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Terror Behind the Walls

Terror Behind the Walls

You may not be the only one wandering the cellblocks of Eastern State Penitentiary. Credit: M. Edlow for Visit Philadelphia

Fall sends Philadelphia into prime festival season, bringing tons of events to enjoy throughout the city.

From food-centric celebrations such as the Apple Festival at Peddler's Village to fantastic, citywide arts presentations via the Fringe Festival to holiday-inspired happenings like the Terror Behind Walls at Eastern State Penitentiary, festivals of all kinds sweep the city throughout the next few months.

When the weather starts to get just a little too crisp, there's always plenty to do indoors, too, and a whole breadth of exhibitions to keep you busy. The Freedom Principle: Experiments in Art and Music, 1965 to Now, an expansive black arts exhibition, unfolds at the University of Pennsylvania’s Institute of Contemporary Art, Robot Revolution opens this October at the Franklin Institute and a ton of other blockbuster displays keep Philadelphia's museum scene thriving.

A wide array of beer festivals also invite you to celebrate the season, so get ready to pull out your lederhosen and take on the Oktoberfest of your choice.

Be sure to check out all of the highlights below and start marking your calendar with all the fun this year has to offer!

Featured Listings

  • Harry Potter Festival in Chestnut Hill

    A magical celebration of wizards and Quidditch

    October 21-22, 2016
    There will be wizardry and wonder in the air this October as Chestnut Hill transforms for the Harry Potter Festival.

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  • Center City District Sips

    Happiest hours all summer long

    Independence Beer Garden is just one of 90 bars and restaurants participating in Center City Sips.

    Through September 28, 2016
    Happy hour is more joyful in the summer thanks to Center City District Sips, when more than 90 bars and restaurants offer discounted drinks and appetizers every Wednesday evening.

    View More
  • Terror Behind the Walls

    Premier haunted house in Philadelphia’s historic prison

    Terror Behind the Walls

    September 16 – November 5, 2016 (select dates)
    The massive Eastern State Penitentiary — a gothic, castle-like structure in Philadelphia’s Fairmount neighborhood — is home to one of the nation’s largest and most ambitious haunted attractions, Terror Behind the Walls.

    View More
  • Nightscape: A Light and Sound Experience at Longwood Gardens

    An immersive garden-wide after-dark installation

    The chance to see stunning sights at Longwood Gardens will continue after dark with the immersive after-dark-only installation Nightscape.

    August 3 – October 29, 2016
    The chance to see stunning sights at Longwood Gardens will continue after dark in the summer and fall of 2016 with the return of the immersive after-dark-only installation Nightscape: A Light and Sound Experience.

    View More
  • The Philadelphia Film Festival

    A city-wide celebration of the cinema

    The Prince Theater on Chestnut Street is one of a number of venues hosting films for the Philadelphia Film Festival.

    October 20-30, 2016
    The Philadelphia Film Festival celebrating its 25th anniversary this fall with nearly two weeks of films, guests and special events to satisfy even the most ardent cinephile.

    View More
  • Bloktoberfest

    An epic celebration of food, music and beer in Graduate Hospital every fall

    Celebrate autumn during Bloktoberfest on South Street

    October 15, 2016
    Taking over a stretch of western South Street every autumn, Bloktoberfest brings in big bands and a bevy of craft beer providers to make for a true neighborhood festival that’s free to attend.

    View More
  • Midtown Village Fall Festival

    Food, drinks and outdoor fun on 13th Street

    Celebrate on 13th Street during the Midtown Village Fall Festival.

    October 1, 2016
    Held every autumn, the Midtown Village Fall Festival is one of Philadelphia’s premier outdoor events, featuring eight hours of tasty food, drinks, live entertainment, shopping and more.

    View More
  • Philadelphia Marathon

    One of the most historic races in the country

    Runners pass through Manayunk during the Philadelphia Marathon.

    November 18-20, 2016
    One of the most historic races in the nation, the Philadelphia Marathon is held every November, crossing the heart of Philadelphia and some of the city’s most iconic landmarks — including Independence Hall, the Betsy Ross House and the Liberty Bell.

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  • Dinosaurs Unearthed at the Academy of Natural Sciences

    Come face-to-face with lifelike, roaring, moving dinosaurs

    Dinosaurs Unearthed at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University allows museum-goers to embark on a multi-sensory adventure that involves moving, life-size animatronic versions of everyone’s favorite prehistoric creatures.

    June 25, 2016 – January 16, 2017
    Dinosaurs Unearthed at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University allows museum-goers to embark on a multi-sensory adventure that involves moving, life-size animatronic versions of everyone’s favorite prehistoric creatures.

    View More
  • Revolutionary Germantown Festival

    A special day to discover America’s history along Germantown Avenue

    Reenactors at the Revolutionary Germantown Festival.

    Saturday, October 1, 2016
    Revolutionary Germantown Festival celebrates the rich history of the Germantown neighborhood and features the annual reenactment of the Battle of Germantown, the only military battle ever fought within the borders of Philadelphia.

    View More
  • The Philadelphia Film Festival

    A city-wide celebration of the cinema

    The Prince Theater on Chestnut Street is one of a number of venues hosting films for the Philadelphia Film Festival.

    October 20-30, 2016
    The Philadelphia Film Festival celebrating its 25th anniversary this fall with nearly two weeks of films, guests and special events to satisfy even the most ardent cinephile.

    View More
  • Philadelphia Marathon

    One of the most historic races in the country

    Runners pass through Manayunk during the Philadelphia Marathon.

    November 18-20, 2016
    One of the most historic races in the nation, the Philadelphia Marathon is held every November, crossing the heart of Philadelphia and some of the city’s most iconic landmarks — including Independence Hall, the Betsy Ross House and the Liberty Bell.

    View More
  • Head of the Schuylkill Regatta

    An exciting, two-day race that draws fans from around the world

    Enjoy a great fall weekend in Fairmount Park and take in a picturesque fall regatta at the Thomas Eakins Head of the Schuylkill Regatta

    October 29-30, 2016
    Enjoy a great fall weekend in Fairmount Park and take in a picturesque fall regatta at the Head of the Schuylkill Regatta, one of the longest running head races in the country.

    View More
  • Fishtown RiverCity Festival

    Annual riverside celebration of the Fishtown neighborhood

    Celebrate the Fishtown neighborhood during the RiverCity Festival at Penn Treaty Park.

    Saturday, October 8, 2016
    Celebrate fall in the Fishtown neighborhood during the annual RiverCity Fall Festival at scenic Penn Treaty Park on the Delaware River Waterfront.

    View More
  • Terror Behind the Walls

    Premier haunted house in Philadelphia’s historic prison

    Terror Behind the Walls

    September 16 – November 5, 2016 (select dates)
    The massive Eastern State Penitentiary — a gothic, castle-like structure in Philadelphia’s Fairmount neighborhood — is home to one of the nation’s largest and most ambitious haunted attractions, Terror Behind the Walls.

    View More
  • Apple Festival at Peddler’s Village

    Weekend celebration of the orchard harvest in Bucks County

    Visitors pack Peddler’s Village in the fall for the annual Apple Festival.

    November 5-6, 2016
    Apple pies, apple butter, apple cider, apple fritters, caramel apples – find these treats and more during the annual Apple Festival at Peddler’s Village.

    View More
  • Bloktoberfest

    An epic celebration of food, music and beer in Graduate Hospital every fall

    Celebrate autumn during Bloktoberfest on South Street

    October 15, 2016
    Taking over a stretch of western South Street every autumn, Bloktoberfest brings in big bands and a bevy of craft beer providers to make for a true neighborhood festival that’s free to attend.

    View More
  • Midtown Village Fall Festival

    Food, drinks and outdoor fun on 13th Street

    Celebrate on 13th Street during the Midtown Village Fall Festival.

    October 1, 2016
    Held every autumn, the Midtown Village Fall Festival is one of Philadelphia’s premier outdoor events, featuring eight hours of tasty food, drinks, live entertainment, shopping and more.

    View More
  • Opera on the Mall

    Free, outdoor performance screening on Indepedence Mall by Opera Philadelphia

    Join fellow opera lovers for a free, broadcast performance on Independence Mall.

    October 1, 2016
    Now in it’s sixth year, Opera on the Mall is a free, big-screen HD broadcast performance from Opera Philadelphia in front of Independence Hall.

    View More
  • Nightscape: A Light and Sound Experience at Longwood Gardens

    An immersive garden-wide after-dark installation

    The chance to see stunning sights at Longwood Gardens will continue after dark with the immersive after-dark-only installation Nightscape.

    August 3 – October 29, 2016
    The chance to see stunning sights at Longwood Gardens will continue after dark in the summer and fall of 2016 with the return of the immersive after-dark-only installation Nightscape: A Light and Sound Experience.

    View More
  • Dinosaurs Unearthed at the Academy of Natural Sciences

    Come face-to-face with lifelike, roaring, moving dinosaurs

    Dinosaurs Unearthed at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University allows museum-goers to embark on a multi-sensory adventure that involves moving, life-size animatronic versions of everyone’s favorite prehistoric creatures.

    June 25, 2016 – January 16, 2017
    Dinosaurs Unearthed at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University allows museum-goers to embark on a multi-sensory adventure that involves moving, life-size animatronic versions of everyone’s favorite prehistoric creatures.

    View More
  • PHS Pop Up Garden

    Two temporary outdoor escapes with food, beer and more

    The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s annual Pop Up Garden returns for its fourth year, transforming a forgotten outdoor area into a gorgeous, landscaped community space.

    Through September 30, 2016
    The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s annual Pop Up Gardens are back, transforming two outdoor areas into a gorgeous, landscaped community spaces.

    View More
  • Center City District Sips

    Happiest hours all summer long

    Independence Beer Garden is just one of 90 bars and restaurants participating in Center City Sips.

    Through September 28, 2016
    Happy hour is more joyful in the summer thanks to Center City District Sips, when more than 90 bars and restaurants offer discounted drinks and appetizers every Wednesday evening.

    View More
  • Tippler’s Tour

    Experience a taste of Colonial tavern life

    The Tippler’s Tour invites the over-21 set to sing along to sample a few drinks and snacks as they ramble through Historic Philadelphia with a Colonial guide.

    May 26 – December 29, 2016
    The over-21 set can sing along to 18th-century drinking songs, enjoy stories of the drinking traditions of Colonial times and sample drinks and snacks as they ramble through Historic Philadelphia with a Colonial guide.

    View More
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