Staying in Philly over spring break? The city might be an expensive place to live and hang out in but there are some places to go that are cool, cheap, or free.
Philadelphia is home to an extraordinary art scene. Fortunately, there are many ways to take advantage of it for free. The Foundation at the University of Pennsylvania comes together once a week to present the area with hip-hop, jazz, rock, punk and other music or cultural-related shows. It’s located at 4012 Walnut St. and is free. For more information, check out www.upenn.edu/philly/foundation. Connected closely with the Foundation is the Rotunda (the club the Foundation uses). Although not free, The Rotunda offers a similar atmosphere. Shows usually range from $5 to $8. For more information, go to www.r5productions.com.
The first Friday of every month, the art galleries in Old City open their doors to the public. Mingle and munch while looking at fine works of art, or possibly even purchasing them. Temple University even has a its own gallery in Old City. The festivities usually run from 5 p.m. until 9 p.m. For more information, call 215-625-9200.
Admission to the spectacular Philadelphia Museum of Art is usually $5 for students with ID, or $8 without, but on Sundays, they open their doors from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. for free. More information is available by calling 215-684-7500. The museum is at 26th and the Ben Franklin Parkway.
Other museums like the Edgar Allen Poe House, located at 7th and Spring Garden, and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, located at 118 North Broad Street, offer free daily tours. Information is available by calling 215-597-8780 and 215-972-7600.
Many students forget the historical significance of Philadelphia. Center City is home to Independence Hall (Chestnut Street between 5th & 6th), where both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were signed, and the Liberty Bell, a symbol of our nation’s strength. Located between 5th and 6th on Market Street, tours and information sessions are available from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. all year round. Information is available by calling 215-597-8974.
Other historical sites in Philly include the Masonic Temple and City Hall. The Masonic Temple is decorated to represent a variety of different historical periods including Gothic, Ancient Egyptian and the Renaissance. Did you know that Ben Franklin and George Washington were both members of this fraternal organization? For more tour information, call 215-567-5836. It is across the street from City Hall, which also offers free tours, not only of the building’s interior but of the towers too. For a bird’s eye view of the city from the William Penn statue this is the place to go. Call 215-686-2840.
With plenty to do in such an eclectic city, stop reading this article now. Get up, go out, and explore Philadelphia.