The sun is shining (for now), birds are chirping (or is that a siren?), and another weekend is upon us in Philadelphia. And, per usual, whether you're staying in town or going down the Shore, we've got the guides to help make it a memorable Memorial Day weekend for you and yours. In other news, an appeals court quickly ruled yesterday to allow transgender students in Boyertown to use bathrooms and locker rooms corresponding to their gender identity, and joining a growing chorus of courts affirming rights of transgender individuals.

— Oona Goodin-Smith (@oonagoodinsmith, morningnewsletter@philly.com)

Twelve year-old Madison Hollingsworth stands on the boardwalk railing in Ocean City, as she visits the Jersey shore from Clementon, with her mother and mom-mom April 10, 2013TOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer
Twelve year-old Madison Hollingsworth stands on the boardwalk railing in Ocean City, as she visits the Jersey shore from Clementon, with her mother and mom-mom April 10, 2013TOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer

Whether you're heading down the Shore, to the Poconos or staying in town this Memorial Day weekend, we've got the details on a bevy of events to ensure you kick off the unofficial start of summer right.

Pack an umbrella no matter where you're headed, though – it looks like thunderstorms may also drop in for a holiday visit.

Going out of town? You're not alone.

More than 2.3 million motorists are expected to take to the turnpike this weekend (that's more than the population of New Mexico), and traffic's already expected to be anything but smooth sailing …or, driving. If you're looking to get to the Shore without the headache of the highway, we've got tips for that.

Gas prices are also predicted to surge, and you may be better off waiting to fill up after crossing the Ben Franklin Bridge into New Jersey.

If you're headed down the Shore…

We've got a guide for that.

Undecided on which beach to spread your blanket? How about a trip to the other, definitely not dry Ocean City, the laid back Bethany Beach, or classic Cape May?

And no matter how the weather fares, we've got tips on where to chow down along the Shore, from casual bites to fine dining, boozy brunches to seafood (because, let's be real, you're not going to the Shore for chicken).

If you're a first-timer, we've also compiled FAQs and see-worthy Shore historical sites to impress your friends and family. Just don't be a jerk about it.

If you're staying in Philly…

Don't fret, we've got a guide for that, too.

From fireworks to garden parties, tango to tall ships, it appears there's something in town for everyone this weekend. The Devon Horse Show is also going on, and Hall and Oates will be making dreams come true (if your dreams happen to involve sandwiches and 80s pop duos) at Penn's Landing during HoagieNation.

In a rare decision from the bench, a federal appellate court on Thursday upheld the policy of the Boyertown Area School District allowing transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms that correspond to their gender identity.

It took less than 20 minutes for a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in Philadelphia to unanimously reject arguments made by a conservative legal organization representing six students, who sued the district last year saying they felt uncomfortable after spotting transgender teens using the restrooms of their choice.

The decision upheld a lower court ruling in August and joins a growing body of federal court decisions from across the country affirming the rights of transgender individuals.

What you need to know today

Through Your Eyes | #OurPhilly

And the winner of our #OurPhilly poll is … @im_batman_311 with a creepy-cool shot at the Eastern State Penitentiary.

We want to see what our community looks like through your eyes. Show us the park that your family walks through every weekend with the dog, the block party in your neighborhood or the historic stretch you see every morning on your commute to work.

Tag your Instagram posts or tweets with #OurPhilly and we'll pick our favorite each day to feature in this newsletter and give you a shout out!

That’s Interesting

  • Ice is out and tonic  is in on the Philly summer craft coffee scene. Coffee tonic (or "C&T," as those in the know are calling it) is the perfect thirst-quenching combination of cold brews and bubbles and making a splash in java joints across the city.
  • Mean Girls creator Tina Fey returned to her roots at Upper Darby High School this week with a surprise visit to promote her 12-time Tony-nominated Broadway musical and meet with students and staff. Sources say she did not make fetch happen.
  • You may soon be able to shop at Reading Terminal Market without ever setting foot in the iconic agora. Inquirer food critic Craig Laban sat down with manager Anuj Gupta for the low-down on the future of the Philly food staple.
  • Fact: Philly breeds survivors. Specifically, Ardmore native Wendell Holland, who elbowed out a fellow finalist during Tribal Council to win big this week on Survivor: Ghost Island and take home a $1 million prize.
  • Have musical cell phone ringtones been silenced for good? Trends suggest the days of hearing "Baby Got Back" preceding an incoming call are numbered.
  • At Dino's Backstage in Glenside co-owner Michael Richard Kelly-Cataldi does it all, from singing a tune with the band to bussing tables at the swanky supper club. Now, he's releasing an album of Judy Garland covers, too.

Opinions

May 25, 2018
SIGNE WILKINSON
May 25, 2018
"Even though you may not be directly impacted by it, you can disrupt the cycle of violence that traps many of Philadelphia's children, and who did not create the conditions that lead to violence. They want liberation. But it's hard to stop it from within especially if you are a child. Although you are on the outside looking in, you can provide more counteractive force than you may realize."
  • Politics are irrelevant to character, strength and quality of human spirit and women should not be categorized, writes columnist Christine Flowers on the stereotype of the "strong woman."
  • "Fifty years ago, the chaos of 1968 set the stage for a future of demagoguery, divisive politics often driven by race, and the unlikely rise of a mediocre Wharton student who spent his time in 1968 trying to get a date with schoolmate Candace Bergen – Donald Trump," columnist Will Bunch writes in a look back at a tumultuous year in American history that he says has a direct connection to today.

What we’re reading

  • Think your workday would be better with a see-saw break or midday hammock nap? MIO Culture does. The Philly-based biz has successfully worked with big names like FedEdx, Whole Foods and Anthropologie to push sustainability, but now, it's trying to sell a different office concept: playtime. The Philly Citizen has the scoop.
  • Love hurts, but it also heals, and Philly's overhauled, one-level LOVE Park is on the comeback, the city's parks and rec chief told Planned Philly. New foliage and fountains promise to add character to the Center City landmark this summer.
  • When now-imprisoned gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar had to miss team events because he was under investigation for sexually abusing the program's underage athletes, USA Gymnastics actively worked with Nassar to concoct cover stories for the disgraced doctor's absence rather than disclose the child sexual abuse claims to parents and gymnasts, new emails obtained by The Indianapolis Star reveal.
  • Kim Jong Un's rise to North Korean Supreme Leader might first have been predicted by a Japanese sushi chef over a decade ago, BBC writes. Penned by a journalist once detained in North Korea, the eight-part piece takes an intricate look at the state of the country, its dictator, and what may come next for North Korea and the world.
  • When two star basketball players sued Pepperdine University for what they say was intense harassment over their relationship, they gave up everything for a long legal battle. The case made headlines and set a historic precedent for LGBT rights. But then, they lost. Now, they're working to ensure others don't face the same fate, Buzzfeed reports.
JOSE F. MORENO / Staff Photographer
JOSE F. MORENO
JOSE F. MORENO / Staff Photographer

Your Daily Dose of | Rebound

A former Temple hoops star and Harlem Globetrotter, basketball was the life Ron Rollerson knew until he woke up from an emergency heart surgery without his left leg. Now, he's diving into a new dream: swimming in the 2024 Paralympics.