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Summer on the River

Pictured: Spruce Street Harbor Park

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Things to Do

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  • The El Bar

    Head beneath the tracks for cheap beer and live music

    The El Bar

    Situated, as the name implies, under SEPTA’s Market-Frankford elevated rail line (or “The El”), this quasi-dive bar attracts a loyal following.

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  • The Elmwood Park Zoo

    A community zoo dedicated to habitat conservation

    The zoo started as a municipal operation in 1924, but in 1985, Norristown turned over the management of what was then an eight-acre park to the Norristown Zoological Society. It has since doubled in size, adding an aviary in 1995, an indoor reptile house in 1996 and a grasslands exhibit in two phases in 1997 and 2002.

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  • The Fabric Workshop and Museum

    Devoted to artists creating new work in fabrics and other materials

    Interior of the Fabric Workshop and Museum.

    The only museum of its kind in the world, The Fabric Workshop and Museum counts among its permanent collection works by well-known names (architects Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown, sculptor Louise Bourgeois, photographer Carrie Mae Weems, artist Robert Morris) working in, for them, a different medium.

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  • The Fire

    Burnin’ up

    A classic gritty rock club alternative to some of the neighborhood’s flashier venues, The Fire does two things — loud rock and cheap beer — and does them very well.

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  • The Franklin Institute

    One of the oldest and most beloved science museums in the country

    Front of the Franklin Institute.

    An innovator in designing hands-on exhibits before “interactive” became a buzzword, The Franklin Institute is as clever as its namesake. Its eminently touchable attractions explore science in disciplines ranging from sports to space.

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  • The Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania

    A century of ancestor tracking, bit by byte

    Since 1892, the Society has been expanding its collections and serving researchers in person, through the mail, and more recently, by email: execdir@genpa.org. Few genealogical societies in the United States have been serving genealogical needs as long, and only a scant few collect and preserve vital and personal records from unpublished sources. The society is run largely by volunteers.

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  • The Grundy Museum

    Victorian-era home of Senator Joseph R. Grundy

    The former home of Senator Joseph Ridgway Grundy sits on the banks of the Delaware River.

    Victorian-era home of Senator Joseph R. Grundy

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  • The Highlands Mansion and Garden

    Georgian mansion and two-acre formal garden

    The Highlands Mansion

    A glimpse of the massive stone walls on the grounds of this 18th-century Georgian mansion hints at the treat to be enjoyed within.

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  • The Historic Barns-Brinton House of Chadds Ford

    Pre-Revolutionary War homes on the National Register of Historic Places

    Re-enactor at the Barns-Brinton House

    Nestled into a sloping hillside, the three-story house is simple, in keeping with Chads’ Quaker beliefs, but comfortable.

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  • The Historical Society of Pennsylvania

    American history starts here, at 13th and Locust Streets

    The Historical Society of Pennsylvania building

    The American Revolution was fading from memory after nearly 50 years, and Philadelphians preserved the past by saving papers, portraits and even furniture. More than a century and three-quarters later, the massive collection was augmented by a merger with the Balch Institute for Ethnic Studies.

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  • The Irish Memorial

    2002 by Glenna Goodacre

    The Irish Memorial

    For the 150th anniversary of Ireland’s Great Hunger of the 1840s, Glenna Goodacre created this 30-foot-long bronze set in a park over I-95. With more than two dozen life-sized figures, the sculpture tells the story of the multitudes who died in the old country as well as the hundreds of thousands who crowded onto disease-ridden ships for the Great Migration to America.

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  • The Johnson House
    Historic Site, Inc.

    A vital stop on the Underground Railroad

    A reenactment at the Johnson House in Germantown.

    It’s easy to imagine 19th-century freedom fighters Harriet Tubman and William Still meeting at this Quaker home in Germantown, owned by four generations of the abolitionist Johnson family.

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  • The Liberty 360 3-D Show
    at the PECO Theater

    Let history surround you in this revolutionary, new 3-D show

    Audience members at the new 3-D Liberty 360

    See Philadelphia’s history in a very new way! Liberty 360 in the state-of-the-art PECO Theater is Philadelphia’s first indoor, 360-degree, 3-D panoramic show, designed to the immerse viewers in the symbols of freedom.

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  • The Liberty Bell Center

    Dramatic new home of the internationally known symbol of freedom

    The Liberty Bell in Historic Philadelphia

    The Liberty Bell has a new home, and it is as powerful and dramatic as the Bell itself. Throughout the expansive, light-filled Center, larger-than-life historic documents and graphic images explore the facts and the myths surrounding the Bell.

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  • The Library Company of Philadelphia

    The country’s first lending library still displays its vast holdings

    The Library Company still pays homage to Ben Franklin, its founding member. Just as in 1731, individuals can buy a “share” of the library. Founded when Ben was 25, subscription libraries were the first of many innovations. When Philadelphia was the U.S. capital, it was, in effect, the Library of Congress. It is now the only major intact Colonial library.

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  • The M Room

    Live music and craft brews

    Short for The Manhattan Room, The M Room features its performance venue on one side and its bar/restaurant on the other.

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  • The Mario Lanza Museum

    A glimpse at the life of America’s opera and movie icon

    Gallery at the Mario Lanza Museum.

    The Mario Lanza Museum grew out of the Mario Lanza Institute, which was founded in 1962 to help provide scholarship money for classical vocal students. As more and more Lanza artifacts have been donated, the museum, now in its fourth location, has grown.

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  • The Market at Liberty Place in Kennett Square

    Community gathering place for fresh local food and entertainment

    The Market at Liberty Place in Kennett Square.

    A gathering place for locals and visitors in Kennett Square, The Market at Liberty Place offers year-round dining, shopping and entertainment.

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  • The Marvelous

    Let the record play

    The Cedar Park music shop with the awesome name harkens to a time when vinyl ruled the airwaves. A reliable source for staying on top of local music, The Marvelous also sells instruments and equipment and hosts performances.

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  • The Media Theatre

    Professional theater in the heart of Delaware County

    Interior of The Media Theater

    The Media Theatre is one of the Philadelphia region’s most popular venues for live theater. Located in a charming vintage building in downtown Media, it’s an exciting place to see a show without trekking into the city.

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  • The Mushroom Cap

    One-stop shop for all-things mushroom

    The Mushroom Cap is Kennett Square's only shop devoted to the local fungi.

    Appropriately located in Kennett Square, the Mushroom Capital of the World, The Mushroom Cap is a fungi-lover’s dream.

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  • The New Race Street Pier

    Relaxing waterfront respite in the heart of the city

    The new Race Street Pier.

    The latest addition to Philadelphia’s amazing outdoor spaces, the new Race Street Pier on the Delaware River Waterfront is a relaxing respite in the heart of the city.

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  • The Oval

    July 16-August 17: Shape of fun on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway

    The Oval, an exciting new public space on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

    Returning to the Benjamin Franklin Parkway for its second season, The Oval once again will transform an island of asphalt and surrounding lawns at 24th Street and the Parkway into an eight-acre public space devoted to summertime fun.

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  • The PFS Roxy Theater

    Home of independent cinema in Rittenhouse Square

    The PFS Roxy Theater in Rittenhouse Square.

    The new home of the Philadelphia Film Society (PFS), the The PFS Roxy Theater brings top independent cinema to Rittenhouse Square.

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  • The Philadelphia Antiques Show

    Antiques and art through the 20th century at the Pennsylvania Convention Center

    Browse antique decorative and fine arts at the Philadelphia Antiques Show. View More
  • The Philadelphia Classical Guitar Society

    Supporting and savoring the art of classical guitar

    Philadelphia aficionados founded the society in 1966 to inform, educate and bliss out devotees of the quiet instrument popularized by Andres Segovia.

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  • The Philadelphia Clef Club of Jazz & Performing Arts

    Sound the horn

    A neighborhood institution, the Clef Club’s mission is to preserve Philly’s rich musical history through regular performances and programming.

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  • The Philadelphia Collection

    Find your style in the city’s top shops

    The Philadelphia Colleciton 2010

    The city shows off its fashionable side during The Philadelphia Collection, a week-long celebration of Philadelphia’s fashion and retail community.

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  • The Philadelphia Contributionship

    A compelling collection of firefighting and fire insurance memorabilia

    A compelling collection of firefighting and fire insurance memorabilia.

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  • The Philadelphia Doll Museum

    Presenting black dolls as artifacts of history and culture

    In the mid-1980s, Barbara Whiteman started a doll collection as an adult hobby, but it grew, so to speak, topsy-turvy-like. School groups and adult collectors frequently came to her home to see her collection, so in 1996, she founded the museum in a storefront along the Avenue of the Arts in North Philadelphia to accommodate more visitors. She’s currently the executive director.

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