Philadelphia ends 2017 with a (firework-filled) bang, and the explosion of awesome happenings continues right into 2018 with a January brimming with blockbuster events.
To spruce up those chilly nights, the super-popular Center City District Restaurant Week returns with the perfect, three-course opportunity to try some of the city's best restaurants and eateries.
Meanwhile, the Philadelphia Auto Show rolls into the Pennsylvania Convention Center at the end of the month, offering attendees the chance to check out hundreds of the coolest cars around.
For those looking to get outside, both the Rothman Ice Rink and the Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest invite visitors to lace up and hit the rink before relaxing with a post-skate hot cocoa or cocktail.
And for an indoor excursion, major exhibitions like Terracotta Warriors of the First Emperor at The Franklin Institute and Kiefer Rodin at the Barnes Foundation are open and ready for exploration.
SugarHouse Casino Mummers Parade
New Year’s Day is about celebrating, and there’s no better place to fête than the Philadelphia’s Mummers Parade. MONDAY, JANUARY 1, 2018
During the Mummers Parade, an only-in-Philadelphia New Year’s Day tradition that dates back to 1901, thousands of men, women and children delight and dazzle crowds with feathers, sequins, music and merriment during a day-long romp along Broad Street. Stretching from City Hall to Washington Avenue, the parade offers plenty of spots exist to catch all of the action. Indoors, watch the Fancy Brigade Finale competition at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, where clubs perform their Broadway-style music-and-dance routines for prizes and bragging rights.
A Longwood Christmas
Thousands of holiday plants take center stage at the expansive Longwood Gardens this holiday season. THROUGH SUNDAY, JANUARY 7, 2018
Thousands of topiaries, wreaths, mirrors and floating cranberries, apples and gilded walnuts transform Longwood Gardens’ heated, four-acre, Versailles-inspired Conservatory, site of free and ticketed holiday performances, during A Longwood Christmas. Outside, 500,000 lights glitter in the trees, and gloriously renovated fountains dance to seasonal music. Catch the horticultural holiday celebration before it’s too late!
The Comcast Holiday Spectacular
The Comcast Center's giant LED display screen is home to the beloved Comcast Holiday Spectacular. THROUGH MONDAY, JANUARY 1, 2018
A massive, street-level, high-resolution LED display screens The Comcast Holiday Spectacular, 15-minute shows featuring dancers from the Pennsylvania Ballet and a magical sleigh soaring through Philadelphia’s skyscape. New Year’s Day marks the last opportunity to take it all in!
Christmas in Peddler’s Village
Wrap up the holiday season at the ultra-festive Peddler's Village in Bucks County. THROUGH SATURDAY, JANUARY 6, 2018
Bucks County’s holiday hub continues its festive Christmas celebration — complete with more than one million holiday lights!— through January 6. Head to Peddler’s Village to admire edible works of art from the Gingerbread Competition & Display, a free exhibition featuring more than 50 entries.
The Philadelphia Auto Show
At the Philadelphia Auto Show, visitors can get up close and personal with the newest vehicle models that will soon be at dealerships around the region. JANUARY 27 - FEBRUARY 4, 2018
Explore the automotive industry’s newest creations at the Pennsylvania Convention Center during the 2018 Philadelphia Auto Show. More than 700 concept, classic, luxury and exotic cars will be on display over a 700,000-square-foot area. The best part? A select number of cars will be available to test drive.
Center City District Restaurant Week
Center City Restaurant Week offers a great chance to sample the menus of some of the city's top restaurants, which in the past has included Harp & Crown. JANUARY 14-26, 2018
Treat yourself to a fantastic meal without breaking the bank during the always popular Center City District Restaurant Week. Diners can enjoy a three-course lunch for $20 or a three-course dinner for $35 at some of the best restaurants in the city. Stay tuned to learn more about this winter’s participating restaurants!
Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest
The Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest is a can't-miss winter attraction on the Delaware River Waterfront, featuring ice skating, food and drink, arcade games and more. THROUGH SUNDAY, MARCH 4, 2018
The popular Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest is back for year five with fire pits, a Kids Lodge arcade, a cozy, chalet-style Lodge Restaurant and Bar, 12 nights of Christmas movies, sweets from Franklin Fountain Confectionery Cabin and hearty fare from Garces Group and Chickie’s & Pete’s. All the fun is centered around a regulation skating rink with a spectacular view of the Ben Franklin Bridge. Additionally, on select Thursdays in January and February, Winterfest hosts Fireside Sessions, a series of free concerts held by the fire pit area.
Dilworth Park Wintergarden
This winter at City Hall, skate around the Rothman Ice Rink, amble through America’s Garden Capital Maze and sip on hot chocolate at the Rothman Cabin. THROUGH SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2018
The heart of Center City surrounds itself with wintertime popups, including the the outdoor Rothman Institute Ice Rink & Rothman Institute Cabin, which offer ice skating, skate rentals, twinkling lights and indoor space to warm up and fill up on snacks, cocktails, beer and hot drinks. At the south end of the park, America’s Garden Capital Maze, a partnership with Greater Philadelphia Gardens, is a living labyrinth of seasonal plants and lights.
Winter Fountains on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway
The centerpiece exhibition of Parkway 100 places massive, glowing domes along the Parkway, each fitted with surfaces for video projections inspired by the Parkway's fountains. THROUGH SUNDAY, MARCH 18, 2018
All winter long, the centerpiece exhibition of Parkway 100 lights up the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Set along various points of the boulevard, Winter Fountains features four massive outdoor domes — surreal, glowing circular surfaces displaying video projections inspired by the Parkway’s grand fountains.
Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend and Day of Service
Celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend and Day of Service with tons of service opportunities, special events and more. JANUARY 13-15, 2018
Those looking to spend the long Martin Luther King Jr. weekend in Philly have tons of great options. An array of museums and attractions all throughout the city host special events and festivities to celebrate King, and the Annual Greater Philadelphia Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service unfolds on Monday, January 15. At the largest Martin Luther King Jr. Day event in the country, more than 100,000 volunteers come out to participate in 1,000-plus service projects. Click the button below to learn more about the day of service, and stay tuned for more information about what's going on elsewhere in Philly.
Broadway Philadelphia’s Les Miserables at the Academy of Music. JANUARY 9-21, 2018
The Victor Hugo-by-way-of-Broadway musical smash Les Miserables brings the spirit of the French Revolution to the Academy of Music. Seen by more than 70 million people in 44 countries and in 22 languages around the globe, the production stands as the world's most popular musical, breaking box office records everywhere as it carries out its 32nd year.
Philadelphia Home Show JANUARY 12-15, 19-21, 2018
Looking for advice and inspiration on how to make your home the best and most beautiful it can be? Join 50,000 of your fellow homeowners at the Pennsylvania Convention Center during the Philadelphia Home Show and take advantage of the hundreds of exhibitors and experts who will be on hand to help. Celebrity guests at the massive show this year include New York designer Tyler Wisler and Kevin O'Connor, the host of the award-winning PBS series This Old House and Ask This Old House.
Big Philly Beerfest JANUARY 12-13, 2018
It’s all about the beer at the fourth annual Big Philly Beerfest. Spread over two nights, this crowd-pleasing event celebrates more than 125 breweries and a ton of craft beer varieties. Another bonus: Proceeds benefit Animal Rescue Partners.
New Hope-Lambertville Winter Festival JANUARY 20-28, 2018
The towns of Lambertville, New Jersey and New Hope, Pennsylvania host this annual winter festival each January. (Photo courtesy New Hope-Lambertville Winter Festival)
The fun-filled New Hope-Lambertville Winter Festival returns in 2018, raising money to support the local community. Some events, like the Chili Cook-Off and the Fire & Ice Ball, are ticketed, while others, like the live ice sculpting performances and the Snowfolk Art contest, are free.
Terracotta Warriors of the First Emperor at The Franklin Institute. THROUGH SUNDAY, MARCH 4, 2018
Check out 10 stunning Terracotta Warriors at The Franklin Institute's blockbuster exhibition.
In 1974, a farmer digging a well in China struck one of history’s most significant archaeological discoveries: thousands of life-sized warrior sculptures that had been guarding the tomb of China’s first emperor since 210 B.C. Ten of the mysterious structures and 170 related artifacts — including weapons, jade and gold ornaments and ceremonial vessels — are now on display at The Franklin Institute in Terracotta Warriors of the First Emperor, an exhibition that examines the story, craft and science behind the terracotta army. Philadelphia is one of just two cities hosting the exhibition, on display through March 4.
Old Masters Now: Rediscovering the John G. Johnson Collection at the Philadelphia Museum of Art
THROUGH MONDAY, FEBRUARY 19, 2018
Part of Parkway 100, Old Masters Now celebrates the 100-year anniversary of a special gift to the museum. (The Battle of the U.S.S. "Kearsage" and the C.S.S. "Alabama", 1864. Edouard Manet, French. Oil on canvas 54 1/4 x 50 3/4 inches. Philadelphia Museum of Art, John G. Johnson Collection, 1917)
Described by The New York Times as “the greatest lawyer in the English-speaking world,” John G. Johnson bequeathed his 1,500 European artworks to Philadelphia in 1917. The Philadelphia Museum of Art 's exhibition Old Masters Now: Rediscovering the John G. Johnson Collection focuses on the amazing collection and its collector, who lived during a time when Philadelphia was a manufacturing and financial leader. Visitors to the museum see familiar names, including Botticelli, Bosch, Titian, Rembrandt and Monet.
Kiefer Rodin at the Barnes Foundation THROUGH MONDAY, MARCH 12, 2018
Explore works from Auguste Rodin — and the response to those works by artist Anselm Kiefer — at this exhibition at the Barnes Foundation. (Anselm Kiefer. The Cathedrals of France (Auguste Rodin les Cathédrales de France), 2016.
That Auguste Rodin’s work stands the test of time is clearly evident in this Barnes Foundation exhibition. Rodin’s sculptures and drawings are displayed alongside contemporary artist Anselm Kiefer’s new, large-scale illustrated books, sculptures and paintings — all inspired by Rodin’s work. Presented in collaboration with the Musée Rodin in Paris, the showcase is part of #Rodin100, marking 100 years since the artist’s death (November 17, 1917) with exhibitions and programming at major art museums.
Other Must-See Exhibitions
Learn about dinosaur eggs, touch real fossils and more at the Academy of Natural Sciences' Tiny Titans exhibition.
This month, find an array of excellent exhibitions inviting you out for an adventurous escapade into the worlds of art, history, science and beyond. Several last-chance opportunities include the fossil-filled Tiny Titans: Dinosaur Eggs and Babies at the Academy of Natural Sciences at Drexel University, the works of five black female artists in Gardens of the Mind at the African American Museum in Philadelphia and the kid-friendly Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood: A Grr-ific Exhibit at the Please Touch Museum.
Museum of the American Revolution NOW OPEN
The Museum of the American Revolution exhibits art, manuscripts and printed works as well as a range of objects gathered from and pertaining to the Revolutionary War.
The drama unfolds exhibit by exhibit at the new Museum of the American Revolution. Just two blocks from Independence Hall — the command center for the Revolution — the newest addition to America’s most historic square mile documents the strategic wins, crushing losses and world-altering consequences of the war for We the People. Visitors learn stories of well-known and everyday people who experienced the tumult through galleries, engaging films and a collection of Revolutionary-era weapons, personal items, diaries and works of art.