What to Expect at the Oval Pop-Up on the Parkway This Summer

The Parkway pop-up will feature mini golf, free concerts, movie nights, kids’ activities and more.

the oval pop-up parkway

The Oval pop-up is coming back in July with free fun on the Parkway. / Photograph by Laura Swartz

Back in 2013, Philly’s Parks & Rec department started painting the drab parking lot on Eakins Oval with vibrant colors and filling it with family-friendly fun for the summer months. The Oval took a few years off due to the pandemic, then returned in 2022 with festival vibes, a beer garden, and weeks of activities. Last year, it came back as a pop-up — minus that pricey Ferris wheel.

And now, the Oval is coming back beginning July 11th and running through August 25th, Thursdays through Sundays. Across its eight acres on the Parkway, there will be free music, family fun, putt-putt, a beer garden, movie nights, shopping and more. Here’s what’s on the lineup.

Mini Golf by Libertee Grounds

Fresh Prince of Bel Air-themed mini-golf hole at the Oval / Photograph by Laura Swartz

New for this year, the Oval has a nine-hole mini-golf course by Libertee Grounds. Co-founders, Sanil Shah, Kanay Patel and Priyank Rambhia, designed this bespoke course especially to honor its location, with homages to Parkway locations like the Barnes Foundation, Rodin Museum and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. It also has Philly pop-culture references like the Fresh Prince of Bel Air throne, Rocky running through the Italian Market, and a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it Danny DeVito appearance. (Look at the Swann Fountain hole a little closer.)

Tickets are just $5 for adults and teens, while kids 12 and under play free.

Want to keep the fun going? Hold onto your scorecard from the Oval’s mini-golf course and bring it to Libertee Grounds for a free round there.

Food and Drink

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Beer garden at The Oval / Photograph by R. Rabena for Visit Philadelphia

In addition to their mini-golf course, Libertee Grounds is also bringing a beer garden to the Oval. There will be some summery cocktails — including a tea-based one — and rotating flavors of boozy slushies. Additionally, they’ll feature wine and beer from local makers like Mural City Cellars, Two Robbers, Love City Brewing, La Cabra Brewing, Victory Brewing Company and Stateside.

As for food, the beer garden will feature some of the Asian-influenced bar fare from its parent restaurant, like their Masala Nachos and Korean Smash Burger. They’ll also have more standard beer-garden bites like hot dogs, soft pretzels and chicken tenders. And for dessert? An old-school classic dirt cup (topped with black sesame for a little update).

The beer garden will also host Quizzo on Sunday afternoons from 5 to 7 p.m., hosted by Johnny Goodtimes. Bring your team (up to eight people) and compete to win prizes, including gift cards to the Oval’s beer garden and mini-golf course.

Movie Nights

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Movie night at the Oval on the Parkway/ Photograph by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia

Grab a blanket and gather around the big screen on the Parkway. Food and drink will be available for purchase. Movies begin at dusk on Fridays.

  • July 12th: The Little Mermaid (2023)
  • July 19th: The Lion King (1994)
  • July 26th: E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
  • August 2nd: Elemental
  • August 9th: Wonka
  • August 16th: Jumanji (1995)
  • August 23rd: Luca

Friday Night Performances and Saturday Night Concerts

Fridays at 6:30 p.m.

The Oval will kick off the weekend with live Friday night performances on the main stage.

  • July 12th: Project Positive, a Philly breakdancing group with a message of community empowerment
  • July 19th: The Philadelphia Suns bring traditional Chinese lion dancing, drumming and cultural celebration.
  • July 26th: Guachinangos mixes Mexican son jarocho with Colombian cumbia and other Latin American rhythms.
  • August 2nd: Troupe Da Da, an African drum and dance ensemble
  • August 9th: Christian “TAMEARTZ” Rodriguez sponsors a “hip-hop masterclass” exploring emceeing, breaking, rapping and graffiti art. (This is ahead of Hip-Hop in the Park the following day.)
  • August 16th: Modero & Co., a traditional Indonesian dance group
  • August 23rd: drum line performance by Mad Beatz Philly

Saturdays at 8 p.m.

Snacktime — everyone’s favorite seven-piece, brass-heavy band that has become synonymous with a good time in Philly — curates a free weekly concert series.

  • July 13th: Ivy Sole
  • July 20th: Victoria Victoria
  • July 27th: Love Club
  • August 3rd: Josh Lee & The Family
  • August 10th: Sibby Liv and guests
  • August 17th: Olivia K and the Parkers
  • August 24th: Snacktime brings their mix of funk, punk, jazz, and pop and R&B, along with some special guests.

Festival: Hip Hop in the Park

Celebrate the history and legacy of hip-hop with an all-day festival featuring musical performances, shopping and art. Christian “TAMEARTZ” Rodriguez returns to curate. August 10th, noon-10 p.m.

Family Fun

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Kids’ activities at the Oval / Photograph by Laura Swartz

In addition to the lawn games and general fun, the Oval is planning some free, child-focused activities and programs every weekend. Here’s the schedule.

  • July 14th: The north outer lane of the Parkway will be closed from 20th to Spring Garden, and filled with free activities that stretch up to Eakins Oval. The day also includes the Barnes on the Block party, with lots of free art-making activities, performances, and free admission to the Barnes Foundation.
  • July 21st: Fleisher Art Memorial brings its mobile art studio, ColorWheels, to the Oval from noon to 2 p.m. Teaching artist Valentín Sánchez-Stoddard of Little Sanchez Studio will lead the art-filled afternoon.
  • July 28th: Enjoy a bead-making workshop with We Are the Seeds, and an all-ages dance workshop with Project Capoeira.
  • August 4th: The Oval’s family festival day (noon to 4 p.m.) includes children’s music, craft-making, story time, face-painting, “Touch a Truck” and more.
  • August 11th: The Riverways environmental collaborative brings nature-based crafts.
  • August 18th: The Clay Studio comes to the Oval for ClayBuild, a collaborative clay-art project everyone can add onto.
  • August 25th: Let’s Rock Recess brings their kid-friendly DJ dance party to the Oval. Plus, balloon sculpting, face painting, juggling, and caricature drawing.

Fitness Classes

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Yoga at the Oval

On Thursday nights, Yoga Habit hosts free, beginner-friendly classes at 6 p.m. Bring your own mat.

Additionally, on July 20th from 9 a.m. to noon, City Fitness will host free fitness classes for all skill levels.

Shopping: Now + Then Marketplace

Browse wares from dozens of local artists, makers and vintage resellers on July 14th and August 24th from noon to 6 p.m.


Learn more and keep up with upcoming events on their Instagram (@TheOvalPHL) and their online calendar.