#OPENINPHL | How to Supportn Philly's Arts, Culture, and Small Businesses from Home

March 31, 2020

The past few weeks have been a whirlwind for people here in Philly and around the world. An unfortunate consequence of our current, and very necessary, health precautions is the effect they have had on local small businesses and creatives. Many are struggling to stay afloat as foot traffic and sales have decreased.

While individuals are getting used to the “new normal” many are interested in helping their neighbors keep their businesses afloat. Supporting your local food and culture scene while social distancing and prioritizing mental health can be tricky! We wanted to make it easier.

Spruce Street Commons put together a list of 5 ways that people can support their local food and culture small business scene while staying healthy. Check out our list below to see how you can do your part!

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1. Ditch the chains and get groceries straight from the (local) source.

Avoid the stampedes at the big-name food stores by ordering groceries from Reading Terminal Market – one of America’s oldest public markets located right here in Philly. Along with produce and meats from local farmers, merchants at Reading Terminal also sell locally sourced pantry staples such as beans, grains, and sauces, as well as prepared food and baked treats.

Through their online store, you can choose groceries from multiple sellers at Reading Terminal Market and pick up your order curbside. People within a 16-mile radius of the market are also eligible for delivery. These options are a great way to support local farmers while practicing social distancing.

Order here: https://www.mercato.com/shop/reading-terminal-market

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2. Get your sweat on through your screen

Staying in doesn’t have to mean abandoning your workout routine. In fact, working out is a great way to take care of your mental health while practicing social distancing. Fortunately, a lot of local fitness studios are offering online, virtual classes that people can take part in.

These online fitness classes range in terms of price and supplies needed to participate. Amrita Yoga is offering a full schedule of yoga and wellness classes over Zoom. These free classes require minimal supplies and accept donations of any amount to support the teachers and staff.

Visit the website or social media profile of your favorite fitness studio to see how you can support instructors while staying active.

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3. Lose yourself in a book from an independent bookstore

Now is a great time to get started on that reading list you made at the beginning of the year. Instead of buying books from your favorite online mega-store, check out one of Philly’s numerous independent bookstores. Many are still open for pickup and some, like Head House Books near Society Hill, even offer delivery. Head House also has audiobook options and will soon be launching virtual book groups in the coming weeks – a great option for people who want to stay social!

Visit the website of your local independent bookshop to see their updated hours and search for the book you are looking for. It’s also a good idea to check their social profiles as many stores update social before their site.

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4. Curate a space that truly feels like home

Before practicing social distancing, many of us spent much of our free time exploring the restaurants and culture that make Philly so special. Now is a great time to bring that culture into your home! Take advantage of this time and dive into any interior design or home decor projects that you’ve been putting off.

Philly’s talented artists and designers make it easy to redecorate while supporting local creatives. For design inspo, check out our Instagram where we often highlight the many local artists who have created pieces for our properties such as Carla Weeks and Marian Bailey. You can also explore hashtags like #madeinphilly and #phillyartist to find artists for your dream living space.

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5. Recreate Philly culinary classics in the comfort of your home.

Ordering take-out from one of Philadelphia’s incredible restaurants is a great way to support the industry during the quarantine. But, if you are more inclined to spend your quarantine sharpening your cooking skills, don’t worry. There are numerous ways you can still support the culinary scene.

Many pizza places, such as Wood Street PHL, are offering make your own pizza kits that allow you to try to recreate their delicious pies at home. Campo’s Deli, famous for its cheesesteaks, has shared a recipe for their famous sandwiches that even the most novice chef can follow. Purchasing a cookbook at your favorite Philly restaurant is another great way to support the industry.

To see all the new and creative ways that restaurants are bringing the Philly dining scene to people’s homes, follow restaurants and individual chefs on social. In other cities, some chefs are starting to offering virtual cooking classes – you’ll want to be the first one to know if your favorite Philly chef hops on to this trend!

We hope this list gave you a few ideas on how to help local businesses while adapting to social distancing. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram to hear more about local artisans and creatives and to share how you’re supporting your neighbors.