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PARKWAY MUSEUMS DISTRICT LAUNCHES CENTENNIAL YEAR WITH
WE ARE CONNECTED FESTIVAL ON SEPTEMBER 8
Friday Night Cultural Open House Features 100 Family-Friendly Activities, Including Free or “Pay-What-You-Wish” Admission to Six Museums
PHILADELPHIA (August 1, 2017; updated August 17, 2017) – Parkway 100, the centennial celebration of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia’s grand cultural boulevard, debuts with the Parkway 100 We Are Connected Festival from 4:00-10:00 p.m. on Friday, September 8, 2017. Presented by the Parkway Council, in partnership with PECO, the cultural district open house offers 100 family-friendly activities throughout the Parkway Museums District, including extended hours and free or pay-what-you-wish museum admission. Other programs include inside and outside entertainment, and giant dot-to-dot puzzles of the Parkway attractions to celebrate the “We Are Connected” celebration theme.
Attendees can visit six world-class cultural institutions – the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, the Barnes Foundation, Eastern State Penitentiary, The Franklin Institute, Philadelphia Museum of Art, and Rodin Museum – for free or “pay-what-you-wish” admission from 4:00-9:00 p.m. In addition to the extended hours, guests can enjoy special programming, tours and entertainment, such as a Dino Dance Party at the Academy, a Ceremonial Centennial Science Demonstration at The Franklin Institute, and 100 Years in Philly Music performances at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Throughout the Parkway Museums District, participants can join in completing giant connect-the-dots puzzles of the Parkway attractions and institutions. Created by award-winning dot-to-dot artist David Kalvitis, creator of The Greatest Dot-to-Dot Book Series, the 23 Parkway puzzles will also be featured in a dot-to-dot coloring book. (The book will be available for sale on-site and at museum gift shops.) Puzzlers can meet the artist, take pictures with giant pencils, and sit, relax and complete more dot-to-dots at the Dippin’ Dots Puzzle Parks, presented with the Crayola Experience.
“The Benjamin Franklin Parkway connects us - to art, culture, science, horticulture, education, and to each other,” said Gail Harrity, chairperson for the Parkway 100 Committee. “Parkway 100 is an unprecedented opportunity for us to celebrate those wonderful connections. The celebration is the result of an exceptional collaboration among the world-class museums and institutions that comprise the Parkway Museums District.”
“For 100 years, the Parkway has served as Philadelphia’s cultural boulevard filled with world-renowned art, science and educational offerings that attract local residents, visitors and businesses,” said Romona Riscoe Benson, director of Corporate Relations at PECO. “That is why PECO is committed to powering the customers and communities we serve by supporting events, like the Parkway 100 We Are Connected Festival, which promote diversity, arts and culture across the region.”
The Parkway 100 We Are Connected Festival begins at 4:00 p.m. with the unveiling of a mural at Park Towne Place, created with Mural Arts Philadelphia. At 5:00 p.m., the Parkway Central Library of the Free Library of Philadelphia will cut the ribbon on their special exhibit, “Corridor of Culture: 100 Years of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.” At 6:30 p.m., Parkway historian David Brownlee will join in opening remarks for the 9th annual Anne d’Harnoncourt Symposium, titled The Museum and the City, co-hosted by the Philadelphia Museum of Art and University of Pennsylvania. A keynote address, An Architect’s Responsibility: A Search for the Durable when Everything is Changing, by architects Tod Williams and Billie Tsien, follows.
The PECO Stage at The Oval will feature performances by local artists, including Worldtown Soundsystem, and the University of the Arts School of Music Jazz Ensemble. Moore College of Art & Design will present 1920s period jazz band Drew Nugent and The Midnight Society. Cret Park will host singer/songwriter Ginger Coyle. Sister Cities Park will showcase local talent Matt Santry, while Dilworth Park presents DJ music.
Swann Memorial Fountain will be the site of hand-painting of frogs, turtles, swans and fish; and the Logan Square Neighborhood Association will present tango lessons and dancing from the Philadelphia Argentine Dance School, with music by the Oscuro Quintet. Friends of Aviator Park will host kids music jam sessions around a parachute.
At the Rodin Museum lawn, participants can also join in creating a city from cardboard with the Center for Architecture and Design, in partnership with AIA Philadelphia, or help paint a mural with Mural Arts Philadelphia. Author/historian Ed Mauger and others will share Parkway stories during Community Conversations presented by Beneficial Bank, as attendees learn about the City Beautiful movement that led to the creation of the Parkway, prominent figures who had a role in the Parkway's development, and significant Parkway events. The lawn is also the stepping off spot for balloon parades.
Fairmount Photo Club will host multiple one-hour, free photo walks, led by prominent local photographers and Instagrammers. Fairmount Water Works will present “A Walk Along the Parkway” one-mile stroll. Association for Public Art (aPA) ambassadors will share stories at the Parkway’s many sculptures, the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society garden docents will talk about plantings at Logan Square and the Rodin Museum, and The Logan Hotel will conduct tours of its art collection.
Friends Select School will present an exhibit on the Parkway as Civic Space. The Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul will feature organ concerts and a presentation on the visits of Pope Saint John Paul II and Pope Francis to the Parkway. The Philadelphia Mormon Temple will host an open house in the Meetinghouse and help visitors search their roots with family history experts.
Special dining options will be offered throughout the Parkway Museums District, and Saint Benjamin Brewing Co. will debut a Parkway Centennial Pale Ale. PHLASH® buses will connect guests to the activities with a $2 festival pass. A television special will be broadcast on 6abc from 8:00-9:00 p.m. on Wednesday, September 20, 2017, in conjunction with the kickoff festival, showcasing the many attractions that are part of the Parkway Museums District.
“Parkway 100 is a result of the creative collaboration of 23 Parkway Council member organizations,” said Judi Rogers, executive director, Parkway Council. “The Parkway 100 We Are Connected Festival is a fitting start to the centennial, bringing people together for a grand open house to experience all the Parkway Museums District has to offer.”
Parkway Council members include: the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, Aimco/Park Towne Place, Association for Public Art (aPA), the Barnes Foundation, Brandywine Realty Trust, Cathedral Basilica of SS Peter & Paul, Center City District (Cret Park, Dilworth Park, and Sister Cities Park), City of Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, College of Physicians/Mütter Museum, Eastern State Penitentiary, Fairmount Water Works, Fox Rothschild LLP, The Franklin Institute, Free Library of Philadelphia, Friends Select School, Independence Visitor Center, The Logan Hotel, Moore College of Art & Design, Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, Philadelphia Mormon Temple, Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Philadelphian, and the Rodin Museum.
The open house festival is the first in a 14-month calendar of events, exhibitions, community conversations, and promotions to mark the centennial of Philadelphia’s grand cultural boulevard. Planned by the cultural and educational institutions, businesses and residences in the Parkway Museums District, Parkway 100 continues through November 16, 2018.
Parkway 100 is made possible through the generous leadership support of the William Penn Foundation, PNC Bank and PECO, and partners the City of Philadelphia and City of Philadelphia Department of Parks & Recreation, as well as the following sponsors: The Logan Hotel, Cooke & Berlinger, Dippin’ Dots, Fox Rothschild LLP, Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau, The PFM Group, Beneficial Bank, Logan Square Neighborhood Association, 6abc, Devine + Partners, LeftHand Creative, and Visit Philadelphia.
Among the September 8 open house activities presented by the Parkway Museums District cultural and educational institutions, businesses and residences are (in alphabetical order):
Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University
Free general admission, 4:00-9:00 p.m. (With purchase of an $8 Supersaver Ticket, visitors also will gain access to Backyard Adventures and Butterflies! exhibits.)
Live Animal Shows at Aviator Park – 4:00 and 5:00 p.m.
Dino Dance Party – with Academy mascot Eddie and friend Trixie, 4:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m., 6:30 p.m., 7:30 p.m., 8:30 p.m., 9:30 p.m. Glow sticks provided for after sunset.
Live animal encounters inside the museum – Birds, mammals and reptiles will roam the halls with their handlers throughout the night.
Backyards Around the World – Check out Academy specimens and touchable biofacts from around the world.
Bug Walks in Logan Square – Academy entomologists will lead walks in search of insects. 4:15 p.m., 5:15 p.m., 6:15 p.m., 7:15 p.m., and 8:15 p.m. (with flashlights)
100 Years of Dinosaurs – See one of the earliest animated cartoons of a dinosaur, “Gertie the Dinosaur” (1914), accompanied by a film of modern paleo artists discussing their work as they lend their artistic talents to interpreting Hadrosaurus foulkii.
Backyard Adventures – Last weekend for the Academy’s special exhibit.
Dino Drafts: The Academy Beer Garden - will be open from 4:00-10:00 p.m. with drinks and mouth-watering bites.
Association for Public Art
Public art ambassadors share stories of the Parkway’s many outdoor sculptures (4:00-7:00 p.m.) and assist public access to the self-guided Museum Without Walls™: AUDIO tour that spotlights the Association for Public Art’s history with the Parkway. Information about Cai Guo-Qiang: Fireflies will be available at Sister Cities Park.
The Barnes Foundation
Pay-What-You-Wish, 4:00-10:00 p.m. Admission includes access to the Barnes collection and special exhibition, Mohamed Bourouissa: Urban Riders.
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
The Basilica and Cathedral Shop will be open 4:00-10:00 p.m., offering tours every half hour from 4:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m., and at 8:30 p.m.
Organ Concerts – 4:00-4:30 p.m. and 9:00-9:30 p.m.
Presentation – 7:00-8:00 p.m., Presentation on the Role of the Cathedral in the life of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and the City of Philadelphia, especially with the visits of Pope Saint John Paul II and Pope Francis
Cret Park (16th and Benjamin Franklin Parkway)
Singer and songwriter Ginger Coyle will be performing for the evening. Here, you can also enjoy cocktails while relaxing after work. 4:00-8:00 p.m.
Dilworth Park (City Hall)
Join Center City District as they celebrate the kickoff of Parkway 100 with music, food and drink at some of your favorite parks! Dilworth Park will host a special Happy Hour with DJ for you to bring in the evening. Stop by and enjoy selections from Dilworth Café while you mix and mingle after work. 4:00-8:00 p.m.
Eastern State Penitentiary
Free general admission, 4:00 – 9:00 p.m. Explore America’s most historic prison at dusk! Free admission includes “The Voices of Eastern State" Audio Tour narrated by actor Steve Buscemi, Hands-On History interactive experiences, history exhibits, and artist installations.
Fairmount Water Works
Experience the Mobile Mussel Hatchery – Explore a living science laboratory in action, get a behind-the-scenes look at the life and times of a freshwater mussel, and enjoy a unique view of the Schuylkill River habitat. The hatchery will demonstrate the ecological benefits of freshwater mussel restoration in improving the health of our waterways. Enjoy this outdoor exhibit, then venture into the Fairmount Water Works to experience a National Historical Landmark full of rich history. 4:00-7:00 p.m.
A Walk Along the Parkway – Philadelphia's Parkway references the most beautiful cities of Old Europe. Discover the magnificent buildings along Philadelphia’s own Champs-Élysées and what lies beneath them. Start at the Fairmount Water Works, where wheels once pumped the City’s drinking water, then embark on a mile-long stroll down the picturesque path to Logan Square and back. Ideal for history buffs, cultural connoisseurs and architectural mavens. 4:00 - 6:00 p.m.
Behind the Scenes at Fairmount Water Works – Walk the same underground paths as a royal family during a behind-the-scenes look at Philadelphia’s first tourist destination. See historic Kelly Pool and hear about the future expansion of the landmark that pioneered engineering, tourism, and environmental awareness in Philadelphia. Note: This is a hard-hat tour and may not be accessible for all of our visitors. Sturdy shoes are strongly recommended. 5:00 - 7:00 p.m.
River Character Temporary Tattoo Station – 4:00-7:00 p.m.
Philadelphia Water Ice samples – 4:00-6:00 p.m.
The Franklin Institute
The Franklin Institute opens its doors for free from 4:00-9:00 p.m. to explore 11 exhibit galleries, plus an all-new virtual reality experience, live science shows, Fels Planetarium shows, and stargazing from the Joel N. Bloom Observatory. Plus, special programming both inside and outside the museum.
Science Busking – 4:00-7:00 p.m.
“Going ‘Round the Square: A Display from The Franklin Institute’s Collection” will give guests a rare, unique look at the history of the Parkway. 4:00-9:00 p.m.
Featured live science shows at 4:15 p.m., 5:15 p.m., 6:15 p.m., 7:15 p.m. and 8:15 p.m.
Solar Observing in the Joel N. Bloom Observatory, 4:00-7:00 p.m.
Evening Astronomy Observations, Joel N. Bloom Observatory and 5th floor observation roof deck, with amazing views of the Parkway, skyline and nighttime sky, 7:30-9:00 p.m.
Exhibit galleries will have programming to allow guests to explore through immersive, hands-on stations, and interact with educators around activity stations (Stream Table, Spin Ride, Baldwin 60000, Van de Graaff Generator demonstrations, Ultrasound demonstrations), 4:00-9:00 p.m.
The new Tech Studio will be open for guests to stop by, see technological innovation at work through experiencing the science of 3D printing, and talk with Franklin Institute exhibit and technology designers about their work.
The Young Scientists area will feature programming for families with younger guests to build together, and put their engineering skills to work.
A Ceremonial Centennial Science Demonstration will happen at 8:45 p.m. in the Benjamin Franklin National Memorial.
Friends Select School
Parkway as Civic Space exhibit, 4:00-9:00 p.m.
The Logan, Philadelphia’s Hotel
Art tours every hour on the hour, 4:00-8:00 p.m.; chair massages in the Spa at the Logan, 4:00-6:00 p.m.; Outdoor Beer Garden by Urban Farmer, patio, 4:00-6:00 p.m.
Moore College of Art & Design
Drew Nugent and The Midnight Society, a 1920s period jazz band, will perform outside the main entrance. Students will participate in coloring the completed giant dot-to-dot puzzles. The Galleries will be open from 4:00-9:00 p.m., and The Art Shop until 8:00 p.m.
Park Towne Place
Mural Dedication and City Proclamation – Park Towne Place Museum District Residences has partnered with Mural Arts Philadelphia to create a mural by Philadelphia-based artist Miriam Singer depicting the vast cultural and historical impact Park Towne Place has had since 1959 while located at its prominent place along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. This new work of public art will be located on the East Tower overlooking the city and a tranquil park space at historic Park Towne Place. Mural unveiling with public reception, including music, refreshments, takeaway art activities, and swag giveaways that pertain to the artwork, 4:00-5:00 p.m.
Also view Configuration: Nicholas Kripal, opening September 8 through April 29, 2018.
Parkway Central Library of the Free Library of Philadelphia
Tours – Rare Book Department, 3rd floor, 4:00-9:00 p.m.
Exhibitions – Corridor of Culture: 100 Years of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, (West Gallery, 1st floor); A Tale of Two Sister Cities: Philadelphia and Tianjin (West Gallery, 2nd floor); Becoming the Detective: The Making of a Genre (Rare Book Department, 3rd floor); Special Mural Arts Monument Lab Sound Installation by Emeka Ogboh (4th floor Skyline Terrace); Virtual Worlds: The Parkway Central Library rebuilt in Minecraft, debut of this enhancement to the popular video game (Grand Lobby, 1st floor). All exhibits, 4:00-9:00 p.m.
Pennsylvania Horticultural Society
Garden docents talk about plantings at the Rodin Museum and Logan Square, 4:00-7:00 p.m.
Philadelphia Museum of Art
Pay-What-You-Wish Friday Night, 4:00-8:45 p.m.
Performances – Two performances of a specially commissioned work by Ross Bellenoit, 100 Years in Philly Music (5:45-6:30 p.m. and 7:15-8:00 p.m.).
Public Symposium Keynote Address – The 9th annual Anne d’Harnoncourt Symposium: The Museum and The City, is a two-day public symposium hosted by the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the University of Pennsylvania. To launch the symposium, Tod Williams and Billie Tsien, the architects of the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia and the visionary Obama Presidential Center in Chicago will talk about the role that museums can play in defining civic life in the 21st century. Their keynote address, An Architect’s Responsibility: A Search for the Durable when Everything is Changing, will take place in the Perelman Auditorium of the Philadelphia Museum of Art (6:30 p.m., $20, $16 for Philadelphia Museum of Art members, free for Penn students and faculty).
Tours – Visitors will also be able to take part in a architecture tour, tours of the collection, and will have an opportunity to interact with curators in the galleries.
Dining – The Museum will also offer indoor and outdoor food and beverage service.
Philadelphia Mormon Temple
Meetinghouse Open House – Visit The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and explore how we are all connected through family history. Search your roots with family history specialists, tour the Temple grounds and learn their purpose, enjoy light refreshments and relaxing music, 4:00-8:00 p.m.
Philadelphia Parks and Recreation
Parks on Tap at Shakespeare Park - Saint Benjamin Brewing Company's Parkway Centennial Pale Ale will debut, 4:00 - 10:00 p.m.
Pay-What-You-Wish, 4:00-9:00 p.m.
Sister Cities Park (18th and Benjamin Franklin Parkway)
Enjoy music from local talent Matt Santry (4:00-8:00 p.m.), along with a delicious menu served by the Logan Square Café (until 10:00 p.m.), and don’t forget to pick up some Parkway 100 merchandise when you stop by.
About the Benjamin Franklin Parkway
The development of the Parkway took place over decades, from the first proposal and signed petition received by City Council in 1891, to groundbreaking in 1907, and finally construction in 1917. The Philadelphia Inquirer reported the Parkway’s October 26, 1918 completion in its story, “Parkway is Open From Hall to Park” (October 27, 1918, pg. 3). Philadelphia’s Evening Public Ledger also announced the completion of the Parkway, reporting: "Uninterrupted Parkway at last leads from City Hall to Fairmount's entrance," (November 16, 1918).
The one-mile Benjamin Franklin Parkway stretches to the Philadelphia Museum of Art, connecting the city’s business district to Fairmount Park, one of the largest urban green spaces in the United States. Known as the Parkway Museums District, the cultural destination is home to some of the city’s most treasured museums, including The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, The Barnes Foundation, The Franklin Institute, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and Rodin Museum.
The picturesque Swann Memorial Fountain at Logan Square is among the Parkway’s most scenic spaces and an example of the Parkway’s abundant public art, with a unique interpretive program by the Association for Public Art (aPA). Locals and visitors like to gather at the Parkway’s pocket parks, including Dilworth Park, Love Park, Cret Park, Sister Cities Park, and The Oval, or run the steps “Rocky” made famous. Trees and international flags line the boulevard, which is also known for its exceptional architecture. The Cathedral Basilica of SS Peter & Paul, Friends Select School, Moore College of Art & Design, and the newly completed Philadelphia Mormon Temple are also here.
Based in Philadelphia, PECO is an electric and natural gas utility subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC). The company’s 2,500 dedicated employees provide advanced, innovative energy solutions to 1.6 million electric and more than 516,000 natural gas customers in southeastern Pennsylvania. In 2015 PECO delivered 86.9 billion cubic feet of natural gas and 38 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity. The company also has an estimated annual economic impact of $4.3 billion in Pennsylvania, supporting more than 8,700 local jobs and producing $732 million in labor income. Founded in 1881, PECO is one of the Greater Philadelphia Region's most active corporate citizens, providing leadership, volunteer and financial support to numerous arts and culture, education, environmental, economic development and community programs and organizations. For more information visit http://www.peco.com, and connect with the company on Facebook and Twitter.