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How are you prepping for a coronavirus winter? | Morning Newsletter

And, the reasons why Philly isn’t the business hub it could be.

    The Morning Newsletter

    Start your day with the Philly news you need and the stories you want all in one easy-to-read newsletter

Good morning.

First: Philadelphians are prepping for what could be a really tough winter. COVID-19 cases in the region have been rising for weeks, prompting the reinstallment of certain coronavirus-related protocols.

Then: Philadelphia has all the ingredients of a city ripe for business. But it has struggled to become a business hub, and employers share what they would do to change that.

And: From football to ... football? Forget the Eagles. It’s time to focus on the Union as the MLS’s top team looks poised to grab a second trophy this season during the MLS Cup Playoffs, which start for the top-seeded squad tomorrow night.

— Josh Rosenblat (@joshrosenblat,

With coronavirus cases soaring and hospitals filling across the region, many Philadelphians, including Germantown boutique-owner Shani Newton, are bracing for a December that might trade its usual holiday joy for worry and danger.

“I pray all the time,” Newton told my colleagues Ellie Silverman and Bethany Ao. “I just ask God to protect the city, the people you love, heal people from the disease, and wake people up to the seriousness of it.”

Silverman and Ao spoke to folks from around the region about how they’re prepping for winter, doing everything from buying extra groceries to pleading with friends and families to take COVID-19 seriously.

There are extra costs associated with doing business in Philadelphia. For example, Philly has high taxes, burdensome regulations, influential unions, and a workforce weakened by generational poverty, my colleagues Christian Hetrick and Joseph N. DiStefano write.

In theory, Philadelphia should be a fertile ground for attracting business. Its location at the center of the Northeast Corridor is advantageous, as is its top hospitals and universities. Plus, it’s far more affordable to live in Philadelphia than it is in Boston, Washington, D.C., and New York City.

And, in their own words, employers explained what they thought Philadelphia should do to create more jobs.

Helpful COVID-19 resources

  1. Check the current coronavirus-related restrictions in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.

  2. What are the first symptoms of the coronavirus and what are the differences between COVID-19, the flu, a common cold, and allergies?

  3. Can you see your friends and family for Thanksgiving? What about if you are planning to host?

  4. When should you replace your cloth face mask?

  5. Track the spread of COVID-19 infections in the region.

  6. Sign up to get free coronavirus news updates in your inbox three times a week.

What you need to know today

  1. If you voted by mail this election, there’s about a 75% chance you voted for Joe Biden. If you cast your ballot in person, there’s about a 66% chance you voted for Donald Trump. That created two parallel elections, my colleagues Jonathan Lai and Julia Terruso report.

  2. Coronavirus cases are rising among the most vulnerable again. But fewer people are dying of COVID-19 now than in the spring.

  3. Judges made rulings in two coronavirus-related cases on Friday. One ruled against lifting Philly’s indoor-dining ban. The other rejected a request by Montco parents that sought to stop a directive that all K-12 schools be shut down for in-person instruction.

  4. The Pennsylvania legislature passed a budget that doesn’t increase taxes nor offer a bailout for restaurants and other industries hit hard by the pandemic.

  5. If you want to get a pre-Thanksgiving COVID-19 test in Philadelphia, be prepared for long lines and appointment shortages.

  6. Coronavirus vaccines seem to be working better than expected, my colleague Tom Avril reports.

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

Here’s to more “great days” yet to come. Thanks for sharing, @forever_philly_photos.

Tag your Instagram posts or tweets with #OurPhilly and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature in this newsletter and give you a shout-out!

That’s interesting

  1. 🎓 Penn student Mackenzie Fierceton learned Saturday that she was selected as a Rhodes Scholar. Winning the prestigious award meant so much to Fierceton, who grew up in foster care, she said, because “it was just like this moment where it hit me, ‘Someone is finally listening to us, they’re finally hearing us and seeing us and care about what happens to us.’”

  2. ⚽ It’s been a while, but payoffs are finally arriving for the Union. The team won its first trophy at the end of the MLS regular season and is now an example for clubs from across the league.

  3. 🦅 A wasted defensive effort saw the Eagles fall to the Browns yesterday, pushing their record to 3-6-1 on the season.

  4. 🍽️ Philly bagels are on a roll, including these local favorites.

  5. 🏈For the first time in the 134-year history of its football program, Penn State has begun a season 0-5.

  6. 🍺 One of the best beers in America is brewed in Germantown.


“If I’ve learned anything during these challenging months watching as the death toll has risen, it’s the value of spending time with loved ones. ... Not this year, though. More than 250,000 Americans have died because of COVID and infections are expected to continue surging. So, we will heed health officials’ urgings for Americans nationwide to keep Thanksgiving celebrations intimate, preferably with no one outside your household.”writes columnist Jenice Armstrong about leaning on memories of being with friends and family to get you through this Thanksgiving.

  1. Baseball isn’t Americans’ national pastime. It’s “worrying every day about everything,” columnist Helen Ubiñas writes.

  2. The Inquirer Editorial Board writes about how Philly should solve its poverty problem.

What we’re reading

  1. Philadelphia magazine reports on whether Philadelphia is ready to listen to the activists who have been calling for years for police to get out of Black communities.

  2. Home sales that hit $1 million in the Philly suburbs spiked from July through September this year, smashing the previous three-month record by 50%, NBC 10 reports.

  3. In parts of Siberia and northern Canada, the oldest and deepest permafrost is being exposed to warmer air for the first time in hundreds or thousands of years. Scientific American looks at what might happen if long-frozen organisms “wake up.”

Your Daily Dose of | Gifts

While many of our holiday traditions could change this year, gift-giving is still a relatively safe way to show affection for loved ones. And, if you have any food-lovers in your life, these gifts, all with Philly ties, could seriously hit the mark.