Philadelphia

How to Celebrate Pride Month in Philadelphia

Honor the 50th anniversary of PHL Pride with parades, drag shows, and more.

Haddon Township Equity Initiative
Haddon Township Equity Initiative
Haddon Township Equity Initiative

Pride is back and better than ever in Philadelphia. The first weekend of June is officially Pride Weekend, so expect a revamped citywide festival with a parade, drag shows, and parties all weekend long. But things don’t slow down after that-the entire month is packed with events celebrating the local LGBTQ community.

Mark your calendars and prepare to hit the dance floor, have a night out in Midtown Village, sip some tea, and rejoice with neighbours this Pride Month. From events where you can party all night to ways to donate your time and money to nonprofit organizations supporting the community, here are all the best ways to celebrate Pride Month in Philadelphia this year.

Take to the high seas

Friday, June 3
The Moshulu
Kick off the Pride Month festivities with a boat party-on the deck of the Moshulu, of course. Between three decks and two DJs, including ​​headliner DJ Shane Marcus, playing all genres of music, you’ll be entertained for every second. Billed as the official Pride Month kick-off, the party is sure to be lively.
Cost: $30-200

Attend a Pride party by the pool

Friday, June 3 – Sunday, June 5
W Philadelphia
W Philadelphia hotel will host events all weekend long for Pride, beginning with an art show and a panel on queer voices and the future of allyship in Philadelphia nightlife, media, and public space on Friday. On Saturday, shop from a marketplace of LGBTQ vendors, then lounge by the pool for a party with music, drag, and fashion. The weekend wraps up with another pool day party and drag show on Sunday.
Cost: Varies per event

Sofitel Philadelphia
Sofitel Philadelphia
Sofitel Philadelphia

Sip and tip your performers

Saturday, June 4 – Saturday, June 25
Sofitel Philadelphia at Rittenhouse Square
Tea is meant to be spilled. On Saturdays in June, tea service is handed over to Brittany Lynn’s Drag Mafia, providing some drag entertainment to enjoy along with your scones. Each week during Pride Month, Brittany Lynn will host a roster of drag performers (except for June 18, when Connor Michalchuk, the creator of Bearlesque hosts) including Miss Redd, Lisa Lisa, Dominique Lee, Gay Sinatra, Asia Monroe, and more. Plus, you’ll get tea service including scones, tea sandwiches, pastries, Palais Des Thes, and a choice of a glass of Champagne, mimosa, or bellini.
Cost: $75-85

Kick off Pride Month with drag brunch

Saturday, June 4
Chick’s
With no shortage of drag brunches to choose from, head to Chick’s on Washington Avenue for an epic lineup-Mandy Mango, Sapphira Cristal, and Luna Thee Jawnette-hosted by Eric Jaffe. Make it a whole thing and order from cannoli-stuffed French toast and a few drinks for the table from Chick’s brunch menu.
Cost: $15

Center City District
Center City District
Center City District

Lace up your skates and glide for Pride

Saturday, June 4
Rothman Orthopaedics Roller Rink
During a two-hour Pride Skate starting at 1:30 pm, visitors to the Rothman Orthopaedics Roller Rink will be treated to interactive performances on the rink, themed decor, music from DJ Albie, and special menu items in the Air Grille Garden. Oh yeah, and plenty of skating and laughs courtesy of host Queen Dominique Lee
Cost: $8-10 roller rink admission, $5 skate rental

Cavanaugh's River Deck
Cavanaugh’s River Deck
Cavanaugh’s River Deck

Get your groove on at a riverfront party

Saturday, June 4
Cavanaugh’s River Deck
It’s time to sweat. The riverfront venue will make for a special afternoon and evening during SWEAT, the Pride edition. Expect music (courtesy of DJs Queen of Spades, Musho, Dave Thomm, and Deluxx the OG), a wet t-shirt contest, twerkfest, giveaways, and more. Inclusivity is the name of the game and all are welcome.
Cost: $20-25

Celebate 50 years of Pride in Philly

Sunday, June 5
5th and Arch Streets and the Gayborhood
Official PHL Pride festivities are under new management and for the first time, a march will be held to honor 50 years since Philly’s first Gay Pride Day in 1972. The march begins at 11 am at 5th and Arch Streets and is open to everyone, no registration necessary. After the march, a festival in the Gayborhood will feature youth and family programming, a sober space, food trucks, relaxation zone, Kiki Alley (a space highlighting the Philadelphia ballroom community), performance stages, and wellness services.
Cost: Pay-as-you-go

Vogue in the galleries

Sunday, June 5
Barnes Foundation
Every first Sunday at the Barnes, visitors are treated to free admission. June 5 is no exception, and the day will also have family activities celebrating families of all shapes and sizes. The lineup includes art activities, storytime, a performance from the Philadelphia Gay Men’s Chorus, and a vogue workship with Kemar Jewel, a Philly-native dancer, playwright, and vogue artist. Capacity is limited, so make sure you register ahead of time.
Cost: Free

Liberty Point
Liberty Point
Liberty Point

Sip and support along the waterfront

Thursday, June 9
Liberty Point
Our Night Out, the monthly social event hosted by LGBTQ community foundation Delaware Valley Legacy Fund, will hold its Pride Month gathering at Liberty Point, a spacious new restaurant on the Delaware River. Check out the new digs and sample the Cocktails for a Cause menu-which features 11 creative drinks in which one dollar from each drink will be donated to William Way Community Center, Philly Asian Queer, The Attic Youth Center, and Galaei.
Cost: $5-10

Make a Pride pilgrimage to the ‘burbs

Thursday, June 9 – Saturday, June 11
Haddon Township
If you didn’t get enough Pride at Philly’s weekend of festivities, head over the bridge to Haddon Township for another three days of celebration. Things get underway on Thursday evening with a parade starting at Crystal Lake and Haddon Avenues, followed by a party with music, dancing, food, and drinks. On Friday, the community is invited to learn about local organizations and partake in Pride quizzo, followed by a drag queen lip sync battle. Hit the town on Saturday afternoon for a street fair, complete with art, music, vendors, food, and entertainment.
Cost: Pay-as-you-go

See how Delco shows its Pride

Saturday, June 11
Upper Darby High School
If you’d rather stay on this side of the Delaware, Upper Darby will host its second annual Pride festival with dozens of vendors selling goods, kids partaking in activities, and plenty of opportunities to dance. Plus, nail and face painters will be on site, so you’re sure to look glam.
Cost: Pay-as-you-go

Pose for the camera

Sunday, June 12 and Saturday, June 25
Gayborhood
On-demand photography service Shoott is offering free 30-minute photography sessions near the Gaybourhood on two dates this month. Select an appointment time, meet up with your photographer, and strike a pose. Then, only pay for the images you like. Even better? Proceeds will be donated to The Trevor Project.
Cost: $30 per image

Photo courtesy of Eric Jaffe
Photo courtesy of Eric Jaffe
Photo courtesy of Eric Jaffe

Prepare to be gagged at an epic drag competition

Wednesday, June 15
Franky Bradley’s
Live drag performance competition show, Snatcherella3000, unfolds week to week as a handful of performers vie for a cash prize and bragging rights. For Pride Month, an over-the-top show will feature contestants from the previous three seasons of the competition for a one-night-only Battle of the Seasons. Nine artists will face off in a runway category, group performance, individual performance and dueling divas show down-and will thus be judged by The Moon Baby, Icon Ebony Fierce, Eric Jaffe, Vinchelle, and Pi.
Cost: $10

Shop queer-owned businesses

Saturday, June 18
Hyatt Centric Center City Philadelphia
A stacked roster of LGBTQ-owned businesses will set up shop at the downtown hotel for the Pride Month Maker’s Market, where you can score jewellery, bath bombs, stained glass, apparel, and much more. Expect a vendor lineup of Allegra Pronesti, Queer Candle Co., Tiff Urquhart, and so many others to explore and support.
Cost: Pay-as-you-go

Parks on Tap
Parks on Tap
Parks on Tap

Drink for a good cause

Saturday, June 18
Fairmount Water Works
Parks On Tap is a Philly summer favourite beyond June, but be sure to visit during Pride Month for a special event. The casual beer garden is hosting a Pride Day that promises music, cocktails, and good vibes, because proceeds from the event benefit LGBTQ nonprofit organizations William Way Community Center, Philly Asian Queer, The Attic Youth Center, and Galaei.
Cost: Pay-as-you-go

Go to an after-hours ball

Friday, June 24
Franklin Institute
Science After Hours, the Franklin Institute’s beloved adults-only event, will honour Pride this month with a nighttime Summer Ball. Dance in the planetarium, play drag bingo, learn about the history of ballroom culture, and yes, even see a few science demonstrations, too. Bold looks are encouraged.
Cost: $40-45

Dine and drag

Sunday, June 26
Devil’s Den
Close out the month with another delectable drag brunch benefiting True Colors United. Jenny Henny, Nikita Sun, Omyra Lynn, Zsa Zsa St James, and Maria Topcatt will take to Devil’s Den outdoor beer garden for a two-hour performance. Tickets include a raffle ticket to win a gift basket, a beer, and your show reservation. Brunch favorites like French toast and breakfast quesadillas are extra (but definitely worth it).
Cost: $10

William Way LGBT Community Center
William Way LGBT Community Center
William Way LGBT Community Center

Donate to worthy causes

Whether you’re ready to party all month long or have your calendars marked for a select few occasions, you can also celebrate by sending your dollars to local organizations doing important work in the LGBTQ community. The Attic Youth Center provides programming and counselling for LGBTQ youth, and William Way Community Center is a pillar in the community, providing events and wellness programming. GALAEI serves the Queer and Trans, Black, Indigenous, and People of Color communities and provides and facilitates Queer educational services, community wellness, and is committed to healing historical harm. Philadelphia Fight offers healthcare to low-income members of the community, Bebashi serves the health needs of people of color living with HIV/AIDs, and Philly AIDS Thrift distributes funds to nearly two dozen local AIDS organizations (don’t miss their extravagant window display and amazing selection of clothing and accessories).

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Allie Volpe is a writer based in Philadelphia. She hasn’t slept in days. Follow her on Twitter:@allieevolpe.

Philadelphia

Museum Exhibits in Philly to Check Out Before They Disappear

Get in some culture (and selfies) at the best art exhibits in Philadelphia.

Photo courtesy of Disney
Photo courtesy of Disney
Photo courtesy of Disney

From the historical to the artistic, Philadelphia is jam packed with museums. Art aficionados of all ages can get lost inside the likes of tourist-friendly museums like the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Museum of the American Revolution or feast their eyes on unique exhibitions at institutions like the Fabric Workshop and Museum and the Museum for Art In Wood.

Between big-ticket exhibitions honouring the House of Mouse to collections showcasing the legacy of a prominent Black family in early America, there’s plenty of material to dig into. After you’ve planned a date night and rounded up friends to explore the city, here are the most exciting museum exhibits in Philly right now-before they’re gone for good.

Photo courtesy of Disney
Photo courtesy of Disney
Photo courtesy of Disney

The Franklin Institute

Exhibition: Disney 100: The Exhibition
Mickey Mouse, you look good for your age. Celebrating the 100th anniversary of Disney is a retrospective exhibition, which got its world premiere right here in Philly. Between rarely-seen artworks and artifacts, costumes and props, and interactive installations where you can listen to hit Disney songs, the exhibit is a Disney lover’s wish-upon-a-star-come-true.
Dates: Until August 27, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Monday through Sunday. Tickets are available online and at the door.

Photo by Ramon Torres, courtesy of ANS
Photo by Ramon Torres, courtesy of ANS
Photo by Ramon Torres, courtesy of ANS

Academy of Natural Sciences

Exhibition: Conversations With Birds
No, not an allusion to the Eagles, this exhibition is dedicated to actual birds, their migration patterns, and humans’ relationship with avian creatures. Expect avian photography and video by local birders and wildlife photographers along with an interactive exhibit showing five migratory birds that pass through the Philadelphia region on their seasonal passage between North and South America.
Dates: Until May 21, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday. Tickets are available online or at the door.

The Barnes Foundation

Exhibition: Sue Williamson & Lebohang Kganye: Tell Me What You Remember
The work of two contemporary South African artists-Sue Williamson and Lebohang Kganye-are shown side by side, offering a cross-generational dialogue. Both artists utilize video installations, photographs, sculptural installations, and textiles “to consider how the stories our elders tell us shape family narratives and personal identities.”
Dates: Until May 21, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Thursday through Monday. Advanced tickets are recommended.

Photo by Jonathan Horowitz
Photo by Jonathan Horowitz
Photo by Jonathan Horowitz

Weitzman National Museum of American Jewish History

Exhibition: The Future Will Follow the Past: An Exhibition by Jonathan Horowitz
Exploring the rapid change of societal issues in America since 2020-antisemitism, racial violence, immigration, women’s rights, LGBTQIA+ rights-Jonathan Horowitz designed installations inspired by recent occurrences. His works explore specific events like the infamous far-right rally from white supremacists in Charlottesville as well as recent themes in American history, like attacks on those within the BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ communities.
Dates: Until July 4, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Friday through Sunday. Admission is available online and at the door.

Photo by Hoda Tawakol
Photo by Hoda Tawakol
Photo by Hoda Tawakol

The Museum for Art In Wood

Exhibition: The Mashrabiya Project
The newly renamed Museum for Art in Wood (formerly The Center for Art In Wood) celebrates the rebrand with a brand new project. Focusing on mashrabiya, the traditional Islamic architectural design, The Mashrabiya Project is a first of its kind effort in the U.S. to examine this aesthetic. As a part of the larger mission, a new exhibition Seeing Through Space features newly-commissioned, never-before-seen works by six female-identifying artists.
Dates: Until July 23, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday. Tickets are not required.

Photo by Carlos Avendaño
Photo by Carlos Avendaño
Photo by Carlos Avendaño

Fabric Workshop and Museum

Exhibition: Henry Taylor: Nothing Change, Nothing Strange
Combining painting and sculpture, Henry Taylor utilized recycled objects in this exhibition, the product of an 18-month residency. The entire second floor of the museum houses the large scale assemblages, tapestries, and textiles. Think: 30-foot billowing canvases and towering totems created from compressed blocks of paint buckets, vinyl home siding, and black plastic planters.
Dates: Until July 23, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday. Walk up admission is available but advanced registration is encouraged.

Photo courtesy of Philadelphia Museum of Art
Photo courtesy of Philadelphia Museum of Art
Photo courtesy of Philadelphia Museum of Art

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Exhibition: Judith Joy Ross
More than 200 photographs from renowned portrait photographer Judith Joy Ross will be on display at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, chronicling her career from the 1980s to today. Her black-and-white portraits are intimate reflections of everyday Americans, and this show features work from all her major projects, plus, never-before-seen images.
Dates: April 24 to August 6, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Thursday through Monday. Advanced tickets are recommended.

American Swedish Historical Museum

Exhibition: Radically Marimekko
Famous for their bright and bold fabrics, Finnish textiles, clothing, and home furnishings, the company Marimekko is showcased at this special exhibit. Drawing attention to Finnish design, the collection traces the brand’s path from industrial art house to fashion icon.
Dates: March 30 to September 24, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open Tuesday through Sunday. Walk up admission is available.

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and African American Museum in Philadelphia

Exhibition: Rising Sun: Artists in an Uncertain America
A collaboration between the African American Museum in Philadelphia and PAFA, Rising Sun showcases new work from 20 artists examining the question of Is the sun rising or setting on the experiment of American democracy? With pieces shown in both museums, visitors can reflect on, challenge, and expand their view of democracy through art.
Dates: March 23 to October 8, 2023
How to visit: The African American Museum in Philadelphia is open Thursday through Sunday; admission is available online and at the door. PAFA is open Thursday through Sunday; admission can be purchased in advance or at the door.

Museum of the American Revolution
Museum of the American Revolution
Museum of the American Revolution

Museum of the American Revolution

Exhibition: Black Founders: The Forten Family of Philadelphia
James Forten may not be a familiar name within early American history, but this new exhibit at the Museum of the American Revolution is looking to change that. Telling the story of Forten and his family through 100 historical artifacts, Black Founders explores the Forten family’s roles in the Revolutionary War, business in Philadelphia, and the abolitionist movement.
Dates: Until November 26, 2023
How to visit: The museum is open daily. Admission is available online and at the door.

National Constitution Center
National Constitution Center
National Constitution Center

National Constitution Center

Exhibition: The 19th Amendment: How Women Won The Vote
That lofty document known as the Constitution and its values, interpretations, and amendments are explored in great detail at the National Constitution Center, naturally. This semi-permanent exhibit examines the 19th Amendment-the one which granted women the right to vote-and the road to its ratification. Out of the near 100 artifacts, expect to see a rare printing of the Declaration of Sentiments from the first women’s convention at Seneca Falls, a ballot box used to collect women’s votes in the late 1800s, Pennsylvania’s ratification copy of the 19th Amendment, and various “Votes for Women” ephemera.
Dates: Semi-permanent, no end date announced
How to visit: The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday. Advanced tickets are recommended.

Mütter Museum of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia
Mütter Museum of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia
Mütter Museum of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia

Mütter Museum

Exhibition: Spit Spreads Death
Eerily topical, the Mütter’s latest special exhibit, Spit Spreads Death, an exhibit about the 1918 flu pandemic, opened in the fall of 2019, less than six months before the start of the coronavirus pandemic. The exhibit traces the disease’s spread throughout Philadelphia neighbourhoods a century ago and how the pandemic impacted the city with artifacts like photos, newspaper clippings, and more.
Dates: Now through 2024
How to visit: The museum is open Wednesday through Monday. Advanced tickets are required.

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Allie Volpe is a writer based in Philadelphia. She hasn’t slept in days. Follow her on Twitter: @allieevolpe.

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