The Oval’s 2015 Summer Season Kicks Off This Week With A Massive Art Installation, A Giant Beer Garden, Movie Nights, Concerts And More

The Oval
The Oval will return to the Benjamin Franklin Parkway on Wednesday, July 15. (Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia)

Update: Due to inclement weather, The Oval will open on Thursday, July 16.

Get excited, Philly: The Oval opens for its summer season this Wednesday, July 15 Thursday, July 16.

With the grand opening comes the return of all the awesome aspects of the seasonal park — beer garden, food trucks, movie nights, etc. — with the addition of cool attractions like a disc-golf course and a brand-new art installation.

Located right in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art at Eakins Oval, The Oval takes over the top of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway for five days a week until Sunday, August 23.

Over the next six weeks, the pop-up park will be the go-to spot for outdoor fun for folks of all ages. Click here for the full schedule of programming.

Read on for our guide to The Oval’s 2015 season.

ART INSTALLATION AND LAYOUT

The Oval is conveniently located within walking distance of major attractions in the city like 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.

An eight-acre open-air urban oasis, The Oval is situated in what was once a surface lot in front of the Museum of Art. The pop-up park will be open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, and noon to 7 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.

The centerpiece of The Oval will be Summer Kaleidoscope an art installation by Jessie Unterhalter and Katey Truhn, a Baltimore-based duo who creates large-scale, colorful pieces that often break the rules of traditional murals by spilling onto the ground and surrounding area. Summer Kaleidoscope is a 25,000-square-foot mural that is presented with the City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program.

A photo posted by theskimo (@theskimo) on

BEER GARDEN AND FOOD TRUCKS

Yes, beer-garden lovers: The Oval’s tree-shaded beer garden returns for the summer of 2015. Wednesday through Saturday evenings during The Oval season, the beer garden will return with alfresco brews under a lush canopy of trees.

To kick off each weekend, the Visit Philly Beer Garden Series will call The Oval home on all Friday nights of its season, from July 17 through August 21. On Saturday nights, the beer garden will welcome Johnny Goodtime’s for evening quizzo.

Take note: The beer garden will be closed on Sundays.

Guests of The Oval can turn to a rotating roster of food trucks for fuel during outdoor fun at the pop-up park. Some of the city’s favorite food trucks like Local 215, The Tot Cart, Delicia’s, Cupcake Carnivale, Farm Truck, Little Baby’s Ice Cream and more will serve food to Oval guests this summer. Beyond regular programming, the food trucks will return for a special event on July 18 and 19, when winners of the Vendy Awards, a food truck competition, will park at The Oval for a full weekend of good eats.

The Oval Beer Garden: Wednesday-Friday, 5-10 p.m.; Saturday noon-7 p.m.; Sunday, closed
Visit Philly Beer Garden Series: Fridays, July 17-August 21
Winner’s Oval: July 18-19
Quizzo: Saturdays, July 18-August 22

Beer Garden
Hang outside at the popular beer garden at The Oval. (Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia)

MOVIES, MUSIC AND MORE

Live music and free movie screenings reign at the pop-up park all season long. On Friday nights, The Oval will host a number of movie screenings with the Art Museum as the backdrop. Upcoming films include Elf, Night at the Museum and Back to the Future II.

In celebration of the films, a number of Friday nights will host additional themed programming — be sure to stop by The Oval for its Christmas in July event on July 31 (think Santa Claus and Christmas carols). The full free movie screening schedule is available below.

Pee Wee’s Big Adventure: July 17
Night at the Museum: July 24
Elf: July 31
My Cousin Vinny: August 7
Cool Runnings: August 14
Back To The Future II: August 21

More on The Oval, below.

Outdoor Movie
Friday night is movie night at The Oval as it hosts free screenings when dusk falls. (Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia)

FITNESS AND MORE

Throughout the summer, The Oval will host a variety of free outdoor fitness classes. Guests can look forward to everything from baby-and-parent yoga to free yoga for adults.

Beyond yoga, guests can take part in kickboxing classes, too. In anticipation of the opening of CKO Kickboxing in Center City, the instructors will host free classes at The Oval for those looking to get their fitness on.

Baby and Me Yoga: Wednesdays, July 22-August 19, 11 a.m.-noon
Yoga: Wednesdays, July 22-August 19, 6-7 p.m.
CKO Kickboxing: Wednesdays, July 22-August 12, 7-8 p.m.

Yoga Mala
The Oval offers both free baby and me yoga and grown-up yoga classes this summer. (Photo courtesy Fairmount Park Conservancy)

GAMES AND FAMILY-FRIENDLY FUN

Throughout its six-week run, The Oval will provide guests with a bevy of games and family-friendly fun. Guests of The Oval can look forward to everything from ping pong and giant games of checkers to a brand-new disc-golf course and karaoke.

Disc-Golf Course: Open Wednesday through Sunday
Summer Art Fun with Mural Arts: July 16, 23, July 30, August 6, 20 and 23.

Ping Pong at The Oval
The Oval is game-central thanks to ping pong, disc golf and more. (Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia)

#VISITPHILLY PHOTO SPOT

The Oval is also home to one of the #VISITPHILLY Photo Spots — photogenic stopping points located at highly trafficked and iconic areas throughout the city.

At The Oval, guests can hop on the stationery three-person bike at The Oval and pose for a picture with the Philadelphia Museum of Art as a backdrop.

A photo posted by The Oval (@theovalphl) on


The Oval 2015 Season

When: July 15 July 16-August 23; Wednesday-Friday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, noon-7 p.m.; Beer Garden, Wednesday-Friday, 5-10 p.m.; Saturday noon-7 p.m.; Sunday, closed
Where: The Oval, 2451 Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Cost: Free

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