30+ Phenomenal Things To Do In Philly This Week, November 27-December 3

Tons of holiday fun, Jay-Z at the Wells Fargo Center, First Sunday museum admission deals and more...

Feeling a little sluggish after the Thanksgiving weekend? Fortunately, this week is packed with events of all sorts to get you up and moving.

Whether you prefer to ice skate with Santa, enjoy a (free!) visit to the Barnes Foundation or dance the night away with JAY-Z, options abound for working off that classic T-day food coma hangover.

With the holiday season now officially here, you can also look forward to joyous celebrations unfolding citywide. Visit City Hall and Dilworth Park for epic holiday festivities, Peddler’s Village for the attraction’s annual Christmas Festival, the Greensgrow Holiday Bazaar for all sorts of giftable plants and evergreen swag or check out one of the many other holiday attractions in our roundup below.

‘Tis the season for a whole lot of festive fun!

Read on for our guide to this week in Philadelphia.

Dilworth Park Wintergarden & Holiday Attractions at City Hall

Dilworth ParkPhoto by J. Fusco for Visit Philadelphia

The area surrounding City Hall has transformed into a winter wonderland this holiday season thanks to the 50-foot-tall Philly Holiday Tree, all-local Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market, a carousel and the Dilworth Park Wintergarden, where ice skating, hot cocoa, a brand-new light show and a greenery-filled maze all await.

Dilworth Park Wintergarden & Holiday Attractions at City Hall

When:Dates vary by attraction
Where:Dilworth Park, 1 S. 15th Street
Cost:Pay as you go

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Christmas Village in Philadelphia

Christmas VillagePhoto by J. Fusco for Visit Philadelphia

The German-style Christmas Village is back at a restored JFK Plaza, also known as LOVE Park. For its 10th year, 80 wooden booths of local and international merchants display and sell Käthe Wohlfahrt trimmings, wintry apparel, handmade toys and all manner of edible and drinkable treats. This weekend brings Christmas Village's Anniversary Weekend (December 2 to 3), which includes birthday cake and photo-ops with Phil, the market's new reindeer mascot!

Christmas Village in Philadelphia

When:Anniversary Weekend: December 2-3
Christmas Village: through Sunday, December 24
Where:Love Park, N. 15th Street & Arch Street
Cost:Pay as you go

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Franklin Square Holiday Festival

Franklin SquarePhoto by Jeff Fusco for Historic Philadelphia, Inc.

The Franklin Square Holiday Festival featuring the Electrical Spectacle makes this historic square twinkle, with free shows every 30 minutes between 4 and 8 p.m. on weeknights and 4 and 9 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Among the 50,000 bulbs set to music is a giant, illuminated kite. Other festivities include Saturdays with Santa; rides on the holiday train and carousel; comfort foods, local beer and hot beverages; and mini-golf.

Franklin Square Holiday Festival

When:Through Sunday, December 31
Where:Franklin Square, 200 N. 6th Street
Cost:Free

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Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest

Winterfest Franklin FountainPhoto courtesy M. Stanley for DRWC

The popular Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest is back with a chalet-style Lodge Restaurant and Bar, hearty fare from Garces Group and Chickie's & Pete's, sweets from Franklin Fountain Confectionery Cabin and a regulation skating rink with a spectacular view of the Ben Franklin Bridge. Head out on Saturday or Sunday (December 2 to 3) for Winterfest's Skate with Santa, where the whole family can get pictures with Mr. Claus on the ice.

Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest

When:Skate with Santa: December 2-3, 1-5 p.m.
Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest: Through Sunday, March 4
Where:Blue Cross RiverRink, 101 S. Columbus Boulevard
Cost:Pay as you go

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Holiday Happenings in Philadelphia & The Countryside

Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia

All throughout the region, fun holiday activities await, including the free and daily Christmas Light Show at Macy's, a tradition since 1956, and The Comcast Holiday Spectacular, an ongoing 15-minute show screened on the largest four-millimeter LED screen on Earth.

Holiday Happenings in Philadelphia & The Countryside

When:Dates vary by attraction
Where:Various locations including The Comcast Center, 1701 John F. Kennedy Boulevard
Cost:Varies

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Christmas Tree Lighting in Rittenhouse Square

Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia

During the holidays, Rittenhouse Square boasts one of the largest Christmas trees in the city. Every year, locals and visitors pack the popular park for the ceremonial lighting of the towering 30-foot-tall Rittenhouse Square Christmas Tree. Throughout the season, Rittenhouse Square is aglow with 5,000 colorful globes, making it a cheerful sight for holiday shoppers among the popular stores along Rittenhouse Row.

Christmas Tree Lighting in Rittenhouse Square

When:Tuesday, November 28, 5 p.m.
Where:Rittenhouse Square, 18th Street and Walnut Streets
Cost:Free

www.friendsofrittenhouse.org

St. Vincent at the Electric Factory

After exiting The Polyphonic Spree and releasing three albums of increasingly impressive art rock compositions, St. Vincent became just the second female performer ever to earn a Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album in 2015 with the release of her self-titled fourth album. She returns to the Electric Factory this week behind her new album Masseduction, a bold dark-pop record that's definitely worthy of another Grammy win.

St. Vincent at the Electric Factory

When:Tuesday, November 28, 8 p.m.
Where:Electric Factory, 421 N. 7th Street
Cost:Tickets start at $41.50

www.electricfactory.info

BalletX in Beautiful Decay

Photo by Bill Hebert

A popular 2013 full-length work featuring performers up to 80 years old returns to open BalletX's season of contemporary ballet.

BalletX in Beautiful Decay

When:November 29-December 10
Where:The Wilma Theater, 265 S. Broad Street
Cost:$25-$50

www.balletx.org

East Passyunk Tree Lighting

Photo courtesy East Passyunk Avenue Business Improvement District

Philadelphia's East Passyunk neighborhood will be decking the avenue during its annual Tree Lighting Party at the famous Singing Fountain. Enjoy festive carolers from Alphabet Academy, student musicians from the Andrew Jackson School, an appearance from CBS meteorologist Chelsea Ingram and a performance by the Christmas Guys at the celebration leading up to Santa lighting the tree. Afterward, be sure to visit the stores and businesses along East Passyunk Avenue for great holiday sales and treats.

East Passyunk Tree Lighting

When:Thursday, November 30, 5 p.m.
Where:Singing Fountain, S. 11th Street & E. Passyunk Avenue
Cost:Free

www.visiteastpassyunk.com

Historic HoliDays and Nights Kickoff in Old City

M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia

The Betsy Ross House courtyard hosts the Old City District Tree Lighting this Thursday complete with carolers, a performance from the Philadelphia Youth Ballet, seasonal drinks and snacks from Fezziwig's Sweet Shoppe and an appearance by Betsy Ross herself. Stick around for $1 off admission to the Betsy Ross House until 8 p.m.

Historic HoliDays and Nights Kickoff in Old City

When:Thursday, November 30, 5:30 p.m.
Where:Betsy Ross House, 239 Arch Street
Cost:Free

www.oldcitydistrict.org

Hillary Clinton Live at the Academy of Music

Catch Hillary Clinton live at the Academy of Music as she speaks about her newest book, What Happened. Clinton will discuss her experience in running for president in the 2016 U.S. election and also talk about what might be next for her in the future. Tickets are running out, so act fast if you plan to attend.

Hillary Clinton Live at the Academy of Music

When:Thursday, November 30, 7:30 p.m.
Where:Academy of Music, 240 S. Broad Street
Cost:$175 and up

www.kimmelcenter.org

Philadelphia Gay Men's Chorus Tinseltown Tidings

The 120-voice Philadelphia Gay Men's Chorus performs Hollywood's greatest holiday hits. Film score selections on the program hail from Babes in Toyland, Home Alone, The Polar Express, White Christmas and more.

Philadelphia Gay Men's Chorus Tinseltown Tidings

When:November 30-December 2
Where:Prince Theater, 1412 Chestnut Street
Cost:$22-$62

www.pgmc.org

Opening Day: A Very Philly Christmas at the Historic Houses of Fairmount Park

Photo courtesy Fairmount Park Conservancy

Five decked-out 18th- and 19th-century park mansions — Historic Strawberry Mansion, Cedar Grove, Laurel Hill, Lemon Hill and Woodford — open their doors for holiday treats and performances during A Very Philly Christmas. This week, special themed events include Sounds of the Season including a premiere by the Black Pearl Chamber Orchestra at Woodford Mansion (December 2) and Family Day (December 3).

Opening Day: A Very Philly Christmas at the Historic Houses of Fairmount Park

When:Sounds of the Season: Saturday, December 2
Family Day: Sunday, December 3
A Very Philly Christmas: November 30-December 31
Where:Various locations including Lemon Hill Mansion, Sedgeley & Lemon Hill Drives
Cost:Prices vary by event

www.holidaysinthepark.com

Opening Day: Illuminating Liberty at the Museum of the American Revolution

Thursday marks the opening day for Illuminating Liberty, colorful illuminations on the sidewalk-level windows of the Museum of the American Revolution that are based on those by eminent Revolutionary-era Philadelphia artist Charles Willson Peale. The Museum's Cross Keys Café will offer seasonal treats, such as Shane's Hot Cocoa and hot cocktails, to celebrate opening day, and the gift shop invites visitors inside to try on Revolutionary-inspired clothing and design their own decorative window illuminations.

Opening Day: Illuminating Liberty at the Museum of the American Revolution

When:Opening Day: Thursday, November 30
Illuminating Liberty: November 30-December 31
Where:Museum of the American Revolution, 101 S. 3rd Street
Cost:Free

www.amrevmuseum.org

Opening Day: Winter Fountains on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway

Rendering courtesy Jennifer Steinkamp

Artist Jennifer Steinkamp created Parkway 100's centerpiece exhibition, which lights the boulevard at night this winter. Inspired by the Parkway's fountains and horticulture, dramatic video scenes project onto four large domes measuring 13 feet high and 26 feet wide. The Association for Public Art commissioned the outdoor art display.

Opening Day: Winter Fountains on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway

When:November 30-March 18
Where:Four points along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway including outside the Rodin Museum, 2151 Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Cost:Free

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Friday Night Lights at Morris Arboretum

Photo by R. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia

Each year, Morris Arboretum's Holiday Garden Railway lights up for special Friday night celebrations. Watch trains run along a quarter-mile of track sparkling with white lights and surrounded by miniature buildings adorned with seasonal greens. This Friday also brings a special visit from the Sugar Plum Fairy and Mouse King (stars of the Pennsylvania Ballet's The Nutcracker), ready to mingle and pose for photos.

Friday Night Lights at Morris Arboretum

When:Friday Night Lights: Friday, December 1, 4:30-7:30 p.m.
Holiday Garden Railway: through Sunday, December 31
Where:Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania, 100 E. Northwestern Avenue
Cost:$10, adult (member); $5, child (member); $18, adults (non-member); $9, child (non-member)

www.morrisarboretum.org

Holiday Tree Lighting and Fireworks at Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest

Blue Cross RiverRink WinterfestPhoto by J. Fusco for Visit Philadelphia

The popular Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest on the Delaware River waterfront goes all out in lighting its tree on December 1. Look forward to performers, singers, dancers and ice skaters, along with seasonal activities and a grand tree lighting finale — complete with fireworks — courtesy of PECO.

Holiday Tree Lighting and Fireworks at Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest

When:Friday, December 1, 6-9 p.m.
Where:Blue Cross RiverRink, 101 S. Columbus Boulevard
Cost:Free

www.delawareriverwaterfront.com

Night at the Market: A 25th Anniversary Celebration to Benefit The Food Trust

Have you ever wondered what the bustling Reading Terminal Market might be like after hours? This December, find out while supporting a great cause by attending Night at the Market. This celebration marks the 25th anniversary of The Food Trust, the organization behind the seasonal Night Market Philadelphia food festivals, and includes pay-as-you go food and drink, Miller's Twist pretzel twisting (and eating), cooking demos and more.

Night at the Market: A 25th Anniversary Celebration to Benefit The Food Trust

When:Friday, December 1, 7-10 p.m.
Where:Reading Terminal Market, 51 N. 12th Street
Cost:$25, in advance; $40, at the door; $250, VIP admission with unlimited food & drink

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JAY-Z at the Wells Fargo Center

JAY-Z's 4:44 tour lands at the Wells Fargo Center on Friday. Celebrating the rapper's 13th studio album, the concert promises theatrical live renditions of 4:44 hits like Smile and Bam.

JAY-Z at the Wells Fargo Center

When:Friday, December 1, 8 p.m.
Where:Wells Fargo Center, 3601 S. Broad Street
Cost:$39.50-$199.50

www.wellsfargocenterphilly.com

Christmas Underwater at Adventure Aquarium

G. Mattie for Visit Philadelphia

Marvel at the world's tallest underwater Christmas tree, which makes its debut at Adventure Aquarium this year. The 18-foot-tall tree, part of the attraction's Shark Realm, will be illuminated for the first time on Friday, December 1 and will be on display through December 30. Alongside thousands of twinkling lights and colorful shells and coral, visitors will get the chance to see Scuba Santa and his "elfish" helpers swimming beneath the surface and celebrating the season.

Christmas Underwater at Adventure Aquarium

When:Tree Lighting: Friday, December 1
Christmas Underwater: December 1-30
Where:Adventure Aquarium, 1 Riverside Drive, Camden
Cost:Free with regular admission

www.adventureaquarium.com

Cricket Cringle

Celebrate the season on Cricket Avenue in Ardmore during the fourth annual Cricket Cringle. The open-air marketplace will feature goods from more than 40 merchants, bites from more than 15 food trucks, live music, complimentary tote bag giveaways and more.

Cricket Cringle

When:December 1-2
Where:17 Cricket Ave, Ardmore
Cost:Pay as you go

www.destinationardmore.com

Lucia Fest and Christmas Market at American Swedish Historical Museum

Join in the festive family fun at the American Swedish Historical Museum’s Lucia and Christmas Market, a one-day ode to the tradition of the Festival of Saint Lucia, which marks the start of the Christmas season in Sweden. Swedish baked goodies and other bites will be served up at the Swedish Christmas Cafe and the Christmas Market will be open all day, selling Swedish holiday items perfect for gifts and holiday decor.

Lucia Fest and Christmas Market at American Swedish Historical Museum

When:Saturday, December 2, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Where:American Swedish Historical Museum, 1900 Pattison Avenue
Cost:$12, adults; $8, members, $5, children age 4-12

www.americanswedish.org

The Philadelphia Orchestra Christmas Kids' Spectacular

This always-popular (and often sold-out) performance gives little ones a taste of the classics, encourages singing along and provokes gasps of joy when St. Nick arrives.

The Philadelphia Orchestra Christmas Kids' Spectacular

When:Saturday, December 2, 11:30 a.m.
Where:Kimmel Center, 300 S. Broad Street
Cost:$24-$52

www.kimmelcenter.org

Deck the Alley at Elfreth's Alley

Deck The AlleyPhoto by R. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia

This Saturday, Elfreth's Alley residents welcome the public to tour the 18th- and 19th-century homes on the nation’s oldest continuously inhabited residential street during the popular ticketed event Deck the Alley. The festive afternoon includes carolers, refreshments and an appearance from a 19th-century Santa Claus, not to mention rare access to more than 20 of the private homes. Attendees can also check out the new-this-year Making Christmas exhibit about the German roots of Christmas in America.

Deck the Alley at Elfreth's Alley

When:Saturday, December 2, 3-7 p.m.
Where:Elfreth's Alley, 124-126 Elfreth's Alley
Cost:$25, adult; $10, children

www.elfrethsalley.org

Gifted: A Handmade Holiday Market

Photo courtesy Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts

To every shopper's delight, a winter edition of the marvelous, always-curated Clover Market elevates to museum-worthy levels thanks to a new-this-year cold-weather location at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA). This Saturday and Sunday, the market will host 75 artisans dealing in high-quality handmade products perfect for holiday gift-giving. A ticketed preview party on Saturday, December 2 includes early access, live music, bubbly and bites. On Sunday, December 3, a free-to-enter market continues all afternoon. The market will be held indoors in the second-floor gallery spaces at PAFA.

Gifted: A Handmade Holiday Market

When:Preview Party: Saturday, December 2
Market: Sunday, December 3
Where:Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 118-128 N. Broad Street
Cost:Preview Party: $25, non-member adults; $15, members
Market: Pay as you go

www.pafa.org

South Street Headhouse Winter Wonderland

Photo courtesy South Street Headhouse District

South Street Headhouse District welcomes the return of Winter Wonderland with free family fun, a tree lighting and a holiday market. Look forward to live musical and dance performances, food vendors under the Headhouse Shambles and more.

South Street Headhouse Winter Wonderland

When:December 2-3
Where:200 Pine Street
Cost:Free

www.southstreet.com

Peddler's Village Christmas Festival

Peddler's VillagePhoto courtesy Peddler's Village

Amid one million holiday lights and excellent holiday shopping at dozens of cute shops, Bucks County's holiday hub Peddler's Village celebrates its annual Christmas Festival this weekend. On tap: a Santa Parade, opportunities to view the Gingerbread House Competition and Display, Victorian decoration and live entertainment.

Peddler's Village Christmas Festival

When:December 2-3
Where:Peddler's Village, 2400 Street Road, New Hope
Cost:Pay as you go

www.peddlersvillage.com

Coffee and Tea Festival

The buzz returns every year when the annual Coffee and Tea Festival comes to town. The event, held at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center, offers more than 50 exhibitors to check out, along with tastings, gift bags and much more.

Coffee and Tea Festival

When:December 2-3
Where:The Greater Philadelphia Expo Center, 100 Station Avenue, Oaks
Cost:$20 admission

www.coffeeandteafestival.com

Greensgrow Holiday Bazaar

Photo by M. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia

Head to Kensington to shop this festive neighborhood annual sale over two December weekends this holiday season. At the Greensgrow Holiday Bazaar, get your tree or holiday greens, handmade crafts, homemade treats, homegrown bulbs and wreaths and other special gifts.

Greensgrow Holiday Bazaar

When:December 2, 3, 16 and 17
Where:Greensgrow Farms, 2501 E. Cumberland Street
Cost:Pay as you go

www.greensgrow.org

A Philly POPS Christmas

Photo courtesy Philly POPS

Maestro Michael Krajewski takes the baton to lead the Philly POPS in a newly re-imagined, always-beloved concert featuring vocalist Justin Hopkins, the Philadelphia Boys Choir, the Philly POPS Festival Chorus and the African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas Gospel Choir. Part of the festivities: a musical performance of How The Grinch Stole Christmas.

A Philly POPS Christmas

When:December 2-19
Where:Kimmel Center, 300 S. Broad Street
Cost:$35-$116

www.phillypops.org

Free First Sunday at the Barnes Foundation

On the first Sunday of the month, the Barnes Foundation offers up free admission to all guests on a first-come, first-served basis (read: arrive early to get your tickets!). This week, the museum hosts a slew of special programs on First Sunday under the theme of The Artist's Process.

Free First Sunday at the Barnes Foundation

When:Sunday, December 3
Where:Barnes Foundation, 2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Cost:Free

www.barnesfoundation.org

Pay What You Wish Sunday at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

People outside the Philadelphia Museum of Art in PhiladelphiaPhoto by J. Fusco for Visit Philadelphia

Enjoy a deal on admission to the Philadelphia Museum of Art this Sunday as it hosts its pay-what-you-wish first Sunday event. From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., guests can visit the galleries within the museum for any price they'd like to pay.

Pay What You Wish Sunday at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

When:Sunday, December 3, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Where:Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy
Cost:Pay-as-you-wish-admission

www.philamuseum.org

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