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19 awesome things to do in Philadelphia this weekend

By
Josh Middleton
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You already know you have a date with a TV and the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday night (we suggest some fun places to see the Super Bowl here), but how are you rocking out the rest of the weekend? There are some cool options on Friday and Saturday night, including the opening of a brand new underground dance club on Market Street, an all-day, back-to-back screening of Groundhog Day on South Street and a hot retro dance party by the provocative party planners at NSFW Dance Party. More laid-back types can catch a slew of new theater and art openings all around the city. Peep below to find details on all that and more. And let’s go Birds!

Friday, February 2 

fidget sp3 fringearts

Photograph: Courtesy /Bill Hebert

Groundhog Day at South Street Cinema; noon; $5
The brand new boutique theater on South Street celebrates Groundhog Day with an all-day showing of Bill Murray’s 1993 comedy classic of the same name. The film runs over and over again from noon till midnight, so swing by anytime you get the chance.

Poly Living Polyamory Conference at Embassy Suites Philadelphia Airport; 3pm; $175
Looking to spread a little more love? Join polyamorists from across the country for this weekend-long event hosted by nonprofit Love More. “Swing” by to take part in lectures and workshops focusing on topics such as how to begin an open relationship; plus tips and tricks on navigating a romance with multiple lovers.

First Friday in Old City; 5pm; free
It’s that time of the month again: More than 40 galleries and boutiques in Old City stay open till 9pm to debut their latest exhibitions—and offer some wine and snacks to those who stop by. The streets also come alive with the sounds of live music, and local artisans set up makeshift booths to sell wares on the sidewalks.

Lydie Breeze at Christ Church Neighborhood House; 8pm; $25–$32
It’s been called the theatrical coup of the Philly theater season: EgoPo Classic Theater stages Guare’s epic Lydie Breeze trilogy, a fascinating historical panorama of an American utopian society. The show will be presented in three parts over the span of five months, with the first, called “Cold Harbor,” taking place through February 11. You can see them piece by piece or take in the whole shebang during a string of marathons in April and May.

Sp3 at FringeArts; 8pm; $29
Movement-based performance-art troupe <fidget> present their latest work this weekend at FringeArts—a thoughtful analysis on the power of coming together during these frightful, alienating times.

Grand opening at Concourse Dance Bar; 9pm; $5
This brand new underground dance bar from the folks at Morgan’s Pier opens Friday night on Market Street. A DJ will be playing hits from the past few decades while you sip the night away on drinks that are on special at the bar.

Saturday, February 3 

Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest
Photograph: Matt Stanley

Philadelphia Auto Show at the Pennsylvania Convention Center; 9am; $14
This massive five-day auto show features the automobile industry’s latest four-wheeled creations scattered about a 700,000-square-foot showroom. Cars on display include luxury, exotic and eco models as well as classic roadsters for the OGs.

Storytime at the Lodge at Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest ; 11am; free
Looking for things to do in Philadelphia with kids this weekend? The Free Library of Philadelphia hosts this weekly gathering at Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest that invites local authors, performers and personalities to read classic and new books to kids. Light snacks and hot chocolate are provided.

“Magical & Real: Henriette Wyeth and Peter Hurd, A Retrospective” at Michener Art Museum; 11am; $18
Seventy colorful paintings explore the careers of real-life lovebirds Wyeth and Hurd. The couple met while the latter was studying with Wyeth’s father. She also studied with her dad, and enrolled at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts at age 16. From there she went on to earn critical praise for her portraiture and magic realist paintings.

“Process and Practice: 40 Years of Experimentation” at Fabric Workshop and Museum; noon; free
The latest exhibition at FWM celebrates the organization‘s renowned artist-in-residence program, which has hosted art superstars such as Marina Abramovic, Louise Bourgeois and Laurie Anderson. The display is filled with boxes that each artist kept to document their artistic process—things like sketches, notes and samples that give a glimpse into the creative process of these contemporary masters.

Really at Theatre Exile; 8pm; $10–$37
As a photographer prepares to shoot a portrait of her deceased boyfriend’s mother, the two women mourn his sudden disappearance from their lives. But his active presence (sometimes onstage, sometimes in memory) shows that when we go, we leave a lot behind. Directed by the acclaimed Brenna Geffers, Theatre Exile’s local premiere is certain to provoke.

Physique: An NSFW Dance Party at TBA location; 10pm; $10–$15
The always provocative and queer-centric NSFW Dance Party is back this month with a bash devoted to the human form. Show off what the good Lord gave you by wearing retro athletic wear and dance all night to tunes from DJs Sharyn Stone and Manifest Love. Check out this link to find out the secret location, which is always announced a few days before the event.

Sunday, February 4

Bru Craft and Wurst

Photograph: Courtesy Brü Craft & Wurst

“2017 Contemporary Photography Exhibition” at Philadelphia Photo Arts Center; 10am; free
Before the big game on Sunday, head to NoLibs to check out this gallery of images from photographers Christine Elfman and Mark Jayson Quines. Elfman, based in Ithaca, New York, displays work from her project “Even Amaranth,” which explores photography as a shifting medium. Quines, based in San Francisco, California, presents work from, “NOBODY,” which explores ideas about spectacle, branding, subcultures, identity, music and even Michael Jordan.

Super Bowl VII Watch Party at City Tap House; 6pm; $25–$60
Both City Tap House locations in Philadelphia offer fun places to watch the Super Bowl on Sunday, but if we had to choose, we’d pick University City, with its spacious dining area, ample seating and TVs everywhere you look. The bar is stocked with a whopping 60 beers on tap and the kitchen cranks out spicy, finger-licking good wings.

Super Bowl Extravaganza at MilkBoy Philly; 6pm; free
Both locations of MilkBoy are offering what could be the most generous place to watch the Super Bowl in town. Admission costs $0, and bartenders will be pouring up complimentary house whiskey shots and doling out free wings at halftime.

Super Bowl LVII Viewing Party at Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest; $6pm; $60
Curious about where to watch the Super Bowl outside the typical bar scene? Check out this bash at the winter retreat along the Delaware River. For $60 per person, you’ll get a table and seat in the cozy Lodge, which will screen the game on two 12-foot screens, and serve Chickie’s & Pete’s cheesesteaks and appetizers all night.

Looking for more watch parties? Consult our guide to the 13 best places to watch the Super Bowl in Philadelphia.

Ongoing

Rothman Ice Rink and America’s Garden Capital Maze at Dilworth Park; all day; pay as you go
Besides endless skating, this year’s Wintergarden features the Rothman Institute Cabin, where you can cozy up with seasonal cocktails, craft beer and light bites; the America’s Garden Capital Maze, a “popup maze-meets-garden” full of photogenic plants and lights.

Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest; 11am; pay as you go
RiverRink affords kids and adults the chance to kick their heels on the ice for a $3 admission fee, with a $10 skate-rental fee collected for those who don’t bring their own. The at-large Winterfest, meanwhile—an approximately two-acre campus encompassing an arcade, lodge and a Franklin Fountain–operated “Confectionary Cabin”—is a free space with plenty of pay-as-you-go indulgences. While the kids skate or push quarters in the arcade machines, adults can warm up by the fire pits with the Latin-inspired dishes of Garces, a basket of Chickie’s & Pete’s famous fries and their choices from a menu of craft beer.

“Winter Fountains for the Parkway” along the Ben Franklin Parkway; 6pm; free
This dazzling light and video show by artist Jennifer Steinkamp celebrates the 100th anniversary of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Starting in early December and lasting through March, the installation comprises five 13-foot high domes lined up along the parkway. After dark, the domes will become glowing projection screens featuring animated videos inspired by the cultural institutions that line the boulevard—places like the Franklin Institute and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Steinkamp’s work is known for its sensuous beauty and transformative power. Prepare to be mesmerized.

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