Find something to do after school A.S.A.P. with ASAP

Photo: Eagles’ Quarterback Michael Vick facing off against Chess Challenge senior Jowel Ammons at the 2012  Eagles Chess Tournament sponsored by ASAP/After School Activities Partnerships and the Eagles Youth Partnership. Photo Credit Rachel Utain-Evans.

Looking for something to do between the end of the school day and going home? Well, of course you can use your STAMP pass to visit a museum, but if you’re looking to hang out and learn something new like chess, debating, or drama, check out the ASAP after school programs directory.

ASAP stands for After School Activities Partnership, and the ASAP directory has clubs and activities you can join all across the city. You can even filter your search through the directory to find stuff just for high schoolers, and locations are laid out on a map so you can find out what’s going on closest to you. If you’re busy after school, there are even ways to filter for before school, weekend, overnight and summer programs.

Click here to try out the directory! If you’ve used the ASAP directory before, let us know about your experience in the comments!

Drop in at the Fleisher Art Memorial Teen Lounge

Photo: Spring Fleisher Public Art Intervention with the Fleisher Art Memorial and Houston Center Teen Lounges. Teens worked with a teaching artist to create stencils with positive messages on them for temporary installation on the Fleisher sidewalk.

The Fleisher Art Memorial teen lounge is one of three lounges in South Philadelphia associated with the Southeast Philadelphia Collaborative (SEPC). The SEPC’s two other lounges locations are United Communities Houston Center, which is at the corner of 8th and Snyder Streets and The Caring People Alliance at 2433 S. 15th Street (which will be opening soon). The Southeast Philadelphia Collaborative is a neighborhood-based organization dedicated to providing educational, safe, fun, and social environments for youth from the ages 13–18. That’s where the SEPC teen lounges come in: The lounges are places made just for teens who want to socialize and enjoy having access to space where they can do art projects, watch movies, play board games, and more. The lounges are totally free and teens can just drop-in whenever the lounge is open. There is no need to register in advance.

Fleisher Art Memorial’s teen lounge is a place you can hang out with friends and get involved with art projects, so if you love to draw or create artwork of any sort this would be a fun place to go. Teens at this lounge get to meet professional artists all the time who show them different ways to express themselves though art and learn new skills and techniques.  They do different art projects such as Storefront Window Installation with Joe Boruchow & Yis Goodwin, where  youth came together to create a window installation in an empty South Street storefront  using art work they made with Yis and Joe. This one-time workshop used arrows as a metaphor allowing youth to express the challenges they faced in their life and goals they wanted to accomplish. Youth assembled their artwork alongside Joe’s and Yis’s work in the storefront and it became an eye-catching collaboration.

Another project was Teen Machines, an exhibit which featured work from teens at Fleisher Art Memorial and Southeast Philadelphia Collaborative. It was a temporary installation at Fleisher which gave teens the ability to express themselves and showcase their artwork.

They are always looking for new people to join in on the fun at the Fleisher teen lounge, and if you do you may have an opportunity to be a part of their next project. You don’t have to be an artist to have fun at this lounge because there are also other fun activities and if you’re not an artist maybe you could learn something about art. You  could probably find skills you didn’t know you had. Have fun with your friends at this lounge! Don’t waste your talent just sitting around after school, get involved!

The Fleisher Art Memorial teen lounge is located at 719 Catherine Street, Philadelphia, PA. The Fleisher teen lounge is open Monday-Wednesday from 4-6pm. For more information visit http://www.fleisher.org/classes/lounge.php#about. You can also check out the Fleisher Teen Lounge tumblr: http://fleisherteenlounge.tumblr.com/

This post was written by Erika Velez, Summer 2013 STAMP Program Fellow and honorary Teen Council member. Erika attends Kensington Business High School.

Hang out at the SEPC Houston Center Teen Lounge

Photo courtesy of the Houston Center Teen Lounge. The Houston Center lounge has break dancing classes every Wednesday and Thursday from 3:30-5:30pm.

Southeast Philadelphia Collaborative educates, informs, and organizes a board of diverse community partners, policymakers, and stakeholders to provide a greater access to resources and opportunities that empower youth to become leaders and positive contributors to their community. If you’re looking for a place to hang out with your friends or even trying to make new friends, SEPC has teen lounges that you can drop in at. There are three different lounge locations: United Communities Houston Center which allows youth from the ages 13 and up, Fleisher Art Memorial which allows youth from the ages 13-18, and The Caring People Alliance (which will be opening this fall). The teen lounges offer youth opportunities to express themselves and connect with their community.

The Houston Center’s teen lounge is fun and filled with activity. Everyone is welcome to enjoy the free lounge. You can watch movies, play board games with friends, do art projects and more! One special thing about this lounge is that they have break dancing classes every Wednesday and Thursday from 3:30-5:30pm. Beginner classes are on Wednesdays and advanced classes are on Thursdays. There is an instructor who teaches teens how to express themselves through dancing, and you also learn cool moves.

The Houston Center lounge also hosts the SEPC Youth Leadership Council. The YLC provides youth with different backgrounds the chance to work together on community goals. The Youth Leadership Council gives youth 13-18 a voice to speak out against the violence/crime, drug abuse, and environmental issues in their community. The members of YLC meet every Tuesday at the Houston Center. Teens that are interested in being a member of the Youth Leadership Council should reach out to teen lounge manager Nathan Schneck via e-mail (nathanschneck@ucsep.org), phone (215-468-1645 ext. 201), or by dropping by the Houston Center teen lounge.

A current YLC responsibility is working with the Philadelphia Orchard Project and Pennsylvania Horticultural Society to maintain a community orchard roughly at 2015 S 8th St between Emily and Mercy Street. They are also currently recruiting for the South Philly Teen Orchard Care Team. They are looking for South Philly youth (13-18 years old) interested in being a part of a team that would be responsible for weekly monitoring, weeding, harvesting and feasting on the fruits growing in their neighborhood orchard. If you are interested in being a part of the care team contact Nathan via e-mail, phone, Facebook message, or by visiting the teen lounge.

So drop in at the Houston Center teen lounge! It’s a place that would be fun for everyone between the ages of 13-18. Don’t miss out! Meet new friends and interact with people in a positive way.

The Houston Center teen lounge is located at 2029 S. 8th Street, Philadelphia, PA. The lounge is open on Monday from 3-7pm and Wednesday and Thursday from 3-6pm. For more information about the Houston Center teen lounge, visit sephillyyouth.com.

This post was written by Erika Velez, Summer 2013 STAMP Program Fellow and honorary Teen Council member. Erika attends Kensington Business High School.