More than a year has passed since I’ve added to this series, and shame on me since Philly has so much to offer visitors. Whether you’re a lunchtime tourist like me who is rediscovering sites once taken for granted, or a visitor from out-of-town, you’ll love exploring Philadelphia’s downtown district. In this segment, the first over the next five Mondays, we’ll look at a less publicized Philly attraction many that locals or tourists may not know exists, The Philadelphia History Museum.
June 24, 2013 – Hungry for a little knowledge? This lunchtime vacation nourished my soul and my body, since I stopped at a street vendor along the way for strawberry banana smoothie. I walked the three blocks from my office building at 6th and Walnut Streets in historic Old City sipping the fruity delight and reached today’s destination, the Philadelphia History Museum, in less than five minutes.
Located on 7th Street right below Market, and only a few blocks from the Reading Terminal, the museum honors Philadelphia’s richly celebrated reputation with plenty of local flavors from the past and present.
Exhibitions at the Museum invite visitors to wander through more than 300 years of the city’s “stories”, which covers Philly’s history from 1680 to today. Explore more than 40 of nostalgic objects that tell the story of the city and its diverse and colorful citizens. To get a bigger picture, use your cell phone while in the City Stories exhibit to receive text messages, and make it a true multimedia experience.
There’s no arguing that the Philadelphia sports fan is passionate, and has a reputation throughout the country for being rather fanatical, which I consider the true spirit of fandom. The museum also currently features, “Played in Philadelphia, Phillies Fandemonium”, a tribute to the baseball arm of Philly sports teams, and the creative fans who cheer them on. Visitors can observe Philly fans in photos and video, and if you’re an out-of-towner, perhaps you will understand why we are proud fans. The exhibit presently focuses on sports, but will also feature revolving themes devoted to the city’s history in theater, music, performing arts, film, broadcast, and electronic media in the future.
Other exhibits include “Made in Philadelphia: A beer revolution”, “Philadelphia Voices: A LGBT history”, and “From Face to Facebook”, which explores portraits of Philadelphians, and how they have pictured themselves through the centuries. It doesn’t matter if you’re a tourist or a local; the Philadelphia History Museum is one of the best places to visit in the area if you want to learn more about the city of brotherly love because it has is something for everyone.
The museum is located at 15 S. 7th Street. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10:30 a.m. through 4:30 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, and $6 for students and teens (13-18). Children 12 and under, museum members and active military are free.
Check out the other options in the lunchtime tourist series. These excursions are perfect if you want to explore Philly on your lunch hour (and work downtown), or if you’re a visitor with an hour or so to spare.