24 Things to Do in Philly This Weekend

Christmas Village in LOVE Park opens for a sneak peek, Franklin Flea Holiday Market debuts at Strawbridge's, Food Fest and more entertaining to-dos.

On this last weekend before Thanksgiving and the official holiday season, check out events like the Franklin Flea Holiday Market for gift inspiration, or get a sneak peek at this year’s Christmas Village in LOVE Park. The food-lover, music fan and athlete alike will find something to enjoy at a food and beer festival, a handful of unique musical experiences and, of course, the Philadelphia Marathon. All this and more broken down for you below:

Holiday Fun and Shopping

Photo by Russ Brown Photography

Photo by Russ Brown Photography

Christmas Village Preview Opening
Get a sneak peek at this year’s Christmas Village at LOVE Park this weekend. Check out new and returning vendors, enjoy mulled wine, hot chocolate and treats. The village will open for real on Thanksgiving Day, with the official ceremony that weekend, just in case you’re already feeling in the Christmas mood after your turkey dinner. Through November 22nd, 11 am, LOVE Park.

Franklin Flea Holiday Market 2015 Opens
Every Saturday starting this week through the weekend before Christmas, the Franklin Flea Holiday Market will return for some seasonal shopping opportunities at the gorgeous historic Strawbridge’s building on Market East. Find a truly unique gift browsing the market’s selection of vintage hand-crafted items and larger vendor booths. Through December 19th, 10 am, pay as you go, Historic Strawbridge’s Building.

Nutcracker Night at the Franklin Square Holiday Festival
Christmas is already in full swing at Franklin Square, where, this weekend, characters from the Pennsylvania Ballet’s The Nutcracker, like the Mouse King and a gaggle of sugarplum fairies, will be on hand for photo opps with the little ones. Stick around for the Electrical Spectacle light show, and grab a bite in the winter beer garden with beverages by Brauhaus Schmitz. Friday, November 2oth, 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm, Franklin Square. 

Holidays On the Hill
Chestnut Hill’s annual, month-long holiday tradition begins this weekend with the Circle of Trees lighting ceremony at Woodmere Art Museum and the arrival of Santa for boys and girls eager to get their wish list in early. The rest of the season includes a Sip & Stroll wine tasting, holiday house tours, Friday Night Lights and the Vintage Pennsylvania German Christmas Toys & Decorations Exhibition. Get all the details on times and locations here. Through December 23rd, various times and locations. 

Holiday Pop-Up Shop and Silent Auction
The Old City Jewish Arts Center host a holiday pop-up shop and silent auction sponsored by local businesses, with proceeds supporting the Center. You can find vendors that specialize in jewelry, knitted goods and skincare, and there will be kosher refreshments available. Through November 23rd, noon, pay as you go, Old City Jewish Arts Center. 

Eric & Christopher Open House
Speciality pillow designers Eric Fausnacht and Christopher Kline are hosting an open house in their Perkasie warehouse, where you can meet them and check out their new holiday products, with cute and festive images like snowmen, nutcrackers, and animals in Santa hats. You can also find totes, wall art and ornaments adorned with their signature farm animal prints. Saturday, November 21st, 11 am, pay as you go, 410 East Walnut Street, Perkasie, PA.

Food and Beer Festivals

After almost 11 minutes a champion was crowned. Joe Heyob won himself a Year of Beer at Brauhaus Schmitz.

Food Fest 2015
For the first year, the Philadelphia Food Festival will bring a day of good eats, drink, and giving back to the community. Over 100 restaurants across the city will offer specials while donating some of their proceeds to charity to help fight hunger and poverty in the community. While the restaurant crawl is free, you can also donate and receive a coupon book, or visit the different drop-offs to bring in canned goods. Saturday, November 21st, noon, free, various locations.

Winter Beer Fest
Seasonal beers are one of the highlights of holiday food and drink. This beer fest will have two sessions in the day where you can try over 100 beers on tap, including spiced ales, IPAs, wheat beers and ciders. Food trucks and designated driver tickets are also available. Saturday, November 21st, noon, 5 pm, $40-$50, 460 North 9th Street.

Philadelphia Marathon

Photo courtesy GORE-TEX Philadelphia Marathon

Photo courtesy GORE-TEX Philadelphia Marathon

It’s finally here. The weekend of sport will begin with Comcast expos, a kids’ fun run, the Rothman 8K and finally, on Sunday, the half-marathon and marathon. For the ultimate spectators’ guide check out Be Well Philly for tips on where to park, cheer on runners, and places to eat and drink nearby. Through November 22nd, various times, various locations.

Catch a Show


Milky Way at Fidget Space (pictured center)
Using drama, comedy, music and dance, Director Hinako Arao’s Milky Way asks if there is such a thing as a universal experience, through the eyes and perspectives of Philadelphian theater artists who are themselves immigrants. Born and raised in Japan, Arao is based in both Tokyo and Philadelphia, and will also appear in the production. Through November 22nd, 3 pm, $10-$12, Fidget Space.

Uncalled Four Comedy Game Show
In Cards Against Humanity fashion, this comedy game show is an interactive night of laughs and drinks where audience members can submit questions, and the comics will have to answer with their own pre-filled deck of cards. Prizes are given to the best questions, and the crowd will vote on the best answer each round. The comic with the most points racked up from their answers wins. Sunday, November 22nd, 8 pm, $5-$7, PhilaMOCA.

Check out our reviews of other shows open this weekend:

Becoming Dr. Ruth at Walnut Street Theatre | A Christmas Story at Walnut Street Theatre (pictured right) | Matilda: The Musical at Academy of Music (pictured left) | Lantern Theater’s Underneath the Lintel  | Azuka Theater’s Lights Rise on Grace (closes November 22nd) | Equivocation at Arden Theatre Company

Shakespeare in Philly

The protagonist in Royal Shakespeare Company's production of Henry V, showing this weekend at Ritz 5.

The protagonist in Royal Shakespeare Company’s production of Henry V, showing this weekend at Ritz 5.

Twelfth Night, or What You Will
UArts’s Ira Brind School of Theater Arts will present Shakespeare’s classic comedyabout a twin brother and sister who are shipwrecked, and each thinks the other has been lost at sea. Philadelphia director Matt Pfeiffer leads the cast in this tale of love and confusion. Through November 22nd, various times, $5-$10, Arts Bank Mainstage Theater.

Henry V
Director Gregory Doran’s Royal Shakespeare Company interpretation of Henry V will have a special one-time-only screening at the Ritz Five this weekend. This Shakespearean play follows Prince Hal’s ascendence to the throne after the death of his father, King Henry IV of England. The show was performed and recorded live last month in Shakespeare’s birthplace, Stratford-upon-Avon.  Sunday, November 22nd, 11 am, $15, Ritz Five. 

Art Openings

A portrait by Jaime Alvarez Terrene, showing in a new exhibition at Pipeline Philly

A portrait by Jaime Alvarez Terrene, showing in a new exhibition at Pipeline Philly

Stanek Gallery Grand Opening
A new art space will have its grand opening in Old City this Friday. With food and wine, enjoy the opening exhibit “Inspirations,” which features art by the gallery’s founders Katherine Stanek and Deborah Fine, along with work from fellow artists who have inspired them. Friday, November 20th, 6 pm, 242 North 3rd Street.

In Time at Pipeline Philly
This Friday, a free reception for In Time will be held at Pipeline Philly gallery. The first exhibition in the ultra-cool Graham Building co-working space, the photographs of this collection show the passing of time through the natural changes of the Earth. Friday, November 20th, 5 pm, free, Pipeline Philly.

Niki Sherey at Carré d’Artistes 
Carré d’Artistes gallery is hosting visiting Washington State artist Niki Sherey, who will paint live through the weekend, talk with visitors about her work, and sign art. Some of the proceeds will go to the French Red Cross to help in the aftermath of last week’s Paris attacks. Through Sunday, November 22nd, noon, Carré d’Artistes. 

Unique Musical Experiences


Christylez Bacon and Nistha Raj will blend hip-hop and Indian music this weekend at International House.

Hip-Hop Meets Hindustani
In an intercultural union of music, Grammy-nominated hip-hop artist Christylez Bacon and Indian violinist Nistha Raj will perform alongside an ensemble of musicians to reflect the musical backgrounds of their coming of age. This five-piece will join North Indian classical music, hip-hop, and D.C.’s go-go music that emerged out of styles of funk and R&B. Friday, November 20th, 8 pm, $8-$15, International House Philadelphia.

Divine Hand Ensemble with Swing That Cat
Edison invented the phonograph 138 years ago this Saturday, and for the Mütter Museum, that warrants a party. Divine Hand Ensemble, an eight-piece string group led by thereminist Mano Divina, and rockabilly band Swing That Cat will perform. Visitors will get evening access to the museum as well as a pumpkin ale from Barren Hill Brewery. Saturday, November 21st, 7 pm, $30, Mütter Museum.

Adam Rudolph’s Go: Organic Guitar Orchestra
Composer and drummer Adam Rudolph has explored all types of worldly music since the 1970s. In this collective co-presented by Ars Nova Workshop, he and 10 other musicians will present a symphony of guitar music — from acoustic, bass, to steel guitar. Sunday, November 22nd, 8 pm, $15, FringeArts. 


Starting left going clockwise: Frankie Cosmos (TK), Ravi Coltrane and Beat Connection all play this weekend in Philly.

Starting left going clockwise: Frankie Cosmos (digboston | Flickr), Ravi Coltrane and Beat Connection all play this weekend in Philly.

Ravi Coltrane
The son of musicians Alice and John Coltrane, and the cousin of producer Flying Lotus, Ravi Coltrane has forged a decades-long dedication to music as a jazz saxophonist, producer and founder of the record company RKM Music. He’ll be playing four shows in total at the jazz venue on Friday and Saturday nights with his accompanying quartet. Listen before you go: “Zoe.”  Friday, November 20th, 8 pm, 10 pm, Chris’ Jazz Cafe.

Arlo Gutherie
Arlo Guthrie, son of folk legend Woody Guthrie, made a promise that on 10-year anniversaries of his folk Americana classic “Alice’s Restaurant,” he’d agree to perform it. And never in between. So get your tickets to hear this classic 18-minute musical yarn about a series of hilarious, incredibly stupid events in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, back on Thanksgiving 1965. The incident in question led to an arrest, which fortuitously made him ineligible for the Vietnam draft. Don’t worry, he’ll tell you all the details in his deadpan, charming way. Played on public radio every Thanksgiving, this guitar-backed monologue has become a holiday tradition for many. Saturday, November 21st, 8 pm, Keswick Theatre, Glenside, PA. —Sarah Jordan

Frankie Cosmos
New Yorker Greta Kline aka Frankie Cosmos makes the simple elegant, able to sing the lyrics of youth in “Birthday Song” like “I hate everybody in this town,” with an eerie kind of sweetness. Although she has released roughly 50 albums and EPs on Bandcamp, her latest EP, Fit Me In, incorporates more of a synth and electronic vibe to her lo-fi bedroom sound. Listen before you go: “Young.” Saturday, November 21st, 8:30 pm, First Unitarian Church.

English Beat
It’s a blast from the rollicking ska-band past with English Beat going on tour promoting the new album, Here We Go Love. Hunky Dave Wakeling leads the band (minus Ranking Roger) that was known for massive new wave 80s hits: “Save it For Later,” “Mirror in the Bathroom,” “Can’t Get Used to Losing You,” “I Confess.” With its infectious house band vibe, The Beat still know how to light up a room. Saturday, November 21st, 9 pm, Underground Arts. —Sarah Jordan

Beat Connection
After touring with names like Toro y Moi and ODESZA, Seattle’s Beat Connection is holding their own show at Johnny Brenda’s. With the release of their newest album, Product 3, last month, the group offers up dreamy and slick indie dance tracks. Also joining the lineup will be Phantoms and Bondage and Discipline. Listen before you go: “Thought Through.” Sunday, November 22nd, 9 pm, Johnny Brenda’s.

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