Flyers hit a little skid

The Flyers played their last game of 2008 on Tuesday against the Ottawa Senators. After two days off for the Christmas holiday, they began their six-game road trip with visits to Chicago and Columbus.

Marty Biron got another night of rest recovering from the flu, which gave Antero Niittymaki another start against the Senators. The high-scoring affair started early when Ottawa grabbed a 1-0 lead five minutes in. The lead lasted all of 93 seconds as Matt Carle scored his second goal as a Flyer. Randy Jones picked up his first point recording an assist on Joffrey Lupul’s 13th goal late in the first period.

Ottawa tied the game with another early goal in the second period. But they were not to be outdone by Jeff Carter, who scored his league-leading 26th on the power play. After being sent down to the Phantoms on Christmas Eve, Andres Nodl was back in the lineup and finally recorded his first NHL goal on a tip-in from a Kimmo Timonen shot.

The Flyers looked to be in control with a 4-2 lead heading into the third period, but the Senators had something to say about that. They were able to tie the game with two goals midway through the final period in a span of about three minutes.

Somehow with all the momentum on Ottawa’s side, Simon Gagne was able to score the eventual game-winner late in the third for his 18th of the season. Mike Richards sealed the win with an empty-netter for the 6-4 win.

The Flyers began their season long six-game road trip Friday in Chicago and it was the first of two lackluster efforts. Without much practice, Biron was back between the pipes and it showed. The team had to travel the day of, thanks to a league rule that does not allow teams to travel on Christmas.

Chicago was looking for their eighth straight win and wasted no time scoring two goals in the first three minutes of the game. Former Flyer Patrick Sharp scored one of them. Richards was able to put home a rebound later in the period that helped the Flyers stay in the game.

The Flyers were able to stay with the Blackhawks as the two teams played to a scoreless second period. Some early power plays propelled Chicago to a 5-1 win as they scored three goals in about the first five minutes of the third period. The offense was non-existent all night as the Flyers were only able to get 18 shots on net including just one in the second period.

Bad weather forced the team to stay in Chicago on Friday night and travel on Saturday to Columbus for a game that day. Traveling on the day of the game matched with no morning skate hurt the Flyers again.

The Flyers fell into a familiar trap as they gave up another early goal in the first period. Former Flyer RJ Umberger assisted on a late first period goal that gave the Blue Jackets a 2-0 lead. Columbus scored their final goal in the third for a 3-0 victory over Biron.

Timonen and Carle both missed the game after suffering injuries in Chicago. Scott Hartnell played despite breaking his big toe in Chicago. Rookie Claude Giroux played both games after getting called up from the Phantoms. He is near the top of the AHL in scoring, and has a taste of NHL experience after playing in two games last season as an emergency call-up. Nodl was sent back down to the Phantoms.

The Flyers will continue their trip with visits to Vancouver, Anaheim and Los Angeles this week.

You can contact Colin Fry at

Flyers: Sizzling Hot

The Flyers continue to be one of the hottest teams in the NHL as we approach Christmas. The Flyers had three home games this week to help prove that fact. They had a couple of division match-ups with the New York Islanders and the Pittsburgh Penguins and a game for the ages against the Carolina Hurricanes as they finished their Christmas Tournament.

The Flyers came out flat against the Islanders on Tuesday, and New York took advantage by striking first with a power-play goal midway through the first period. It was a 2-0 lead 61 seconds later.

The Flyers then got some help from some unlikely sources. After a big hit by Riley Cote, Arron Asham put home his second of the season. In the second period, Darroll Powe notched his first career goal off a rebound of a shot by Mike Richards. Later in the second, Jeff Carter tied himself for the goal-scoring lead in the NHL with his 20th of the season.

The Islanders would not go away as they made it a tie game with a quick goal in the third period. But a one-timer by Simon Gagne later in the third period propelled the Flyers to another victory.

Thursday, the Flyers hosted Carolina for the last time this season with Antero Niittymaki getting the start. A goal 61 seconds into the game gave Carolina the early lead. The Flyers looked flat all period and pretty much all of the second.

Carolina took a 2-0 lead quickly into the second period. The Flyers finally woke up when Scott Hartnell deflected Carter’s wrist shot from the point into the net for a power-play goal. But that goal was erased when Carolina scored 11 seconds later.

Some rough stuff between the two teams resulted in a 5-on-3 power play for the Canes. Former Flyer Joni Pitkanen scored one of two goals during that span that led to a Carolina 5-1 lead. When the second period was over, the only thing the fans were cheering about was the effort for the fans to reach 20,000 hot dogs consumed on Dollar Dog Night. Achieving that number would win each fan a pair of free tickets to a Phantoms game in December or January.

However, the Flyers wanted to give their fans something else to cheer about. Less than two minutes into the third period, Hartnell was able to poke home his second of the night and it seemed like the fans knew something special was about to happen.

Hartnell was able to finish off the hat trick with a back-hander that made it 5-3. The crowd erupted when Scottie Upshall was able to lift the puck over the stick-less Carolina goaltender. And then with a 1:44 left in the game, Gagne was somehow able to squeeze the puck past the goaltender’s failed effort to hug the post with his left pad.

Niittymaki, who remained in the game, came up huge in the third and in overtime, especially when the Flyers took a penalty to give Carolina a power play for the rest of the extra session.

The Flyers were too hot in the shootout for the Hurricanes despite the fact that they have not had much luck in this phase of the game. Gagne and Richards made two beautiful moves and Niittymaki stoned former Flyer Rod Brind`Amour for the win.

It was the first time the Flyers had come back from a four-goal deficit in 20 years. They beat the Detroit Red Wings on that day in 1998 by a score of 11-6.

Saturday was a showdown for second place in the division when the Penguins came to town. The Flyers came out firing and took it to the Penguins. The power play came up huge as the Flyers scored four goals with an advantage. It started with a Joffrey Lupul wraparound before Mike Knuble pounded home a rebound off a shot by Richards.

The Penguins cut the lead in half in the second period with a deflection past Marty Biron. With some help from the fans, the Flyers exploded for three goals in less than seven minutes. Matt Carle, who returned from injury after missing five games, fed Richards and Hartnell for two beautiful goals.

Knuble deflected a shot by Richards for the 5-1 lead. It was Knuble’s 200th career goal and came one game after he recorded his 400th career point.

Unlike the Hurricanes on Thursday, the Flyers were able to protect a 5-1 lead and held off the Penguins for a 6-3 victory. Jeff Carter scored the last goal for the Flyers, his 21st of the season.

Now in second place in the division, the Flyers have captured at least one point in each meeting so far with the Penguins. The top two Pittsburgh forwards and Flyer killers, Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, were held to one point combined as they played to a crowd of boos every time they touched the puck.

The Flyers will finish a four game home stand with the Colorado Avalanche on Tuesday before another visit to Montreal on Thursday. They will then play the Washington Capitals on Saturday at home for the first time since the playoffs.

You can contact Colin Fry at

Sixers Weekly Wrap-up

This was a week of changes for the Sixers team. Their losing slump ended on Saturday along with Mo Cheeks’ coaching career in Philadelphia.

The week started off on Wednesday night with a home-and-home loss against the Cleveland Cavaliers. It was a tough game to lose considering the back and forth battle between both teams. Even though the Sixers lost, three of the players had season high scores. Andre Iguodala scored 27 points, while Andre Miller and Lou Williams had 22 each.

Along with some season scoring highs, this was also Elton Brand’s return from a two-game absence. Fans could tell that the time off hurt his game a bit. His shooting wasn’t as on key as it had been.

The Cavaliers owned the third quarter and had a 21-point lead at one point. Fans at the Wachovia Center began to boo their hometown Sixers, giving the players a little push to play hard in the final quarter. Unfortunately, the Sixers could not regain a lead and the Cavaliers won 103-93.

Their next game completed the home-and-home series at Cleveland Friday night. But the location did not change the outcome of the game.

The beginning of the game started off with promise, allowing the Sixers to get 25 points in the first quarter. This could have been due in part to several Cavaliers players being on the injured list.

However, the Cavaliers didn’t let the start of the game get to the Sixers head. They began to step up their defense and held the lead for the rest of the game.

The Sixers went on to lose 88-72, but Brand seemed to be showing some improvement on the court after being out last week. Unfortunately for the team, Williams was unable to make the game because he was sick with the flu.

We didn’t have the mental toughness down the stretch, Iguodala said in an report. We kind of gave in. I’m not saying that as a team we didn’t play hard, but we didn’t execute and we didn’t get the stops we needed.

The loss pushed the Sixers’ record to a disappointing 9-14, and the Sixers decided to fire coach Maurice Cheeks.

Cheeks, who was a former player for the Sixers in the 1980s and a beloved coach for the past two years, was replaced with Assistant General Manager Tony DiLeo. The news came about after the Sixers lost their eighth game out of ten, and seemed to be somewhat sudden to some.

Some believe that the change was brought about because the former coach didn’t know how to correctly integrate the new Sixer, Elton Brand, with his lineup, causing the Sixers to have lost so many games.

Whatever the reason for the change, the Sixers had a game to play Saturday night against the Washington Wizards.

DiLeo helped lead the Sixers to a long awaited win in his debut and seemed to get good use and play out of Brand.

Brand had a season high 27 points, which helped aid in the 104-89 win over the Wizards. Brand wasn’t the only Sixer having a good night, because for the first time in weeks, the players seemed to be playing a more consistent game across the boards.

Williams returned to the court and added 15 points to the win. Iguodala and Thaddeus Young both pulled in 14 points.

Along with steady scoring, the team excelled in other aspects of the game. Samuel Dalembert played a great game with 17 rebounds, while Miller aided with 12 assists.

“It was good to get a win for all of us, Iguodala said in an report. “When a change like this happens, it sends a message of uncertainty that you don’t know what might happen next.”

The win was one of hope for the team, allowing the organization to take a positive outlook into Week 8 of the season. This week, DiLeo and the Sixers face off against the Milwaukee Bucks, Washington Wizards and Indiana Pacers.

Keep your fingers crossed.

You can contact Noelle Roby at

Playing good hockey

After a big win against the Penguins, the Flyers looked for their fifth straight win Tuesday against the Colorado Avalanche. Thursday, they were in Montreal for the last time this season before a back-to-back on Saturday and Sunday with the Capitals and Devils.

With Marty Biron still out with the flu, Antero Niittymaki was in net again. Colorado took the lead with a goal six seconds into a power play. Mike Knuble made sure the fans were still in the game when he tied it about two minutes later. Jeff Carter scored #22 on a shorthanded 2-on-1 break with Simon Gagne at the end of the first.

The Flyers took control for good when Joffrey Lupul and Mike Richards tallied goals in a 78 second span. Colorado stayed in the game with a late second period goal. Gagne finished off a three-point night with a power play goal early in the third that sealed the Flyers 5-2 win.

The Flyers effort in Montreal Thursday night was nowhere close to what it was last year in the playoffs. They were simply outplayed. The Canadiens jumped out to a 3-0 lead on Niittymaki and that was all she wrote. Arron Asham didn’t let the Flyers go away empty handed. He scored his third of the year to make it 3-1. Braydon Coburn also scored his third goal, which eventually made it 4-2, but Montreal added on again and won the game 5-2 in convincing fashion.

Saturday, it was the Flyers turn to be dominant and they did not disappoint. It was a rematch with the Washington Capitals. Lupul stayed hot with his 11th, which was the only goal of the period. With Biron still sick with the flu, Nittymaki rebounded nicely with 25 saves in the first period alone.

The second period belonged to Jeff Carter as he tallied two more beautiful goals to add to his league lead. Scott Hartnell took over in the third as he scored his second hat trick in the last five games. He scored all three goals within a 12-minute span. Gagne also tallied a power play goal in the offensive explosion. The Capitals were able to sneak one by Niittymaki in the middle of the Flyers’ run, but he ended up saving 47 of 48 in the decisive 7-1 win.

Randy Jones made his season debut Sunday in New Jersey after missing the first 32 games with a hip injury. But the injury gods evened the score when Scottie Upshall left the game with a lower body injury.

The Devils took a 2-0 lead after a scoreless first with two goals in 66 seconds. But that did not phase the Flyers, who kept digging to get back in the game. Carter made it a game with his 25th late in the second that gave the Flyers life.

Niittymaki kept the Flyers in the game with some big saves that allowed Lupul to tie the game with less than five minutes to go. However, the Devils took the game in a shootout; something that has not been kind to the Flyers.

The Flyers last home game of 2008 is on Tuesday against the Senators before starting a six-game road trip. Scottie Upshall will be out 7-10 days.

You can contact Colin Fry at

Stressed? You’re not alone

AHHHHHHHH Stressed? For college students, stress is a routine. But what do you do when you’re stressed?

There are ways to alleviate stress even when you are bombarded with work. Instead of allowing the ten-page papers and the final exam study guides to take hold of your blood pressure, take a few minutes and remember that it is only work, and all work eventually gets done.

Walk away from your project; take a break from your work or even a 20-minute nap. It will help you refocus and give you a spurt of energy. Although naps are a way of rebuilding energy this does not mean all nighters are a good idea. Make sure to get a good night’s sleep. Believe it or not, all nighters actually make your stress level skyrocket and eventually drain you much more than any morning cram session would.

Stress builds up when you keep it all inside. Let out your stress in any way possible. It can come out in any form. Exercise is one of the best ways to calm your nerves. Do some push-us or go for a run. Exercise takes your focus off of the build-up of work and on another activity.

Not into running? Yoga is one of the best remedies for exam week. It helps you forget about your problems and stress and teaches you to calm yourself even before the stress takes over. Your local gym or school should offer these classes.

We all procrastinate at some point in our lives, but that isn’t always the way to deal with stress. Get your work done progressively. If you have a project that is due in a week, sit down for an hour a night until it’s complete. It will be a lot less stressful for you to do it that way than to do it all the night before. It will also be a lot more creative because you will have had time to think it through.

Still stressed even thinking about stress? Talking to a parent, friend or relative about your stress is another great way to take control.

Realizing you are stressed out is not a bad thing. Whatever it is, you need to find something that works for you. Remember, you are the sole commander or your own body.

The only person that can relieve your stress is you. Just remember—relax! It will only help you through your remaining weeks of the semester.

You can contact Kara Schneider at

Flyers hope for winning streak

After a tough game Saturday in Toronto, the Flyers came home for some home cooking. Tuesday, they faced off against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Thursday, the New Jersey Devils were in town while they were in Carolina on Saturday.

The Flyers looked to start a new winning streak against the Lightning, although it seemed like it was only the Flyers playing. Jeff Carter continued his hot season, picking up goal #17 on the power play early in the game. Former Flyer Steve Downie was in the box at the time, but that was not the end of his night. Former Flyer Mark Recchi also notched a power-play goal in the first period to tie the game at one at the first intermission.

The second period was scoreless but that was good news for the Flyers. Already a man short after Scottie Upshall was thrown out in the first period for a boarding penalty; the Flyers lost Danny Briere again. He returned after missing eight games but left in the second period. It was determined that he has another problem with his groin and he will be shut down for 4-5 weeks.

The third period did not lack any scoring. Mike Richards scored the Flyers’ 11th shorthanded goal of the season. That is tops in the league. The Flyers looked to have a stranglehold on the game when Carter potted his second power-play goal of the night.

However, Vaclav Prospal scored on a floater that landed behind Marty Biron and in the net 21 seconds later. Then it was the most recent former Flyer, Downie, who tied the game to force it into overtime. The Lightning had a chance with 16.3 seconds left in regulation with a penalty shot. Scott Hartnell, after losing his stick earlier, threw his glove at Ryan Malone who was on a breakaway. Thankfully, Biron stopped both shots.

Malone then took a penalty in overtime which helped set up the game winner. On the power play, Kimmo Timonen skated towards the net before giving a behind-the-back pass to Richards who blistered a shot home for the overtime winner. The Flyers evened the season series with the 4-3 victory.

For the first time in five years, the Flyers faced the New Jersey Devils without Martin Brodeur, who is out with an elbow injury. A scoreless first period produced 10 shots combined in the Flyers’ effort to win their third game against the Devils already.

The power play stayed red hot when Timonen scored on a slap shot from the point. The Flyers looked to go into the third period with the lead, but the Devils tied it on a late goal with Biron down in the crease.

The game was a defensive battle and stayed that way until Upshall scored the go-ahead goal when he knocked the puck off a Devils defenseman’s stick when the Flyers were a man up. A late mental lapse by Biron caused another overtime game.

Sloppy play from both sides caused a turnover in overtime and Patrik Elias, who tied the game in regulation, took the puck and beat Ossi Vaananen before beating Biron and stealing one with a 3-2 victory.

The Christmas Tournament continued Saturday when the Flyers went to Carolina. The Flyers continued to get off on good starts when Richards scored a shorthanded goal. The game stayed that way until the third when Sergei Samsonov, who won the Black Friday tilt in overtime, tied the game. Carter won the game in overtime when he beat former Flyer Michael Leighton. Antero Niittymaki played in the 2-1 victory.

Matt Carle missed all the games this week with what is being called a lower body injury.

The Flyers will host the New York Islanders on Tuesday in the first of four straight home games.

You can contact Colin Fry at

Army vs. Navy

The Navy Midshipmen’s 34-0 romp over the Army Cadets Sunday afternoon at Lincoln Financial Field gave Navy the Commander in Chief’s trophy for a record seventh-straight year in the annual showdown of service academies.

But the longstanding tradition of Army versus Navy means more to current servicemen than a simple win or loss in the standings. Army-Navy week is the highlight of the year for over 8,000 servicemen split between the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md. and the United States Military Academy in West Point, N.Y.

“It’s the oldest rivalry in America,” said midshipman Jason Maenza, a South Jersey resident and midshipman enlisted at the United States Naval Academy. “It’s what our school is all about. As plebes you sound off, ‘Go Navy, beat Army,’ every time you turn in Bancroft Hall from day one.”

The excitement that builds for the game kicks off early each year and intensifies the week before the Army-Navy game. Both academies hold tremendous pep rallies in the nights leading up to the game, highlighted by huge bonfires where makeshift rival mascots are torched.

“There’s all kinds of shenanigans going on,” said Maenza. People look forward to that week throughout the semester. Plebes get to play pranks on the upperclassmen; everybody is having a good time.”

Plebes, the youngest class of freshmen at all United States service academies, are subjected to strict guidelines and the inevitable paying of dues throughout their first year. But they receive some extra liberties and freedom during Army-Navy week each year.

“It’s a chance for the plebes to get back at the upperclassmen,” said Naval Academy midshipman James Robillard, a resident of Fresno, Calif.

The military’s exchange program sends some Army cadets to Annapolis and Naval midshipmen to West Point at the beginning of new semesters, so the visiting parties studying at the rival campus quickly become the butt of jokes during Army-Navy week.

“For Army-Navy week [at the Naval Academy], they’ll take away the Army guys’ uniforms and give them plebe uniforms that they have to walk around in for the week,” Maenza said.

“It’s nothing but respect,” Maenza said. “You see Michigan State and Ohio play, and they put up riots. They hate each other. But with us, we stand for each other’s alma maters at the end of the games. It’s a friendly rivalry.”

Sunday’s game marked the 81st time out of 109 total contests that the city of Philadelphia hosted the rivalry. The city marks a convenient midpoint between Annapolis and West Point, both of which are about two hours away by car.

Held in Baltimore last December, the cramped quarters of M&T Bank Stadium forced the 8,000-plus servicemen to march into the arena from two blocks away last year. Philadelphia’s Sports Complex and its mass of parking lots that surround Lincoln Financial Field provide an optimal staging point for the cadets and midshipmen.

“It’s perfect. Philadelphia is the birthplace of the Army and the Navy,” said Maenza. “You can tell Philly really wants it and enjoys having it. It fits. It’s tradition.”

Philadelphia will play host to the rivalry again next December, but the game’s location is up in the air after that. Mayor Nutter made an aggressive bid to keep the game in Philadelphia from 2010 to 2014, but the winning city will not be announced for quite some time.

You can contact Zach Patten at

Sixers Searching for Elixirs

The 76ers have a decent lineup with a lot of talent and a few flashy names, but they proved over the weekend that their inconsistencies form a clear path to defeat by the hands of any team in the league.

Currently in the midst of a four-game losing streak, the Sixers are three games under .500 with their heads underwater, flailing to grab onto any life preserver that could save them from the next four games.

The Sixers will complete a home-and-home against Chicago on Tuesday, host the first-place Lakers Wednesday, travel to Detroit Friday, then face the Nets Saturday at the Wachovia Center to end a stretch of four tough games in five days.

As of Monday morning, the final three teams mentioned had combined for a 32-14 record, a .696 winning percentage. The Sixers are a forgettable 7-10.

Just hope the riptide doesn’t carry this team out to sea by week’s end.

The season is still young, but there seems to be a number of issues hampering this team from success. The hype of July’s Elton Brand signing has worn off, replaced instead with frustration as he struggles to perform up to his career averages.

Andre Iguodala’s numbers have taken a nosedive since making the switch from forward to guard. Iguodala has lost nearly seven points per game from last season while his shooting percentages have dipped considerably after signing an impressive six-year, $80 million contract in August.

But other statistics tell a different story, one with a cheerier tone. The team’s three point shooting, free throw and field goal percentages have all improved over last year’s figures. The Sixers average 94 points per game and Willie Green is shooting 43 percent from beyond the arc.

Still, last year’s team that became notorious for running the court has found itself jogging through sand this season. Fast break points are way down despite Brand’s verbal reassurance that he could keep up with a quick team. On the contrary, the body language of the other starting four almost suggests that they try to avoid fast breaks, maybe as a way to appease the front office’s decision to hammer a square peg into a round hole by stripping the ripening young offense of its identity and forcing it to revolve around Brand.

Regardless, the team is restlessly hoping that the flat-footed square peg will smoothen its edges and slide into place. The adjustment period to the new power forward sits at 17 games and counting.

The biggest problem is the Sixers’ mid-game snoozing that leads to lapses of inconsistency from quarter to quarter. While the defense could certainly use some improvement, the offense has been falling asleep in even-numbered quarters.

In their 10 losses, the Sixers have been defeated by an average of 12 points per game. They lost some by two, others by 24. The main culprit here is quarters in which the team puts up a point total in the teens.

In each loss, the Sixers tossed out at least one quarter where they scored less than 20 points. The entire team seems to take a 12-minute vacation when this happens, as the Sixers average just less than 15 points in those weak quarters. The opposition pounces on the opportunity and averages 25 in those same periods.

The players know this, but they haven’t been able to find the tools to fix the problem. The offense is rushing possessions and missing easy shots. The bench is greatly underperforming. The players held a sabbatical on the court and allowed a couple embarrassing 20-2 and 14-0 runs by the Bulls Sunday night.

This team needs a shot in the arm, but it’s got to be tough knowing that any hope of first place is out of reach before the season even begins. Boston is 16-2 to this point and isn’t showing any signs of letting up after pounding the Sixers 102-78 Friday night.

Just like last season, the young guys need to put themselves in the spotlight and take control. Lou Williams is starting to find his stroke again while rookie Marreese Speights is quietly making a name for himself. And after seeing so many games, I can’t help but feel that Thaddeus Young has the chance to become a very special player.

So now it is time for the players to stop making excuses and perform to their abilities. I’m not asking for an all-star season from every player. I just want some consistency.

You can contact Zach Patten at

Have A Tuna Christmas

This holiday season would not be as special if it had been without the comedy of “A Tuna Christmas.”

“A Tuna Christmas” is a gut-busting play about a group of “country folk” living in a small town in Texas known as Tuna. It is twenty-four hours until Christmas Day and everyone in Tuna, Texas is being put through the holiday wringer, including the Bumiller family. Bertha Bumiller is incredibly stressed because not only is her husband a philandering alcoholic, her twins can not even find the time to help their mother bake cookies and trim the tree. And if the Bumiller’s situation isn’t bad enough, there is also an unknown character that is roaming around and ransacking everyone in town’s holiday decor. So, now everyone in town, including Vera Carp is upset and fearful that their yard displays will get ruined and that they will not win the annual local Yard Display Contest.

“A Tuna Christmas” returns from its successful run last year as audiences poured from all over to view actors Benjamin Lloyd and John Zak as they brought to life over twenty characters. Both actors from “A Tuna Christmas” are incredibly talented and undoubtedly well-known for the amazing work they have done on stage.

Benjamin Lloyd is a performance teacher at the Philadelphia University of the Arts and has also authored a self-help book for actors titled “The Actor’s Way: A Journey of Self-Discovery in Letters.” Lloyd is best known for his memorable schizophrenic performance for the play, “Stones in His Pockets.”

John Zak is another unforgettable stage performer. Zak mainly works with popular comedy troupes such as Bad Hair Sketch Comedy and Comedy Sportz. Zak also has been nominated for a Barrymore Award. In 2006, He won an award for Best Supporting Actor in a Play for his part as Caliban in Shakespeare’s “The Tempest.”

Are you unfamiliar with The Greater Tuna Series? Well, this trilogy is one of the most successful stage plays of its kind! “Greater Tuna” was so well-received that it was honored a Los Angeles Dramalogue Award for the acting and writing. “A Tuna Christmas” also honored by being one of the best plays published in “Best Plays of 1995.”

Tickets are on sale right for $30 and will be running until Jan. 4. Visit www.walnutstreettheatre.orgfor more information.

You can contact Erica Nelson at

Help Out This Holiday Season

This holiday season do not spend your time waiting around for Santa to deliver the gifts. ‘Tis the season to be Generous! It is said it is better to give rather than receive and what better time of year to start practicing this saying than The Holiday Season? There are thousands of foundations all over the internet and tri-state area for donating anything from food and clothes to toys and even your time.

One of the most well-known foundations in Philadelphia and the world is the Salvation Army. Year-round the Salvation Army has locations to drop off clothing, shoes, toys and food. During the holiday season that the Salvation Army has it’s Kettle donations where you can walk out of a department store and find a volunteer ringing a bell and holding a red kettle that you can drop your donations into. The Salvation Army allows donations anytime throughout the year at one of their various locations or online at

PhilAbundance foundation is a foundation where not only are donations appreciated but also volunteers are always welcome. PhilAbundance is best known for its successful year-round food and money donations, food drives and volunteer opportunities. PhilAbundance host a number of events (i.e. plays, musicals, luncheons) monthly just for good Samaritans to come out and help their community by donating money and food and participating in the ongoing festivities.

The most current event that PhilAbundance is having occurs this week from Dec. 1 to Dec. 5. This event is “Preston & Steve’s Camp Out for Hunger.” During this week WMMR’s Preston and Steve show is broadcasted from the Metroplex Shopping Center in Plymouth Meeting, Pa. They are collecting non-perishable food items on behalf of PhilAbundance from 6a.m. to 8 p.m. Food items that are canned, boxed or packaged will be collected and then later on be given to people who are in need of them.

A great foundation to also start giving to this holiday season is the Toys-For-Tots foundation. The object of the Toys-For-Tots foundation is to collect unwrapped toys throughout the months of October, November and December. There are select Toys-For-Tots donation locations throughout the tri-state area where donors are allowed to drop off toys as well as clothing. To find out these locations, visit

Although these foundations are the only ones listed, they are not the only foundations. There are thousands of foundations where you can help by volunteering, donating or even holding your own drive throughout the Philadelphia Region or right in your own neighborhood. Start the season off right; don’t be a Scrooge!

You can contact Erica Nelson at