MEDIA – Bob Kelly, one of the Philadelphia area’s favorite TV personalities, will add fun, dancing and a good cause to Dining Under the Stars every Wednesday through September. Kelly will host a dance party at the Towne House, 117 Veterans Square, from 5-9 p.m. every Wednesday, while collecting new pajamas for young patients at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children in Philadelphia.
“I urge anyone going to Dining Under the Stars to stop by to say ‘hello’ and have a happy hour drink and drop off a pair of children’s pajamas before heading out to dinner,” the reporter said. Emmy Award-winning traffic jam, “Or to stop after dinner to drop off pajamas, have an after-dinner cocktail, and do some dancing!”
Kelly also hopes to stroll down State Street here and there to say hello to Dining Under the Stars guests and reignite excitement for her order of “Kelly’s Kidz” pajamas.
Dining Under the Stars is the Media Business Authority’s outdoor summer dining event, now in its 15th year. This year, 26 restaurants are participating.
Kelly started the charity Kelly’s Kidz after her own son Austin, 10, was hospitalized at Nemours Children’s Hospital, Delaware, when he was just 8 months old. Kelly prayed for her son in the hospital chapel and swore that if he brought him home he would find a way to help the hospitalized children.
When he started the charity, Kelly helped fund a radio studio for young children and a sensory arts and crafts center, both in Nemours. A Kelly fan asked if he could also branch out and help young patients at St. Christopher’s Hospital, and he hasn’t stopped since.
Kelly decided to collect pajamas because they are constantly needed to keep hospitalized children comfortable.
“We all know those hospital gowns aren’t very comfortable,” Kelly said. “The pajamas aren’t terribly expensive, so donors don’t hesitate to pick up a pair or two to donate and help the kids.”
In addition to her current collection of pajamas, Kelly will also be collecting new unboxed toys throughout July at the Towne House during Dining Under The Stars, starting July 6. Everyone can stop by to celebrate “Christmas in July”, drop off toys and say hello to Kelly.
“Parents and grandparents, especially those who have had children or grandchildren in hospital, are grateful like me and are happy to have this chance to give back,” Kelly said. “How can you come back to thank the hospital and the staff for all they do for our children? It’s a very good way to give back, in practical terms.
Kelly’s Kidz is hosting a huge pre-holiday toy drive, aided by the 13 Philadelphia Mummers String Band Clubs. Kelly and her son Austin, accompanied by members of the 13 clubs, as well as Santa Claus, go to St. Christopher’s Hospital to distribute the toys. During the pandemic, when no visitors were allowed, the String Bands played in the parking lot, while children greeted Santa Claus at their windows and parents of patients went downstairs to buy age-appropriate toys. children. Over the past vacation, Kelly’s Kidz was able to deliver two truckloads of toys to the hospital.
The remaining toys were donated to the hospital’s children’s services to distribute to St. Christopher’s patients throughout the year. Kelly’s Kidz also hosts a winter coat, hat and glove drive in October to keep young patients warm. The non-profit organization Kelly’s Kidz, Inc. lists its mission as “to empower the community to fund the resources needed to provide children in pediatric hospital settings with elements of play”.
In addition to her Towne House appearances each Wednesday night, Kelly also hosts a live dance party at the Seaport Pier Restaurant Bar, 22nd and the Boardwalk, in Wildwood, from 5-8 p.m. every Friday night. The seaport is family-friendly and Kelly hopes people will stop by to relax at the end of the week as they head to shore, drop off pajamas for St. Kitts and enjoy the fun atmosphere.
While Kelly organizes the dance parties, he also organizes a raffle to raise funds for Kelly’s Kidz. Every Wednesday and Friday, Kelly raffles a set of prizes. Past prizes have been a set of Phillies prizes and a set of Flyers prizes, donated by sports teams.
“When we donate the pajamas, the hospital staff can tell us, ‘We still don’t have enough pajamas in size 6 or size 12 or any size,’ and then we can use the money raised. through raffles to buy more pajamas or whatever the hospital asks for for the kids,” says Kelly.
People don’t need to be present to win. Kelly posts the winning ticket on the “Kelly’s Kidz” Facebook page so people who buy a ticket can see if they’ve won later that night.
Kelly said he could always use more volunteers to help sell raffle tickets.
“The more raffle tickets we sell, the more kids we can help,” Kelly said.
If anyone is looking for a volunteer opportunity for just a few hours, Kelly said to message them through her Facebook page,
Dinner under the stars, reminiscent of the guinguettes of Paris and the squares of Rome and Venice, can be enjoyed at Media all summer long. The outdoor dining event runs Wednesday night through September on State Street from Monroe to Orange Streets, as well as two blocks down Olive Street. The streets are closed at 5 p.m., with the first service at 5:30 p.m. Parking is at the Municipal Garage, at Baker and Olive streets, and at the State Street lot in Gayley as well as at street parking through Media.
Musical entertainment by local schools and performing groups takes place weekly at the Rafferty Subaru Performance Space near the Armory (Trader Joe’s Building) on State Street and a different local non-profit organization is highlighted each week. This week, Los Bomberos de la Calle will celebrate the vibrant, energetic and moving music of Puerto Rico at the Rafferty Subaru Artistic Performance Space. Los Bomberos de la Calle is committed to preserving, educating and serving the community by collaborating with after-school and school programs as well as weekend classes for drumming and dancing.
Dining Under the Stars is sponsored by Rafferty Subaru, M&T Bank, Weathers Motors, TRUIST, Main Line Health and United Savings Bank.
Restaurants participating in Dining Under the Stars this summer include 320 Market Café, Ariano, Artisan Boulanger Patisserie, Azie, Dim Sum Mania, Dos Gringos, Fellini Café, Hidalgo, Iron Hill Brewery, La Belle Epoque, La Catrina, La Na Thaïlandais , Lariele Wood-Fired Square Pie, Little Anthony’s Pizza, Miyake Sushi and Poke Stop, Nooddi Thai Chef, Peking Media, Rye BYOB, Shere-E-Punjab, Sligo, Spasso Italian Grill, State Street Pub, Stephen’s On State, Tap 24 , Temaki Sushi and Two Fourteen.
For more information on Dining Under the Stars, visit the Media Business Authority’s “Visit Media PA” Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/diningunderthestars. For more information about Kelly’s Kidz and how to get involved, visit the “Kelly Kidz” Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/kellyskidzevents or email [email protected]