One of the newest communities in North Philadelphia, Mayfair is a neighborhood full of constant change and growth. Initially incorporated in the late 1920s-early 1930s, it sits in-between the Tacony and Holmesburg neighborhoods. Few people left the Mayfair/Holmesburg areas to travel into busier places like Center City, as it was seen as a quiet and peaceful farm area for people to work and live. As a result of its somewhat humble beginnings, it’s uncertain where Mayfair’s name comes from. The two most popular versions are that either it came from a local telephone caller, or that the local civic leader Thomas Donahue created the name by saying “We ‘may fare’ if we get behind this community and push – so why not call it Mayfair?” As the neighborhood grew with new installments such as the Mayfair movie theater and the Mayfair Businessmen’s Association, the name stuck. One notable point about the Mayfair of old is that while it was relatively peaceful, the community didn’t go without conflict. In the 1940s, the Mayfair, Tacony, and Holmesburg neighborhoods had an intense dispute over whether to name a new high school after Mayfair. Many in the Holmesburg community disapproved of the idea, claiming that the high school shouldn’t be named after a specific community. The dispute was only resolved by deciding to give the school a more generic, but still prestigious name – Abraham Lincoln High School. The high school still persists to this day- attention Rocky fans- has a notable alum named Sylvester Stallone.
Today, Mayfair is a quaint yet exciting neighborhood, and has enjoyed its status as a family friendly area since an influx of residents during the post-WWII era. One of its highlights is Pennypack Park, which hosts a yearly music festival. The Pennypack Park Music Festival is an exciting event for the whole community, and supports educational music initiatives through internship programs and scholarships. The park gets its name from the Lenope Native Americans and translates to “slow-moving water”, the Pennypack Creek stretches from Montgomery County to the Delaware River. The Pennypack Environmental Center offers programs for those who want to explore the history of the park, and many of the trails are open for strolls around this historical area. Lest we forget, Mayfair has also been given a stamp of presidential approval. Right before winning the election, Bill Clinton had one last stop at a diner in Mayfair. In 2008, Barack Obama visited Mayfair at a rally about a month before the elections. These days, things are much quieter in Mayfair, but excitement never wanes. There’s always things to do on Cottman and Frankford avenues, and people will rush out to celebrate anything from the Sixers making the 2001 NBA finals to the winning the Phillies 2008 world title. There are plenty of things to do in Mayfair, and if you’re looking for a home or investment property, there are some great listings in Mayfair and neighboring Holmesburg for you.
4510 Shelmire Ave rests in the Holmesburg neighborhood and features a bright and spacious living room, and a newer open kitchen perfect for formal dining. The backyard is open and sunny, perfect for gardening and grilling enthusiasts. This house is perfect for those looking to renovate a home, or for use as a potential investment property. Another great property for first time home buyers or investors is 4020 Chippendale, with a gallery kitchen layout, spacious bedrooms, wide patio, and high ceilings. The cozy nature of Chippendale’s block is only highlighted by the fact that it is less than a mile away from delicious spots such as Gino’s Pizza, the House of Thai Cuisine, and Aya Asian Fusion. If you want to stay updated with the most recent events in Mayfair, stroll onto the Mayfair Civic Association website, which is a great way to stay connected in the community. They’ve hosted a wide variety of amazing events, including their Dinner in Pajama Pants event. Yes, there is a dog in pajamas in those photos. It’s adorable, we know. Between the lovely townhomes and the thriving nature of Mayfair, you will experience the best of the Northeast Philly community.