TWO THINGS happen to City Councilman Bobby Henon as he makes his way through the crowd at Mayfair's first-ever Christmas Village at Frankford and Cottman avenues on Sunday.
Revelers see him approaching and greet him with a 'Bobby,' or a 'Hey, Bobby,' or, if they're a little older, a 'Councilman.'
Then they want to talk about methadone.
"Are you going to the meeting?" a community organizer asks him. "Make you sure you tell him about the methadone clinic," another urges Henon when they see a Daily News reporter following him.
There's a hearing Wednesday at City Hall about a proposed methadone clinic less than a mile from all the festivities. Residents want to stop it about as much as the Grinch, who's walking in the crowd close to Santa, wanted to stop Christmas.
Henon spent the morning hanging up Christmas decorations at his East Torresdale home, on a roof with some precipitous inclines. He had trouble finding parking for the Christmas bazaar and when he gets there, his sons, Matthew and Zachary, wander off to hand out candy canes while he and his wife, Jill, talk with vendors selling knitted hats, cupcakes, and neighborhood-pride shirts.
"I didn't recognize you without a suit on," one woman says to him.
The Christmas tree at the corner is supposed to be plugged in at 4 p.m., but there's still another 30 minutes of daylight left. In the meantime, Henon shadowboxes a friend's kid, bends down to see a sleeping, bundled baby, and talks youth soccer with this reporter.
Elected to Council's 6th District last year, Henon says his office isn't quite decorated and he's eyeing up some framed photos that one vendor's selling. Henon buys two large photos, one of The Thinker outside the Rodin Museum and another of Boathouse Row. He pays $150 for the pair.
"At City Hall, if it's not in the trash you have to buy it yourself," he says.
- Jason Nark