Hello, readers of The Inquirer Morning Newsletter.

First: Food critic Craig LaBan shares his list of the best restaurants at the Shore.

Then: Three decades after David Ruffin’s death in Philadelphia, his friends and family discuss the complicated legacy of the Temptations star.

And: Philly reached a budget deal after a compromise on antiviolence funding.

— Tommy Rowan (@tommyrowan, morningnewsletter@inquirer.com)

The best restaurants for summer dining at the Shore

Consider this the first wave of recommendations from food critic Craig LaBan, who is traversing the Atlantic Coast on his quest to find the best restaurants at the Shore. Next week, he’ll spotlight even more new restaurants in Long Beach Island, Ventnor, Avalon, and Wildwood.

For now, so far, so good. From a new roadside market that’s Jersey oyster heaven to a tasting menu Cape May splurge, stellar destinations for handmade Mexican food and a stylishly revamped beachside porch for breakfast burritos and poke, this summer’s Shore dining crop has already produced several tasty highlights worth the wait.

Here’s Craig LaBan’s list of can’t-miss restaurants at the Shore this summer.

30 years after the Temptations singer’s death in Philly, a look at his complicated legacy

You may not know the name David Ruffin, but you most likely know his voice: the delicate signature of such iconic Temptations tunes as “My Girl,” “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg,” and “I Wish It Would Rain.”

Ruffin, who was a regular presence in North Philadelphia’s Uptown Theater in the 1960s, had his career revived in the 1980s by Daryl Hall and John Oates, a pair of Philly admirers who asked Ruffin to perform with them at Live Aid. But in 1991, Ruffin died in Philly from an accidental overdose, losing out on a storybook start to his career’s third act.

Three decades later, Ruffin’s family and friends are at odds with the singer’s legacy, which they feel is overshadowed by his portrayal in the media, which emphasized his struggles with addiction. Read on for reporter David Gambacorta’s full look at Ruffin’s complicated life and legacy.

Reopening resources

What you need to know today

Celebrating Juneteenth

  • President Joe Biden signed legislation Thursday commemorating the end of slavery by making Juneteenth the 12th federal holiday. The new holiday marks the events of June 19, 1865, when Union soldiers brought news of freedom to enslaved Black people in Galveston, Texas — two months after the Confederacy had surrendered and 2½ years after the Emancipation Proclamation.

  • Here are some events where you can celebrate on Saturday and beyond.


  • Columnist Jenice Armstrong wasn’t aware people celebrated Juneteenth until she was an adult and living in Philly. On Saturday, she’ll be dancing.

  • Camden educator Rann Miller writes that teaching Juneteenth in schools is crucial amid debates about how to tackle U.S. history.

  • White people should celebrate Juneteenth, too, as the holiday represents the “liberation for the destitute white person from an economic system stacked against them as well as the enslaved Black person,” writes Chad Dion Lassiter, executive director of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission.

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

Those are some good footsteps to follow, especially in this weather.

Tag your Instagram posts with #OurPhilly, and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature here and give you a shout-out.

That's interesting

🎻 The Philadelphia Orchestra and Kimmel Center have initiated a corporate alliance that would consolidate their governance under a single parent company.

🌊 Speaking of the Shore, what is that weird-looking barge off the coast of Ventnor?

😭 Still reeling from the Sixers’ stunning defeat to the Hawks on Wednesday? Well, to put things in perspective, here’s a handy list of the most heartbreaking losses in Philly sports history. (And no, it doesn’t include Wednesday’s collapse. Well, at least not yet.)


“If the season ends the way it probably should, the way that Ben Simmons’ postgame face said it probably will, Wednesday night could easily go down as one of those generation-defining cataclysms that echoes throughout time. Hyperbole? Perhaps. There are plenty of moments that look a lot smaller from the outside. But this was not just a loss. It was defeat, in the grandest and most abstract sense of the word,” writes sports columnist David Murphy in reaction to the Sixers’ epic loss in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals.

  • Columnist Trudy Rubin sees Russian President Vladimir Putin’s recent respectful exchange with President Joe Biden to mean one thing: The Kremlin leader, whose country suffers from serious economic and health problems, may need the United States more than we need Russia.

  • Parents everywhere — author and caterer Bethany Watson-Ostrowski has a special message for you: Congratulations. “You earned a Ph.D. in Pandemic Crushing this year.”

What we're reading

  • COVID-19 forced us inside and away from our loved ones. It took away so much of our normal lives. Author (and former Inquirer reporter) Jennifer Weiner writes in an essay for Philly Mag that what helped get her through the loneliness and despair was music.

  • The Athletic attempted the impossible: renaming the Washington Football Team. The sports outlet simulated the team’s rebranding process — they even consulted with a branding expert to help — and came up with six interesting options. Spoiler alert: Last Placers wasn’t on the list.

Your daily dose of | Dads

Sunday is Father’s Day — and it’s the first since 2019 where we can (safely) honor dads, grandfathers, uncles, and father figures. So let’s celebrate. Whether you’re honoring your own relative or a top-notch dad friend, here’s your Father’s Day guide, complete with a list of things to do and gift ideas.