Artwork at The People’s Lot done by NOMAD. (GIH | Rasheed Ajamu)

The Germantown Info Hub is launching its new profile series where neighbors and affiliates share their favorite places and things to do in Germantown.

Our first profile features Germantown native and anonymous Black artist NOMAD. NOMAD reached notoriety recently, often being the center of conversation amongst Germantown residents around his graffiti art. Some of his recent works included Graphic Content at the National Liberty Museum and the Jawn 6 Philadelphia Airport exhibit. He was also the focus of a recent documentary by students at Haverford College.

To keep up with NOMAD’s work, follow him on Instagram at @nomad_face.

Favorite place to grab food

NOMAD says he likes the newer business Cluck and Gills (5729 Germantown Avenue) for their chicken fingers and Veeliscious Eatery (5147 Germantown Avenue) for their chicken cheesesteak rolls, which he says are “on point.”

Cluck & Gills. (GIH | Rasheed Ajamu)

What’s your favorite park to frequent?

“My favorite park is Vernon Park because when I was growing up, that’s where I went. And now, they always have events for the community there.”

Vernon Park’s Fall Bazaar. (GIH | Rasheed Ajamu)

What recreational activities do you enjoy in your neighborhood?

NOMAD enjoys riding his bike through the neighborhood. He also likes the culture of farmers and vendors markets in Germantown. He shouts out the monthly Black Soul Block Party (hosted by Black Soul Vintage) and weekly Germantown Farmers Market (hosted by Philly Forests) in the spring and summer. 

Vendors at the Black Soul Block Party in summer 2022. (GIH | Rasheed Ajamu)

What are your favorite shops?

“I like the books and the shirts at Black Soul Vintage,” the artist says. “Another one is Walt’s (Walter’s) Bike Shop. I can always count on him whenever I need my bike fixed.”

Walter’s Bike Shop is at 5128 Germantown Avenue, and Black Soul Vintage is at 90 Church Lane.

Walt’s Bike Shop. (GIH | Rasheed Ajamu)

Which buses/trains do you use most frequently if you use public transportation? When do you use public transportation?

NOMAD answers, saying, “The 23 because it can take you downtown. And I like catching the Regional Rail. I use it to travel to work, go downtown, or up to Chestnut Hill to go to Artist & Craftsman (Supply).”

What historic destination would you implore tourists/visitors to visit and learn more about?

NOMAD talks about the legacy of Germantown High School, saying, “I really wanna tell people about the history of Germantown High School. It has a history in the neighborhood. I went to the daycare center inside that jawn. It was a pretty cool school.”

He mentions other landmarks, like the old YWCA building and the Wyck House. He says he lived on McCallum Street for years and only learned about the purpose of the Wyck House last year.

Germantown High School with artwork by NOMAD. (GIH | Rasheed Ajamu)

What’s your favorite fun fact/memory about the neighborhood?

“The Farmers Market at Haines & Germantown,” NOMAD says. He recalls Auntie Anne’s pretzels and Amish goods being the highlight of his visits.

If you could make one addition to the neighborhood, what would it be?

NOMAD says he wants to see a space designated for joy. “Like a space where people can go and not care about nothing,” he explains. “Somewhere that can have all kinds of artistic stuff, electronics, physical things, and somewhere where people can rest.”