Looking to get outdoors? Sprawling open-air destinations, such as Parks on Tap, Spruce Street Harbor Park and Cherry Street Pier, are open throughout summer with food, drinks and pretty views galore. The month of August also sees fun special events, like drive-in movie nights at the Navy Yard and yoga on the roof of the Bok Building.
If you’re still leery about getting around people IRL, check out some of these latest virtual events, including online music festivals, theater and town hall discussions.
We’ll keep updating this list until we’re in the clear, so stop by regularly for more ideas about things to do in Philadelphia while we wait out the coronavirus.
Things to do in Philly during quarantine
Things to do this weekend
- Jet Wine Bar on South Street is hosting Beirut Benefit Week from August 7 to 13 to support those affected by the recent explosion in Lebanon. Besides the do-good aspect, the event gives you an opportunity to try five wines from the Bekaa Valley of Lebanon, plus specialty cocktails made with Arak, the licorice-flavored national drink of Lebanon. Lebanese-inspired bites are also available. Twenty percent of your check will go to the Lebanese Red Cross.
- August 9 to 16 is Shark Week at Adventure Aquarium, which is home to the largest collection of sharks on the East Coast.
- The National Constitution Center is open with free admission for all visitors through September 5.
- Pop-up sound and light show Wonderspaces is open in the Fashion District with 14 experiential art installations, such as Submergence, which lets guests walk through—and take pictures of—8,064 dazzling points of light that change color along with music.
- Hang out along the breezy Delaware River Waterfront attractions Spruce Street Harbor Park Blue Cross RiverRink SummerFest and Cherry Street Pier are all open every day of the week for summer with dazzling light shows, carnival rides, and food and drink from a host of local vendors.
- Parks on Tap is open in two outdoor locations: along the Schuylkill River outside Fairmount Water Works (open Monday through Sunday) and at Fairmount Park Horticulture Center (Wednesday to Sunday). Both spots offer beers, wine and barbecue-style grub in an airy, under-the-stars setting. Go here for more details, including hours, safety protocols and info on how to sign in before your visit.
Things to do next week and down the road …
- Fairmount board game café Thirsty Dice is hosting a socially distant outdoor game night at The Spring Gardens on Monday, August 10, from 6 to 8pm. Tickets are $15.
- Miss going to the movies? Pennsylvania Film Society has a solution for that with its PFS Drive-In at the Navy Yard. The setup will operate daily beginning Friday, August 14, through October with a slate of newly released and time-worn favorite flicks, like Get Out, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse and all the Fast and Furious films. Up to 200 cars can park at the outdoor theater, where you’ll find films being projected onto a massive screen attached to stacked shipping containers. What’s cooler than that? The full lineup of films will be released soon. You can find those here. Tickets, which range from $7 to $12, go on sale Wednesday, August 12.
- The Pennsylvania SPCA and Main Line Animal Rescue team up to host a nostalgic drive-in movie night to raise funds for their lifesaving missions. It’s happening in Chester Springs on Saturday, August 15, at 6:30pm. They’ll be screening The Sandlot.
- The PFS Drive-In at the Navy Yard (mentioned above) includes a schedule of free Monday night movies held in collaboration with Philly cinema group ReelBlack. The official schedule will be released soon, but we got word that upcoming films include Night Catches Us (August 17), Love and Basketball (August 24), and The Watermelon Woman (August 31).
- Palo Santo Wellness Boutique leads an open-air yoga event on top of the Bok Bar on Thursday, August 20, at 5pm. Tickets are $20. Besides just an all-levels yoga flow, the event also features “ancient wisdom storytelling” and sacred sound meditation.
Upcoming re-openings to look out for
- Chill out to the soothing sounds of the piano: The Philadelphia Young Pianists’ Academy is hosting its first-ever full-scale piano festival everyday through August 9. Check out the full schedule here.
- Open a bottle of wine and settle in for a performance of the Wilma Theater’s digital production Code Blue. The Blanka Ziska-directed short follows two men “caught in the chaos of contemporary America.”
- Speaking of the Wilma: The making of the local theater company’s latest virtual production, Is God Is, is the subject of a recent episode of NPR podcast The Indicator. Listen here.
Next week and down the road …
- Tap into your inner flower child during WXPN’s “Woodstock Week: Back to the Garden Again.” Over the course of seven days—August 10 through 16—the local station will play all 33 songs performed at the famed 1969 Woodstock festival—from Janis Joplin and Joan Baex to the Grateful Dead and Jimi Hendrix. Here’s the full schedule.
- Catch a new locally made film every Monday at 6pm through September 16 during the Institute of Contemporary Art’s “Open Video Call 2020” series. Find a full schedule and list of accompanying filmmaker Q&As here.
- Writers and book lovers should check Blue Stoop’s weekly virtual gatherings Wednesdays on the Stoop. The free events include book and poetry readings, writing workshops and more. See the full list of upcoming events here.
- The Kimmel Center is taking part in a live virtual concert featuring Christoper Jackson, the Grammy- and Emmy-winning crooner who played the original George Washington in Hamilton. Taking place Saturday, August 15, at 8pm, the show benefits a Kimmel Center initiative to provide free arts education to local students in Title 1 schools. Donations can be made here.
- Mark your calendar for a virtual town hall discussion on Zoom between Pennsylvania Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman and his formal rival turned best pal Jeff Bartos on Wednesday, September 9, at 6pm.