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July 8, 2014

Roundup: Our Guide To Bastille Day Festivals, Events And Dinners In And Around Philadelphia

The festivities surrounding Bastille Day are of epic proportions as Eastern State Penitentiary hosts its annual blowout, numerous restaurants present dinners and much more. (Photo by Darryl W. Moran for Eastern State Penitentiary)

Happy Bastille Day, Philadelphia.

In celebration of the storming of the historic Bastille in Paris, an event that fueled the French Revolution, Philadelphia attractions, bars and restaurants host events perfect for raising a beret to the holiday during block parties, bar crawls, food and drink specials and much more.

Bastille Day is officially Monday, July 14, but the soirees start on Thursday, July 10 and continue through the weekend to July 14.

Our guide to Bastille Day in Philadelphia, below.

Fairmount French Fling Bar Crawl: Raise a glass to the French as the Fairmount French Fling Bar Crawl takes over eight bars throughout the Fairmount neighborhood. Presented by Kronenbourg 1664, a French beer, the bar crawl offers revelers with $3 Kronenbourg beer specials and food deals at participating bars — which include The Belgian Cafe, London Grill, La Calaca Feliz, Fare and Bishop’s Collar. The bar crawl begins at 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 10. There’s no fee to participate.

When: Thursday, July 10, 6 p.m.
Where: Participating Bars
Cost: Pay as you go

London Grill and Paris Wine Bar: Fairmount’s London Grill and its sister restaurant, Paris Wine Bar, celebrate Bastille Day with four days of festivities, July 10-14. Over the course of the weekend, enjoy food and drink specials, live music and alfresco fetes. Before Saturday’s festival at Eastern State Penitentiary, visit London Grill for family-friendly activities beginning at 2 p.m. The full list of programming is available right here.

When: July 10-14
Where: London Grill, 2301 Fairmount Avenue
Cost: Pay as you go

Paris Bistro and Jazz Cafe: Paris Bistro in Chestnut Hill serves up a four-course French feast complete with fare fit for a Francophile like local oyster tartare, duck confit, poached pear and more. The meal rings in at $37.50 for the food course and $59.50 for food and an optional wine pairing. The special menu will be available from July 11 through 13.

When: July 11-13
Where: Paris Bistro, 8229 Germantown Avenue
Cost: $37.50; $59.50 with wine pairing

Eastern State Penitentiary’s Bastille Day Festival: A fabulous fete, Eastern State Penitentiary celebrates the 20th anniversary of its annual Bastille Day Festival on Saturday, July 12. The streets surrounding the historic prison begin to fill with festivalgoers in the afternoon, with neighboring London Grill launching its celebrations at 2 p.m. with outdoor dining, drinking and family-friendly fun. At 5:30 p.m., the Penitentiary’s festivities begin. Once again, Philly’s experimental cabaret troupe, The Bearded Ladies, launches into a hilarious Bastille Day performance including a mock-storming of the Bastille (the Penitentiary makes a great stand-in) complete with revolutionaries and an appearance by Marie Antoinette. In a climactic crescendo, a cry of “Let them eat Tastykake!” signals 2,000 Tastykakes to be flung into the crowds from the prison’s towers. After the show, bars open their doors for after parties and Eastern State hosts discounted twilight tours.
[*Top Pick*]

When: Saturday, July 12; Pre-Party at London Grill, 2 p.m.; Bearded Ladies Cabaret Show, 5:30-6:30 p.m.
Where: Eastern State Penitentiary, 2027 Fairmount Avenue
Cost: Free


For more information about Bastille Day at Eastern State Penitentiary — click here.


Parc, pictured above, celebrates Bastille Day and its 6th-birthday with food and drink specials on Monday, July 14. (Photo by G. Widman for Visit Philadelphia)

More happenings, below.

Fairmount Bastille Day After Parties: After the epic showcase at Eastern State Penitentiary, bars and restaurants throughout the Fairmount neighborhood host after parties complete with French food and drink specials for revelers to enjoy. Stop by Alla Spina, Jack’s Firehouse, Urban Saloon and more for deals on French-inspired food and drink. The full list of participating bars is available here.

When: Saturday, July 12, 6:30 p.m.
Where: Participating Restaurants
Cost: Pay as you go

Bastille Day in Media: The Eiffel Tower in the middle of State Street is the first inkling that the Bastille Day celebration in Media holds plenty of fun and surprises. Professional theater presentations, live music, dancing, art exhibits, plein-air painting activities and the storming of the Bastille make for a family-friendly day of revelry on July 12.

When: Saturday, July 12, 6-10:30 p.m.
Where: State Street from Jackson and Orange Streets
Cost: Free

Bistro St. Tropez: Fill up on a variety of French fare at Bistro St. Tropez as it serves up a three-course feast in celebration of Bastille Day on Saturday, July 12. Choose from menu items like escargot, paté, crème brûlée and more. Dinner costs $38 per person plus tax and gratuity.

When: Saturday, July 12
Where: Bistro St. Tropez, 2400 Market Street, 4th Floor
Cost: $38 plus tax and gratuity

Bistrot la Minette: Indulge in a tasty four-course feast at Bistrot la Minette’s Bastille Day meal. On both July 13 and 14, the French eatery is slated to serve up a special four-course menu to guests for $40 a pop.

When: July 13-14
Where: Bistrot la Minette, 623 S. 6th Street
Cost: $40 plus tax and gratuity

Parc: On the actual Bastille Day holiday, Parc celebrates not only the Bastille Day holiday, but its 6th-birthday, too. All day long, sip St. Germain sangria and nosh on Bastille Day food specials while taking in the scenes from the tony Rittenhouse Square resto.

When: Monday, July 14
Where: Parc, 227 S. 18th Street
Cost: Pay as you go

Fond: French-trained chef Lee Styer of Fond in the East Passyunk neighborhood teams up with Philadelphia’s venerable French chef Georges Perrier for a Bastille Day meal on Monday, July 14. The five-course meal costs $90 per person and an optional wine pairing is available as well. The full menu is available here.

When: Monday, July 14
Where: Fond, 1537 S. 11th Street
Cost: $90 plus tax and gratuity

Alliance Française de Philadelphie Bastille Day Celebration at Le Chéri: Party with the Alliance Française de Philadelphie on Monday, July 14 at its annual Bastille Day celebration. This year, the festivities are slated for Le Chéri at the Philadelphia Art Alliance. At the evening soirée, enjoy a french buffet complete with menu items including suckling pig, salmon, a variety of cheese and macarons. Dancing, a raffle and silent auction round out the party. Tickets start at $85 and are available online.

When: Monday, July 14, 6:30-9:30 p.m.
Where: Le Chéri, 251 S. 18th Street
Cost: $85 and up

The Yardley Inn: Enjoy lunch or dinner at The Yardley Inn as it serves up a French feast on July 14. Choose from classic French food items like bouillabaisse, escargot and more. The full menu is available here.

When: Monday, July 14
Where: The Yardley Inn, 82 E. Afton Avenue
Cost: $15.95 Lunch, $25.95 Dinner


For more information about Bastille Day at Eastern State Penitentiary — click here.


Fairmount Avenue is an ideal spot to celebrate Bastille Day as it hosts a bar crawl, tons of brunch and dinner specials and the epic Bastille Day party at Eastern State Penitentiary. (Photo by Darryl Moran for Eastern State Penitentiary)

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