Tag Archives: philadelphia

Will Smith’s Birthday

Actor, producer, and rapper Will Smith was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on September 25, 1968. He began rapping at the age of 12, and when he met DJ Jeff Townes at a party when he was 16, duo DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince was born.

Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince separated themselves from the rest of hip-hop by releasing catchy but clean tunes including “Summertime” and “Parents Just Don’t Understand”. While “Gangsta” rappers NWA were talking about drugs and violence, Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince were rapping about problems facing teens in middle-America, and people all over were able to relate. As their success mounted, the rap duo won the first Grammy Award for a Rap performance in 1988.

From 1990 to 1996, Will Smith acted as the title character in The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, a sitcom about a street wise kid from Philadelphia sent to live with family in California in order to keep out of trouble. The show’s re-runs  still air on multiple networks today.

Will Smith made the transition from television to movies in the mid-90s. His first big hit was opposite Martin Lawrence in the 1995 hit Bad Boys. After his breakout, the hits just kept going: Independence Day (1996), Men in Black (1997), Enemy of the State (1998), and many others. Smith received two Academy Award nominations for his reprisal of Muhammad Ali in 2001’s Ali, and 2006’s The Pursuit of Happyness.

Some of his other popular films include I, Robot, Hitch, I Am Legend, and Hancock, with many more projects in the works.

Happy Birthday Will Smith!

Sources: Biography,

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Constitution Day

September 17 is Constitution Day!

Today, we observe the signing of the United States Constitution in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania by 39 delegates of the Constitutional Convention in 1787. Constitution Day is a day to recognize those who have adopted the Constitution as citizens of America, whether they were born on United States soil or not.

Constitution Day is an American federal observance that was passed into law in 2004 by West Virginia Senator Robert Byrd. Prior to 2004, September 17 was known as “Citizenship Day”. Today it is mandated that publicly funded schools and federal agencies organize educational programs about the Constitution.

Take this quiz to find out how much you know about our nation’s Constitution.

Sources: Constitution Day, Wikipedia

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Grace Kelly Dies

Actress and Princess Consort of Monaco, Grace Kelly, died after suffering a stroke and crashing her motor vehicle on September 14, 1982.

Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on November 12, 1929, Grace Kelly showed a talent for the arts at a young age. She entered the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, much to her father’s disapproval, and embarked on an acting career, though short lived. Grace Kelly retired from acting at the age of 26 after appearing in 11 films and 60 television productions.

Grace Kelly married Prince Rainier III on April 19, 1956 and officially withdrew from show business to focus on her duties in Monaco. She had three children with the Prince: Caroline, Albert, and Stephanie.

On September 13, 1982, Grace Kelly had a stroke while driving, lost control of her vehicle, and plunged down a 45-foot cliff. Her daughter Stephanie was in the car with her, and they were both rushed to the hospital. After being in a coma for 24 hours, Grace Kelly passed away on September 14, 1982.

Sources: Wikipedia, Biography

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Declaration First Read

July 8, 1776 marks the date of the first public proclamation of the Declaration of Independence.

The Declaration of Independence was approved by the 2nd Continental Congress through a vote on July 4, 1776. On July 8, the Liberty Bell tolled at noon to summon the people of Philadelphia to the Pennsylvania State House yard for a public reading of the Declaration of Independence.

This very first reading was performed by Colonel John Nixon of the Philadelphia Committee of Safety. Bells tolled all through the night in celebration of such a monumental occasion in United States history.

Sources:

National Park Service, History.com

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