Event

Old City Fest

Sunday, October 7, 2018

A free street festival in Philadelphia’s historic district

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Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia
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Overview

Old City transforms from quiet cobblestone thoroughfares into a mecca for entertainment and alfresco eating during Old City Fest on Sunday, October 7 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Several blocks along North Third Street and Arch Street close down to traffic to showcase local designers, creative firms, restaurants, retailers, galleries and theaters, as well as the neighborhood’s culture, history and architecture.

Dozens and dozens of the area’s businesses participate.

Activities, exhibitions and programs unfold throughout the afternoon, catering to both families and the over-21 crowd.

The Experience

More than 100 vendors will fill the streets during the fest, going beyond just food and drink.

Old City Fest is a celebration of art and design, fashion and food, creativity and culture on the streets of America’s most historic square mile— Old City, Philadelphia.

This event highlights the region’s premier art and design district, showcasing local designers, creative firms, restaurants, retailers, galleries, theater, culture, history and architecture

Don’t Miss

More than 100 vendors usually fill the streets during the festival — going beyond just food and drink — with booths featuring galleries, design houses, artisans and independent retailers selling an array of goods and services.

Festival-goers should come ready to shop, as plenty of crafts, home goods, fashion-forward apparel and other local finds are on display.

Of course, the annual festival is packed with food and drink vendors — usually more than two dozen in total — who take over the streets of Old City. Participants typically include area staples like Cuba Libre, Continental, Franklin Fountain and more.

Families can also enjoy an array of all-ages entertainment on the family fun zone stage, as well as kid-friendly activities, which over the years have included mini-golf with Franklin Square, Revolutionary War trivia with the Museum of the American Revolution and 18th-century dress-up with Elfreth’s Alley.

Attendees at Old City Fest shop items from local stores and makers at Old City Fest. Attendees at Old City Fest shop items from local stores and makers at Old City Fest.

Old City Fest attendees can shop the latest trends from local stores, makers and designers at the popular outdoor fall festival.   — Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia

What To Expect In 2018

Old City Fest celebrates five years of music with the biggest lineup in the festival’s history on stage at Fourth and Arch streets. Philly-based rapper and Music Ambassador Chill Moody will perform, as will the West Philadelphia Orchestra and house music band Worldtown Soundsystem. Jolly’s Dueling Piano Bar brings the pianos outside, and 13-year-old DJ D-ILL returns for another year.

Fashion shows featuring the newest styles by local designers are scheduled for 1:45 and 3:45 p.m., and attendees can shop the runway looks on the spot. More than a dozen local makers, including a few 2018 newcomers, are selling their jewelry, woodworking, housewares and more as part of the specially designated Independents Row area outside 35 N. 3rd Street.

More than 20 food vendors offer their mouthwatering bites, pastries, coffees and brews. A few new purveyors join the lineup this year, including Barry’s Buns with cinnamon rolls, crumb cakes and other fall treats, and the soft-opened Bourse food hall.

Circus street performers at Old City Fest Circus street performers at Old City Fest

Circus street performers enliven the annual Old City Fest.   — Photo courtesy Wandering Lens Photography

Getting There & Tickets

Old City is easily accessible via foot, bike, Indego Bike Share and public transportation. Street closures mean limited parking, so visitors’ best bets are to either walk if able, ride a bike, or hop on the Market-Frankford line.

Admission is free; eats, drinks and vendor shopping are pay-as-you-go.

For more information about Old City Fest, click the button below.

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