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September 23, 2014

Reminder: Opera On The Mall Takes Over Independence Mall To Present A Free Broadcast Of Opera Philadelphia’s The Barber Of Seville, Saturday, September 27; Registration Still Available!

Opera on the Mall

Good news! Registration is still open for Opera on the Mall, Opera Philadelphia’s free annual broadcast on Independence Mall. (Photo by Dominic Mercier for Opera Philadelphia)

Heads up, a free evening of opera is coming your way this weekend!

This Saturday, September 27, Opera Philadelphia celebrates the start of its 2014 season with Opera on the Mall, a free HD broadcast of the comedic opera The Barber of Seville on the iconic grounds of Independence Mall.

The event, which is now in its fourth year, is a super-popular way to spend an evening alfresco — and fills up to capacity year after year.

Register in Advance

Tickets to Opera on the Mall are completely free, but registration is required! Register online and bring print-at-home tickets for expedited entrance to the mall.

Bonus: Everyone who registers will be entered to win a subscription for two to Opera Philadelphia’s 2014-2015 Opera at the Academy series and a Garces Group gift card, too!

As of now more than 7,000 people are registered to take part in this public display of opera. Remember, registration is still open, so claim your spot now!

Join in this come-one, come-all, family- and pet-friendly celebration of music.

Opera on the Mall

More than 7,000 attendees are expected to come out to Independence Mall to take in a free Opera Philadelphia broadcast of The Barber of Seville. (Photo by Dominic Mercier for Opera Philadelphia)

Bring a Picnic

Picnics are encouraged at Opera on the Mall, so pack a spread, bring a blanket and dine outdoors overlooking Independence Hall.

Plus, boxed meals are available for pre-order from the Independence Visitor Center’s Independence Cafe.

Food Trucks & More

Tons of food options will be available on and surrounding the mall on Saturday evening, too.

Look for food trucks along 5th Street between Market and Chestnut Streets including Chewy’s, Cow and the Curd, Lil Pop Shop, Mama’s Meatballs, Surf and Turf Truck, Sweet Box, and Foolish Waffles.

Before the broadcast, which begins at 7 p.m., head out for a variety of pre-show events, including a screening of the classic cartoon Rabbit of Seville, a free photobooth and more. The gates open at 5:30 p.m., pre-show festivities begin at 6 p.m., and the first 1,000 guests will receive a free seat cushion.

Starting at 7 p.m., Opera Philadelphia’s season opener — Rossini’s The Barber of Seville — will be broadcast in high definition from the stage of the Academy of Music to a giant outdoor screen in the shadow of the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall.

Opera on the Mall is rain or shine, but in the case of extreme weather the event will occur on Sunday, September 28.

And for those who prefer to take in the classic work indoors, The Barber of Seville runs on stage at the Academy of Music Friday, September 26 through Sunday, October 5.

Join in the musical moment!

Opera on the Mall
When: Saturday, September 27, Pre-Show, 6 p.m.; Broadcast, 7 p.m., rain or shine
Where: Independence National Historical Park, 1 N. Independence Mall W.
Cost: Free
More info:

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September 23, 2014

The Philadelphia Orchestra Debuts Its 2014-2015 Season With Season Begins At The Kimmel Center, This Weekend, September 26-28

The Philadelphia Orchestra starts its 2014-2015 season with Seasons Begins, this weekend, September 26-28. (Photo by Jessica Griffin)

The Philadelphia Orchestra starts its 2014-2015 season with Seasons Begins, this weekend, September 26-28. (Photo by Jessica Griffin)

The Philadelphia Orchestra launches its 2014-2015 season this weekend, September 26-28, with Season Begins, a show featuring Lang Lang, an accomplished classical pianist and graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music.

One of the classical music world’s most popular musicians, Lang Lang will take the Verizon Hall stage with the Orchestra’s popular conductor, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, and The Philadelphia Orchestra at The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts.

The season opener will largely feature An Alpine Symphony by Richard Strauss, an intense piece of music that requires 125 musicians, wind and thunder machines, an offstage brass ensemble and cowbells. The piece aims to take the audience on a trip to the Alps through the music.

As part of the 2014-2015 40/40 Project — a mission to perform 40 pieces that have not been performed by the Philadelphia Orchestra in 40 years, all in celebration of Yannick’s 40th birthday — the season also opens with three pieces of music that have not been performed by the Orchestra in 40 years, all selected by the general public via social media.

Tickets for the season opener, which start at $39, are available online.

Beyond Season Begins this weekend, The Philadelphia Orchestra continues its 2014-2015 season with a number of highlights. A concert and gala with Jean-Yves Thibaudet, a French pianist, arrives on October 10. In October and early-November, organ-lovers will delight with the month-long Art of the Pipe Organ series. Later in the season, in January, the works of classic Russian composers take the spotlight in the three-week St. Petersburg Festival.

For more on The Philadelphia Orchestra’s upcoming 2014-2015 season, click here.

The Philadelphia Orchestra Presents Season Begins
When: September 26-28
Where: The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, 300 S. Broad Street
Cost: $39-$195
More info:

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September 23, 2014

The Art-Reach Fall Festival Brings Interactive Arts, Live Entertainment, Food Trucks And More To West Fairmount Park, Saturday, September 27

Art-Reach Fall Festival

Celebrate the organizations that bring the arts to underserved audiences with great eats and activities at the Art-Reach Fall Festival this Saturday, September 27. (Photo by Ashley LaBonde, Wide Eyed Studios)

From world-class museums to powerful performances, Philadelphia is alive with the arts.

Art-Reach, a local non-profit organization, helps make sure that no one misses out on these amazing cultural experiences. To celebrate 28 years of helping Philly’s underserved audiences connect with the arts, this fantastic organization is throwing a fun-filled fundraising event.

This Saturday, September 27, the Art-Reach Fall Festival comes to West Fairmount Park. From noon until 4 p.m., the grounds of Ridgeland Mansion will be a sea of live entertainment, interactive arts and crafts, and fantastic food.

Catch live music from Birdie Busch & the Greatest Night, Commonwealth Choir, Creative Kids Club Hoop Starz and other acts throughout the day. Plus, attendees can enjoy hands-on fun during interactive activities led by teams from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens and Fleisher Art Memorial’s mobile studio, ColorWheels.

Some of the area’s most popular food trucks – including Vernalicious, Hot Diggity, Lil’ Pop Shop, Mama’s Meatballs and Sugar Philly Truck – will be on hand to serve up fresh, mouthwatering eats.

Tickets are available online now for $35 each, which includes admission, three food truck vouchers, unlimited beverages, live entertainment and activities for all ages. Access is free for kids under five, and just $15 for guests ages 5-12.

All proceeds from the Fall Festival will directly support Art-Reach’s many worthwhile programs.

Art-Reach Fall Festival
When: Saturday, September 27, noon-4 p.m.
Where: Ridgeland Mansion, 4100 Chamounix Drive, West Fairmount Park
Cost: $35, adults, $15, kids 5-12 years old, free, kids under 5
More info:

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September 23, 2014

Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day Live Brings Free Admission To 16 Museums Throughout The Philadelphia Area, This Saturday, September 27

Penn Museum

Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day Live brings free admission to 16 museums in the Philadelphia area, including The Penn Museum, pictured above. (Photo courtesy The Penn Museum)

This Saturday, September 27, 16 Philadelphia-area museums swing open their doors for free admission in celebration of Smithsonian magazine’s Museum Day Live.

From Center City and Camden to Jenkintown and Bryn Athyn, a number of the area’s most popular museums celebrate the day with free admission to its galleries.

Participating museums include the Penn Museum, Battleship New Jersey, the National Museum of American Jewish History, the African American Museum in Philadelphia, the Academy of Natural Sciences, the Wyck Historic House and the Rosenbach Museum and Library.

The full list of participating museums is available below and right here.

Free tickets are required to take part in Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day Live. Click here to register, download and print your Smithsonian Museum Day ticket. Tickets are valid for free admission for up to two people.

Note that free admission will only be granted to those with a Museum Day Live ticket, so don’t forget to register. Also note that Museum Day Live tickets are only valid for two people per address.

See you at the museum!

Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day Live
When: Saturday, September 27
Where: Participating Museums
Cost: Free
More info:

See below for the full list of participating Philadelphia-area museums. (more…)

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September 23, 2014

Photo of the Day: It’s Officially Fall In Philadelphia

Happy Fall, Philadelphia! (Photo by J. Fusco for Visit Philadelphia)

Happy Fall, Philadelphia! (Photo by J. Fusco for Visit Philadelphia)

Can you feel it in the air?

Officially, the 2014 autumnal equinox brought the fall season to the Northern Hemisphere on Monday, September 22 at 10:29 p.m. EDT, so today marks the first full day of the fall season.

Despite the mild temperatures of late, the fiery colors of fall will be out in all of their glory very soon.

Now is the perfect time of year to get outdoors and explore the region, and there’s plenty on the calendar to accommodate autumnal explorations.

Need some inspiration? Look no further. Check out our current guides to the season, and stay tuned for much more right here. It’s going to be a phenomenal fall.

Top 14 Things We’re Looking Forward To This Fall In Philadelphia

All in all, there’s a lot happening in Philly to be really, really excited about. MORE INFO

Our Guide To The More Than 60 Late-Summer And Early-Fall Festivals

Enjoy every kind of festival you could possibly think of this fall. MORE INFO

Where To Celebrate Oktoberfest In Philly

It is officially Oktoberfest season in Philadelphia. MORE INFO

Remember, there’s much more to come from Uwishunu this fall on all of the happenings, attractions, dining and seasonal entertainment. Stay tuned!

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September 22, 2014

Philly Mag Shops Gathers The City’s Top Retailers For A One-Day Warehouse Sale On Sunday, October 5; Score $5 Off Tickets With Code VISITPHILLY

Philly Mag Shops

Head to the Crane Arts building on Sunday, October 5, for an afternoon of warehouse-style shopping. (Image courtesy Philly Mag Shops)

Experts on the Philadelphia fashion and retail scene know that the best shopping happens in this city’s independently owned boutiques.

Now, thanks to Philadelphia magazine, more than 25 of the area’s top shops and designers will assemble under a single roof for an exceptional afternoon of retail therapy.

On Sunday, October 6, Philly Mag Shops returns for its second year of assembling dozens of independent Philadelphia retailers together under one roof at the Crane Arts building for a one-day-only shopping event.

From noon to 3 p.m., shop the designer warehouse-style sale for a huge array of goods including jeans, dresses, tops, shoes, accessories and jewelry — all from local boutiques.

The best part? All goods will be discounted up to 40 percent!

Participating shops include such fashion fixtures as Knit Wit, Erdon, Nicole Miller, Third Street Habit, Per Lei, Vagabond and so many more, which means deals on clothing by high-end houses, well-known brands and under-the-radar labels.

Look for the majority of apparel to be on display in the main event space, with shoes, jewelry, accessories and local designs — including the finalists from the Philly Mag Fashion Project — set up in an adjacent lounge.

Outside, brush up on beauty tips at three beauty bars with the hair experts from Verde Salon, nail pros from Lacquer Lounge and makeup artist Beke Beau.

Ready to sign up? Tickets are $25 in advance and available online.

But right now, the first 50 people to purchase using code VISITPHILLY will get $5 off tickets!

Just enter the promotional code VISITPHILLY online at checkout to redeem the deal. Remember, though, the discount expires after the first 50 tickets are sold, so we recommend scooping up tickets now.

For the full lineup of participating local retailers and designers, see below.

And for those who’d like to give back, Career Wardrobe will be on-site to collect donations of gently worn items for women in need.

See you at the shops!

Philly Mag Shops 2014
When: Sunday, October 5, noon-3 p.m.
Where: Crane Arts Building, 1400 N. American Street
Cost: $25
More info:

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September 22, 2014

Opening Alert: The Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk, The Awesome Over-The-Water Extension Of The Schuylkill River Trail, To Officially Open On Thursday, October 2

Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk

Officially opening on Thursday, October 2, the highly anticipated Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk will create an over-the-water extension of the existing Schuylkill River Trail from Locust Street to the South Street Bridge. (Photo by M. Edlow for Visit Philadelphia)

An opening date for the Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk has been set for Thursday, October 2, and we can’t wait.

This is a development project we first told you about three years ago, and we’re even more excited about it now than we were then.

The boardwalk is going to be an awesome over-the-water extension of the existing Schuylkill River Trail, extending the trail from Locust Street another four blocks south to connect to the South Street Bridge.

This is a huge addition to the Schuylkill River Trail. The trail is easily one of the most-used parks in Center City Philadelphia, with more than 19,000 users every week. It’s super popular with runners, walkers and bikers. There are also movie nights, yoga classes, concerts and much more.

The boardwalk is going to be another excellent addition to the park’s repertoire, connecting the trail to University City and beyond.

To celebrate the opening of the highly-anticipated addition, the boardwalk will launch with a number of community events on October 1, 2 and 5.

Read on for more information about the soon-to-be-open boardwalk.


The boardwalk extends the existing Schuylkill River Trail from Locust Street to the South Street Bridge. The extension had to happen via an over-the-water boardwalk because there was not sufficient space for the trail to continue over land along this portion of the trail on account of active railroad tracks.

Access Points

There are basically three access points to the boardwalk. The first is the access point at Locust Street, the current southern end of the trail. When the boardwalk opens on October 2, the on-land trail will seamlessly connect to the over-the-water boardwalk here and run to the South Street Bridge. There are two access points on the South Street Bridge: a 460′ long ramp for bikes connects to the north side of the South Street Bridge, while a stairtower for pedestrians connects the boardwalk to the south side of the bridge.

Length and Width

The 2,000-foot-long boardwalk is 15 feet wide and about 50 feet out from shore at its furthest point, beyond the tree canopy.

Overlooks And Solar-Powered Lights

The boardwalk promises four widened overlooks with benches ideal for fishing, taking in the waterfront views and general hanging out. The trail is immensely popular for evening runs and rides, so Schuylkill Banks lined the entire path with solar-powered overhead lights.

Opening Weekend Events

The boardwalk will be officially unveiled with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Schuylkill Banks and Locust Street by Mayor Michael Nutter on Thursday, October 2 at 11:30 a.m.

Before the ribbon-cutting ceremony, though, the festivities get a jump start from a now-sold-out 5k Fun Run/Walk on Wednesday, October 1. Come out to the South Street Bridge Steps from 5:30 to 8 p.m. to cheer on the runners.

In celebration of opening weekend, the boardwalk will welcome the public to an opening party from 1 to 3 p.m. on Sunday, October 5. Enjoy an old-fashioned celebration complete with live entertainment and free popcorn, cotton candy, pretzels and taffy, while checking out the latest addition to the Schuylkill Banks.

Future Plans

Eventually, Schuylkill Banks wants to extend their portion of the Schuylkill River Trail even further south beyond the South Street Bridge. The next phase of the extension is currently in the design phase and would extend the boardwalk south from the South Street Bridge to Christian Street, with the goal of eventually having the trail connect all the way to the Grays Ferry Crescent. Which would be amazing. We hope the opening of this section provides even more momentum for a park that shows off Philly’s clear appreciation for a great trail and waterfront open space.

Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk
When: Opening on Thursday, October 2
Where: Schuylkill Banks between Locust and South Streets
Cost: Free
More info:

Previously: The Schuylkill River Trail To Be Extended From Locust Street To The New South Street Bridge Via A New Over-The-Water Boardwalk Path

The Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk

This is a shot of the new boardwalk taken from the South Street Bridge, where a 460′ ramp (at right) connects to boardwalk below. (Photo courtesy Schuylkill River Development Corporation)

A rendering of one of the overlook sections of the boardwalk, where you can pause to take in the view. (Image courtesy Schuylkill River Development Corporation)

A rendering of one of the overlook sections of the boardwalk, where you can pause to take in the view. (Image courtesy Schuylkill River Development Corporation)

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September 22, 2014

Main Line Restaurant Week Returns To More Than 20 Restaurant Starting, Today, September 22 And Running Through September 28

Main Line Restaurant Week

From September 22 through 28, more than 20 restaurants throughout the Main Line dish out dining deals for Main Line Restaurant Week. (Image courtesy Main Line Restaurant Week)

Dig in! More than 20 restaurants in the Main Line and Western suburbs of Philadelphia are teaming up for Main Line Restaurant Week, multiple days of lunch and dinner deals, starting today, September 22.

The dining promotion runs through Sunday, September 28 and promises prix-fixe lunches ringing in at or less than $15 and three-course dinners ranging from $10 to $50, depending on the restaurant. Prices do not include tax, tip or alcoholic beverages.

The dining special runs for both lunch and dinner, but take note, not all restaurants are slated to offer both meals. Click here to see what meal each participating restaurant is serving up.

Fill up on everything from Mexican and Mediterranean fare to Italian eats and Southern food.

Participating restaurants include White Dog Cafe in Wayne, Tiramisu in Berwyn, Big Fish in Glen Mills, Stella Blu in Conshohocken and the Blue Bell Inn.

The full list of participating restaurants is available right here.

Main Line Restaurant Week
When: September 22-28
Where: Participating Restaurants
Cost: Lunch, $15 and under; Dinner, $10-$50; Plus tax and gratuity
More info:

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September 22, 2014

The Fat Ham In University City Launches Weekly Sunday Suppers This Fall, Starting Sunday, October 5

The Fat Ham Philadelphia

Top Chef Kevin Sbraga’s University City spot The Fat Ham kicks off its new Sunday Supper service this October. Make your reservations now! (Photo by M. Edlow for Visit Philadelphia)

As the fall chill rolls in, University City’s The Fat Ham is cozying up with the culinary equivalent of a hand-knit Fair Isle cardigan.

Starting Sunday, October 5 is the restaurant’s new series of Sunday Suppers, which were inspired by Chef/owner Kevin Sbraga’s memories of Sunday meals in his own childhood home.

The three-course prix-fixe, which runs $30 per person, is served family-style from 4 to 9 p.m. for parties of two or more people, with a cornucopia’s bounty of options from the restaurant’s menu.

First courses include mustard greens Caesar salad with grilled oyster dressing; southern hummus with boiled peanuts, grilled bread and garlic oil; biscuits and gravy with fennel sausage and chive; and shrimp and grits with country ham, scallion and peanuts.

Next up is the main course, featuring TFH’s dynamite hot chicken, roasted beets, collard greens, baked macaroni and cheese, and a seasonal roast with weekly changing local vegetables.

The shared meal finishes up with buttermilk cheesecake. Add a bourbon cocktail or two, and there’s no need for that extra layer.

Sunday Supper at The Fat Ham
When: Sundays, starting October 5, 4-9 p.m.
Where: The Fat Ham, 3131 Walnut Street
Cost: $30 per person, not including tax and gratuity
More info:

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September 22, 2014

The Rittenhouse Row Fall Fashion Crawl Returns This Tuesday, September 23 To Spotlight The Neighborhood’s Top Shops And Best Cocktails

Cheers to shopping in Rittenhouse Row during the neighborhood fashion crawl, part of The Philadelphia Collection, this Tuesday, September 23. (Photo by R. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia)

In a heady mix of fashion and cocktails, the Rittenhouse Row Fall Fashion Crawl brings style-lovers out to Rittenhouse in a roving event highlighting the best of fall shopping and sipping this Tuesday, September 23.

A slew of Rittenhouse Row retailers will host simultaneous in-store events, while attendees party hop from 6 to 8 p.m.

The event serves as one of the key anchors in The Philadelphia Collection fashion celebration, and returns for its second year in 2014 following a high-energy debut shop-a-thon in 2013.

With a lineup of more than a dozen stops, guests can pick and choose which Rittenhouse boutiques to shop on Walnut Street, Chestnut Street, Locust Street and Broad Street, as well as 17th, 18th and 20th streets.

Participants in the fashion crawl can hits such stores as Kenneth Cole, Nicole Miller, South Moon Under, Calypso St. Barth, Boyds, Duke & Winston, Toppers Spa and Salon, Joan Shepp, Knit Wit, Mettlers American Mercantile, LAGOS, Intermix, Commonwealth Proper, Liberty Travel, L’Occitane and more.

At each stop, score deals on goods while toasting with drinks crafted by the bartenders of such spots as Ladder 15, Ocean Prime, Rouge, Sbraga, The Continental Mid-town, The Crow and the Pitcher and Zama.

To attend, scoop up a ticket online for $25, or pick one up the night of the event at AKA Rittenhouse (135 S. 18th Street) for $30.

All participants must stop by AKA Rittenhouse between 6 and 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, September 23 to pick up an armband (both those who’ve pre-purchased and who will purchase at the door), as well as a map of the evening’s events.

Crawl in any order, but keep your armband on to enjoy the specialty cocktails, gifts with purchases, raffles and shopping discounts.

For the complete crawl lineup, see below!

Get ready to raise a glass to a fine mix of style and taste.

Rittenhouse Row Fall Fashion Crawl 2014
When: Tuesday, September 23, 6-8 p.m.
Where: Throughout the Rittenhouse neighborhood
Cost: $25, in advance; $30, at the door
More info:

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