‘Tis the Season To-Do: Must-Attend Holiday Happenings

2017 Franklin Square Holiday Festival 
200 N 6th St | Now until December 21
For the 21-plus crowd, the Winter Beer Garden will be open in the evenings. Gather by the outdoor fire pits to drink craft beers, wine and specialty cocktails. To eat, there will be empanadas, latkes, turkey legs, soup, churros, fried Oreos, pie and other bites from Squareburger. Ben’s Sweets & Treats also will be back, but with a new gourmet hot chocolate bar and s’more-making station.

College Nights at the Rothman Rink
Dilworth Park by City Hall | Thursdays | Now until February 22
College students pay $2 admission to the Rothman Rink with student ID (skate rental not included).  On Wednesdays, 21+’ers can enjoy the weekly Cocktails and Cold Ones event.

The Christmas Village in Philadelphia
LOVE Park | November 23 – December 24
Modeled after traditional European open-air Christmas markets, Christmas Village in Philadelphia is a daily outdoor holiday market selling all sorts of gift-able items right in the heart of Center City.

Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest
101 South Columbus Blvd | November 24 – March 4  
Philadelphia’s largest outdoor ice skating rink and winter wonderland is open seven days a week, including all holidays. This seasonal winter park, includes a beautifully lit landscape featuring a majestic holiday tree, outdoor seating area with fire pits, cozy warming cabins, the Franklin Fountain Confectionary Cabin,  and a chalet-inspired Lodge with food and beverages from local restauranteurs.

Historic Holiday Nights in Old City
2nd and Market St 
| Thursdays, 5-8PM |  November 30 – December 28
The kickoff celebration will take place on Nov. 30 at 5PM at the Betsy Ross House courtyard (239 Arch Street) and will feature Betsy Ross, carolers, and the new Old City District Design Tree.  Fezziwig’s Sweet Shoppe will offer seasonal sips and snacks. Visitors can enjoy $1 off admission at the Betsy Ross House, which will offer extended hours until 8:00 p.m. 

Holiday Meet Up: Ugly Sweater Party (21+) 
Philadelphia Museum of Art | Friday, December 1 | Free for Young Friends
Spiked hot chocolate, anyone? Grab your favorite ugly holiday sweater and have a drink with us in the Members’ Lounge.

Punk Rock Flea Market: Holiday Edition
BOK Building, 1901 S 9th St | December 16 – 17
Find one of a kind holiday gifts for your family and friends at the The Punk Rock Flea Market! Over 100 vendors per day, different vendors each day! $3 to enter, entry good for both days. The event is in the Boy’s Gym of the BOK building, enter on Mifflin St.

Stag & Doe Nights in Chestnut Hill 
16 E Highland Ave | Wednesdays | December 6th, 13th and 20th
Stroll along the festive Germantown Avenue and enjoy extended store hours (until 9 PM) along with holiday sales and promotions throughout the Chestnut Hill shopping district. Celebrate the season with live entertainment, seasonal treats, dazzling lights, and a visit from the jolly old elf, himself. 

Local Festivals, Free Museum Days + More!

There’s never a dull calendar week in Philadelphia! We have festivals,  a celebrity sighting, free (or almost free) museum days, plus more in this week’s rundown. 

Festivals happening right now:

First Person Arts Festival
November 5 – 18
Philadelphia Jewish Film Festival
November 4 – 19
CraftNOW Philadelphia |
November 1 – December 8

Coming up:

Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival | November 9 – 19
Philly Zine Fest | November 12

Tuesday, November 7

An Eagles player could be your barista on Tuesday… See for yourself at Saxbys New Café Preview Party.

Wednesday, November 8

Pay-What-You-Wish Wednesday at the Philadelphia Museum of Art is one of our favorite midweek activities.

If you’re 21+ and a Drake fan, you have to check out So Far Gone aka #DrakeNightSFG at The Fillmore in Fishtown!

Thursday, November 9

Make your way down the Parkway for an evening of ‘out of this world’ astronomy activities hosted by Franklin Institute Chief Astronomer Derrick Pitts at Night Skies in the Observatory at the Franklin Institute. 

Friday, November 10

Celebrate International Science Center and Science Museum Day at the Franklin Institute.  Free demonstrations, activities, and live shows will promote sustainability, environmental responsibility, and biological innovation + more!

Saturday, November 11

The National Constitution Center will be honoring Veterans Day with free admission to all visitors.  Following your visit to the Constitution Center,  stroll down to the Museum of the American Revolution for their Veterans Day Weekend activities.

Looking for more things to get into? Campus Philly’s event calendar is full of local events picked especially for Philadelphia students!

Free Hoagies, Fireworks and More to Ring in the Fourth!

When you’re the birthplace of America, you have to bring the party on your birthday! We have lot of years –241, to be exact– to celebrate and events all around the city to do just that. Below are our weekly picks plus Fourth of July festivities.

Pay a visit to the Philadelphia Museum of Art at visit on Pay-What-You-Wish Wednesday.

After you gallery gaze, star gaze while watching  a free outdoor movie screening of E.T. the Extraterrestrial at FringeArts.

21+’ers can cool off with a cold one at any of these outdoor beer gardens.

Meet us on the National Constitution Center’s lawn to celebrate the 25th annual Wawa Hoagie Day happening this Thursday, June 29 from 12 to 2 p.m. Enjoy a 6-ton hoagie salute, free Wawa hoagies, a hoagie building competition between police and firefighters and more!

Start your day with hoagies and end it with Old City Eats! Every Thursday from 5 to 8 p.m., thirty Old City restaurants and bars will be offering great food deals.

F is for Friday and FREE! Enjoy free admission to the Penn Museum and Eastern State Penitentiary. Catch a free concert and fireworks at the Philadelphia Orchestra’s Free Neighborhood Concert Series. Speaking of fireworks, be sure to take advantage of all the festivities to celebrate America’s birthday in America’s birthplace!

On Saturday, head to 40th and Walnut for a special Independence Day Weekend edition of Philly’s favorite street food festival, Night Market, brought to you by The Food Trust and Wawa Welcome America.

And the cherry on top? Watching a free screening of Rocky at the famous Philadelphia Museum of Art’s steps on Sunday night.

This is just a sample of what’s going on this summer! For more events, check out our up-to-date calendar and Facebook events page  for more ways to explore and experience Philadelphia.

P.S. If you’re interning in Philadelphia, get on the list for Tuesday, July 18’s My Philly Summer Party on the Free Library of Philadelphia roof deck!

Museum Yoga, Secret Shows, Muses and More

With arms wide open, we’re welcoming the warm weather and all that comes with a summer in Philly, like all the awesome events. Speaking of open, becoming an Open Arts member is the key to unlocking the city’s arts and culture scene. To join, use promo code: social1617. As a member, you’ll get to see tons of cool stuff for almost half the price or FREE!

Wednesday Nights at the Philadelphia Museum of Art
5 to 9 p.m. | 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway | FREE for Open Arts members

Relax. Refresh. Be inspired. Enjoy Pay What You Wish admission to the main building every
Wednesday from 5:00 to 8:45 pm. Gallery Tours 6:00-7:00 pm Join a guide and take a stroll through the galleries to learn about art and the people who created it. Yoga 6:00 – 7:00 pm Get centered with Dhyana Yoga.

Moses Williams: Cutter of Profiles
Wednesday, May 17 at 6 p.m. | Wagner Free Institute of Science, 1700 W. Montgomery Avenue | Free for Open Arts members 

Williams was a “cutter of profiles”—meaning he created cut silhouette portraits that Peale Museum visitors could take away as souvenirs. Join Dr. Gwendolyn Shaw, Associate Professor of History of Art at the University of Pennsylvania, to explore the life and work of Mr. Williams, and how his story illuminates hidden narratives about race, identity, and art in the age of Peale’s museum.

The Museum as Muse
Thursday, May 18 | Philadelphia Magic Gardens, 1020 South Street | $20 for Open Arts members

Artists of all levels can drop in to draw, paint, or photograph in PMG’s unique environment. Take advantage of an instructor offering tips and critiques as well as nude figure models posing amongst the mosaics. Bring your easel or tripod and capture PMG in a rare private setting. 

Secret Show: MR Stine at the Painted Bride Art Center
Monday, May 22  at 7 p.m. | 230 Vine Street | $10 for Open Arts members

Every 4th Monday of the month, Secret Show invites emerging and esteemed local artists to take over the Painted Bride to produce the hour-long artistic experience of their dreams. The catch? You can’t know any details about the show until the lights go down and the curtain rises!


New events are posted regularly on Open Arts, so be sure to check back. In addition to our Arts calendar, you can reference our curated events calendar for fun things to do.

Philly To-Do: Take a Hike!

What immediately comes to mind when you think of Philly? We bet it’s not the nearby trails you can hike or bike on or weekend street closures for pedestrian activities. Yeah, we have all that! That’s why we’re going to give you a different, greener view of the area surrounding Philadelphia.

And lucky for you, getting there will be a breeze! Zipcar is offering students $10 of driving credit (1 hour of driving) by using promo code: CampusPhillySpring  (Expires 5/15/17) and will be valid for 2 weeks after redemption. Not a Zipcar member yet? Join now and cash in on that driving credit!

Weekends on Kelly Drive
From April through October, MLK Drive, which runs through Fairmount Park, is closed off to cars every Saturday and Sunday from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. so that runners, cyclists and pedestrians can use the lanes freely. Read more here.

Field Guide: 8 Hikes Near Philadelphia With Waterfalls and Gorgeous Views
As a Northeastern PA native, I am partial to Ricketts Glen State Park! Who doesn’t love a good waterfall? This summer,  I am definitely checking out the other 7 spots.

Under-the-Radar Bike Trails Around Philly
Katie Monroe, founder of the Facebook group Women Bike PHL, spills on her favorite less-crowded bike trails around town.

The top three hiking destinations within 10 miles of Philly
On a nice weekend, you’ll probably find some of Campus Philly’s staff hiking or biking along the Wissahickon.

Free Saturday Public Boating at Bartram’s Garden 
Every Saturday from 11am–3pm (in season), the public can explore the Schuylkill River by rowboat or kayak from the Bartram’s Garden Community Boathouse. Our 2017 season runs from April 22 to October 28.

In addition to giving you something, Zipcar is giving back! They currently have a wrapped vehicle with United By Blue – each hour the vehicle is reserved a $1 will be donated back to them. Now that’s a nice ride!

Whatever path you choose to drive down, we want to know about it! Share your road trip adventures on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter and tag @CampusPhilly #ZipTrip.



Philly To-Do: Intern Dan’s Weekly Picks

This week get out and celebrate finales, grand openings, free admissions and a neighborhood’s twist on Restaurant Week!

Black History Month Finale

Today marks the last day of Black History Month. Throughout the month, there have been many events at various locations, it’s not too late to partake in the festivities. Black History Untold wraps up their month-long event tonight at WHYY Studios, and workshops such as A Taste of African Heritage at the Parkway Central Library

Museum galore this Sunday

This Sunday at The Barnes Foundation will be completely free as part of their Free First Sunday! Every first Sunday of each month traverse the galleries and check out the Person of the Crowd: The Contemporary Art of Flânerie exhibit, all for free!

If, the Barnes wasn’t enough to satisfy your art craving, the Philadelphia Museum of Art kicks off their Pay-What-You-Wish Sundays this week. Every first Sunday of each month, visitors will be able to pay as much as they wish to enjoy exhibits like American Watercolor.

Franklin Square

Spring is in the air, with Franklin Square officially opening March 1st . Franklin Square is a great spot to hangout and enjoy the great weather with food, drinks, mini-golf and more.

East Passyunk Restaurant Week

And you thought restaurant week was over. This week reserve your table at a number of restaurants participating in East Passyunk Restaurant Week . For just $15, $25, or $35 experience a 3 course meal on a range of diverse foods!




Philly To-Do: Weekend Edition

Well, that snow storm was a bust! Lucky for you that means that the sidewalks will be clear for all your weekend adventures. Below we’re giving you some inspiration to get off campus and out into the Philadelphia streets.

–For one night only! Grab a FREE cake shake at P’unk Burger!

–Whether you have one sweetheart or a whole crew of Galentines, you’re bound to find a Valentine’s event to hit up.

— From traditional Mexican to spaghetti and meatballs,  discover international flavors locally! If you’re feeling generous, check out Philly spots who donate to good causes. 

— Round up your roommates and plan a Philly field trip to South Street or Center City.

— Check out the many ways you can celebrate Black History Month in Philadelphia.

Whatever you do this weekend, remember that there’s no right or wrong way to create memories in this great city! If you want to share your adventures, tag @CampusPhilly on Twitter or Instagram.

Philly To-Do: Black History Month

Take advantage of the many events Philadelphia has to offer including performances, workshops, and discussions to stay entertained, enlightened, and most importantly, engaged. Below are some events and activities that celebrate the importance of Black History Month tailored around a college student’s budget.

February 3:  Films at AAMP: Black Girl + Merkato

AAMP is where you want to be for Black History Month. In continuation of their screening events, AAMP will be screening the 1966 classic Black Girl which chronicles the life of a young Senegalese woman who struggles with life in France working for a wealthy white couple. Following this screening comes an original documentary film by Philadelphia filmmaker Sosena Solomon titled Merkato. Merkato explores Africa’s largest open-air market in Ethiopia, covering the ethos of the community. Once again, the screening event is open to the public and free with RSVP. Doors open at 6pm, with the films scheduled to start at 7pm.

February 8: PHILADANCO – The Great Mix, Jazz and Dance @ The Merriam Theater

Dance your way over to the Merriam Theater, then sit back and admire this performance by PHILADANCO. The dance ensemble pays tribute to jazz icons with music from Earth Wind and Fire. Get there early, as doors open at 11:00 AM. The event is also free to the public.

February 20: The Story of We the People @ The National Constitution Center

Thanks to the good folks at TD Bank, the events are FREE on President’s Day. There are 4 main exhibitions at the Constitution Center starting with the Breaking Barriers Show. Breaking Barriers is an interactive exhibit which delves into the lives of notable African Americans such as Jackie Robinson, Thurgood Marshall, and Bessie Coleman. Next is, Decoding The Document: Emancipation Proclamation Workshop. Get a closer look at the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendment that only the Constitution Center can provide. Pickup a flier and get started on the African American History Self-Guided Tour. The tour highlights important moments throughout African American history, including artifacts from President Obama’s inauguration. Finish with the Giant Game Board Activity which tests your knowledge of African American history!

The events run through the month of February, however admission on President’s Day is completely free, so don’t miss this opportunity!

February 25African Cultures Day @ the Penn Museum

Experience the entire gamut of African culture at the Penn Museum. African Cultures Day at the Penn Museum is filled with a slew of activities, from performances, and crafts, to games and interactive explorations. Admission to the museum is $10 for Students with ID, starting at 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM!

February 28Black History Untold @ WHYY Studios

As Black History Month comes to a close, it’s important to not only reflect on the culture of black history, but to also revel in the present and future of black culture. Join WHYY as they bring their Black History Untold series to an end. If you’re not familiar with the series, Black History Untold uncovers the full story of black history through the lens of local black leaders. Through personal essays these leaders share their thoughts on black happiness. The event will include live entertainment, a panel discussion, and networking opportunities from 5:30pm to 7:45pm with a reduced price of $10 for Students with college ID!


Pop! Goes the Bubble: Expand Your Experience

We have a challenge for you that shouldn’t be challenging at all! Are you up for it? You’ve been assigned the semester-long task of trying new things and planning off-campus adventures. It’s easy to stay on campus and hang out at your regular spots, but we want you to know that there’s so much more to experience! Below you’ll find motivation to roll up your sleeves, lace up your shoes and hit the Philly pavement. You have to admit that’s the best homework assignment you’ve ever received.

Sign up to become an Open Arts member  by using the promo code: social1617. Once you’re a member, you can take advantage of the free or discounted tickets to fantastic arts and culture events happening all over Philadelphia.

Speaking of Open Arts, we’re partnering with some of Philly’s best venues for THREE cool, creative and exclusive Open Arts College Night Series this spring!  You should check out one (or all!) of these upcoming events:

  • Opening Night at the Opera on Friday, February 10
  • Sittin’ In at the Kimmel Center on Wednesday, February 15
  • Pennsylvania Ballet’s Romance on Friday, April 7

Are you attending the very popular Inclusive Leadership Conference on February 11? If so, here’s what to expect at ILC and what to do before and after

Commit to get fit! Philly has so many great (and FREE) fitness meetups and groups.

Become an active participant in your community. How? Get to know organizations who need your great mind and helping hands. There are a lot of resources on how to take action and make an impact.

Go beyond the dining hall and explore the flavors of Philadelphia! From grabbing a coffee to ending your night with a sweet treat, we hope our suggestions will get your stomach gears turning. Looking to treat yourself? Make reservations during Center City District’s Restaurant Week!

Lace up your ice skates at Blue Cross RiverRink or Rothman Rink! Not into skating? No worries. While you’re friends are doing laps around the rink, you can be lapping up some hot chocolate in their cozy lodge areas.

Explore local museums for FREE. Did you know that The Barnes Foundation offers students free weekday admission? They do! Here are the details on planning your visit. Have you heard about Pay-What-You-Wish Wednesday at the Philadelphia Museum of Art? After 5 p.m., you can pay what you wish to tour the entire museum and participate in museum activities like Dhyana Yoga and more! P.S. Always check our Open Arts calendar for other museum deals.

Always check our events calendar. We hand pick events just for you!

Philly To-Do: Inclusive Leadership Conference Weekend

This year’s Inclusive Leadership Conference’s theme is Finding Your Voice: Advocating for Inclusion & Respect. We all come from different experiences, backgrounds, and are born with different skills and passions. No voice should be the same. Maybe you know your voice or maybe you want to discover it. In either case, we want you to leave the conference with the motivation to (re)disover your voice, the knowledge on how you should use your voice, and ways in which to flex your voice!

Just like no voice is the same, no city is the same. Welcome to Philadelphia the City of Brotherly Love and Sisterly Affection! We’re home to passionate sports fans, the Rocky steps, cheesesteaks, world-class museums, the Liberty Bell and so much more.

Below you’ll find what’s on our radar for the weekend of  #ILCPhilly:

1. Open Arts College Night: Opening Night at the Opera 
Address: Academy of Music 240 S Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19102
When: Friday, February 10 at 8 p.m.

Opera Philadelphia will be providing $10 Advanced Rush tickets to students for opening night of Tancredi, a medieval story of chivalry and tragic love in post-World War I Europe. Grab your friends and dress-up for a night out with the Opera at the Academy of Music!

Register here for $10 Advanced Rush tickets.  Make sure to select the February 10th, 2017 date.

2. Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest
Address: 101 S Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19147
Hours of Operation: Friday: 1pm – 12:30pm / Saturday: 11am - 12:30pm / Sunday: 11am - 10:30pm.

Blue Cross RiverRink is now in its 23rd year as an outdoor ice skating rink and fourth season as Winterfest. The regulation-sized rink offers daily public skating sessions, skate rentals, sharpening, and free season-long events and entertainment.

Surrounding the rink you’ll find a beautifully lit landscape featuring a majestic holiday tree, outdoor seating area with fire pits, cozy warming cabins, the Franklin Fountain Confectionary Cabin, the Kids Lodge with arcade games, and a chalet-inspired Lodge with food and beverages from Garces and Chickie’s and Pete’s. With the Delaware River to the east and the Ben Franklin Bridge to the north, it makes for a spectacular winter scene!

3. The Barnes Foundation / Museum
Address: 2025 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy, Philadelphia, PA 19130
Hours of Operation:
Open Wed–Mon: 10 am–5 pm. Also open 6–9 pm every First Friday and select Friday evenings.

Immerse yourself in the greatest private collection of impressionist, post-impressionist and early-modern paintings. Explore more than 3,000 masterpieces, including 181 Renoirs, 69 Cézannes, 59 Matisses, 46 Picassos, 16 Modiglianis, and 7 Van Goghs, plus textiles, metalwork, decorative objects, African sculpture, Native American ceramics and jewelry, and Pennsylvania German furniture.

4. Run the Rocky Steps!
Address: Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy, Philadelphia, PA 19130
Price: Totally free

If you visit the Barnes or take a walk down Benjamin Franklin Parkway, you’ll be close to the steps that Rocky Balboa famously conquered. Running up the steps and pumping your fist is a Philly-must. We’ve all done it! At the top, you’ll find a beautiful view of the city—perfect photo opportunity.

5. Jurassic World: The Exhibition at the Franklin Institute
Address: 222 N 20th St, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Hours of Operation: Daytime (9:30am – 5:00pm) / Evening (5:00pm – 8:00pm)*

As the whole, the Institute is awesome. Their current exhibit, which runs until April, is all about the Jurassic World dinosaurs. We know someone who recently went and it’s the real deal, even with props from the movies! Get closer to dinosaurs than ever before in Jurassic World: The Exhibition! Based on one of the biggest blockbusters in cinema history, the Exhibition immerses audiences of all ages in scenes inspired by the beloved film.  Now, the park that was only a promise comes to life…right before your eyes.

6. Get historic in Old City!
Looking to turn back time and stroll the streets our Founding Fathers walked down? Grab hot drinks from one of the many coffee shops in the area and be charmed by the oldest buildings in our city. Speaking of old, you can head down to Elfreth’s Alley, our nation’s oldest residential street. Of course, you can rip a page out of Philadelphia’s history textbook and check out the National Constitution Center, Independence Mall and the Liberty Bell!