Top 5 Events: 4th of July in Philly

Anyone who’s been in the City of Brotherly Love for the biggest holiday of the summer will tell you that it’s an exciting and eventful place to be for the Fourth of July. Every year for more than a decade, Philly has hosted the “largest free concert in America,” the Philly 4th of July Jam, and grand finale fireworks. In more recent years, Philly started hosting what is now an annual Philly favorite, the Wawa Welcome America Series. For 10 days leading up to Independence Day, Wawa sponsors many fun, free events, festivals and concerts for guests of all ages to enjoy. The best part of all these thrilling outdoor events is that they are completely free and open to the public. I’ve highlighted a few of the most popular events from the Welcome America series that you don’t want to miss, but don’t forget to check out the website for a full list of events for the week!

Free Admission to the African American Museum 
When: Wednesday, July 1, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Where: 701 Arch Street. Cost: Free!

If you’d like to immerse yourself in the rich culture of the African American influence in Philly, check out the African American Museum for free admission on Wednesday. Opened in 1976, the museum offers visitors a diverse collection of fine art, photographs, memorabilia, folk art and costumes. The Welcome America series also offers free admission to three other popular Philly museums during the week, so if you’re interested in history and science, be sure to check out the full schedule.

Philadelphia Orchestra Neighborhood Concert
When: Thursday, July 2, 8 p.m. Where: Penn’s Landing, 101 S. Columbus Boulevard. Cost: Free!

The Philadelphia Orchestra presents the eighth season of their free concert series, where they hold a performance of patriotic music as a “thank you” to the people of Philadelphia. The world-renowned ensemble performs on the scenic RiverStage at the Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing. Immediately following the performance, guests can enjoy an impressive fireworks salute.

Liberty Block Party 
When: Friday, July 3, 1 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. Where: 5th & 6th Streets between Market & Chestnut Streets. Cost: Free!

Kick off your Fourth of July weekend with a free block party in Historic Philadelphia, offering live entertainment, food and beverages. Philly is known for its unique food scene, so you don’t want to miss out on these tasty food trucks and vendors. Admission to the street festival is free, but food and drinks must be purchased.

Independence Day Parade
When: Saturday, July 4, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. Where: Throughout Historic Philadelphia. Cost: Free!

The big day is finally here, and it’s time to celebrate your USA pride! What better way to do that than join in on a 1.2 mile march through the city where it all began? One of the biggest highlights of Fourth of July in Philly, the parade starts in front of Independence Hall in Old City and takes participants down Market Street towards the Delaware River. More than 6,000 people including marching bands, military groups, performance groups and even Miss America 2015 will be joining in on the celebration!

Party on the Parkway and Philly 4th of July Jam
When: Saturday, July 4, Noon – 11 p.m. Where: Benjamin Franklin Parkway near Eakins Oval. Cost: Free!

Thousands of locals and visitors alike gather on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway for the biggest Fourth of July celebration in Philly, the Party on the Parkway! The event will feature blocks and blocks of live entertainment, activities, games, food and more, perfect for visitors of every age to enjoy. That night, stay on the parkway for the Philly 4th of July Jam, the annual free concert that’s been a Philly tradition for decades. The concert has been attended by huge superstars in past years including Nicki Minaj, Ed Sheeran, Ariana Grande, John Mayer, Ne-Yo, Kevin Hart, Sheryl Crow, The Goo Goo Dolls and more. This year, the concert will star Philly’s own The Roots with Miguel and Jennifer Nettles from the popular country band Sugarland. If you don’t feel like dealing with the heavy crowd, the concert will be aired live on local news stations and even on Vh1. Immediately following the concert, the holiday goes out with a bang with a spectacular fireworks grand finale show right over the scenic Philadelphia Museum of Art.

South Philly Spotlight: South Street

Start exploring South Philadelphia at South Street, known for its diverse, urban feel and attractions for visitors of all ages. Whether you’re in the mood to shop, eat, or just appreciate the exciting atmosphere, there’s something that everyone can enjoy.

Start your day at Famous Fourth Street Delicatessen, the tasty Jewish deli known for its huge portion sizes and delicious, freshly cut meats. Since 1923, the deli has served satisfied customers with breakfast, sandwiches, salads, smoked fish, dinner entrees, and desserts. Their specialty: huge hot pastrami sandwiches or breakfast sandwiches overflowing with tons of meat.

Next, head over to Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens, a museum with walls covered in mosaics by award-winning mosaic mural artist Isaiah Zagar. At Magic Gardens, you can sign up for a tour, see an exhibition, or just walk through on your own. You will see fully mosaicked gallery spaces, sculptures, and different types of tiles. This unique, creative type of art can’t be found at any other site in Philly, and taking photos is encouraged!

If you’re into music, check out Repo Records, the underground music sanctuary that has been a huge part of South Street’s culture for the past decade. Repo specializes in buying and selling new and used metal, punk, indie, hip-hop, classic rock, jazz, R&B and soul CDs, cassettes, and LPs.

For a quick lunch, stop by Lorenzo and Sons, the legendary pizza shop known for having arguably the best pizza in the entire city. Cash-only and no indoor seating, Lorenzo & Sons will only serve you an oversized plain slice of pizza, but it’ll be the best plain slice you’ve had. Or try Jim’s Steaks, the delicious cheesesteak shop that opened in 1939 on South Street, now with three other Philadelphia locations. You’ll always see a long line outside of the original location on South Street, but the tasty, hot cheesesteaks made to your liking are well worth the wait.

If you’re interested in art, check out B Square Gallery, opened by local artist Heather Bryson in 2000. Bryson showcases unique handmade jewelry, functional art, paintings, and other types of art by talented local artists, including herself. Philadelphia is full of many skilled artists, and the ones that frequent South Street are no exception.

Once nighttime hits, go see a show at Theatre of Living Arts. The TLA dates back to the late 90s as an art house movie theater, and was converted into a concert hall, movie theater, and theater over the years. Now, the TLA is a mid-sized concert venue known for its great acoustics. The standing-room-only venue offers shows nearly every day, whether it be local or national music acts, and concerts of all genres.

For a late dinner, head over to Brauhaus Schmitz, Philly’s best authentic German bier hall and restaurant. Opened in 2009 by German-born food expert Douglas Hager, the restaurant strives to give Philadelphians a real taste of all the delicious food and beer Germany has to offer. The menu offers ethnic schnitzel and sausage, soups and salads, entrees and appetizers.

To end your eventful day on South Street, check out the hilarious Society Hill Playhouse, specializing in comedy acts for people who “hate theater.” This century-old playhouse is located right off of South Street and hosts local and national stand-up comedy acts, along with other entertaining shows. They offer a cabaret on the first floor that seats 99 people and a main stage on the second floor that seats over 200, making this historic building the perfect spot to pick a show, bring a big group, and laugh all night.

South Street has so much to offer, and visitors of all ages can enjoy these delectable restaurants and small eateries, unique galleries and music shops, hilarious and entertaining shows and much more.

Student Guide to Manayunk’s
26th Annual Arts Festival

Manayunk has been recognized as a center of historical charm in Philly, offering a small-town feel while being only minutes from Center City Philadelphia. The neighborhood’s Main Street is home to shops, businesses, bars, and restaurants, all strategically placed along the scenic Schuylkill River. The community is made up of a combination of residents who’ve been fixtures in the neighborhood for decades, and young millennials right out of college who are attracted to the social scene and young feel of the neighborhood. All of this means that Manayunk has something to offer for everyone.

This summer, Manayunk is taking advantage of its thriving social scene and beautiful outdoor location and hosting many fun events, including some that have been held for years and some that are new to 2015. One of the largest and most popular events held every year is the Manayunk Arts Festival.

The Manayunk Development Corporation will host the 26th Annual Manayunk Arts Festival on Saturday, June 20, and Sunday, June 21 this year. The event is the largest outdoor arts festival in the tri-state area, attracting nearly 200,000 guests every year. Held on Manayunk’s popular Main Street, guests come from all over to attend this fun two-day festival. Vendors, buyers, collectors, and designers alike will all be in attendance.

Main Street is home to popular bars and restaurants, many of which will be right in the center of the festival action. Many eateries will provide al fresco dining and food and drink deals for festivalgoers. Alongside these popular food spots will be individual tents holding 300 different artists from all over the country. Artists will sell their handmade items in many different categories of art, including fiberglass, ceramics, photography, wood and sculpture, painting and drawing, jewelry, and mixed media. The event will also provide an Emerging Artists tent for young artists who are just getting into the business and trying to make a name for themselves in the area, including recent graduates. Their tent will be located on the corner of Main Street and Roxborough Street at one of the busiest crossroads of the festival.

This weekend extravaganza is free (music to a college student’s ears) and open to the public, but attendees are encouraged to bring some spare cash to spend on the beautiful artisan crafts and art being sold throughout the festival, as well as on the appetizing food and drink deals that will be available along Main Street.

Since Main Street will be closed to car traffic from Green to Shurs Lane, public transportation is your best bet for getting to the festival in a timely and affordable manner. SEPTA’s Manayunk/Norristown line train drops off only a few blocks from the vendor’s tents. SEPTA bus 35 and 61 will drop guests off even closer. A shuttle bus will also be available for $3 roundtrip for adults and free for children will pick up guests at both 555 City Avenue and the Ivy Ridge train station and drop them off right in the hub of the festival, perfect for an easy ride on a student budget.

Although the event will mostly be focused on the art being displayed and sold, there will also be live music and delicious food trucks for guests to enjoy, along with the rest of the establishments along Main Street already participating.

This celebration of unlimited art and an enjoyable day of outdoor fun will be held from 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. on Sunday.

Top 5 Events: Education in Nature!

School’s out for the summer, but that doesn’t mean you should stop learning! Greater Philly offers many interesting educational experiences, both indoors and out, and the bonus is that most of them are completely free. Whether you’re in the mood to learn about plants and nature, fresh local foods, or the history of the city, Philly has some type of tour or event to offer for every kind of learner this summer, both in the heart of Philadelphia and in surrounding towns.

PECO Green Roof Tours
When: Tuesday, June 16, 5 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. Where: PECO Headquarters, 2301 Market Street Cost: $10

PECO has a 45,000 square foot green roof located on the roof of their headquarters in Center City. Completed in 2009, PECO works with the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society to maintain the green roof and the plants, as well as offering public tours and educational showings on the top of the 8-story building. The roof helps keep rainwater out of Philly’s aging sewer system, and includes a paved observation deck and an “intensive” that holds native grasses and perennials. This scenic tour can teach you about plants as well as the environmental importance of green roofs, for a low cost.

Evening Garden Tour
When: Wednesday, June 17, 7 p.m. – 8:30pm. Where: Scott Arboretum of Swarthmore College, 500 College Avenue, Swarthmore Cost: Free!

If you’re interested in learning more about plants and nature in a picturesque environment, this is the perfect tour for you. Staff from the Scott Arboretum will take visitors up to the green roof and gardens to show and teach the groups about the different types of plant collections they hold. This tour is geared towards both beginner and expert planters, as well as anyone interested in learning more about plants. The tour group will meet at the Scott Arboretum Offices and then embark to the gardens.

Eating on the Wild Side: Selecting, Storing, and Preparing Food for Taste and Nutrition. 
When: Thursday, June 18, 7 p.m. – 8pm. Where: Free Library of Northampton Township, 25 Upper Holland Road, Richboro. Cost: Free!

The Free Library of Northampton will host an educational talk with expert Susan Pierson about the importance of proper storage and preparation for your food. Pierson is an environmental educator and the President of the Bucks County Foodshed Alliance. If you want to learn where to buy the freshest locally-grown foods and how to get the most nutrition out of your food, don’t miss this informative experience!

Delaware Canal Festival
When: Friday, June 19, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. and Saturday, June 20, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. Where: The Delaware Canal (near the Calhoun Street Bridge), Morrisville Cost: Free!

Delaware Canal Festival is a two-day event filled with outdoor fun and friendly competitions. Events will include food trucks, games, art exhibits, the Bucks County Folk Song Society in concert, the River Drivers in concert, and short kayak rides up and down the canal given by the park staff. Make a day trip out to Morrisville to participate in the fun! There will also be a Cardboard Boat Float contest, a Duck Decorating contest, and the annual Decorated Boat Parade, where prizes will be awarded for the most humorous boat, the most beautiful boat, and the most creative boat, as well as Judges Choice boat and Best of Parade boat. Individuals, families, neighborhoods, businesses, and organizations are encouraged to enter the race, even if their boat is just for fun!

Historic Philadelphia Puzzling Adventure
When: Everyday for the rest of the summer, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Where: Franklin Square. Cost: $50 per group

Puzzling Adventures holds these fun events, described as a mix between a scavenger hunt and an informative guided tour, in major cities across the country. In Philly, the Puzzling Adventure is held in Old City and takes participants on an educational and interesting walking tour around Independence Mall. The tour will give your team a series of directions and questions to get you to the next location, where you can sightsee and enjoy the area before solving your next puzzle or instruction to get to the next location. Participate in a team, as a couple, or individually, and take as little or as long as you want to complete the tour. Use the discount PHFUNG for a 20% discount for your team.

Top 5 Events:
Immerse Yourself in the Arts

Philadelphia is a city thriving with art, and as a student you should immerse yourself in as many creative experiences as possible. Whether it be visual art, dance, theater, or music, there are so many opportunities to engage in the arts community first-hand. In the summer months, art exhibits of all types are held more often and are typically held outdoors in the welcoming weather. The best part of these events? They fit a college students’ budget, as most of them are free and open to the public. Here’s a list of some exciting chances to engage in different events in the art community of Philly this week!

Pasion y Arte Flamenco Co. Performance in Public Spaces 
When: Friday, June 12, 5:30 – 7:00 p.m. Where: The Porch at 30th Street Station. Cost: Free!

Pasion y Arte Flamenco is the premier all-female flamenco dance company in Philly and will be presenting an hour-long, interactive, and fun dance performance on the outdoor porch of 30th street Station. The entertaining performance will include a brief history of the Flamenco dance, Flamenco dancers and musicians from the company, live music, and an invitation for audience members to join in the Flamenco dancing and have fun.

ARTspiration!
When: Saturday, June 13, 10 a.m.- 3 p.m. Where: Fleisher Art Memorial, 719 Catharine Street. Cost: Free!

Fleisher will be holding its annual community arts festival ARTspiration!, which has become so popular it is often attended by more than 2,000 people. This free event that was started in 2007 will be held on Catharine Street right outside Fleisher’s historic campus. This festival will cater to all ages and offer a look into the creativity and art that is so present in Philadelphia. Activities include music and dance performances and art-making activities led by local artists.

West Park Arts Fest
When: Saturday, June 13, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Where: West Park Cultural Center, 4201 Parkside Avenue. Cost: Free!

The 8th annual West Park Arts Fest will be held at the West Park Cultural Center and celebrate different cultures and the diverse community of Philadelphia through music and dance. The celebration will include outdoor singers and performers, cultural dance groups, and activities for children such as arts and crafts under a pavilion.

Graffito Works at Shofuso House
When: Sunday, June 14, 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. Where: Shofuso Japanese House and Garden, Landsdowne Drive and Horticultural Drive. Cost: Free after admission!

Graffito Works is an interactive, site-specific dance performance that is open to the public, and is choreographed and directed by Steven Weisz. The on-site dance will show audience members a collaborative and thoughtful work as the dancers improvisational skills are shown through their interactions with each other, the site, and objects around them.

Open Spaces: An Art in the Open Exhibition
When: Tuesday June 16, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Where: Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, 8480 Hagys Mill Road. Cost: Free!

The scenic and nature-oriented Schuylkill Center is hosting their Open Spaces outdoor arts exhibition. Nine artists will present their work both indoors and on the trails of the Schuylkill Center. These artists spent three days creating their work in public, some artists creating string and ribbon sculptures, and leaving their creative processes visible to audience members. The event will also hold a reception to celebrate these talented artists and offer light refreshments in the gallery, along with a guided walk to the outdoor works.

Top 5 Events: Get Your Food On!

Philadelphians, want to get your foodie on this summer? Philadelphia is full of unique, exciting, and delicious food, restaurants, and world-renowned chefs. During the summer months when the weather is beautiful and the city is pumping with energy, many different food tours are offered throughout the city so residents and visitors can learn the best local spots for the tastiest eats. You may have to splurge on a few of these tours, but it’s worth it for these once-in-a-lifetime scrumptious events. Read on for some of the most exciting food events this summer that offer a wide array of food spots throughout different neighborhoods in the city!

Authentic Philadelphia Food Tour
When: Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays until November. Where: Chew Philly Food Tours, 4653 Umbria Street, Manayunk. Cost: $34.

Tour-goers have the opportunity to learn about and explore historic Manayunk while tasting traditional Philly favorites, like the soft pretzel, tomato pie and cheesesteaks. All of the tour guides are born-and-raised Philadelphians who can offer insider tips and secrets on the history and culture of the neighborhood, as well as bringing tour goers to the best family-owned delis, bakeries and restaurants.

Ethnic Eats Tour
When: Sundays from 1:30-4:30 p.m., starting June 7. Where: Various locations throughout South Philadelphia. Cost: $39.

The Ethnic Eats food tour is the only food tour in South Philly that strays from the traditional Italian Market in the area and focuses on all the diverse immigrants livening up the area with their ethnic and yummy eats. The experienced tour guides will take visitors to a taqueria, a Vietnamese restaurant, a Thai restaurant, and an Asian supermarket, where they can enjoy a full lunch of delicious cultural foods. The tour also prides themselves on being the only tour group allowed to take their visitors inside the shrine of a Buddhist Temple.

Farmers’ Market at Dilworth Park
When: Wednesdays from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Where: Dilworth Park, Center City. Cost: Free, depending on what food you purchase.

If you’re looking for a less pricey option to experience some local foods, farmers’ markets are never out of style! Dilworth Park partners with Farm to City, a program that brings fresh, healthy and locally-grown food into urban environments. You can never go wrong with healthy, organic foods that come straight from the farm!

Flavors of Philly Tour
When: Mondays-Saturdays 1:30 – 4 p.m., Sundays 11 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Where: Center City Philadelphia. Cost: $29.

Flavors of Philly Tour offers a laid-back, funny, and traditional Philly experience, highlighting some of the most popular Philly food favorites in the heart of Center City. Guides will take tour-goers on an entertaining ride through Philly’s history and tell stories of how the iconic foods of the city came to be, culminating in a huge meal that includes authentic Philly favorites — cheesesteaks, cheese whiz fries, tomato pie, soft pretzels, sweets, and famous 4th street cookies.

Eating East Passyunk Tour
When: Saturdays 3 – 5 p.m. until August 29. Where: 1601 East Passyunk Avenue. Cost: $35

This tour takes guests on an interesting and educational tour of the iconic East Passyunk neighborhood in South Philly. Tour guides will start at one end and take guests through the avenue, highlighting many local bars, restaurants, murals and other landmarks along the street. The street came from humble beginnings and became known for its delicious Italian eateries, but food fans have recently been calling East Passyunk the city’s contemporary Restaurant Row — you don’t want to miss out on this insider tour of the city’s new culinary center.

All Summer: PECO’s Multicultural
Series at Penn’s Landing

Philadelphia is known for being a hub of diversity and a melting pot of many different cultures, all mixed together within the city’s limits. Every summer for the past 15 years, PECO has held a multicultural festival at Philly’s own Penn’s Landing, where a different culture is featured nearly every weekend from June to September. This fun outdoor festival series is meant to celebrate all the different cultures in Philly and offer diverse entertainment every weekend at the Great Plaza stage. It’s no surprise that PECO hosts this annual event, because they are one of Philadelphia’s most civically active corporations – they sponsor many community programs and organizations, specifically in culture, education, environment, and economic development. This summer-long festival series is educational in the sense that attendees can learn about many different cultures, but also entertaining and perfect for all ages. All the events are free and open to the public, so this season-length celebration should be at the top of your summer bucket list!

The multicultural series kicks off with the Irish Festival on Sunday, June 7, from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. This day is focused on celebrating the luck of the Irish, offering food, music, and Irish dancers and bands performing their complex routines. There will also be merchants selling traditional Irish goods, making for an educational and interesting family-friendly day.

The next event will be the Islamic Heritage Festival on Saturday, June 13, from 2 p.m. – 8 p.m. The weekend starts off with the Unity in Diversity Parade, which begins near the Historic District and will make its way through Old City and end at Penn’s Landing. Following the parade, the Islamic Festival will offer boat rides, a health and wellness fair, kid-friendly games, face painting, free prizes, and a traditional open-air market bazaar. The event will also host singers and entertainers for the audience to enjoy — in past years, artists have included famous jazz artists, Muslim rap artists, and R&B artists.

Following the Islamic festival, the Portuguese Heritage Festival will be held on Sunday, June 21, from 1 p.m. – 7 p.m. The purpose of the Portuguese Festival is to show Philadelphians how Portuguese immigrants have contributed to the well-being of the city through their work. Merchants set up around the event will offer traditional Portuguese dishes and wines for free samples or purchases. Every year during the festival, the Tall Ship Gazela, a Portuguese ship home ported in Philadelphia, is blessed in front of the crowd. The blessing of the ship along with displays of Portuguese art, performances of folklore dance groups, and international music playing is meant to give local Philadelphians a glimpse into the history of the Portuguese culture in their region.

Next is the Hispanic Fiesta, held the weekend of July 11, from 2 p.m. – 8 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. The Hispanic event is the most popular of all the cultural festivals held at Penn’s Landing and attracts more than 15,000 people each day. The event is meant to raise awareness of Latino culture in Philadelphia and offers a fun celebration of music, dance, and entertainment from top Latino artists that attract a large audience. The celebration also offers delicious ethnic foods and traditional, handmade crafts from many Latin American countries.

The next celebration is held by the African Cultural Alliance of North America on Sunday, August 2, from 2 p.m. – 8 p.m. The African Festival is mostly recognized as a concert offering a wide range of African entertainment, varying from traditional African dance to popular modern dance and reggae music performances. The concert is free and will also include vendors selling authentic African cuisine, clothing, and pieces of art.

Following the ACANA Festival is the Festival of India, held on Saturday, August 15, from 1 p.m. – 7 p.m. This celebration of Indian culture is hosted by the Council of Indian Organizations and is held on the same date of India’s Independence Day. Thousands come to attend this vibrant collection of Indian art, music, dance, and cuisine, which offers something for the whole family.

Next is the Caribbean Festival, which takes place on Sunday, August 18, from 12 p.m. – 8 p.m. Currently in its 28th year, the Caribbean Festival celebrates the culture and unique music from 14 different Caribbean islands. The festival this year will offer a children’s corner for child-friendly activities, a Caribbean “workshop” to learn more about the culture and a Caribbean marketplace with traditional island foods. Most importantly, the festival is used to raise scholarship funds for college students of Caribbean descent.

The Mexican Independence Day Festival is on Sunday, September 13, from 1 p.m. – 7 p.m. Planned to commemorate the independence of Mexico, the celebration offers traditional arts and crafts, tasty Mexican cuisine, face painting, prizes, and popular Mexican rock bands.

The last event to wrap up this season of PECO’s multicultural festivals is the Brazilian Day Festival, which will be held on Sunday, September 20, from 1 p.m. – 7 p.m. This festival will demonstrate true Brazilian culture through its authentic music and dance performances with all the popular rhythms and dances from Brazil. Performers will showcase the samba, forro, pagode, capoeira, samba-reggae, and more.

Throughout the wide variety of cultural festivals held this summer, local residents and tourists alike will have the chance to learn and engage in new, exciting cultures on the shores of the scenic Delaware River Waterfront. What better way to spend your relaxing summer weekends than learning about cultures that are all around you in your city?

Top 5 Events: Get Fit Under the Sun

Many people imagine their days off in the summer months at the beach or on their back porch, lying on a chair and baking under the hot sun with a cool drink in hand. As relaxing as it is to spend an entire day reading a book and sunbathing, it feels even better to be active and not let the lazy summer days get the best of you. It’s important to get that daily dose of Vitamin D during the summer when the sun is always out, but there are many ways to be more active while still getting your daily dose of sunshine. There are countless outdoor activities available for Philadelphians to enjoy this summer — here’s a list of some outdoor options to get your daily workout in under the sun.

Fishtown Beer Runners
When: Every Thursday at 7 p.m. Where: Start at 2346 E Susquehanna Ave Cost: Free!

Fishtown Beer Runners is a club of runners from all over the city who gather once a week to run three to five miles and end at a local pub for some post-run beers. The FBRs were voted Best Running Club by Philadelphia Magazine “Best Of Philly” awards in 2012 and 2013. The FBRs started their club after learning about a study done by doctors that beer can actually hydrate you after exercise. If you’re a runner and also like to socialize and have a couple drinks, this club is a fun way to get your daily exercise in around the city. 21+.

Yoga On the Banks
When: Tuesday, Saturday, and Sunday mornings. Where: Grass area at 25th and Locust, near the Schuylkill River Banks Boardwalk. Cost: Free, donations are appreciated

Yoga On the Banks was started in April 2014 when a yoga teacher was inspired by the success of Yoga on the Pier and the yoga program on the Delaware River and wanted to bring accessible outdoor yoga to the western part of Philly. This year, Yoga On the Banks has grown with an expanded class schedule and expanded teacher base. Yoga in itself is a great way to get in touch with your inner zen, but outdoor yoga provides even more inner- freedom and relaxation with the fresh air and green surroundings.

Indego Bike Sharing
When: Bikes available 24/7, 365 days a year. Where: Stations located throughout Center City and Delaware River area. Cost: Without a membership, $4 for every 1/2 hour.

Philly is also becoming more easily accessible with it’s newest innovation, Indego Bike Sharing. With over 600 self-service bikes and 60 stations strategically placed around communities, Indego makes it easy and cheap for Philadelphians to ride around and get some fresh air on a nice day, or to use the bikes as their sole mode of transportation around the city. Whatever you decide to use Indego for, it’s simple, clean, reliable, and a great workout.

Canoe with Perks
When: Every Thursday from mid-May – September. Where: John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove. Cost: $15

If you’re looking for an excuse to get out of the city and into the greener suburbs, a guided canoe tour on a quaint creek can be just what you need for your short getaway. The price includes a canoe, oars, a lifejacket, and a guided tour by one of the Perkiomen Creek educators. The guide will take you on a relaxing and informative tour of the scenic nature around the creek, pointing out animals, bugs, and trees. This calm afternoon of nature on a canoe is a great way to stay active, not to mention, it’s much cooler in the woods.

Saturday Wellness Walks
When: Last Saturday of every month at 2 p.m. Where: Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, 8480 Hagys Mill Rd, Philadelphia Cost: Free!

The Schuylkill Center offers a Wellness Walk for adults, an invigorating walk through their scenic nature trails. The walk is led at a moderate pace on a generally level trail, giving participants friendly companions, open skies, and clear air. If you’re feeling lazy or sluggish in the summer heat, take advantage of the opportunity to replenish and re-fuel your health and mind through the peace of nature.

Top 5 Events : Experience the Arts

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to be rolling in the dough to enjoy art galleries and museums. Some of the most talented visual artists have work that can be viewed for free, as long as city-goers know when and where to go to experience this beautiful art. College students, this means you. Keep reading for a list of different art (and sometimes music) exhibits available in Philly this week — and all for free.

Craft Phila – Liberty Bell Fair
When: Saturday May 16, 10 a.m. – 7 p.m., Sunday May 17, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.Where: Independence Square (20 South 6th Street) Cost: Free!

Come out to the center of historic Philadelphia in Old City and enjoy an open-air artists and makers fair right across from the famous Liberty Bell. The fair will feature beautifully handmade craft and wares, visual arts, and fashion, all by talented independent artists from the area. The event will also offer delicious food from some of Philly’s top food trucks, craft brews, musicians and performers, prizes, and take-home crafts for children.

Word & Image: Contemporary Artists Connect to Fraktur
When: Monday April 13 – Sunday June 14 Where: Free Library of Philadelphia (1901 Vine Street) Cost: Free!

This intriguing exhibition is one of two held by the Free Library as part of their Framing Fraktur event, a three-month celebration of the manuscript art made by German immigrants known as Fraktur. This particular exhibit displays drawings, paintings, woodblock prints, and embroideries by seven international artists who created their work to convey their respective cultures.

Chester County Studio Tour
When: Saturday, May 16, 10 a.m. -6 p.m.; Sunday, May 17, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Where: Throughout Chester County Cost: Free!

A 2-day tour event featuring 100 artists and 47 studios, CCST encourages local art-lovers to view one of their maps, browse through participating artists, and pick a road to follow and stop at local studios along the way. The event has charted scenic roads for viewers to travel along until they reach all, or a few, of the studio destinations. Each studio features different types of visual art.

Kensington Kenetic Sculpture Derby & Arts Festival
When: Saturday May 16, 12 p.m. – 6 p.m. Where: Trenton Avenue and Norris Street Cost: Free!

The Philadelphia Federal Credit Union is hosting this 9th annual fun, wacky, outdoor festival in the Kensington neighborhood. Local residents call it the “best day in the neighborhood.” It will feature nearly 200 art vendors along with a parade of human-powered sculptural floats. This non-traditional design competition encourages creativity and a sense of community through the hilarious costumes and quirkly float themes.

Haverford Spring Fest
When: Sunday May 17, 12 p.m. – 7 p.m. Where: 2 Brookline Blvd, Havertown Cost: Free, but $2 donation encouraged

Haverford Spring Fest is a celebration of spring and the blooming art and music culture of Haverford township. The festival will include art and business vendors and a performance lineup that includes generations of headliners from Philly’s music scene, along with food, drinks, and a fun zone for kids. This is a perfect chance to enjoy the outdoors in the new spring weather and celebrate a sense of community with neighbors.