Good morning. I’m happy to be back with you.

First: The Mummers Parade has a long history of controversy, but the latest iteration could be forging ahead with a large gathering in the pandemic.

Then: It was back in September when President Donald Trump said “bad things happen in Philadelphia” during the first presidential debate, and if our look back at the year is any indication, residents of Philadelphia didn’t take offense, they took it as a challenge. Here are 10 good things that happened in Philly this year.

And: After demanding higher payments, Trump has signed the relief bill.

— Ashley Hoffman (@_ashleyhoffman,

History shows canceling the New Year’s Day parade will not stop the Mummers from marching

The city did not stop these “historically chaotic celebrations” from happening in 1919 due to the pandemic or in 1934 due to the Depression. And this year’s official parade may be officially canceled, but that hasn’t stopped thousands of rogue Mummers from vowing to take their strut to the streets for an unofficial event. This time, it’s going to be a “protest.”

A Facebook page that two anonymous hosts started calls it a “Mummers/New Year’s Day protest against Mayor Kenney.” It’s happening on South Second Street, instead of along the South Broad Street parade route where many take in the spectacle. Roughly 2,700 people have indicated they’ll be in on it, and 8,300 more expressed interest. Social distancing is not expected, and it seems that safety precautions may even be used to lampoon Gov. Tom Wolf. Mayor Jim Kenney says the city won’t use force to break up the proceedings.

We talked to one expected participant, and this is everything we know so far about what could be a Mummers protest march.

Amid the dumpster fire that was 2020, here are 10 good things that happened in Philly this year

Before we depart this hectic year, it’s about time for some very good stories. This year will go down in the history books for seismic changes and unspeakable tragedy, but that’s not all that happened.

There were the inventive things we did, the spirited things we did. Amusing things we discovered, old things toppling down, and things we fell in love with. Ten stood out to reporter Stephanie Farr. She’s the same scribe who got people talking about their favorite random interactions with kind strangers and with complicated news pressing in at every turn, here we are looking at these positive stories.

“Amid the dumpster fire that was 2020, Philly still became a beacon of joy and absurdity, Farr writes in her look at the 10 good things that happened in Philly this year. “From passionate expressions of love amid powerful protests to dancing mailboxes and ballot boxes outside of the Pennsylvania Convention Center, the city showed the world just what it means to be Philly this year.”

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Here’s a beautiful reason to look up in West Philly. Thanks for sharing @city_of_architectural_love.

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That’s interesting


The cartoonist for The Inquirer and Daily News since 1985, Pulitzer Prize winner Signe Wilkinson, reflects on 35 years of drawing cartoons on Philadelphia’s politicians and life.

“But, as we have repeatedly seen, this president who claims to love the military is eager to use U.S. military forces as a political prop - and to try to manipulate them for partisan purposes.” — Columnist Trudy Rubin writes that this was President Donald Trump’s most grotesque Christmas gift.

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Housebound? Hop on an imaginary ride through this photo essay of photo ops of a lifetime for a John Cena action figure.

Our photographer Charles Fox has explored memories inseparable from his heart by placing the plastic pro wrestler in all manner of scenarios. And Cena was the ideal subject. “The multi-jointed strongman was not only flexible enough to create different positions, he was flexible in character, as well, easily able to go from muscle-bound pugilist to adventure-seeking he-man to fun-loving good-time guy,” he writes.

But his commitment to the subject is beyond words. Read on for all kinds of fun photos and the zenith of the John Cena toy photo, a shot of him posing humbly with an inflatable flamingo.