In Philadelphia, April showers bring on not only May flowers but tons of festival fun. The South Street Spring Festival adds an epic, 12-plus city block celebration to the list of awesome festivals happening during this lovely month of May.
Featuring more than 30 restaurant vendors and food trucks, 40 different bands and Brauhaus Schmitz’s annual maypole dance- and German-beer-filled Maifest, there’s plenty to explore at the South Street neighborhood festival.
South Street Spring Festival Fast Facts
- The festival runs Saturday, May 7, 11 a.m.-8 p.m.
- The free, all-ages festival spans 12-plus city blocksfrom Front Street to 8th Street.
- Expect 30-plus restaurants and food trucks, 40 bands, 3 stages and 7 performance areas.
- Brauhaus Schmitz Maifest anchors the festival with German brews, maypole dancing and Barvarian food.
What to Look Forward to on South Street
The South Street Spring Festival will bring a solid nine hours of festival action – from 11 a.m. until 8 p.m – to the neighborhood, meaning there’s tons to lookout for all festival-long.
The festivities will run along South Street, closing off traffic beginning at Front Street and concluding at 8th Street, and will also branch off from 2nd and South streets heading west up to Pine Street.
The entire area transforms into a big vendor bash that invites you to shop, eat and get to know local businesses.
Bookending the festival are two awesome parties: At 8th Street, the Brauhaus Schmitz Maifest puts on a German-style beer garden party — complete with a soaring maypole and a dance surrounding it — and at Front Street a huge lawn concert area awaits, complete with beach balls and a kids’ zone.
You’ll also find three stages throughout the festival grounds hosting 40 different bands and seven other performance locations featuring various live entertainment. Tons of food and drink options, crafting activities, family-friendly fun and a special taco-eating contest are also set to pack the day.
Festival Eats, Drinks and a Philly-Style Taco Competition
More than 30 restaurants, bars, vendors and food trucks will serve up food and drink options throughout the festival. Look for everything from free samples, to special one-off dishes, to signature favorites to specially priced grab-and-go festival fuel.
Participants include Cow and the Curd, Circles Thai, Lil Pop Shop, Rita’s Water Ice, Whetstone and more, with food options that will cover everything from truffle pecorino mac and cheese to fish tacos to burgers, gyro and other tasty eats.
New this year, the South Street Headhouse District will also host a special taco-eating contest, featuring tacos filled with the most Philly-flavor a taco can get. The ambitious challenge utilizes an oversized Lorenzo and Sons pizza slice in place of a tortilla and wraps it around a Jim’s Steaks cheesesteak – that is, the taco filling.
The contest, which will be open to the first 20 contestants to sign up, will be a simple race to the finish line for whoever can finish the mammoth meal the fastest. ‘Taco bout a challenge!
Maifest at Brauhaus Schmitz
What kind of festival features another festival inside of it? An awesome one, of course.
Coinciding with the South Street Spring Festival, the 4th Annual Maifest Street Festival at Brauhaus Schmitz brings a taste of Germany to Philadelphia.
Held outside the popular German eatery on the 700 block of South Street, Maifest features a bevy of German beers, traditional music and Bavarian food and authentic dancers gathering around the city’s largest maypole.
Traditional German Maifest beers, such as Hofbräu Maibock and Hacker Pschorr Hubertus Bock, will be flowing all afternoon, along with other rare and imported beer offerings like Warsteiner and Paulaner.
Food offerings will include large Bavarian pretzels, roast pork and sausage sandwiches served with sauerkraut, bratwurst and more, which you can enjoy seated on long communal tables imported for Germany.
All food and drink for Maifest is pay-as-you-go and open to the public. Put on your lederhosen and dirndl and get ready to join the fun.
If driving, there are parking lots or garages at spots such as 516 South Street and 419 Bainbridge Street.
South Street can get busy, so if able, arrive on foot, by bike (try Indego!) or by public transportation via SEPTA.