May 17, 2016

Oh the Al Fresco You’ll Go

By: Shana Saddic & Allie Seifert

As you may have read in this month’s C&A newsletter, we are thrilled about the beautiful and exciting places that Philadelphia has to offer this spring. From outdoor dining options, festivals and fitness under the clouds, you’ll have to get started on your summer to-do list right away to fit it all in.

Outdoor Dining
Now that the weather is warmer, there’s nothing better than a meal outside. We have created a list of great outdoor dining options throughout the city, so you can have a few drinks under the sun.

Art Bar
Art Bar at the Sonesta hotel just recently revamped the menu and introduced a “Thirsty Thursday” program with extended happy hour and live music. Art Bar expanded its outdoor seating—making it a perfect location to sit back, relax and watch the hustle and bustle of Market Street.

Parc
This STARR restaurant, is famous for its outdoor dining located in Rittenhouse Square. French doors spill onto a 75-seat sidewalk terrace covered by a dark red awning perfect for perfect dining en plein air. 

Bar Bombon
Bringing the European mentality of leisure to center city Philadelphia, Bar Bombon is flavorful, colorful Latin- inspired cuisine. The best part? It’s organic and plant based, hello bikini season.   

American Sardine Bar
The quirky menu matches perfectly with the hip atmosphere at this restaurant. The craft beers, all-sandwich menu and casual vibe is perfect for the outside dining with lounge chairs and decorative lights.

 Shore tip: Heading to the beach soon and looking for a place to eat outside? LandShark Bar and Grill located on the Atlantic City boardwalk is a great hangout offering classic American food (and of course it’s great to go barefoot!)

Outdoor Festivals
May is a busy month in Philadelphia, with lots of fun and creative pop up festivals. We’ve curated a list of our highly anticipated events coming soon with music, beer gardens, outdoor shopping, unique foods and more!

Rittenhouse Row Spring Festival
On May 21, 2016, Walnut Street is going to be kicking-off with street cafes, culinary demonstrations, art, beer and cocktails sampling, live entertainment, etc. This event is from 12p.m.-5p.m. and attracts more than 50,000 attendees each year, so we wouldn’t miss it!

Strawberry Festival at Peddler’s Village
Anyone who likes strawberries, this event is definitely not one to miss! Enjoy a wide variety of strawberry treats along with a strawberry pie-eating contest. During this 2-day festival on May 21 & 22, 2016, there will be live entertainment, food, family events and more!

Shore Tip: Night in Venice in Ocean City, NJ is a highlight of the summer season with thousands of spectators lining the bayfront and attending parties along the route from the Ocean City-Longport Bridge to Tennessee Avenue. The 62nd annual event will be held July 16, beginning at 6:30.

Parks & Attractions
Name one of the 10 best cities in the world for parks, Philadelphia’s outdoor spaces are an ideal place to spend a summer day. Here are some of our favorite attractions taking place in parks across the city.

Chinese Lantern Festival in Franklin Square Park
This year marks the 10th anniversary of Franklin Square Park, and it’s celebrating with a bang!  The landmark park, located at 6th & Race Streets, will host the first-ever Chinese Lantern Festival in the Northeast, United States.  The festival, which features a 200-foot illuminated Chinese Dragon and three-story Pagoda, will run from April 22- June 12, 2016, starting at 6:00 p.m.

Spruce Street Harbor Park
This pop-up park is a favorite among Philadelphians offering a hammock-filled urban oasis on the waterfront. A floating restaurant, beer garden outdoor games and entertainment against a backdrop of illuminated trees is an ideal setting for all ages. Spruce Street Harbor Park opens May 6 and is free and open to the public.

Picnic in Rittenhouse Square Park
Enjoy a beautiful Spring day in Rittenhouse Square Park with a picnic lunch from AKA Rittenhouse Square’s critically acclaimed restaurant a.kitchen+bar complete with a lite lunch, beverages, cutlery, supplies and a cozy blanket, all packaged in a convenient basket. Centrally located in the heart of downtown Philadelphia, Rittenhouse Square Park is a favorite among locals, providing a retreat amidst the energetic city streets while offering a dose of history as one of five original squares planned by city founder William Penn in the17th century.

The Awesome Fest in Drexel & Liberty Lands Parks
This summer, The Awesome Fest brings the ‘80s back to Philadelphia with a 10-week film and music festival featuring 50 live performances and outdoor movie screenings at parks across the city, every Thursday night from June 26- August 14, beginning at 9:00 p.m. Check the Awesome Fest Website for a full schedule of events.

 Shore tip: For those traveling to the shore this summer, we recommend the Barnegat Lighthouse State Park in Long Beach Island, NJ, a serene 32-acre park that offers unmatched views of the Atlantic Ocean; or the Cape May County Park & Zoo, a family-friendly 200-acre park with a free Zoo!

 

Fitness
After the Broad Street run, we’re more motivated than ever to get in shape for the summer, but it’s tough to get to the gym when the weather is so nice. Here are some outdoor fitness alternatives that allow you to soak up the sun without foregoing exercise!

 Scenic Bike Ride
Philadelphian’s love to bike! It is the leading city in the county for bicycle commuting and bicycle use has seen a 260% increase in recent years. Grab a bike at Hotel Monaco or the popular bike share program, Indego, and take a ride along the Schuylkill Banks where you can enjoy the waterfront, city skyline and the iconic Boat House Row; or Forbidden Drive, a scenic gravel path through the Wissahickon section of Fairmount Park. Don’t forget to grab a (healthy) bite a Valley Green!

Attend an outdoor fitness class
After a long, cold winter in the city, Philadelphians take every opportunity to enjoy the sunny outdoors – and exercising is no exception.  No matter what your fitness level, Philadelphia has an outdoor fitness class for you. Some of the most popular include river-front Yoga on the Race Street Pier, CoreFitness Bootcamp on the famous Art Museum Stairs or Zumba at City Hall’s Dilworth Park.

Walking tour
As Philadelphia locals, sometimes we take for granted all of the rich history that surrounds us. A great way to see the sites and learn about your city – while getting in your daily dose of exercise – is to participate in one of Philly’s famous walking tours.  Our favorites include the Once Upon a Storytelling Benches and Independence After Hours. Or, for a more flexible option, check out Your Philadelphia Tour, where you can create your own custom tour of the city.

 Shore tip: Fed up with shore traffic? Try biking! Every year, the City to Shore Bike Race for BikeMS draws more than 7,000 cyclists to participate in a 2-day event for a great cause. Route options are available for all cycling abilities ranging from 25-180 miles, ending in Ocean City, NJ.

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