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30+ Things to Do With Kids This Week Around Philly and the Main Line: July 2–8

Need plans? We've got something great, every day, all week long!

Need plans? We’ve got something great, every day. And for Independence Week, we’re giving you the weekly events and the weekend High Five in one super jam-packed post!

 

Things to do Sunday July 1st (In case you’re here from our Special Edition email newsletter!)

Weekday events! Go straight to: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday

Looking for weekend plans? Click here for Philly events, and here for what’s happening on the Main Line and in the suburbs.

 

All Week

‘The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley, Jr.’

July 3—6

Upper Darby Summer Stage, 601 N. Lansdowne Ave., Drexel Hill

 

Filled with infectious songs and non-stop adventure, this musical based on Jeff Brown’s popular book series is a perfect show to introduce your family to live theater. Recommended for ages 4 and up. For the youngest theater-goers who may have difficulty enjoying the show quietly, they offer free babysitting!

Art Splash

Through September 3

Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia

 

Enjoy a summer of art exploration as the Philadelphia Museum of Art brings city-themed tours, projects, and more to the Great Stair Hall Balcony.  Kids and their grown-ups can experience the “Modern Times” exhibit through tours, art making, and imaginative play, including a LEGO build featuring a model of the Art Museum! On Sundays the museum offers pay-what-you-wish admission, though kids 12 and under are always free!

‘Game Masters’ at the Franklin Institute

Through September 3

The Franklin Institute, 222 N. 20th St., Philadelphia

 

Showcasing the work of over 30 innovative game designers, “Game Masters” takes visitors on an interactive journey inside their favorite video games. The exhibit features over 100 playable games, as well as the opportunity to learn the stories of the designers and see the evolution of favorite games from concept art to what we know today.

Spruce Street Harbor Park

11 am — 11 pm Monday — Thursday; 11 am — 1 am Friday and Saturday

301 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd., Philadelphia

 

This waterfront spot has food, drink, games, and is a great place to relax!

Blue Cross RiverRink Summerfest

1 pm — 11 pm Monday — Thursday; 1 pm — 1 am Friday; 11 am — 1 am Saturday; 11 am — 11 pm Sunday

101 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd., Philadelphia

 

Skate, ride the Ferris wheel, play mini-golf, and then take a break for some crab fries and Skee-Ball. You can do it all at this fun attraction.

Garden Railway Circus Week at Morris Arboretum

June 30–July 8

100 E. Northwestern Ave., Philadelphia

 

Model trains and cable cars navigate a quarter-mile of track all set against the beautiful garden backdrop. The Garden Railway is one of the true highlights of the incredible Morris Arboretum, and is always a kid favorite. The exhibit runs daily through Labor Day (and then weekends only through October 8), but for this week, the Railway takes on a circus theme!

‘Xtreme Bugs’ at Academy of Natural Sciences

Through January 21

1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia

 

Nearly 20 towering animatronic bugs will come alive in this new creepy crawly exhibit! Get a bug’s-eye view of the world and learn about their intricacies and behaviors. See our preview here.

‘Hello From Japan!’ at Please Touch Museum

Through September 3

Please Touch Museum, 4231 Avenue of the Republic, Philadelphia

 

The Please Touch Museum’s new “Hello from Japan!” is an immersive exhibit that teaches about Japanese culture, as well as literacy, math, and problem-solving skills through hands-on activities like construction and pretend play.

Chinese Lantern Festival in Franklin Square

Through July 8

200 N. Sixth St., Philadelphia

 

Franklin Square will once again glow with 1,500 individual works of art consisting of giant sculptures wrapped in colorful silk and filled with thousands of LED lights. Guests will also enjoy the nightly Dragon Beer Garden and Asian cuisine. Read our full guide to the Chinese Lantern Festival to plan your visit. Want to know more? Go behind the scenes and see how these beautiful lanterns were made!

‘Hamilton: The Constitutional Clashes That Shaped a Nation’

Through December 31

National Constitution Center, 525 Arch St., Philadelphia

 

Walk in Alexander Hamilton’s shoes and learn more about the Founding Father whose life has fascinated Americans for centuries. This exhibit focuses on the intellectual and political conflicts between Hamilton and his contemporaries, including Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and John Adams, and of course, Aaron Burr (that one was a bit more personal). It’s included with museum admission.

Photo Pop!

Through September 3 (excluding Mondays), 3—11 pm (last timed tickets for 10 pm)

1315 Walnut St., Philadelphia

 

This immersive and interactive pop-up exhibit celebrates local artists and is highly Instagram-worthy! See our preview here!

Longwood Garden’s Festival of Fountains

Through September 30

1001 Longwood Road, Kennett Square

 

The gorgeous display of fountains is back combining lights, technology, and water displays which will excite the whole family.

Parks on Tap: Shofuso Japanese House and Garden

July 5–8

Lansdowne Dr and Horticultural Dr, Philadelphia

 

Family-friendly beer garden Parks on Tap comes to the beautiful Shofuso grounds in Fairmount Park. Stop by on the weekend for Family Tanabata Weekend, a traditional Japanese star festival held in midsummer with activities, stories, crafts, and more.

 

Monday

Free Museum Day: Mutter Museum

July 2, 10 am—5 pm

3001, 19 S. 22nd St., Philadelphia

 

Definitely not for the faint of heart, but older kids who don’t get squeamish will be fascinated by this museum full of medical oddities.

Go 4th and Learn: Uncle Bobbies Coffee and Books

July 2, 10 am—noon

5445 Germantown Ave., Philadelphia

 

This community bookstore will host a morning of fun and enriching activities for children ages 6-12.

Storytime in Franklin Square

July 2, 10—11 am

200 N. Sixth St., Philadelphia

 

Librarian Margaret Bernardi of the Independence Branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia will read free stories to children in the Franklin Square Pavilion every Monday this summer.

Music Monday with Roots with Ruark

July 2, 10—10:30 am

Lulu’s Casita, 6 Cricket Ave., Ardmore

 

Join Ruark for music circle, then stay after and play at Lulu’s.

Calder Re-Wired and Pay-What-You-Wish Admission

July 2, 11:30 am

Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia

 

The museum is usually closed on Mondays, but on Art Splash’s opening week, the museum will hold a special Pay What You Wish Monday. Come create in the studio, and also enjoy performances by the Picasso People, who will bring the work of sculptor Alexander Calder to life with mime, music, and puppetry.

Story Jams at DiSilvestro

July 2, 10:30 am

DiSilvestro Rec Center, 1701 S. 15th Street, Philadelphia

 

Come for a weekly playgroup centered around play and positivity that includes storytime, music, dancing, and sensory exploration.

Parkway Pals at Sister Cities Park

July 2, 10:30 am—12:30 pm

Sister Cities Park, 210 N. 18th St., Philadelphia

 

From 10:30—11:30 am, enjoy Story Art: a storytime led by Free Library, followed by nature-themed crafts. Then, at 11:30 am, the Franklin Institute will bring unique science experiments, demonstrations, and hands-on activities. Click here for our full preview of summer programs at this Center City oasis.

Independence Day Celebration at Museum of the American Revolution

July 2, 11 am

101 South Third Street, Philadelphia

 

From 11 am—2 pm, costumed historical interpreter portraying Thomas Jefferson, the original author of the Declaration, will meet-and-greet visitors and pose for photos. At 1 pm, visitors can enjoy a free slice of cake in honor of the nation’s real birthday, the date that Continental Congress declared independence from Great Britain. Throughout the celebration, kids can try on Revolutionary-inspired clothing, design a flag, decode secret messages and practice drilling like a Revolutionary soldier in the Museum’s Patriots Gallery; as well as explore colonial era Philadelphia in the new Revolution Place family discovery center.

Wells Fargo Citywide Reading

July 2, noon—1 pm

Various locations of The Free Library of Philadelphia

 

Kids can enjoy free book giveaways and storytimes at select branches of the Free Library of Philadelphia, as part of Wawa Welcome America. See link for locations.

Philly @ The Movies: ‘Pitch Perfect’

July 2, 5–8 pm

Xfinity Live, 1100 Pattison Ave., Philadelphia

 

Come for a free showing of this aca-awesome favorite! Tickets are required but free (click on link to reserve your spot).

Pop-up Library in Rittenhouse Square

July 2, 6 pm

Goat statue in Rittenhouse Square, 210 W. Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia

 

Join the Free Library of Philadelphia Book Bike at the goat statue in Rittenhouse Square for stories, activities, and the Summer Reading Game.

Family Rock Painting at Media-Upper Providence Free Library

July 2, 6—7 pm

1 E. Front St., Media

 

Make a beautiful rock or two for your garden, or to hide for someone else to find! Best for ages 3 and up.

Kimmel Center’s Broadway Philadelphia on Independence

July 2, 7—8:30 pm

520 Chestnut St., Philadelphia

 

Celebrate the upcoming Broadway Philadelphia season with performances by cast members from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, Miss Saigon, Fiddler on the Roof, Cats, Anastasia, Love Never Dies, and Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas. “But what about Hamilton?” you ask. Well get ready, because the ShowStoppers (teens from the Kimmel Center’s free after-school musical theater program) will lead the crowd in “Hamiltunes,” a licensed sing-a-long event to the songs of Hamilton!

Tuesday

Free Museum Day at National Liberty Museum

July 3, 10 am—5 pm

321 Chestnut St., Philadelphia

 

Interact with incredible stories of heroes and a collection of contemporary art with themes of freedom, civic engagement, and diversity. Also, kids can ring the (replica) Liberty Bell!

Tyler Arboretum’s Garden Sprouts

July 3, 1—2:30 pm

515 Painter Road, Media

 

Plant a pizza! Where do your pizza toppings and spices come from? Plant your own pizza garden and take it home so you can create your own delicious dinner. For kids ages 4-6.

Stars, Stripes, and Sundaes

July 3, 4—5 pm

Tree House Books, 1430 West Susquehanna Ave., Philadelphia

 

Stop by Tree House Books for a July 4th Eve ice cream social! They’ll be making their own ice cream and then topping them with some favorite goodies before enjoying!

History Happy Hour: Ice Cream Social

July 3, 4—6 pm

Cross Keys Café at the Museum of the American Revolution, 101 South Third Street, Philadelphia

 

Celebrate life, liberty, and the pursuit of happy hour by kicking off your Fourth of July festivities with an Ice Cream Social! There will be food and drink specials in Cross Keys Cafe. History Happy Hours are open to the public and do not require a ticket (does not include museum admission). Come early for a free patriotic performance by Fifes and Drums of the Old Barracks on the museum’s outdoor plaza from 1—4 pm.

Historic Philadelphia Block Party

July 3, noon—7 pm

Independence Mall, Philadelphia

 

Celebrate July 4th early and in style with a massive block party featuring food trucks, live music on two stages, historical reenactors and performers (including stilt walkers!), and much more. Of the two live music sites, don’t miss the Independence Kids Stage with music by local favorites like Music Monkey Jungle! The Kids Zone will feature a whole day of hands-on historical activities including 18th Century games, the ability to dress-up in revolutionary uniforms, instruction on how to march like a revolutionary soldier, and a chance to handle revolutionary muskets. This party will also celebrate the reopening of the Bourse building, including live performances and a beer garden for adults.

POPS on Independence

July 3, 7—9 pm

520 Chestnut St., Philadelphia

 

This fabulous (and free) concert is a Philadelphia tradition enjoyed by 15,000 attendees each year! The 65-piece Philly POPS orchestra will perform a patriotic, entertaining show featuring vocals by the incredible Heather Headley (you may know her from her starring roles in Broadway’s Aida and The Lion King). Philly native Justin Hopkins will also lend his voice to what is sure to be a spectacular event.

Conshohocken Fireworks

July 3, fireworks start at 9:45 pm

Sutcliffe Park, West 9th Avenue and Freedley Street, Conshohocken

 

Get your holiday started early with this Tuesday night fireworks display. Past years have been so successful, borough officials are asking residents to carpool and be prepared to walk a distance to get into the event. Once there, enjoy the bounce houses on the athletic fields, dance with the DJ on the basketball court, and watch the karate demonstration taking place at 7:30 pm. There will be plenty of food to enjoy, and of course fireworks–set to go off around 9:45 pm.

Fourth of July at Sesame Place

July 3 and July 4, park hours are 10 am – 9 pm, with the fireworks show set to start around 9:30 pm

100 Sesame Rd., Langhorne

 

The littlest patriots always love Sesame Place and it’s sure to be extra exciting during their Fourth of July celebration. After a day in the park, where you can have your picture taken with Elmo is his red, white, and blue, stay for the Neighborhood Street Party Night Parade, which will be followed by a fireworks display. If you’re really brave solider, you can purchase their Any-Two-Weekday Ticket Package and go both nights.

Wednesday: July 4th!!!

Happy 4th!!!!! We have guides to fun at Wawa Welcome America as well as on the Main Line, so click on those links for all the fun! Meanwhile, we’ll single out some favorites:

Free Museum Day: National Museum of American Jewish History

July 4, 10 am—5 pm

101 South Independence Mall East, Philadelphia

 

Kids can participate in activities like painting an American flag, storytimes, and Independence Day arts and crafts projects. The museum’s galleries will also be open to the public.

Narberth Fourth of July Celebration and Fireworks

July 4, 10 am — 2 pm; evening concert begins at 7:30

Narberth Playground, 100 Conway Ave., Narberth

 

Narberth is always throwing a holiday party, but their Fourth of July celebration has the largest following as it has something for everyone. The park is bustling with a diaper derby, a baby parade, live music, sports, games, and a pie-eating contest. Later, there’s a concert, followed by fireworks.

July 4th at Please Touch Museum

July 4

4231 Avenue of the Republic, Philadelphia

 

Celebrate Independence Day through play, movement, stories, and art. Stomp bubble wrap (to make fireworks sounds), create patriotic art, and more!

4th of July Sensory Festivities at PlayArts

July 4

1241 N. Front St., Philadelphia

 

If the crowded outdoor festivities are too much for your little ones, stop by PlayArts for some indoor calmer activities. Check back on their website and social media for more details as they come.

Rotary Club of Pottstown Fourth of July Parade

July 4, 10:30 am

The parade begins at High and Adams Sts. and continues west to Manatawny Street

 

If you want a true taste of Americana–this parade won’t disappoint. Highlights include the 16-foot high rubber duck, a rare calliope that you’ll never forget the sound of, and of course come watch grown men and women riding around on miniature cars and trucks powered by lawnmower engines.

July Fourth Community Picnic in the Park

July 4, 11 am — 3 pm

Visitors Center, Valley Forge National Historical Park, 1400 N. Outer Line Dr., King of Prussia

 

For families looking to end the day before dark, don’t forget our neighborhood gem. There are zillions of activities to keep kids engaged and even fascinated. Start the day with a burger or hot dog, then play revolutionary games (like a fire cake toss), catch a musket demonstration presented by volunteers dressed in Continental Army uniforms, or listen in as Benjamin Franklin recites the Declaration of Independence (you can even add your signature to the park’s copy).

Independence Day Celebration at Franklin Square

July 4, noon—3 pm

200 N. Sixth St., Philadelphia

 

Celebrate America’s birthday with fun featuring the Lightning Bolt Express Train.

Independence Day Splash at Adventure Aquarium

July 4

1 Riverside Drive, Camden NJ

 

Celebrate America’s birthday with extended hours (until 9 pm), special programming, and a DJ dance party. Then end the night with fireworks along the Camden Waterfront at 9:30 pm.

Independence Day Parade

July 4, 11 am—12:45 pm (birthday party at 1 pm)

South Fifth Street and Chestnut Street, Philadelphia

 

Floats, marching bands, and much more will parade around historic Philly. The parade will begin at 11 am at Fifth and Chestnut streets, turn around at Ninth Street, and end at Front and Market streets. Bring a chair or blanket and get comfortable. Then at 1 pm, stop by Independence Visitor Center for free Termini Brothers cupcakes to celebrate America’s birthday! Not up for the crowds? You can also watch the parade broadcast on NBC 10.

Party on the Parkway (Concert and Fireworks at night)

July 4, noon—10 pm

Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia

 

The grand finale of Welcome America is a full day of celebration on the Parkway, including plenty of food, live performances, a zipline, arts and crafts with the Clay Mobile and much more! There are three stages of performances during the day, including one solely hosting children’s entertainment. There will also be a Kids Zone in Aviator Park from noon–6pm with fun activities! For grownups, there will be beer gardens! And the day ends with a fabulous free concert headlined by Pitbull, and finally a spectacular fireworks display over the Art Museum!

Thursday

LEGO Brick Building Event

July 5, 10 am—5 pm

Independence Visitor Center, 599 Market Street, Philadelphia

 

At this free LEGO event, families can join LEGOLAND’s Model Builders in creating four mosaics made of LEGOs to depict Philadelphia’s Independence Day celebrations. The event will also unveil LEGOLAND Discovery Center’s new model of the Comcast Technology Center to the public, to be added later to their Miniland exhibit of Philadelphia landmarks.

LGBT+ STEM Day

July 5, 10 am—5 pm

Franklin Institute, 222 North 20th Street, Philadelphia

 

In recognition of LGBT+ people in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, the Franklin Institute will host live demonstrations related to visibility and the color spectrum, and mark the day with a dramatic rainbow ball explosion on the front steps. Franklin Hall will be lit up in rainbow all day!

Museum Explorers Family Workshop at Brandywine River Museum

July 5, 10 am and 11 am

1 Hoffman’s Mill Rd., Chadds Ford

 

Kids age 3-10 and their grownups will discover the elements of art in various works such as line, shape, form, color, and texture and create a colorful and textural collage.

Bartram’s Garden Little Explorers

July 5, 10—11:30 am

5400 Lindbergh Blvd., Philadelphia

 

Kids age 2-4 will search for cool bugs in the garden and make their very own insect sculptures. Bring a picnic lunch and stay for free story hour at noon.

Trolls Summer Skate Party

July 5, 10 am—10 pm

Rolling Thunder Skating Center, 7017 Roosevelt Boulevard, Philadelphia

 

Go skating with Poppy and Branch!

Annual Butterfly Count at the Schuylkill Center

July 5, 1—3 pm

8480 Hagy’s Mill Road, Philadelphia

 

Become a citizen-scientist while learning the life histories of monarchs, swallowtails, cabbage whites, and many more. Butterfly watchers of all levels welcome.

Lil’ Filmmakers

July 5, 1 pm

Paschalville Library, 6942 Woodland Avenue, Philadelphia

 

Children are invited to participate in this special film making series. Young people will learn the basics of video production, creative writing, and acting to develop and create a short movie.

‘Moana’ at Walnut Street West Library

July 5, 3 pm

201 South 40th Street, Philadelphia

 

Beat the heat indoors with Disney’s epic Moana.

Pairings on the Parkway

July 5, 5—8 pm

Sister Cities Park, 210 N. 18th St., Philadelphia

 

This popular BYOB event features live music by a different singer-songwriter each week, and a special summer grilling menu at the on-site Logan Square Café. If you forget to bring your wine, Chaddsford Winery is there selling wine by the bottle or glass as well. Bonus: the Children’s Discovery Garden has extended hours!

Teen Quizzo at Media-Upper Providence Free Library

July 5, 6—7 pm

1 East Front St., Media

 

Teens can test their knowledge and win a prize! Light refreshments provided. Call to register.

Manayunk Stroll the Street

July 5, 5—9:30 pm

Main Street, Manayunk, Philadelphia

 

Every Thursday night throughout the summer, Manayunk will host local food trucks, vendors, and live music as visitors and residents walk, shop, and eat. This week’s theme is fitness, and kids can do a karate class at 7:30 pm!

Summer Quest Kickoff: Swamp Songs and Marsh Melodies

July 5, 6:30 pm

Radnor Library, 114 West Wayne Avenue, Wayne

 

See ocean animals up close as the Center for Aquatic Sciences at Adventure Aquarium teaches about animal calls.

Penn’s Landing Screening Under the Stars: ‘Justice League’

July 5, 8:30 pm

Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing, Philadelphia

 

Justice League will be screened outdoors on a big screen at Penn’s Landing for free!

Friday

“Continental” Breakfast at the Museum of the American Revolution

July 6, 9 am

101 S. Third St., Philadelphia

 

Enjoy early access to the Museum’s Revolutionary Philadelphia playscape while enjoying a continental breakfast with a costumed interpreter.

Storytime at Morris Arboretum 

July 6, 10:30—11:15 am

100 E. Northwestern Avenue, Philadelphia

 

Come for a fun and engaging reading session tailored to the season. Stay after to enjoy the arboretum, including the Garden Railway decked out in its circus theme this week!

Squeeze! Paint! Squish! Infant Art Experience

July 6, 11 am—noon

Media-Upper Providence Free Library, 1 E. Front St., Media

 

Explore colors and textures with homemade finger paint and play dough. For babies ages 6-24 months.

‘Ratatouille’ at Fumo Family Library

July 6, 2:30 pm

2437 South Broad Street, Philadelphia

 

Spend the afternoon with Pixar’s Ratatouille. Bring your own drinks, the library will provide the popcorn!

The Big Bounce

July 6—8, 3—7:45 pm

Chester Park, Edgemont and E. Elkington Blvd., Chester

 

10,000 square feet of full-on inflatable fun! The Big Bounce is a crazy, action-packed fun day out suitable for all the family, featuring the world’s largest bounce house alongside a host of amazing inflatable attractions.

Spiral Q Puppet Theater at the Goat in Rittenhouse Square

July 6, 3:30 pm

210 W. Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia

 

As part of Philadelphia City Institute’s First Fridays Interactive Arts programs, Spiral Q Puppet Theater and other presenters will delight in the park!

BYOB and Pizza Night at Lulu’s Casita

July 6, 4—7:30pm

6 Cricket Ave, Ardmore

 

Lulu’s is open until 7:30pm for more fun, BYOB and pizza starting at 4pm. Parents can relax with some adult beverages while kids tire themselves out before bedtime.

First Friday Happy Hour at PlayArts

July 6, 5—7 pm

1241 N. Front Street, Philadelphia

 

Bring your friends and your little ones out for First Friday! BYOB and, as always, Slice will be providing the pizza, with gluten-free and dairy-free options. Adults are free, drop-in rates apply for kids.

Ambler Kiwanis Fireworks Show

July 6, 6 – 10 pm

Wissahickon High School, 521 Houston Rd, Ambler

 

This post-fourth celebration comes on the heels of a week-long carnival. Head over early in the evening to ride some rides before the fireworks that start at 9:30 pm.

Summer UnWINEd Concert

July 6, 6–9 pm

The Market at DelVal, 2100 Lower State Rd., Doylestown

 

Bring the whole family to relax on the lawn and enjoy great live entertainment by The Idlewoodsman, as well as food, wine, and ice cream for purchase. An inflatable attraction and lawn games will keep the kids busy while you enjoy your adult beverages.

Bryn Mawr Twilight Concert Series: David Bowie Tribute

July 6, 7 pm

The Bryn Mawr Gazebo, 9 S. Bryn Mawr Ave., Bryn Mawr

 

Brian Filone’s David Bowie tribute with Marion Halliday and Trickster Sister.

Philadelphia Events

All Weekend

French Alliance Weekend at Fort Mifflin

July 7–8, 10 am–4 pm

6400 Hog Island Rd., Philadelphia 

 

Members of the 11th Pennsylvania’s Regiment de Gatinois will be on hand all weekend to help celebrate the alliance between France and the United States during the Revolutionary War. There will be soldiers drilling in French, displaying the uniforms and equipment of the French soldier during that period; and French ladies in their finery to discuss liberty using the ideals of John Locke and the Enlightenment.

PECO Multicultural Series: Concilio’s Hispanic Fiesta

July 7—8

Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing, Philadelphia

 

Celebrate the music, dance, entertainment, foods, and artisan crafts from a variety of Latin American countries.

Messy Marvelous Mixtures at Academy of Natural Sciences

July 7—8, 1—5 pm

1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia

 

Make a mess with science as you investigate different mixtures. From ooblek to playdough, learn about the science behind making these concoctions as you measure, scoop, and stir.

Family Tanabata Weekend

July 7—8

Shofuso Japanese House and Garden

 

Tanabata is a traditional Japanese star festival held in midsummer. Tie wishes (tanzaku) to the bamboo tree, watch giant Tanabata star ornaments swish in the breeze, and make paper cranes for good luck. This weekend of activities includes Japanese storytelling, musical instrument demonstrations, origami, and calligraphy. And it’s also this weekend’s site for Parks on Tap!

Celebrate Genny’s Birthday at Adventure Aquarium

July 6—8

1 Riverside Drive, Camden, NJ

 

Genny the hippo is turning 18, so the aquarium is celebrating all weekend with special birthday activities.

Saturday

Summer Feast at Please Touch Museum

July 7

4231 Avenue of the Republic, Philadelphia

 

Families can sizzle, sauté, and stir with food based art, literacy, and STEM activities. Through a partnership with Vetri’s Mobile Teaching Kitchen, chefs young and old will learn how to how to cook fresh produce.

Nature Play Saturdays

July 7, 10:30—11:30 am

The Schuylkill Center, 8480 Hagy’s Mill Road, Philadelphia

 

Bring your family for unstructured nature play and a hike with representatives from the NaturePHL program. Climb, explore, and learn more about the many health benefits of outdoor activity.

Saturday Free Boating at Bartram’s Garden

July 7, 11 am—3 pm

Bartram’s Gardens’ Community Boathouse, 5400 Lindbergh Blvd. Philadelphia

 

Bartram’s Garden will provide the boats, life jackets and basic instruction. Choose from a kayak (for 30 minutes) or rowboat (for 45 minutes). No experience is necessary. All ages are welcome, but minors must be accompanied by an adult.

Seafarin’ Saturday

July 7, 11 am—1 pm

Independence Seaport Museum, 211 S. Columbus Blvd., Philadelphia

 

Ever wonder what the different parts of a submarine are? Learn all about it and create your own paper submarine.

Programming from Scratch workshop at the Franklin Institute

July 7, 11 am–1 pm

Franklin Institute, 222 N 20th St., Philadelphia

 

For older kids who want to delve deeper into game development, Franklin Institute will host a beginners’ coding workshop (using Scratch, naturally) for kids ages 10-13, to complement their “Game Masters” exhibit celebrating gaming.

Storytime in the Lodge

July 7, 11:30 am—12:30 pm

Blue Cross RiverRink, 101 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd., Philadelphia

 

Enjoy a new book and entertainment with Listen, Learn, and Play, as well as a book swap and light snacks.

Kayak Tours at Schuylkill Banks

July 7, 5:45 pm

Walnut Street Dock, Schuylkill Banks, Philadelphia

 

This professionally guided tour of the tidal Schuylkill includes equipment rental, 1/2 hour of instruction and 1 hour on the river. The tour departs from the Walnut Street Dock. Must be age 8 or older to participate (kids must be accompanied by an adult).

‘Kung Fu Panda’ at Trolley Car Diner

July 7, sunset

7619 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia

 

Come early for dinner, grab an adult beverage for the adults and some ice cream for the kids. Then enjoy a free outdoor movie under the stars.

Sunday

Sundays with Pop-Up Play

July 8, 11:30 am–12:30 pm

Spruce Street Harbor Park, 301 S. Columbus Blvd., Philadelphia

 

Children and families will engage in free interactive activities through art, music, science, and physical movement that revolve around themes like water science, civic engagement, building, and more.

PECO Family Jams at Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens

July 8, noon—4 pm

1020 South St., Philadelphia

 

Inspired by Isaiah Zagar’s mosaics, musician and composer Phyllis Chen is working with the community to create a 400-foot music box strip for a performance in Philadelphia this September. During this hands-on family workshop, each participant will create a one-foot section of Phyllis’ music box mosaic; as well as explore music boxes and create music by drawing on and punching holes in special music box paper.

Petapalooza

July 8, noon—3 pm

Germantown and East Highland avenues, Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia

 

A day of food, arts and crafts, “yappy hour” food and drink specials (for dogs and humans), and special extras like a photobooth and caricaturist. Best of all, pet rescues will be there with information and adoptable pets!

Pet Walks with Art at Woodmere Art Museum

July 8, 2 pm

9201 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia

 

As part of Petapalooza, enjoy a summer afternoon with your pets and a free outdoor tour of Woodmere’s beautiful grounds and sculptures.

Sundays on Stage: Charlotte Blake Alston

July 8, 2 pm

Parkway Central Library, 1901 Vine St., Philadelphia

 

Master storyteller Charlotte Blake Alston will share stories and songs from the African and African American oral traditions. Come ready to clap, sing, and help tell the stories!

The Lara and Joe Show at Grays Ferry Triangle

July 8, 5 pm

Triangles at Grays Ferry, 2235 South St., Philadelphia

 

Enjoy live music by family favorite The Lara and Joe Show, soft serve, and food trucks with family and friends!

Main Line and Suburban Events

All Weekend

The Big Bounce

July 6—8

Chester Park, Edgemont and E. Elkington Blvd., Chester

 

10,000 square feet of full-on inflatable fun! The Big Bounce is a crazy, action-packed fun day out suitable for all the family, featuring the world’s largest bounce house alongside a host of amazing inflatable attractions.

Saturday

Linvilla Orchards’ Annual Blueberry Festival

July 7; pick-your-own begins at 8 am, festivities begin at 11 am

 

Pick your own blueberries, enjoy live music and entertainment and costumed character visits, and don’t miss the pie eating contest!

Stuffed Animal Vet Clinic

July 7, 10 am—noon

Brandywine Zoo, 1001 N. Park Dr., Wilmington, DE

 

Bring your favorite stuffed animal, or adopt one from the gift shop, to get a checkup with the zoo’s veterinarian. Stuffed animals might get their vitals checked, bandaged, or given ‘medicine’ to make sure they have a clean bill of health before heading home with you!

An Afternoon with Ben Franklin

July 7, 2:30—3:30 pm

Historic Grange Estate, 143 Myrtle Ave., Havertown

 

Bring your picnic lunch, enjoy the Grange’s grounds, and meet one of our Founding Fathers! The presentation begins at 2:30 pm.

Koji Live In Concert

July 7, 2:30—3:30 pm

Ludington Library, 5 S. Bryn Mawr Ave., Bryn Mawr

 

Koji will be performing a free all-ages acoustic concert that combines indie and punk music.

Uwchlan Township Community Day

July 7, 4 pm

Lionville Park, 1 Devon Drive, Exton

 

Free games, attractions, and activities for all ages.  Enjoy a variety of food, from ice cream to BBQ, from local vendors and food trucks. Don’t miss the fireworks display and complementary glow necklaces.

Chester County Freedom Fest Concert and Fireworks

July 7, 6 — 11 pm

Nottingham County Park, 150 Park Road, Nottingham

 

Extend your Independence Day celebration with this weekend event. Eat, play, and rock out at this fun family event. There will be food vendors, activities, and then a performance by On the Rise at 7:15 pm. The fireworks begin around 9:30 pm. Admission is free, as is a parking shuttle; if you want to park on-site, it’s $10 per car.

Sunday

Jenkins Explorers: Summer Sundays

July 8, 2—3 pm

Jenkins Arboretum, 631 Berwyn Baptist Road, Devon

 

Kids age 4-8 and their grownups meet in the Children’s Garden for a nature based story and activity. Event is free, registration is required.

Concert Under the Stars: York Street Hustle

July 8, 6 pm

175 W. Valley Forge Road, King of Prussia

 

Bring blankets and a picnic for a free, open-air concert with York Street Hustle. Beer garden opens at 5 pm!

 

 

Photograph courtesy of Visit Philadelphia.

PHILADELPHIA ASSISTANT EDITOR

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