Ready for a round of alfresco fun, Philadelphia? The Oval on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway returns this week with a three-day farm-inspired festival at Eakins Oval.
Following a hugely successful inaugural season in 2013, the open-air public space brings outdoor entertainment back to the Parkway this spring and summer, transforming an island of asphalt and surrounding lawns at 24th Street and the Parkway into an eight-acre fun zone.
This weekend, April 17-19, Farm Fest at The Oval offers a tease of what’s to come throughout the temperate months.
Featuring beer gardens, daily food trucks, live bluegrass music, hands-on activities, gardening workshops, movie screenings, a petting zoo and more, the event includes a wide variety of family-friendly and over-21 programming.
Read on for our guide to the food and drink, entertainment and more, and check out the complete schedule of events online.
Food & Drink
Plan on coming hungry and thirsty to hang out at the Farm Fest at The Oval. With a daily beer garden and lineup of food trucks, the festival is set to be well-stocked with local eats and drinks.
• Food Trucks: A daily, rotating lineup of food trucks will dish street food each day Farm Fest at The Oval is open. Guests can look for food truck fare on Thursday, April 17 from 5 to 9 p.m., Friday, April 18 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and then, from 5 to 9 p.m. on Friday evening.
Come Saturday, April 19, food truck fare will be served up all day long from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. with eats from the Farm Truck, Cow and the Curd, Chewy’s, Taco Mundo, Mac Mart, Cupcake Carnivale, Lil’ Pop Shop and Farm to City’s Brulee Bakery. For the complete food truck schedule, check here.
• Victory Brewpub Mobile Beer Garden: On Thursday and Friday, the Victory Brewpub Mobile Beer Garden will be on-site from 5 to 9 p.m. to pour a nice selection of locally made craft brews.
• Local Libations Lounge: On Saturday, Frecon Farms and The Other Farm Brewing Company offer up hard apple cider and Belgian-style brews in a lounge of local beverages.
See below for more on Farm Fest at The Oval.
For three days, The Oval will host a slew of farm-themed events, games, kids activities and live bluegrass/folk music.
Pre-festival games will be set up on Thursday afternoon, and Thursday evening brings out a talk from GRID Magazine and bluesy live music from TJ Kong & the Atomic Bomb.
On Friday, the fun starts at 11 a.m. with a family-friendly farming relay race, garden story time, and Kids Karaoke. Later, from 5 to 9 p.m. on Friday night, the Highwater Preachers take the stage before an outdoor screening of the made-in-Philly movie Witness.
To wrap up the fest on Saturday, little ones can celebrate Easter early with an egg hunt and Easter-themed surprises, plus a 4-H Club-sponsored petting zoo, and kids tree-climbing. All guests will enjoy live clogging and square dance performances from noon to 2 p.m., followed by blues-rock tunes from bands on stage from 2 to 6 p.m.
Located within easy walking distance of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Barnes Foundation, The Franklin Institute, Academy of Natural Sciences, the Free Library, the Rodin Museum and Sister Cities Park, The Oval is situated in what was a surface lot in front of the Museum of Art.
By public transportation, take SEPTA bus routes 2, 7, 32, 33 and 48. Or use Uber; new users can use the promo code FARMFESTIVAL14 for a free ride up to $20.
By far the easiest way to arrive at The Oval, though, is by foot or bicycle. There are crosswalks leading from the sidewalks of the Parkway, straight to the park and bike racks are on site.
Stay tuned for more on this super summertime attraction right here, too.
See you at The Oval!
Farm Fest at The Oval
When: April 17-19
Where: Eakins Oval, 24th Street and the Benjamin Franklin Parkway
More info: www.theovalphl.gov