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November 14, 2014

Coming Attraction: The Brand-New Museum Of The American Revolution To Open In Historic Philadelphia In Early 2017

Museum of the American Revolution

The Museum of the American Revolution will rise three stories above the street in historic Philadelphia on Chestnut Street. (Image courtesy Museum of the American Revolution/Robert A.M. Stern Architects)

This country’s revolutionary history never feels like its too far gone in Philadelphia, with the profusion of public attractions devoted to telling the many stories of our nation’s founding.

In the coming years, Philadelphia will be home to yet another destination that will bring to life the events and people of the past when the Museum of the American Revolution opens in early 2017.

After a groundbreaking this fall, construction is now underway for the new museum that is being built in historic Philadelphia, mere steps away from Independence Hall, Carpenter’s Hall, Franklin Court and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier of the Revolution.

Designed by firm Robert A.M. Stern Architects, the new 118,000-square-foot museum will rise three stories and include permanent and temporary exhibition galleries, education spaces, theaters, retail, a cafe and more.

The Museum of the American Revolution aims to create new interest and encourage exploration of this important historic era through a wide array of object-driven exhibitions, interactive galleries and large-scale models of 18th-century artifacts.

Thanks to a deep collection of historic artifacts, works of art, original manuscripts and printed works collected over many, many years, the museum has several thousand objects — including the original tent General George Washington used as his command center — that are now in storage and just waiting for the museum to open.

Once open, the museum expects to attract more than 500,000 visitors annually, serving as a gateway to the region’s and nation’s many Revolutionary sites.

Coming Attraction: Museum of the American Revolution
When: Early 2017
Where: 123 Chestnut Street
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November 14, 2014

Philly Custom Menswear Label Commonwealth Proper Debuts Ready-To-Wear Line, Shoppable Now At CMMP’s Rittenhouse Square Showroom

Commonwealth Proper

Look proper, Philly. Philadelphia-based custom menswear line Commonwealth Proper now deals in ready-to-wear clothing and accessories, too. (Photo courtesy Commonwealth Proper)

Excellent news for fashion-conscious fellows: Commonwealth Proper has expanded beyond made-to-measure menswear.

In addition to the custom suiting that put CMMP on the map, the Philadelphia-based label now comprises ready-to-wear casual shirts and blazers, 3×1 brand denim, tees and accessories — the new weekend wardrobe of CMMP’s tattooed salarymen clientele.

Commonwealth Proper is the sole Center City stockist of jeans by 3×1, a New York City brand that manufactures selvedge denim jeans within a tiny SoHo factory.

In fact, everything within CMMP’s ready-to-wear collection is proudly made in the USA, with a number of items earning bonus points for being crafted right here in the City of Brotherly Love.

It’s all part of Commonwealth Proper’s push toward a product line that’s 100 percent Philly-made.

The entire RTW collection is shoppable right now in the CMMP showroom at 1839 Chestnut Street, which is open to the public by appointment. Stay tuned, though, for CMMP to institute some open-door policies in the year ahead.

Commonwealth Proper’s Ready-To-Wear Line
When: Shop online and by appointment
Where: Commonwealth Proper, 1839 Chestnut Street
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November 14, 2014

Weekend Picks: Opening Weekend For The Ice Rink At Dilworth Park And Franklin Square’s Holiday Festival, Love Your Park Fall Service Day, Franklin Flea Holiday Market, First Person Arts Festival And More

A photo posted by Uwishunu Philly (@uwishunu) on

The holiday season is at hand: It’s opening weekend for the ice rink at Dilworth Park and Franklin Square’s Holiday Festival.

The holiday spirit has slowly begun to spread though the city, and this weekend’s openings of pop-up markets and well-loved holiday attractions officially heralds the return of the merry season to Philadelphia.

Dilworth Park opens its ice rink today (!) with a free skate from noon to 3 p.m. Beyond the free skate, the ice skating rink will stay open all weekend — and season — long.

It’s also opening weekend for Franklin Square’s Holiday Festival, which promises a winter beer garden, holiday craft market, a spectacular light show and more. Plus, Franklin Flea’s Holiday Market returns to the historic Strawbridge’s building this Saturday for the first of its six seasonal market days.

Also on Saturday, the city’s parks gear up for winter as Love Your Park Fall Service Day returns to more than 70 parks throughout the city for a full day of volunteer-run raking, planting and cleaning.

Read on for our guide to this weekend.

Friday, November 14

Top Pick: Rothman Institute Ice Rink at Dilworth Park (Fri, Sat, Sun) — Opening Day!

Top Pick: Art After 5 at the Philadelphia Museum of Art Presents Ted Rosenthal Trio: Rhapsody in Gershwin

Top Pick: Peter Blume: Nature and Metamorphosis at PAFA (Fri, Sat, Sun) — Opening Day!

Top Pick: Winter Beer Garden at Franklin Square (Fri, Sat, Sun)

Top Pick: PHS Holiday Pop-Up Store in Chestnut Hill (Fri, Sat, Sun)

Our Guide to Viewing Fall Foliage in Philadelphia (Fri, Sat, Sun)

Paul Strand: Master of Modern Photography at the Philadelphia Museum of Art (Fri, Sat, Sun)

Late-Night Burger, Bourbon and Beer Special at The Fat Ham (Fri, Sat)

Lagos Annual Sample Sale (Fri, Sat)

Manita Burrito Pop-Up at Mugshot’s Coffeehouse (Fri, Sat, Sun)

ThinkFest 2014

AIA Bookstore and Design Center’s Holiday Pop-Up Shop (Fri, Sat, Sun)

Taste Tour, Music and Art: Benefiting Becky’s Home Orphanage in Ghana at Art Sanctuary

Red Speedo at Studio X

Mary Poppins at the Walnut Street Theatre (Fri, Sat, Sun)

Jombi Supastar Artist Talk at Jed Williams Gallery

Second Friday on Lancaster Ave.

David Lynch: The Unified Field at PAFA (Fri, Sat, Sun)

Souled Out at The Trestle Inn

First Sip Friday at Pinot Boutique

Kevin O’Brien Studio Sample Sale

Culinary Expedition at The Penn Museum (Fri, Sat, Sun)

Schuylkill River Park

More than 70 parks across the city participate in Love Your Park Day this Saturday including the popular Schuylkill River Trail and Schuylkill Banks in Center City. It’s an opportunity for residents to help take care of the parks they hold so near and dear.
(Photo by M. Edlow for Visit Philadelphia)

Saturday, November 15

Top Pick: Love Your Park Fall Service Day

Top Pick: Franklin Square Holiday Festival, Winter Beer Garden and Electrical Spectacle Holiday Light Show (Fri, Sat, Sun)

Top Pick: First Person Arts Festival (Fri, Sat) — Closing Day!

Top Pick: Franklin Flea Holiday Market at the Historic Strawbridges Building

Top Pick: Williams Glackens at The Barnes Foundation (Fri, Sat, Sun)

Top Pick: 10 New Retail Openings in Philadelphia — Get An Early Start On Your Holiday Shopping

PHAIR Open-Air Market

The Spirit of Gin Brunch at Oyster House

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November 14, 2014

Deal Alert: Doc Magrogan’s Oyster House Offers Half-Price Lobsters Throughout November For Lobster Month

Doc Magrogan's

(Photo courtesy Doc Magrogan’s)

Take a crack at a great deal at Doc Magrogan’s Oyster House this month.

Both the University City and West Chester locations of Doc Magrogan’s Oyster House are dishing out lobster at insanely low prices through the end of November.

The seafood house boasts a lofty lineup of lobster discounts with a few themed menu additions created specially for the promotion, too.

The best deal might be the offer of half-price whole steamed lobsters: one-pounders that are generally $32 a pound are now $16, so two-pound lobsters are $32 and three pounders are $48. All of the whole lobsters are steamed in Old Bay spices and served with corn and potatoes.

Beyond the traditional crustacean preparation, also on offer are lobster appetizers and entrees including lobster bisque, lobster tacos and a lobster roll packed with a quarter-pound of Maine lobster on a toasted brioche roll.

In addition to the sea-themed eats, the bar gets in on the action with fish bowl cocktails like the the Drunken Octopus Bowl with Kraken rum, Blue Curaçao liqueur, pineapple juice, sour mix, sprite and grenadine for $22.

Head to the University City location or the West Chester location through November 30 to get your eat — and drink — on.

Lobster Month at Doc Magrogan’s Oyster House
When: Through November 30
Where: Doc Magrogan’s Oyster House; University City, 3432 Sansom Street; West Chester, 117 E. Gay Street
Cost: Varies
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November 14, 2014

Christmas Village Returns To Love Park With Holiday Shopping, Food, Drinks, Weekend Entertainment And More, November 27-December 28

Christmas Village

Christmas Village returns for a season of holiday shopping, music, merry food and drinks and more, November 27 through December 28. (Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia)

Holiday shopping gets even more festive as the Christmas Village at Love Park, an open-air shopping destination modeled after an open-air German Christmas Market, returns for the season on Thanksgiving Day, November 27 and continues through Sunday, December 28.

Throughout Love Park, guests will find holiday decor and gifts galore like toys, ornaments, clothing, jewelry, items for the home, artwork and more housed in more than 90 wooden booths that embody the holiday markets that are present throughout Europe.

In addition to holiday shopping, guests will also enjoy traditional European food and drinks for the holiday season. Look forward to bratwurst, schnitzel, döner kebab, sweet waffles, spiced mulled wine, hot chocolate and more.

Beyond daily shopping and food options, also look forward to themed events on weekends, tastings with Chaddsford Winery, a kid’s zone and more.

Christmas Village officially opens with a grand opening celebration on Saturday, November 29 from 4 to 5 p.m. Stop by for live holiday performances, opening celebrations with the Christkind, a holiday sing-a-long and the chance to be some of the first guests to shop the holiday market.

Christmas Village will be open for two previews before the officially opening day — the market will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Thanksgiving and from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Black Friday, November 28.

Stay tuned for more information about specific vendors and special events at Christmas Village.

Note that Christmas Village will be closed on Christmas Day.

Christmas Village at Love Park
When: November 27-December 28; Closed on December 25; Sunday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m.-8 p.m.
Where: 15th and JFK Boulevard
Cost: Pay as you go
More info:

Christmas Village

Mark your calendars! Christmas Village brings an open-air German holiday market to Love Park from November 27 through December 28. (Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia)

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November 14, 2014

Now Open: Philadelphia-Based Brand ellelauri Debuts Its Flagship Store On 19th Street In Rittenhouse Square


Joining the groundswell of new retail in Philadelphia, ellelauri is now open in a newly renovated space on 19th Street, just off of Rittenhouse Square. (Photo courtesy ellelauri)

Just in time for the holiday shopping season, yet another retailer has joined the ranks of shops in the Rittenhouse neighborhood.

Unlike the recent influx of national stores like Nordstrom Rack, Uniqlo, Timberland and Vans, the most recent newcomer has roots right here in Philadelphia.

A brand-new flagship location for Philadelphia-based womenswear line ellelauri is now open on 19th Street, and it’s something of a homecoming for founder and designer Liz Rymar and her co-founder and sister Laura Rymar, who grew up in the area.

The ellelauri brand has seen success selling the brand online, in select boutiques nationwide, at a pop-up shop at The Shops at Liberty Place and with a seasonal shop in Avalon, NJ.

Now, though, ellelauri has a permanent year-round Philadelphia home to stock and sell its locally designed and American-made line of clothing.

Not only designed by Rymar right here in Philadelphia, ellelauri’s entire line is also manufactured in the United States in New York’s Garment District.

Made up of flattering silhouettes and a chic color palette, the ellelauri line is eminently versatile and broadly appealing — in fact, a cast of notable celebrities have been spotted in the line’s skirts, dresses and tops.

The collection is now available at both the new flagship boutique and at The Shops at Liberty Place, as well as online at and in select stores nationwide. All ellelauri locations carry the full line, along with a wide variety of accessories and complementary brands like J Brand and Wildfox.

And remember, Philadelphia (along with the rest of Pennsylvania) is tax-free when it comes to clothing, which is just one more reason to love local shopping.

Now Open: ellelauri
When: Monday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
Where: 114 S. 19th Street
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November 13, 2014

Tonight Picks: Opening Night For The Franklin Square Holiday Festival, Night Skies In The Observatory At The Franklin Institute, First Person Arts Festival And More

Franklin Square

The holidays arrive at Franklin Square tonight as it turns on its holiday lights and starts its merry festival for the first time this year. (Photo by Jeff Fusco for Historic Philadelphia)

As mid-November rolls in, the holiday festivities start to fill the city.

Tonight, Franklin Square’s Holiday Festival opens for the season with the first lighting of Electrical Spectacle: A Holiday Light Show and a peek at what’s to come this holiday season (food trucks! winter beer garden! holiday market!).

Also tonight, The Franklin Institute hosts an evening of star gazing and outer space conversation for its monthly Night Skies in the Observatory event.

Both the First Person Arts Festival and the Philadelphia Jewish Film Festival celebrate arts with evening events for art fans.

Our top picks for tonight, below.

Franklin Square Holiday Festival Opening Day

Franklin Square debuts its holiday lights for the first time this year as it opens the Franklin Square Holiday Festival, a new expanded holiday celebration. At 5 p.m., the holiday magic at Benjamin Franklin’s namesake park begins with the first lighting of Electrical Spectacle: A Holiday Light Show, a free dazzling show of more than 50,000 lights. Beyond holiday lights, guests can preview other happenings from the upcoming Franklin Square Holiday Festival season, including the winter beer garden, food trucks, Franklin Square Holiday Market, Lightning Bolt Holiday Express train and Kids Craftivity Hour.

When: Thursday, November 13, 4:30 p.m.
Where: Franklin Square, 200 N. 6th Street
Cost: Free admission; pay as you go activities

First Person Arts Festival

Tonight, the Christ Church Neighborhood House hosts two events for the First Person Arts Festival, which celebrates spoken word through Saturday, November 15. Tonight, visit the Old City venue for Lava Fossil at 7 p.m., a comedic one-person show, and Sane New World at 9 p.m., a show starring comedian Ruby Wax.

When: Thursday, November 13, 7 and 9 p.m.
Where: Christ Church Neighborhood House, 20 N. American Street
Cost: Varies

Philadelphia Jewish Film Festival Presents Zero Motivation

The Philadelphia Jewish Film Festival continues with a screening of Zero Motivation at the Ritz East. The film tells the comedic story of a group of female HR workers at an Israeli army base. Tickets are $12 for general admission.

When: Thursday, November 13, 7 p.m.
Where: Ritz East, 125 S. 2nd Street
Cost: $12, general admission; $11, seniors; $7, students

Night Skies in the Observatory at The Franklin Institute

Learn about outer space at The Franklin Institute’s Night Skies in the Observatory event. Learn about the moons of other planets, like Jupiter’s four largest moons that Galileo used to prove theories about our solar system. Admission is free for museum members and $5 for non-members.

When: Thursday, November 13, 6-9 p.m.
Where: The Franklin Institute, 271 N. 21st Street
Cost: Free for members, $5 for non-members

The Franklin Institute

Tonight, The Franklin Institute hosts its monthly Night Skies in the Observatory event complete with discussion and stargazing.
(Photo courtesy Farnklin Institute)

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November 13, 2014

Kildare’s Irish Pub On Main Street In Manayunk Hosts Its Annual Craft Beer And Irish Whiskey Festival This Saturday, November 15


Head to Main Street in Manayunk this Saturday for an afternoon of craft beer and Irish whiskey at Kildare’s. (Photo courtesy Manayunk Development Corporation)

In need of a cold-weather warmer? Kildare’s in Manayunk presents tons of belly-warming spirits this weekend for its craft beer and Irish whiskey festival — a full day of more than 40 samplings of craft beer and more than 10 samplings of Irish whiskey.

On Saturday, November 15 from 3 to 6 p.m., folks are invited to enjoy a plethora of sips, food and live Irish music.

Participating breweries include Victory, Yards, Sixpoint, Weyerbacher, Conshohocken Brewing Company and many, many more. For something a wee bit stronger, look to participating whiskey distilleries including Jameson, Redbreast and Paddy.

Choose from general admission, $30, or VIP tickets for $40. General admission tickets provide guests with drink samples, food, a souvenir tasting glass and access to the festival from 3 to 6 p.m.

Those who purchase a VIP ticket will be granted admission to the festival a full hour before general admission ticket holders (at 2 p.m.), enjoy VIP-only beer and whiskey, will be the first to sample the festival’s offerings, and will enjoy all of the perks of general admission tickets.

Tickets are available online.

Craft Beer and Irish Whiskey Festival
When: Saturday, November 15, VIP, 2-6 p.m.; General Admission, 3-6 p.m.
Where: Kildare’s Manayunk, 4417 Main Street
Cost: $30 for general admission, $40 for VIP
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November 13, 2014

The Annual Philadelphia Weekly Taste Of Philly Returns With Food And Drinks From Dozens Of Local Restaurants, Tuesday, November 18

Get a taste of Philadelphia's culinary offerings and help support the fight against childhood hunger at the Taste of Philly, Tuesday, November 18. (Photo by R. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia)

Don’t know where to go to dinner next Tuesday? Good news – there’s no need to choose!

Get your ticket to the Philadelphia Weekly Taste of Philly culinary event, returning for its eighth year on Tuesday, November 18.

From 6 to 9 p.m., hungry guests will descend upon the Crystal Tea Room to enjoy bites and beverages from dozens of the city’s most delicious restaurants.

Last year’s lineup included popular spots like Tashan, Honey’s Sit N Eat, Milkboy, the Rose Tattoo Café and Jose Pistola’s. This year’s participants aren’t yet announced, but there’s only one surefire way to know the final list: go in person and see for yourself!

Tickets cost $35 per person and include three hours of non-stop eats, drinks and merriment. For a limited time, use promo code UCE5 to get a $5 discount.

A portion of the proceeds raised will benefit Philabundance, which provides food to local people in need.

Happy eating!

Taste of Philly
When: Tuesday, November 18, 6-9 p.m.
Where: Crystal Tea Room at the Wanamaker Building, 100 East Penn Square (above Macy’s)
Cost: $35 per person
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November 13, 2014

BalletX Brings Its Signature Dynamic Style To The Wilma Theater Stage For Its Fall Series 2014, November 19-23


BalletX brings three amazing pieces, and dynamic dancers like Richard Villaverde (shown), to the stage during its upcoming Fall Series 2014. (Photo by Alexander Iziliaev)

Our city’s high-octane contemporary ballet troupe BalletX hits the stage for its fall season next week, and dance lovers should take note.

Performing three pieces of fresh choreography, BalletX is set to present an extraordinary spectacle of athleticism, agility and musicality during its Fall Series 2014 at The Wilma Theater, opening Wednesday, November 19 and running through Sunday, November 23.

Since founding the company in 2005, co-artistic directors Christine Cox and Matthew Neenan have become well known for bringing dozens of new works to Philadelphia, expanding BalletX’s repertoire with more than 30 world premieres of contemporary choreography.

In its fall performance series, BalletX will treat audiences to yet more new work, spotlighting an incredible array of talent in works by acclaimed choreographers Jorma Elo, Olivier Wevers and BalletX’s co-artistic director Matthew Neenan.

For seven exciting performances, the mixed-bill program will surely impress with a world-premiere work from Jorma Elo based on the film Touch of Evil, an abstract piece by Brussels-born dancer and choreographer Olivier Wevers, and Matthew Neenan’s new work Increasing, accompanied live by alumni of The Curtis Institute of Music.

Beyond the shows, this fall also brings the return of the interactive lecture series The X-Process. Wednesday, November 19 at 7 p.m. join in an open forum Q&A event, and on Saturday, November 22 at 4 p.m. — in between the matinee and evening performances at The Wilma Theater — guests are invited to join the BalletX artistic team for beer, pizza and to hear just how a performance season is crafted.

Tickets for the performances and lecture are available online and they’ve been selling fast, so jump on plans to catch one of the performances now and don’t miss a single pirouette.

BalletX Fall Series 2014
When: November 19-23
Where: The Wilma Theater, 265 S. Broad Street
Cost: $22-$35
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