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Kendra Wilkinson Autographs Memoir for Fans; Tapes Reality Show in Philly August 31, 2010

Posted by Matt Wargo in Philadelphia Scoop.
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Go Kendra!

Kendra Wilkinson, star of the E! network’s “Kendra,” autographed copies of her memoir, “Sliding Into Home,” for hundreds of fans at the Barnes and Noble in Rittenhouse House Tuesday night.

Queues of gleeful fans wrapped in-and-out of the book stacks on the third level as they awaited a chance to meet the reality-TV star.

The former Playboy model posed with fans for pictures and signed books for about three hours.

Production crews taped the book signing as part of the third season of “Kendra,” which is expected to premiere in November.

Her and her hubby Hank Baskett live with their son, Hank IV, in Two Liberty Place in Center City. Baskett returned to the Philadelphia Eagles after inking a one-year deal with the team in March.


EM:HE Design Team Works To Finish A Dream Home in Berks August 5, 2010

Posted by Matt Wargo in Haphazard Happenings, Travel and Explore.
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We’ve entered the final countdown for the extreme build going on outside of Hamburg in Berks County.

The Home Builders Association of Berks County handed the keys to the Urban’s new home over to the design team yesterday around noon.

Volunteers and crews were busy working throughout the night to decorate and furnish the interior of the new dream home.

While the new home looks nothing like the 300-year-old cottage that once stood on the property, it wasn’t completely out with the old. Designers incorporated several of the features from the old home, such as wood beams and shingles into the new home, themed “An Urban Fairytale.”

Solar panels, a windmill and wind turbine, and a gazebo sit near the revitalized pond.

Trisha and Cora Urban will return from their vacation at Walt Disney World in Florida Thursday.

Officials say the reveal and infamous “move that bus” line are scheduled for 2 p.m. Thursday.

UPDATE 8/5/10: The bus was officially moved at 2:42 p.m. for the big reveal. Thousands were at the site of the Urban’s new home.  A new car was also in the driveway.

It’s A Girl…And Now This Baby Giraffe Needs A Name! August 4, 2010

Posted by Matt Wargo in Philadelphia Scoop, Travel and Explore.
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The Philadelphia Zoo’s baby giraffe made her debut at the zoo Tuesday, but without a name.

Now, the zoo’s asking for your help to pick her name. The choices: Abigail, Patricia, and Shari.

Zoo officials say the new giraffe weighs about 100 pounds and is just under six feet tall. The unnamed baby was born overnight on July 17 to a proud Stella and Gus, making her the first giraffe to be born at the zoo in 13 years.

Click here to cast your vote on the Philadelphia Zoo’s website.

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition Brings Lights, Camera, Action to Berks August 3, 2010

Posted by Matt Wargo in Haphazard Happenings, Travel and Explore.
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ABC’s “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” is changing the lives of a Berks County family by rebuilding their dream home.

Trisha and her daughter Cora, 1, were selected for the makeover following a tragic loss. Trisha’s husband died from a heart attack mere hours before Cora was born.

Ty Pennington and his crew surprised the mother and daughter at a carnival in Chester County. A police escort whisked the family and the caravan back to their home where some scenes for the show were filmed.

The theme for their new house: “An Urban Fairytale.” A horse-drawn carriage ride served as a picturesque send-off for the family before they headed to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.

As hundreds of volunteers from Berks County and the surrounding region work to rebuild the home in seven days, some celebrities helped take this extreme build to another level.

Supermodel Christie Brinkley and Leigh Anne Tuhoy, the woman whose story inspired The Blind Side, joined show designers Tracy Hutson and Phil DiMeo in a charity football event Monday evening. The two served as flag football coaches for the night.

Allison Baver and Kristy Kowal, two Olympians from Berks County, served as referees for the gridiron match.

The event helped raise money for the American Heart Association, an organization the family has strong ties to.

It was an event I got to see through my eyes as an intern with 69 News.

There’s so much energy from all of the volunteers, crews, and fans at the production sites of “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.” Not only was it interesting to see things happening behind-the-scenes, it was exciting to witness how a community can come together to help someone in need.

The show is expected to air in late September or early October.

Until then, you can check out my pictures below from the build site and the fundraiser in Hamburg.

Overpriced Textbooks Could Become Cheaper For College Students August 2, 2010

Posted by Matt Wargo in Haphazard Happenings.
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Relief may finally be on its way to college students when it comes time to buy the dreaded textbook.

The Higher Education Opportunity Act is a new federal law that took effect in July. The new mandate requires colleges to release required book lists at the time of course registration, in addition to disclosing the prices and revision information to schools.

The new law will give college students more time to search for a bargain on their books.

Every college student dreads buying their textbooks in time for the start of classes, but what may be a more horrifying experience for your bank accounts is book buy-back time.

Seriously, ten bucks back for a book that sank you at a cost of $100 or more? Even worse, the bookstore won’t take your materials back because of a newer edition.

The HEOA aims to give students more time to look into alternative buying options like textbook buy-back, rentals, and online retailers offering books cheaper than college bookstores.

Last semester, I posted some great alternative options for purchasing your textbooks. Chegg is a website that allows students to rent their textbooks at a highly reduced cost. Even better, all you do is mail it back at the end of the rental period. You never have to worry about book buy-backs or stress over resale. For even bigger discounts when using Chegg, use the rental code CC116144.

Other options  for discounted books include eBay’s Half.com, Amazon Marketplace, and CampusBookRentals.com.

With Amazon Student, the website’s new student membership program, your savings could add up even higher. It’s a free service that gives anyone with a .edu email address free two-day shipping through an on-the-house Amazon Prime subscription.

Happy Savings!