Welcome to “Jerry Blavat Way”

Legendary DJ Jerry Blavat entered the gates of heaven in January at 82. Down on earth Wednesday night, Philadelphia named a portion of Broad Street “Jerry Blavat Way.”

Keely Stahl, the Geator’s main squeeze, before the new street sign

Broad is the city’s main artery, and for six decades, Jerry was the city’s musical heart.

They’re dancing in the street

A two-hour dance party was a nice tribute to a man who always made everyone feel good, said City Councilman Mark Squilla. 

The man known as the Geator with the Heater was born in South Philly and always carried that vibe with him.

Squilla also made the important point that Jerry was the first white DJ to give credit — and all-important air time — to Black artists, which explains why Dionne Warwick attended his funeral. Jerry didn’t talk a word that is rapidly becoming a cliche, diversity — he lived it.

Mayor Jim Kenney offered a few words, respectful, but lacking any  emotion. Some guy in the crowd waved a couple of posters, one saying, “Jerry hated Jimmy” and the other an F-bomb directed at the mayor.

I don’t know if Jerry hated Kenney, but he did confide to me that he was disappointed that Kenney rarely asked him to host city events, as every other mayor had, and always for free.

Jerry was happy to donate his time and talent to his home town, the place he always felt most comfortable.

He did a lot of other charity work.

DJ Steve Klasko played a lot of oldies, with the crowd singing along, and dancing, too.

Latest version of the Geatormobile

On Broad Street, the latest version of the Geatormobile from Gary Barbera was parked in the middle of the street.

Keely Stahl, the Geator’s forever girlfriend was smiling, happy that everyone was having such a good time.

Jerry would have loved it.

11 thoughts on “Welcome to “Jerry Blavat Way””

  1. Jerry was an incredible historian of Philly and Motown music. He knew the backstory of so many groups and the hits they made. The tributes are appropriate

  2. Jerry Blavat was just a tad before my time, but I appreciated him as the musical legend he was around these parts. A life well lived for sure.

  3. In May 1966 a 25 year old Jerry Blavat hosted Bishop Neumann High School’s after senior prom party at the Merion Inn in South Jersey. He provided us seniors and our dates with a memorable time.

  4. I always reminded His Geatorness (as I always addressed him; he of course, would call me “Chuck-a-Phonic Chuck”) that one of the great perks of my career as an entertainment writer was the chance to get to know and spend quality time with him.

  5. When I was named VP/GM of XXXX-FM (oldies) radio in Philly, Jerry dropped in one day, unannounced, to wish me success. It was a really nice thing for him to do one; he was a big somebody and I was just another radio guy, but he really liked people and it showed. RIP, Geator.

  6. jerry, we will miss you as dj at Hammonton parade and carnival this 16th of July.

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