One of the more positive things to come out of this whole (lingering!) Covid experience is the creativity that some local bars, restaurants and attractions have shown to entice folks to come out of their quarantine pads for a little fun.
Exhibit A is a cool new dog park / beer garden hybrid that’s opening this weekend at Craft Hall in Northern Liberties. It’s a genius combo that lets your dog run off some energy while giving you a little liquid courage to chat up other dog parents. Who knows, you may find a new friend for life—or maybe even a new summer fling! More on that below.
If you’d rather leave your dog at home (trust me, I get it), there are tons of other beer gardens to check out around town—including Parks On Tap along the Schuylkill, and the gorgeous garden oasis hosted by the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society on South Street. You could also catch the latest summer flicks at the drive-in theater at the Navy Yard, or spend your Saturday afternoon at some family-friendly festivals in Old City and Mt. Airy.
Find details on all that and more in the list below.
This list grows as the week moves along, so stop by regularly for more ideas about things to do in Philadelphia this week and weekend. Have event ideas or suggestions about how we could make this list better? Email me at [email protected].
THINGS TO DO IN PHILLY THIS WEEK
- DOG-FRIENDLY BEER GARDEN OPENING: In a city full of beer gardens, Craft Hall has managed to create one that stands apart: It’s just as much for dogs as it is drinkers. Stop by the Northern Liberties watering hole beginning Friday, July 29, at 4pm, to check out the two-part pup-friendly expansion. On one side, you have “Unleashed Bark and Beer,” a 2,000-square-feet dog park with green turf that’s got patio seating all around so you can sit and chat with other dog owners, drink in hand. Guests can place contactless orders for beer, wine, cocktails, and even libations for dogs. If you’re looking for a full-on dinner experience, the “Puppy Porch” is a dog-friendly dining setup on a patio that seats 40-plus patrons. Treats for four-legged diners will be available there, too. 🐶
- OUTDOOR MOVIES: Here’s what’s screening under the stars this week in Philly:
- July 29–August 1: Jungle Cruise at the PFS Drive-In at the Navy Yard
- BIRTHDAY BASH @ FRANKLIN SQUARE: The lively Old City park celebrates the 15th year of its Summer Splash series with a full-day hoopla on Saturday, July 31 from 10am to 10pm. You could spend the whole day at the free event and never get bored, with craft stations, lawn games, yoga, story walks, dance performances, live music and more. To keep things extra peppy, you could always visit the new onsite beer garden, too!
- UNITY IN THE COMMUNITY DAY: The Office of the Philadelphia Sheriff is hosting a family-friendly community festival at the Mount Airy Church of God in Christ (6401 Ogontz Avenue) on Saturday, July 31, from 10 am to 4pm. The affair has something for everyone: a job fair with Amazon and other employers, free food from Brown’s Shop-Rite, activities for kids, live musical and spoken word performances and more.
- NATIONAL SPRITZ DAY IN PHILLY: Are you one of those people who makes it a point to celebrate all the national days of [fill in the blank]? Then I don’t have to tell you about National Spritz Day on Sunday, August 1. For those of you in the dark: It’s a day to celebrate one of summer’s trendiest, most refreshing libations. A few local restaurants are joining in on the festivities, such as Royal Boucherie with its three-step build-your-own-spritz bar, and Red Owl Tavern, which is serving up three botanical-infused concoctions: the Pepper Tree Spritz, Lemon Tree Spritz and the Strawberry Flower Spritz. I don’t know about you, but I’m trying them all. 🙃
- WEEKEND HAPPY HOURS IN PHILLY: You know a bar loves you when it continues its happy hour deals throughout the weekend. Show some love to these locally owned spots that offer specials not only on Friday after work, but Saturday and Sunday as well.
- Art in the Age from 3 to 5pm all weekend: $2 off small batch bottled cocktails and $1 off local craft beer and cider
- Bing Bing Dim Sum from 4:30 to 6:30pm on Friday; 3 to 5pm on Saturdays; and 4 to 6pm on Sundays: $8 bartender’s choice cocktail, $1 off draft beer, $8 house wine and house Junmai sake
- The Twisted Tail from 4 to 6pm all weekend: $3 select draft beers and $4 house wine, and $6 small plates, such as oysters and smoked wings.
- Assembly Rooftop Lounge from 4 to 6pm Friday and Saturday: various discounts on small plates and drinks
- Jet Wine Bar from noon to 2pm on Saturday and Sunday: $6 white sangria, $7 rosé Aperol spritz ($7), $4 select craft beer, $6 soft pretzel sticks, $7 margherita flatbread and more.
- VISIT CANDYTOPIA: An art museum filled with candy creations is now open in the Fashion District with more than a dozen “environments” tailor-made for your Instagram feed. No matter how you feel about these made-for-IG pop-up installations, you won’t be to hold back smiles as you wander through the kooky space filled with unicorn pigs blasting confetti out of their butts, marshmallow tsunamis and a giant gum ball machine. We could all use a little silliness in our lives these days. Tickets range from $20 to $28, and 3 and under get in free.
THINGS TO DO AT PHILADELPHIA ATTRACTIONS
Some of Philly’s most iconic attractions are back open for spring with fun, socially distant activities during Covid-19. Here’s some stuff worth checking out:
- Spruce Street Harbor Park is open on the Delaware river with its covetable hammocks, arcade games, floating bar and Philly food staples galore—from pretzels to water ice to crab fries and tacos.
- Blue Cross RiverRink Summerfest keeps visitors entertained for hours with roller skating, ferris wheel rides, boardwalk games, mini-golf, an arcade and all kinds of summertime grub, such as funnel cakes, cotton candy, chicken wings, crab fries and beer, beer, beer.
- Parks On Tap, Philly’s beloved pop-up beer garden, is open at Water Works behind the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Besides idyllic views of the museum and water, the setup offers a menu full of snacks, sandwiches and sweets, plus beers, wines and specialty cocktails. For more, including safety protocols and hours of operation, go here.
- You could stop by Dilworth Park any day of the week for lunch or dinner at the Air Grille, watch kids playing in the fountains, try an outdoor fitness class (Mondays and Tuesdays, 6pm), hear live music at lunchtime (Wednesdays and Thursdays, noon–1pm), and catch an outdoor movie (Thursdays, 8:15pm).
- There are all kinds of fun things to do at Franklin Square this summer, including mini golf, riding the carousel and ogling musical fountain shows. See a full itinerary of events here.
- Bok Bar, the South Philly rooftop bar with gobsmacking views of the Philadelphia skyline (and then some), is open with a fun slate of weekly activities, such as restaurant pop-ups, drag brunches, rooftop yoga sessions, maker workshops and tons more. You can find the full schedule here. Plan ahead; reservations are required in lieu of Covid safety protocols.
- Cherry Street Pier is always bustling with some kind of activity—whether it’s art shows or food markets or visitors just sitting back, beer in hand, and gazing at the beautiful Delaware River views.
- Fairmount Park, Philadelphia’s largest park is a perfect place to spend a sunny Saturday or Sunday afternoon hiking trails, touring historic mansions or taking a kayak tour along the Schuylkill. Don’t know where to start? Consult the Fairmount Park Conservancy’s digital guide to the park to discover four different trails to explore. You could also check out the organization’s events calendar for upcoming to-dos, such as birdwatching tours, outdoor exercise classes and romantic moonlit strolls.
- Eastern State Penitentiary is offering after-dark tours on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights through September 4. Guests will have a chance to explore everything the daytime tours offer (like Al Capone’s cell), but under the eery light of the moon—plus grab a beer from Triple Bottom Brewing Company in the prison’s Fair Chance Beer Garden.
- The Philadelphia Zoo, the nation’s oldest zoo, is always a fun place to spend a weekend or chill weekday afternoon. For now, guests can walk among massive animatronic dinosaurs in a prehistoric setting at special exhibition “Big Time: Life in an Endangerous Age.”
- Shofuso Japanese house and gardens in Fairmount Park is now open for spring tours.