The City Paper is a free publication that comes out every Thursday, but they also have an awesome website (citypaper.net) where you can read the latest edition or older editions which you may have missed.
Unlike the Philadelphia Daily News, the Philadelphia Tribune or the Inquirer the City Paper is not pretentious, overbearing or unfair and imbalanced. Their articles are ones that are of interest to Philadelphians without the splashy headlines or condescending tone; they are written so that everyone regardless of their level of education can understand what is being said and why.
Unlike the Metro newspaper the paper doesn’t target a specific age group (18-34), but any age group. The City Paper’s articles also take as much space as they need to in order to tell the story correctly; to give the reader as much insight as possible.
There are two things that are a must read on both the website as well as in the print copy that make the City Paper better than any other news or information site in Philadelphia.
The first is the weekly column The Bell Curve which seems to be a collaborative effort by the staff of writers. In this column they take news, it may have been a big ticket item or something small, and then they make jokes about it which are usually pretty funny. Then they give each item a grade which is either a negative or a positive. At the end of the column they add these grades up.
Case in point: City Councilman Jim Kenney wanted to change the type of salt Philly uses during a snowstorm. He wanted to use a mixture of salt brine with sugar beet molasses. It didn’t matter that the streets had been using the same type of salt since the 1940s.
In February he initiated a resolution asking the Streets and Services Committee to hold public hearings to investigate the use of rock salt. There’s been no word from the committee when they’re planning on doing this. It’ll probably have to wait until they stop laughing.
The City Paper couldn’t resist themselves. In the February 13, 2014 edition they ran with the gift they were just given:
• Councilman Jim Kenney says the city should consider non-salt options for melting ice, like beet juice. And everybody just, like, stares at him.
• The Red Cross says there’s a blood shortage in the area. “Perhaps beet juice would do the trick,” offers Councilman Kenney.
• Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell introduces bills to allow the city to borrow $250 million to build a high-tech police headquarters. “It’ll be beet powered!” says Councilman Kenney. “No, it won’t,” says Councilwoman Blackwell.
• A milk truck gets sucked into a sinkhole in Kensington. “Who needs milk anymore?” cackles Councilman Kenney, his face dripping a ghastly pink-ish purple.
Another great reason to read the City Paper is senior staff writer Daniel Denvir who always delivers outstanding and thought-provoking articles such as “DA Seth Williams creates unit to exonerate the innocent” (04/15/2014), “Taxpayers subsidize wealthy Philly law firms” (04/01/2014), “Should Philly's public gas company be in private hands?” (03/06/2014), and “Rebellion against standardized testing spreads to Philly” (04/03/2014).
So make sure you check out this website because it has something for everyone.