Did You Know? Philly’s Center City District Parks Make For One Gorgeous Outdoor Wedding

John F. Collins Park is perfect for an intimate affair. Photo by Michael Spain-Smith.

John F. Collins Park is perfect for an intimate affair. Photo by Michael Spain-Smith.

It’s impossible not to love a gorgeous outdoor wedding this time of year. Let’s be honest—natural sunlight and organic backdrops make for a seriously breathtaking affair. Lucky for us, Philadelphia is in no way lacking when it comes to pretty spaces to host your Big Day outside.

We recently learned all about holding your wedding in a few of the Center City District Parks, and we have to say, we kinda love the idea of a wedding being held in such historic, unique and scenic spots with the city quite literally as your backdrop. One of them, Dilworth Park, which is currently undergoing renovations on the west side of City Hall, won’t be ready until fall (and obviously, we’ll update you on all the deets, then), but right now, both the Sister Cities Park and the John F. Collins Park are fully equipped to hold your celebration.


Sister Cities Park is located in Logan Square between the Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul and Swann Fountain. The charming space includes the Sister Cities Fountain, as well as an elevated Discovery Garden with a wading pool, and a view of the iconic Art Museum off in the distance. There are about a million different ways to set up your party whether you opt to hold it under a tent, or not—you could do an intimate dinner for 20 people under a smaller tent, or throw a cocktail-style standing reception for 2,000 of your nearest and dearest if you rent out the entire park, just to give you an idea of the flexibility.

And what's really cool is that the CCD also offers a separate “Interlude Package” at Sister Cities, so that couples whose ceremony ends well before their formal reception begins—ceremonies at the Basilica must end by 4pm, and the earliest many of the area venues will begin a reception is 6pm—can host their guests here, with a quick in-between-parties party featuring light bites and beverage service.

John F. Collins Park, on the other hand, is a secret hideaway amongst the bustling city streets, tucked away off 17th between Chestnut and Ranstead Streets in Rittenhouse. Wrought iron gates and a sculpture fountain are the highlights of this spot, making it ideal for raw, intimate events. (Many “first looks” have been staged here due to its unmatched sense of privacy.) This space, too, offers a variety of options for your party's set-up—and therefore, capacity—though the max it can hold is 150.

All park options come with preferred caterers (including Brûlée Catering by Chef Jean-Marie Lacroix) and a team of experts who will nail down every detail of your day from start to finish. To check out any of these spaces for your Big Day, fill out the online application, or reach out to Sarah Anello directly at 215-440-5507.

  Like PW on Facebook | Follow PW on Twitter | Sign up for the PW newsletter

Be respectful of our online community and contribute to an engaging conversation. We reserve the right to ban impersonators and remove comments that contain personal attacks, threats, or profanity, or are flat-out offensive. By posting here, you are permitting Philadelphia magazine and Metro Corp. to edit and republish your comment in all media.