to the Friday the 13th Ethics Board raid of Miller’s Council office and finally Bass’ victory speech in November. There is an audio clip that includes her entire speech at the Platinum Grille in Chestnut Hill.

The hurricane

Hurricane Irene came through our area on Saturday, August 27. The run up to the storm was more eventful than the actual storm for Northwest Philadelphia. Stores sold-out their entire supply of batteries, flash lights and bottled water. The official rainfall total from Irene total was 5.7 inches for Philadelphia. It wasn’t the hurricane officials feared, but it did cause flooding along the region’s rivers and streams. We have included two photos that you may remember seeing on NewsWorks. If you didn’t get a chance to see the ‘Mighty Wissahickon’ the morning after take a look at this video shot by Jeff Meade.


Did we miss something?

Take a look at the photos and leave us your thoughts. What events did we leave out? Do you have photos that you think captured some of the big events of 2011 in Northwest Philadelphia? Send them to and we’ll create a public album of the best of 2011.

Our many thanks to NewsWorks staffers and freelancers who took these photos. Here are the photographers that help capture the big events in the Northwest for NewsWorks:

Jana Shea, Bas Slabbers, Jenny Swigoda, Kristen Mosbrucker, Nathaniel Hamilton, Jeff Meade, Shai-Ben Yacov, Kimberly Paynter, Taunya English, Megan Pinto, Aaron Moselle, Brian Hickey and Howard Pitkow.

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