Things to Do in Philadelphia This Week & Weekend
Bok Bar, Liberty Point and Independence Beer Garden open for the season, Parks on Tap, African Restaurant Week and more, April 10-16, 2023...
Good news for fans of outdoor brews: This week’s list of things to do in Philadelphia features the return of several of Philly’s premier outdoor bars and beer gardens.
Here’s what’s on tap: Wednesday sees the return of Independence Beer Garden in the Historic District and the kickoff of Parks on Tap at the Azalea Garden in East Fairmount Park.
The good times keep flowing on Thursday as the beloved Bok Bar opens in South Philly and Liberty Point returns for its sophomore season on the Delaware River waterfront.
Hungry for more? Score fantastic dining deals during African Restaurant Week in Southwest Philadelphia and celebrate some vintage finds at the pop-up Clover Market in Chestnut Hill.
Add a touch of color to your weekend during the Festival of Colors at the Philadelphia Zoo and the Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival in Fairmount Park.
And the 2023 NBA Playoffs get underway Saturday as the Philadelphia 76ers host the Brooklyn Nets for a first round matchup in South Philly.
You’re doing awesome things in Philadelphia. Why shouldn’t you be rewarded? Check out our Philly Rewards program to learn how to earn great prizes just for exploring the City of Brotherly Love.
Below, find the best things to do this week and weekend, April 10-16, 2023.
This Week & Weekend
Philly joins cities across the United States in celebrating African Restaurant Week . The initiative supports restaurants, bars, cafes and small businesses that promote food and culture from across the African diaspora. Philly’s celebration is anchored in Southwest Philadelphia, with restaurants along and around Woodland Avenue offering 15% off orders of $20 or more. Participating restaurants include African Small Pot, Abyssinia and Jam Rock Jamaican Restaurant.
Opens Wednesday, April 12, 2023
The Bell. The Hall. The beer garden . Enjoy local brews, tasty bites and a few party games at this sprawling seasonal site located just steps from Independence Hall and directly across the street from the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia’s Historic District . Find a spot in the shade or soak up the sun as you sip on a pint or two. It’s enough to bring a proud tear to Ben Franklin’s eye
Philly’s roving beer garden returns for a 2023 season that brings brews and bites to parks and green spaces in neighborhoods in nearly every corner of the city. First stop: the Azalea Garden in East Fairmount Park, located between Boathouse Row and the Philadelphia Museum of Art . Enjoy draft beers from Mainstay Independent Brewing, cocktails, and finger foods and sandwiches, as well as gardens featuring daffodils, tulips, and more than 150 species of azaleas and rhododendrons.
Where: Azalea Garden, Kelly Drive
It’s an idyllic pairing of suds and buds outside of the Shofuso Japanese Cultural Center in Fairmount Park as Philly’s Triple Bottom Brewing Co. serves up some cold ones — including a Shofuso Lager made just for the occasion — at this picture-perfect pop-up beer garden . Also on the menu: Japanese radlers (beer mixed with your choice of fruit juice) and snacks like Asian nachos and pulled pork bao buns from Bao Bun Studio. Sounds like the perfect spot to refuel during the nearby Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival (read on in this article for more info).
Opens Thursday, April 13, 2023
Returning for a second season at Penn’s Landing , this massive outdoor oasis — with room for up to 1,300 of your closest friends — offers stellar views of the Ben Franklin Bridge and the Delaware River. On the menu: beer, fresh and frozen cocktails, and a food menu featuring sandwiches, seafood platters and shareable appetizers.
School may not be out just yet, but good times are back in session at Bok Bar. The popular South Philly bar — located on the roof of a former vocational school building turned artist haven — returns for another season of cold brews and excellent views. Grab a drink and a bite to eat, and take in sweeping views of the beautiful Philadelphia skyline. Each month brings a new food partner to the space in 2023. First up is Porco’s Porchetteria , serving up porchetta sandwiches, “meaty-balls sandwiches” and snack platters through April 30, 2023. Reservations aren’t required, but be on the lookout for special ticketed events like drag shows, sunset yoga sessions and salsa nights throughout the summer.
Where: Bok Bar, 800 Mifflin Street
Adam Sandler — Saturday Night Live alum, star of 2022’s Philadelphia-set Hustle and all-around silly human — takes the stage for an evening of music and comedy in South Philly. Promotional materials for the show, which is intended for audiences 16-plus, tease an appearance from a surprise guest. Hmm …
April 14 – October 29, 2023 (Fridays through Sundays only)
Elfreth’s Alley boasts 300 years of history on its charming cobblestone road lined with quaint row houses. While a modern city has sprung up around it, the alley preserves three centuries of evolution through its old-fashioned flower boxes, shutters, Flemish bond brickwork and other architectural details. While the street is open to the public at all times, two of the houses are now a museum , which reopens for the season beginning this Friday . Pair your visit with a listen to The Alley Cast , a podcast that delves deep into the real-life stories behind the people who’ve lived or worked in these historic houses.
Opens Friday, April 14, 2023
Two brand-new exhibitions open at Asian Arts Initiative , Chinatown’s thriving community arts center. The Body You Want (April 14 – August 5, 2023, select dates) is a mixed media exploration in which six Asian and Asian American artists advocate to move beyond society’s conventional gender identities and truly celebrate a broader range of gender expression. The Erotic Project (April 14 – July 8, 2023, select dates) is a collaboration between more than 40 artists from Philadelphia, Los Angeles and Portland. Began during quarantine in 2020 by artist Aubrié Costello, the growing multimedia project explores eroticism in expected and unexpected forms through portrait vignettes co-created participating artists. Note: Visitors to The Erotic Project must register in advance .
Opening: At the Water’s Edge: Working and living along the Delaware River at the Independence Seaport Museum
Opens Friday, April 14, 2023
Learn about life along the Delaware River during this brand-new exhibition at the Independence Seaport Museum . Curated artwork and artifacts shed light on the diverse peoples who have called the riverfront home for generations, from indigenous peoples, sailors and ironworkers, and immigrants seeking refuge and freedom of religion. The exhibition runs through May 2025.
Bartram’s Garden in Southwest Philadelphia celebrates spring with a free family-friendly celebration following the theme of “The Beauty of Urban Ecology.” Tour the riverfront gardens, enjoy hands-on workshops with team members from The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, grab a bite to eat from local food trucks and participate in a drum circle led by musicians from Musicopia. Before the day is out, be sure to take home a new plant friend during the annual plant nursery kickoff sale.
Join the Philadelphia Zoo and members of Philadelphia’s proud Indian community for a special celebration of Holi, an ancient Indian festival welcoming the arrival of spring. It’s a day full of traditional Indian music, food, dancing and — of course — a color-throwing ceremony. The celebration is included in regular zoo admission.
Are you ready? Joel Embiid, James Harden and Tyrese Maxey look to complete The Process by bringing Philly its first NBA title since 1983. First up is a matchup against the Brooklyn Nets in the first round of the 2023 NBA Playoffs. Following in-season trades of superstars Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant (and an injury to Ben Simmons), former Villanova star Mikal Bridges leads the new-look Nets into South Philly for the afternoon tipoff.
This celebration of Dinah — a heroic, formerly enslaved woman who saved Stenton mansion from being burned by British soldiers during the Revolutionary War — begins with a ceremony at Stenton Park Recreation Center at 1 p.m. Following remarks about Dinah’s life and legacy, the program continues with tours and educational activities at Stenton through 4 pm. The event is free to attend, but RSVPs are encouraged .
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The West Philadelphia Cultural Alliance celebrates legendary musician and activist Paul Robesen with a special concert commemorating what would be his 125th birthday. Grammy Award-nominated a cappella group Sweet Honey In The Rock are joined by local and international choirs for the quasquicentennial celebration. Tickets are required.
Life’s a beach! Philly’s most fabulous bingo night celebrates spring break in style. Join the Bingo Verifying Divas (BVDs) for an evening of scandalous skits, over-the-top musical numbers, classic bingo games and great prizes during this spring break-themed extravaganza. Tickets are required.
To mark the glorious return of cherry blossoms to Greater Philadelphia each year, the Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia hosts a two-day celebration complete with musical performances, cultural activities, workshops, dancing and more in a cherry blossom-rich section of Fairmount Park . A return to pre-pandemic form, the expanded festival features a beer garden, food court, marketplace and Japanese cultural activity center. While peak bloom snuck in a bit early this year , our bet is on a stellar celebration nonetheless.
Opening: Nkwiluntàmën: I long for it; I am lonesome for it (such as the sound of a drum) at Pennsbury Manor
Opens Saturday, April 15, 2023
Indigenous artist Nathan Young’s immersive yearlong sound installation outside of Pennsbury Manor — a reconstruction of William Penn’s home along the Delaware River in Bucks County — invites visitors to reflect on Indigenous peoples’ connection to land. On the self-guided walk, guests encounter original compositions, personal narratives and environmental recordings. A member of the Delaware Tribe of Indians, Young aims to foster a deeper appreciation for the tribe’s heritage and homeland through the sounds of wind, water and wildlife.
Philly is celebrating the 50th anniversary of hip-hop in 2023 with concerts and celebrations across the city. On Sunday, it’s a return to basics. Bring the little ones for this free event at the Kimmel Center to learn the fundamentals of hip-hop dance during an interactive dance class.
This popular traveling pop-up market makes a stop in Chestnut Hill for a day full of handmade goods and vintage finds from nearly 100 carefully curated small businesses. Also on the docket: plenty of local food trucks and live music. The market swings through Bryn Mawr (May 21, 2023) and Kennett Square (June 4, 2023) in the coming weeks.
Where: 25 W. Highland Avenue
Sisterly Love Collective Panel Discussion + Cocktail Party with Shari Bayer at The Study at University City
The Sisterly Love Collective welcomes celebrated podcast host and author Shari Bayer to The Study Hotel at University City for this cocktail reception and panel discussion celebrating her forthcoming book, Chefwise: Life Lessons from Leading Chefs Around the World. Joining Bayer for the panel are three prominent women in the Philly restaurant scene: Cybille St. Aude-Tate, co-owner of Honeysuckle Provisions; Melissa McGrath, executive oyster shucker, Sweet Amalia Oyster Market & Kitchen; and Sofia Deleon, owner of El Merkury. The event, which coincides with the sold-out Philly Chef Conference is open to the public and free to attend, but RSVPs are encouraged .
Live Performances in Greater Philadelphia
Dates vary by event
Soak up these live performances at venues across Greater Philadelphia this week and weekend.
- Eternal Life Part 1 at The Wilma Theatre : It turns out eternity is a pretty long time in this space-set play examining big questions about life, purpose and family (opens Tuesday).
- Hymn at Louis Bluver Theatre at The Theatres at the Drake : Two brothers meet in adulthood for the first time and try to forge a friendship during this powerful music-filled production from British playwright Lolita Chakrabarti (opens Wednesday).
- 9 to 5 the Musical at Jenkintown Music Theatre : This hilarious story of female friendship — set in a toxic 1970s workplace — features music and lyrics from Dolly Parton. For the Friday premiere, audiences are encouraged to “get all Dolly’d up” by wearing their best vintage looks (opens Friday).
- Steel Magnolias at the Stagecrafters Theater : The regulars at Truuvy’s beauty parlor in rural Louisiana are women of steel, handling life’s challenges with grace and humor in this touching drama-comedy (opens Friday).
- Decibel Magazine Metal & Beer Festival at The Fillmore Philadelphia : There are few things quite as hardcore as heavy metal and beer — and Decibel Magazine’s annual festival promises plenty of both. Over the course of two days, attendees take in sets from Suicidal Tendencies, The Black Dahlia Murder, Gorguts, Incantation and more while knocking back brews and other adult beverages from 3 Floyds, Broken Goblet Brewing, Brimming Horn Meadery and many others.(Friday & Saturday).
- The Tammy Faymous Cabaret at City Winery Philadelphia : With her signature messy wigs and questionable makeup choices, Tammy Faymous puts the focus on performance in this energetic drag show featuring songs from the likes of Amy Winehouse, Billie Eilish and Miley Cyrus. Looking for more? Check out our new guide to drag performances in Philadelphia (Saturday).
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Food & Drink Picks in Greater Philadelphia
Dates vary by event
Treat yourself at one of these food-related happenings in Greater Philadelphia. Hungry for more? Check out our newly updated guide to Philly’s hottest new restaurants .
- French AF Series: La Fête du Morille at Forsythia : Earthy morel mushrooms star in this edition of Forsythia’s wildly popular French AF series. The five-course mushroom-y menu features dishes like a tobiko fondue made with morel marmalade and beet and morel tartare. For dessert? A champagne tart topped with a morel mushroom graham crumble. Reservations are required (Wednesday).
- Now Open: Jet Wine Garden at Jet Wine Bar : Sip wine and unwind in Jet Wine Bar’s foliage-filled South Street space . In addition to wines from around the world, the bar serves up seasonal crafted cocktails and small plates perfect for pairing. Bring the whole fam: The Garden is kid- and pup-friendly (open Wednesdays through Saturdays).
- Oysters & Rosé at The Dutch : A seasonal fan favorite returns to The Dutch in South Philly: Grab a seat at the bar or patio to score half a dozen oysters and a glass of rosé for just $20 from 5 to 9 p.m. during this weekly spring and summer special (Thursdays).
- Rita’s Water Ice Beer Launch Party at Neshaminy Creek Brewing Co. in Croydon : We’ve seen the future, and it’s water ice beer. The fine folks at Neshaminy Creek Brewing are throwing a launch party for their new line of Rita’s Fruit Brews, inspired by the legendary flavors of Rita’s Water ice. The family-friendly party features music from West Philadelphia Orchestra, circus performers, non-alcoholic water ice and a Ferris wheel. Guests can purchase one six-pack of Mango Blonde Ale while supplies last (Saturday).
Sporting Events in Greater Philadelphia
Dates vary by game
Root, root, root for the home team at these sporting events in Greater Philadelphia.
- Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park : The Fightin Phils open up the young season’s first divisional series with three games against the rival Miami Marlins (Monday through Wednesday). Come hungry on Tuesday: It’s the first Hatfield Franks Dollar Dog Night of the season.
- Philadelphia Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center : The Fly Guys bid farewell to the 2022-2023 season with one final skate against the Columbus Blue Jackets in South Philly (Tuesday).
Through Sunday, August 27, 2023
The House of Mouse celebrates a century of dazzling audiences with a brand-new exhibition, making its world premiere in Philadelphia. Disney100: The Exhibition opens the vaults for behind-the-scenes glimpses into the creation of the company’s most popular characters, films, shows and attractions, offering 10 themed galleries with interactive installations covering everything from Snow White to Star Wars. Pro tip: Score complimentary tix to the exhibition when you book the Visit Philly Overnight Package for stays through August 20, 2023.
Through Sunday, October 8, 2023
“Is the sun rising or setting on the experiment of American democracy?” Nearly two dozen artists interpret that question in new artworks that appear in this collaborative exhibition at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and the African American Museum in Philadelphia (AAMP). This landmark exhibit invites visitors to consider complex issues from multiple viewpoints.
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Through Sunday, November 26, 2023
This new exhibition charts the life of James Forten, a free man of African descent who fought in the war for American independence in 1781, then returned to Philadelphia to become a successful businessman, philanthropist and stalwart abolitionist. Chronicle Forten’s life and follow his family’s 100-year story from the American Revolution through the lead up to the Civil War and women’s suffrage movement. On Wednesday, join author and historian Dr. Julie Winch for a discussion of her groundbreaking biography, A Gentleman of Color: The Life of James Forten . Tickets are required.
In Case You Missed It
Did you miss something new from visitphilly.com? Time travel is hard; getting you caught up is easy. Here’s what we’ve been up to recently:
- We touched up our guide to the best new restaurants in Philadelphia for 2023 . Find your new favorite spot!
- A fan of the finer things in life? (OK, fancy pants.) Check out our brand-new guide to fine dining in Philadelphia .
- Let’s make one thing perfectly clear: Philly proudly supports the LGBTQ+ community, now and forever. Want to show your love? Our rundown of where to see drag performances in Philadelphia is a wonderful place to start.