The wait is almost over! For the third consecutive year, the magnificent Philadelphia Chinese Lantern Festival returns to get Franklin Square glowing from May 1 to June 30.
At the festival (which has been extended to eight weeks for 2018!), 1,500 individual artworks made of more than 15,000 LED lights form 28 stunning lantern displays.
CHINESE LANTERN FESTIVAL FAST FACTS
- The Philadelphia Chinese Lantern Festival in Franklin Square returns from May 1 to June 30.
- Twenty-eight stunning lantern displays fill the historic park.
- The festival also features Chinese performance art, crafts, food, a beer garden and more.
- Tickets are on sale now and range from $12 to $18.
Aside from the 200-foot-long Chinese dragon and the playful pandas from last year, every luminous, silk-sheathed lantern creation is brand new.
Chinese artisans use traditional methods to craft the intricate handmade lanterns that light up Franklin Square in Philadelphia’s Historic District for this exciting celebration of Chinese culture and light.
Additions to the festival this year include an endangered species lantern gallery — crafted using lighting technology that has never been seen before in the United States — and an elephant lantern that guests can interact with by hopping on a bike and peddling to change its colors.
Also new this year, guests can stride directly into the bright belly of a massive great white shark lantern via a walk-through tunnel. Other lanterns commemorate the Year of the Dog, mythological animals and tropical birds.
Cultural performance artists specializing in face changing, plate spinning, jar juggling and more entertain visitors each night. Traditional handcrafts demonstrations — including aluminum-wire weaving, flute making and sugar painting — also take place every evening to further showcase Chinese arts and culture.
The popular Dragon Beer Garden returns this year as well, offering American and Asian-inspired bites, craft beer, wine and cocktails.
Note that festival hours differ depending on the day. From Sundays through Thursdays, the fest runs from 7 to 11 p.m. On Fridays and Saturdays, the grounds open at 6 p.m. and close at 11 p.m.
Also important: Timed tickets are required for entry on Fridays and Saturdays. Guests can enter 15 minutes prior to the time on the ticket or anytime after and stay as long as they wish.
Purchase tickets online here.
Stay tuned for more on this exciting eight-week spring festival in Philadelphia’s Historic District!