The massive (and massively popular!) Old City Fest is back this Sunday, October 8 in Philadelphia’s Historic District, with entertainment for all, from live music to runway shows to shopping opportunities galore.
OLD CITY FEST FAST FACTS
- The festival runs 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, October 8, on 3rd Street from Market to Race streets.
- One hundred-plus Old City vendors will fill the streets during the fest.
- More than two dozen restaurants will sell food and drink outdoors.
- Admission is free; eats, drinks and vendor shopping are pay-as-you-go.
Of course, the annual festival will also be packed with food and drink vendors — more than two dozen in total — churning out tasty treats like pumpkin ice cream, crab cake sliders, gnocchi with pesto and harvest grape kombucha as well as local brews from 2nd Story Brewing Company.
The festival goes down from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on 3rd Street between Market and Race streets, serving as a showcase of the neighborhood’s many artists, designers, restaurants, galleries and historical attractions.
Food & Drink
More than 25 food and drink vendors will take over the streets of Old City on Sunday, including area staples like Cuba Libre, Continental, Franklin Fountain and more. New festival vendors this year include Capofitto, Common Wealth Old City, Fezziwig’s and Tuna Bar.
Look forward to everything from pork dumplings (Buddakan) to macaroons of all sorts (ICI Macarons & Café) to BBQ chicken sliders (The Little Lion) to hot waffles with acai berries (Stripp’d Juice).
Select restaurants will also offer craft beer and cocktails, and the area’s 2nd Story Brewing Company will serve up several styles of its house-brewed beer. Inspired Brews will offer draft kombucha in multiple seasonal flavors (including pumpkin spice!) and spots like Old City Coffee and United By Blue will fulfill your caffeine needs.
With its plethora of historic attractions, independent boutiques and top-notch art galleries, the Old City neighborhood holds a vast array of talented individuals and cultural venues that Old City Fest seeks to highlight.
More than 100 vendors will fill the streets during the fest, going beyond just food and drink.
Find booths featuring galleries, design houses, artisans and independent retailers selling an array of goods and services. Come ready to shop, as plenty of crafts, home goods, fashion-forward apparel and other local finds will be on display.
Look out for Independents Row, a designated area along 3rd Street, will offer the chance to peruse a selection of handmade goods and meet the local artists and makers behind them.
Explore Philadelphia’s Historic District
In another designated area on Arch Street, local cultural groups repping Philadelphia’s Historic District will be out, too, alongside a team from Visit Philadelphia.
Between 2nd and 4th streets, stop by a dozen booths to check out what’s happening at attractions like the National Constitution Center, the Museum of the American Revolution, the Philadelphia History Museum, Franklin Square, Elfreth’s Alley and more.
Seek out the folks from the Betsy Ross House, the Independence Visitor Center, Carpenter’s Hall and Arden Theatre for free, interactive demonstrations like calligraphy and chocolate-making.
For a complete list of vendors, click here.
Live Music & Entertainment
Old City Fest will feature its largest music line-up to date this year, with acts like Brooklyn’s Red Baraat, locally acclaimed rapper Chill Moody and Philly trombonist Ernest Stuart set to hit the stage for an afternoon filled with live music.
In between sets, 12-year-old DJ D-ILL, whose previous gigs have included spinning beats at the White House’s annual Kids’ “State Dinner,” will DJ a lineup of lively tunes.
Old City Fest will also host two fashion shows this year scheduled for 1:45 p.m. and 3:45 p.m. Those strutting the runway will sport pieces from an array of area designers, such as Erdon, The Geisha House and Rennes.
Families can also enjoy an array of all-ages activities, including mini-golf with Franklin Square, Revolutionary War trivia with the Museum of the American Revolution, hat- and wig-making at a Carpenters’ Hall tent and 18th-century dress-up with Elfreth’s Alley.
A Family Fun Zone will also host performances by the Give & Take Jugglers, Philadelphia Dance Academy, Music Monkey Jungle and more.
Getting There & Staying Over
Old City is easily accessible via foot, bike, Indego Bike Share and public transportation. Street closures are going to mean limited parking, so hop on the Market-Frankford line or a bike, or plan to walk if you’re able.
Want to keep exploring Old City and Philadelphia’s Historic District after the festival ends? The neighborhood has a ton of great restaurants and bars to check out after you wrap up your visit and also a plethora of historical attractions to explore. Check out the Historic District guide on visitphilly.com for ideas on what to do afterward.
Plus, given that Old City Fest falls on a holiday weekend, why not make a full weekend out of it? Book the Visit Philly Overnight Hotel Package and get free parking and two Philadelphia’s Historic District Passes!
See you on the cobblestones!