Under the Radar: Story Slam, Body Boot Camp, Magic Gardens, Flavors of Philly Tour

First Person Arts StorySlam: Guilty Pleasures

/ Aug. 28 / 8:30 p.m. / 21+, General Admission $10, First Person Arts Members $8 / L’Etage – 624 S. 6th St. Above Creperie Beau Monde / storyslams.firstpersonarts.org

Do you have a guilty pleasure, something you probably shouldn’t be doing, but just can’t get enough of? At First Person Arts StorySlams competitions, 10 storytellers get the chance to be the center of attention for five minutes at the mic as they share their personal stories in hopes of being the crowd’s favorite. Audience members choose the best storyteller, who in turn wins the Golden Ticket to compete in the Grand Slam with the month’s top storytellers to win the title of “Best Storyteller in Philadelphia.” So, whether your guilty pleasure is chowing down on a pint of Ben & Jerry’s every night, spending the last few dollars of your paycheck on beer, or something totally outrageous, sign up at the door to share your story…or sit back and judge everyone on their personal tales. Doors open at 7:30 p.m., slam begins at 8:30 p.m.

Philly Fast Fit Body Boot Camp

/ Ongoing Tuesdays and Thursdays Aug. 7 – Nov. 20 / 6:29 a.m. – 7:14 a.m. / $5 per class / Philadelphia Art Museum / fastfitbodybootcamp.com

Jump-start your workout plan to beat the Freshman 15. At Philly Fast Fit Boot Camp, you’ll join other boot campers with an optimistic attitude to work hard and motivate each other, all while laughing and enjoying the fitness routine. There’s no crowded gyms or fancy equipment to wait around for, just fellow fitness gurus of all shapes and sizes looking to exercise and play. Yes, play. Philly Fast Fit Boot Camp combines a tough work out routine of warm-ups, cardio and a plethora of other exercises and games that will take participants back to feeling like that scrawny, hyper 10 year old in physical education class. No specific level of fitness is required – any beginner or top-notch athlete can take part in shedding those pesky love handles and having fun. The boot camp begins at the crack of dawn, so you’ll feel refreshed and energized to start a long day of classes.

Self-Guided Tours: Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens

/ Aug. 28 – Aug. 31 / Tuesday – Thursday 11 a.m. – 6 p.m., Friday 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. / $5 / Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens – 1020-1022 South St. /phillymagicgardens.org

Too much free time during syllabus week? Head to South Street and explore Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens, the fully-mosaicked visionary art environment, gallery and community arts center created by Isaiah Zagar. The Magic Gardens features thousands of hand-made tiles, mirrors, glass bottles, bicycle wheels, intricate statues and sculptures, and embedded text within the walls, holding reference to Zagar’s family as well as elements of the larger world. Zagar’s largest artwork spans across half a block on South Street and inspires creativity and community engagement through folk, mosaic and visionary art. Self-guided tours allow visitors to spend as little or as much time as they want to explore the elaborate form of art without the nuisance of a monotone tour guide. Trained guides are, however, available to answer any questions. Check out the Magic Gardens while the weather is still nice.

Flavors of Philly Food Tour

/ Aug. 28 – Sept. 3 / 1:30 p.m. – 4 p.m. / $39 / Center City, Philadelphia / cityfoodtours.com/philadelphia/philly-food-tours-general-info.html

Get back into that Philly spirit with the Flavors of Philly Food Tour, where you’ll learn all about the city’s history, culture, and of course, favorite foods. The tour includes five stops, including a visit to a mom-and-pop pizzeria, soft pretzel bakery, the famous Reading Terminal Market and more. Attendees will learn how some of the locals’ favorite foods got their start, and walk away with a mind full of new knowledge and a stomach full of cheesesteaks, tomato pie, cake truffles, soft pretzels and cheese-whiz fries. The tour, led by fun and dedicated guides, also includes an up-close and personal look at City Hall and views of the city’s prominent architecture. Be a Philly foodie for a day and take a break from the Ramen noodles and Easy Mac. For more information on availability and tickets, check out the website.

Shauna Bannan can be reached at shauna.bannan@temple.edu. 

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