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30+ Things to Do With Kids This Week Around Philly: September 17–23

Need plans? We've got something great, every day.

Need plans? We’ve got something great, every day.

Looking for more? Click here for what’s going on in the suburbs!

 

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All Week

Philly Free Week at Magic Gardens

September 16—21, excluding Tuesday

Philadelphia Magic Gardens, 1020 South Street

 

Residents of Philadelphia county (must show proof of residency) can get free admission to explore this incredible mosaic installation. Must make reservations online.

‘Hamilton: The Constitutional Clashes That Shaped a Nation’

Through December 31

National Constitution Center, 525 Arch St.

 

Walk in Alexander Hamilton’s shoes and learn more about the Founding Father whose life has fascinated Americans for centuries. This exhibit focuses on the intellectual and political conflicts between Hamilton and his contemporaries, including Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and John Adams, and of course, Aaron Burr (that one was a bit more personal). It’s included with museum admission.

‘Xtreme Bugs’ at Academy of Natural Sciences

Through January 21

1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway

 

Nearly 20 towering animatronic bugs will come alive in this new creepy crawly exhibit! Get a bug’s-eye view of the world and learn about their intricacies and behaviors. See our preview here.

Spruce Street Harbor Park

11 am — 11 pm Monday — Thursday; 11 am — 1 am Friday and Saturday

301 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd.

 

This waterfront spot has food, drink, games, and is a great place to relax.

Parks on Tap: Pretzel Park

September 19—23

4300 Silverwood St.

 

Family-friendly beer garden Parks on Tap comes to Manayunk in its second-to-last week! If you haven’t caught it all season, your time is running out.

Monday

Philadelphia Orchestra Musicians’ Audience Appreciation Day

September 17, 9 am—9pm

Various locations throughout Philly

 

For the annual Audience Appreciation Day, free, informal small ensemble concerts pop up all over the city, from SEPTA stations to libraries and more. See the whole schedule here.

Constitution Day

September 17, 9:30 am—5 pm

National Constitution Center, 525 Arch Street

 

Museum admission is FREE all day to celebrate the Constitution’s birthday. All day there will be special shows, discussions, and more to teach about the importance of the Constitution. The day also includes a birthday celebration complete with a Constitution-shaped cake, confetti, and appearances by Presidents George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. The Front Lawn and Grand Hall Lobby will host Constitution Day games and crafts from 9:30 am—3:30 pm.

Philadelphia Orchestra Sound All Around

September 17, 10 am and 11:15 am

Academy of Music Ballroom, 240 S. Broad St.

 

Philadelphia Orchestra violinist, Daniel Han, will introduce the unique ways string instruments create their magical sound. Pre-register online.

Story Jams at DiSilvestro

September 17, 10:30 am

1701 S. 15th St.

 

Story Jams is a playgroup centered around play and positivity that includes storytime, music, dancing, and sensory exploration. Follow Story Jams on Instagram @storyjams in case of inclement weather.

Lunch Break at The Rock School 

September 17, noon—3 pm

Parking lot at The Rock School of Dance, 1225 Washington Ave.

 

The Rock School parking lot will become a carnival midway of lollipops, goodies, Amazon prizes, bubbles, and Nutcracker 1776 characters (Sugar Plum Fairy and General Mouse Howe). Amazon’s Treasure Truck will be there with prizes and giveaways. You can also win tickets to upcoming Rock School performances.

Troll Roll Glow Night

September 17, 5—9 pm

Rolling Thunder Skating Center, 7017 Roosevelt Boulevard

 

Meet Poppy and Branch for a special glow skate night.

Sensory Storytime

September 17, 6 pm

Richmond Library, 2987 Almond Street

 

Geared toward children on the autism spectrum and their families, this special storytime includes picture books, songs, and movement activities. Kids can stay after to play with manipulatives and to socialize.

Outdoor Movie Night: ‘The Incredibles’

September 17, 7 pm

Ferko Playground, 1101 E. Cayuga St.

 

Bring blankets and enjoy Pixar’s The Incredibles. Snacks will be for sale on site.

Tuesday

The Geography Lady at Momo’s Treehouse

September 18, 10 am

205 Arch Street

 

Preschoolers and toddlers will enjoy music, games, crafts, and more as they explore the world with Geography Lady.

Music Monkey Jungle Free Session at Reading Terminal Market

September 18, 10 — 10:30 am

51 N. 12th St.

 

Sing, dance, move, and have a rockin’ good time with Music Monkey Jungle. Admission is free and open to the public.

Toddler Time at American Swedish Historical Museum

September 18, 10:30—11:30 am

1900 Pattison Avenue

 

Fall is right around the corner and with it comes harvest time! Read Jamberry by Bruce Degen, pick real apples from the museum’s heritage Rambo apple trees, practice counting lingonberries, and drink apple and lingonberry juice.

Live at LOVE: Same Picture Different Poses

September 18, 1—2 pm

Love Park, 16th Street and JFK Boulevard

 

Part of the Fringe Festival, Same Picture Different Poses brings together a unique fusion of circus, dance, and theater for this site-specific work exploring relationships and love.

Community Night at Franklin Institute

September 18, 5—8 pm

222 North 20th Street

 

Everyone is welcome to join in the fun at this FREE educational and fun-filled science extravaganza that includes access to the museum and hands-on activities. Admission is free and there is no need to pre-register.

Wednesday

Day Off Camp at Philly Art Center

September 19, 9 am—3 pm (half day and extra care also available)

2501 Olive Street and 514 Bainbridge Street

 

If your kids (age 5-12) have off school, you can sign them up for a day of creative fun and skill-building, both in and out of the studios. Before and after care available for an extra cost.

Arden Theatre Play in a Day (Day Off Workshop)

September 19, 9 am—5 pm

62 N. Second Street

 

If your kids have off school and love to perform, sign them up for Play in a Day, where they’ll work together to create an original play that they will perform at the end of the day!

AdventureWoods Free Public Hours

September 19, 9 am—3 pm

Awbury Arboretum, 1 Awbury Road

 

This innovative, sustainable natural playground engages children in creative, imaginative, and active discovery. Kids are free to have fun and learn, experiment and discover, all while exercising and enjoying the outdoors.

Baby and Me Yoga

September 19, 9:30 am

Vault + Vine, 3507 Midvale Ave.

 

Enjoy baby bonding and a gentle, playful practice to move the body and clear the mind. Bring a mat for yourself and a blanket for baby. Pre-crawlers only. Drop-in for $18 (or you can buy a class card).

Book Nook Storytime at Reading Terminal Market

September 19, 10—10:30 am

51 N. 12th St.

 

This program, in partnership with The Free Library of Philadelphia, is geared towards children ages 3 to 5.

Jams! in the Park @ Dickinson Square

September 19, 10 am

Dickinson Square Park, 4th and Tasker Streets

 

Meet in the park for stories, music, and a sensory activity.

School Age Geography Lady Class at Lilypad (Ages 5 and up)

September 19, 3:30—4:30 pm

1234 S. Broad St.

 

Join the Geography Lady after school to explore different countries and cultures around the world through stories, music, movement, games, crafts, and a snack.

Navy Yard al Fresco

September 19, 4:30—7 pm

Central Green, Intrepid Avenue and Rouse Boulevard

 

Enjoy live music by Ryan Tennis, pay-as-you-go food trucks, and drink specials. Grab the family and play a game of bocce or table tennis. Stroll and shop the Al Fresco Makers Market with homemade crafts and food.

Thursday

Barnes Toddler Time

September 20, 10 – 10:45am and 11 – 11:45am

2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway

 

Bring your curious and imaginative toddlers (ages 2-4) to the museum for art-related stories, art making, movement activities, and an introduction to the works in the Barnes collection.

 Drop-in Play and Storytime at Philly Art Center

September 20, 10:30—11:45 am

2501 Olive Street and 514 Bainbridge Street

 

For babies ages 0-2. Walkers enjoy sensory stations, while floor-bound babies enjoy age appropriate manipulative play. Storytime is at 11 am. No need to sign up, just drop-in for $5 at the door.

Thursday Tots at Wissahickon Environmental Center

September 20, 1—2 pm

300 Northwestern Avenue

 

Bring your little one (age 3-5) for an hour of discovery and celebrating the season at the Tree House.

Bat Night Walk

September 20, 6:30—8 pm

John Heinz at Tinicum, 8601 Lindbergh Blvd.

 

Come learn about different bat species found on the refuge on this special twilight walk! Cobbs Creek Community E.E. Center will lead an after-dark walk and help visitors identify bats using sonar equipment. Free and kid-friendly.

Outdoor Movie Night: ‘Pitch Perfect 3’ at Schmidt’s Commons

September 20, 7—9 pm

1001 N. Second St.

 

Come sing and dance as The Barton Bellas reunite for one last singing competition! Bring your own chair or blanket.

Friday

Park(ing) Day

September 21

Various locations throughout Philly (map)

 

Every year on the third Friday in September, activists, artists, architects, and other citizens transform metered parking spaces into temporary public parks for the day. See how many you can find, and admire the interactive designs! Certain locations have “playful learning” elements too, so they bring more than creative relaxation.

Baby Bird Playdate

September 21, 10:15 am

Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway

 

Play at the museum with your little ones and enjoy music, art making, and gallery walks.​ Best for toddlers and their caregivers.

Bartram’s Garden Movie Night: ‘The Good Dinosaur’

September 21, 6:30—10 pm

5400 Lindbergh Blvd.

 

Gather after sundown in the courtyard for a free screening of The Good Dinosaur. There will also be a guided, family-friendly tour of the garden starting at 5:45 pm. Movie starts at 6:45 pm with free popcorn and lemonade.

iLuminate

September 21, 7:30 pm

Merriam Theater, 250 S. Broad St.

 

This dance group of America’s Got Talent fame wears electrified glow-in-the-dark suits while performing dynamic routines and illusions on a darkened stage! It is truly a unique experience.

‘Terror Behind the Walls’ Begins

September 21, 7—11 pm (timed tickets required)

Eastern State Penitentiary, 2027 Fairmount Avenue

 

Not for the young or faint of heart, this historic prison features six haunted attractions! Kids under 7 are not permitted (and even kids over 7 probably will want to at least wait for a Family Night).

Weekend Events

Get all our weekend picks in the High Five, here!

Looking for more? Click here for our Main Line and suburbs picks.

 

Photograph by Laura Swartz.

 

Philadelphia Assistant Editor | Email tips to laura@familyfocus.org

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