Have Fun, Do Good: Take the Plunge!

A quirky ice plunge at Drexel benefits locals with disabilities, the Feminist Flea Market & Craft show hits the Bok and more things to do it Philly this week for a great cause

Thanksgiving may be behind us, but the season of giving rolls on in full force. This week, consider taking a moment to help the hungry in Philadelphia.

From Camp Out For Hunger, which donated more than 1.8 million pounds of food last year, to this year’s Cranberry Bowl, a day-long football tournament / charity event in Philly, it’s never been easier––and more fun––to donate non-perishable food items at several locations throughout the city.

There’s also the Feminist Flea Market and Craft Fair in South Philly, where the perfect holiday gift made by a local artist is sure to catch your eye. And while you’re in the holiday spirit, bring your pup to Hotel Palomar for a free photo with Santa. ????????

Finally, round out the week with a frigid plunge into a pool of water to benefit children and adults in Philadelphia with intellectual disabilities.

Like always, this week is bursting at the seams with events that double as opportunities for civic action. Read all about it below.

Things to do in Philadelphia this week for a good cause

1. Camp Out For Hunger at XFINITY Live!

A group of people gather together at the annual Camp Out for Hunger event hosted by the Preston & Steve Show.
Photo courtesy Preston & Steve Show / Facebook

We’ve put together a full list of ways to help the hungry in Philadelphia, but here’s another way to extend a hand to the city’s less fortunate. From Monday until Friday, Preston and Steve’s Camp Out for Hunger food drive will be posted up at XFINITY Live! to collect non-perishable food items that will be donated to Philabundance. Last year, the food drive generated a record-breaking 1.8 million pounds of food (!) Let’s beat that this year, Philly! Here’s a list of the 10 most-needed food items that you can donate. December 2–6, Monday–Thursday, 6am–9pm; Friday, 6–11am, free, XFINITY Live!, 1100 Pattison Avenue.

2. Polar Plunge at Drexel Recreation Center

Three ladies—two of whom are wearing tutus—jump into a pool of icy water for the Polar Plunge at Drexel University.
Photo courtesy Special Olympics Pennsylvania

Nothing will remind you that winter is coming more than jumping into a pool of water in early December. But for five years now, locals have been doing just that—sometimes in full costume!—to raise funds for SOPA Philly, a nonprofit that provides sports training and opportunities for athletic competition to children and adults with intellectual disabilities. In 2019, the Polar Plunge has already raised $41,000, but their goal is $200,000 by the year’s end. So if you’re going to submerge yourself in freezing water this year, let this be the reason you do it. Happy plunging! Friday, December 6, 10am–7pm, $5–$100, Drexel Recreation Center, 3301 Market Street.

3. Feminist Flea Market & Craft Fair at the Bok School

A vendor for The Bettys stands next to hour table at the Feminist Flea Market and Craft Fair.
Photo courtesy Feminist Flea Market & Craft Fair

This Saturday, at Bok in South Philly, more than 100 vendors and artists—including those who are transgender, non-binary and gender-non-conforming—will gather for the Feminist Flea Market & Craft Fair. There’s a $5 entry fee, which may seem unusual for a market—until you hear the reason: All proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to WOAR, a nonprofit organization in Philadelphia working to eliminate all forms of sexual violence. This is a not-to-be-missed event, especially with the holidays just around the corner. So come support local small businesses and artists as you shop for a holiday gift and take a stand against sexual violence all in one place. Saturday, December 7, 10am–5pm, $5, Bok, 1901 S. 9th Street.

4. Girls On The Run 5K at the Navy Yard

Young girls cross the finish line at the annual Girls On the Run 5K in Philadelphia.
Photo courtesy Girls On the Run Philadelphia / Facebook

In 2016, The Citizen wrote about Girls On The Run, a national program that uses running to teach 8- to 13-year-old girls how to tackle issues like peer pressure, healthy eating, body image and other things that girls face every day. Back then, the Philadelphia chapter of Girls On The Run served 300 girls. Today, that number has grown to over 1,000. This Sunday, Girls On The Run will be hosting its annual 5K, where more than 600 girls will run with their friends and family. Register to run here or cheer them on come race day as they run the city’s streets. Sunday, December 8, 8am–11:30am, $20–$25, The Navy Yard, 4747 S. Broad Street.

More things to do in Philly this week for a great cause:

People do yoga in the greenhouse at the Fairmount Horticultural Center
Photo courtesy Fairmount Park Conservancy
  • December 6: Gear up for the 19th annual Roundup event, where a night of live music and dancing will be had to benefit the Children’s Crisis Treatment Center, a nonprofit that works to offer behavioral health services to children and families.
  • December 7: This year’s Cranberry Bowl––the annual football tournament for all of Philly––is all about ending hunger. Participants are asked to bring perishable food items that will be donated to Philabundance.
  • December 7: Head to Hotel Palomar to get a free photo of your pup with Santa as part of Santa Paws 2019. Enjoy hot cocoa and cookies and consider donating to Lulu’s Rescue, who will be there with adoptable puppies.
  • December 8: Get your yoga on in a lush greenhouse (pictured) to benefit Fairmount Park Conservancy—and your inner Zen warrior. Classes happen on select weekends through March 29.
  • December 8: Celebrate the season with a Victorian-themed holiday party that benefits local indie theater group Tiny Dynamite.
Photo courtesy Special Olympics Pennsylvania

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