Kristen DeWilde loves to dance. It was what got her through her parents’ separation. And so the friends throwing a bachelorette party for her in Philadelphia this weekend knew just what to do.

They ordered a surprise pop-up dance party in Franklin Square Park.

The choreographer they hired, Alexandra Vidich, put out a call earlier in the week for a practice at the park Saturday afternoon. A few dancer friends and someone who just happened to see the notice on a community board came and together they worked up a few routines to the music of The Nutcracker.

“’Tis the season to try something interesting,” said Jimmy Quach, 37, a fitness and yoga buff who joined the practice.

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Vidich, 37, was hired to put on the show Saturday evening through, a nonprofit in the quirky business of organizing pop-up dances. Though she has often put on bigger shows, Vidich wanted to keep this one small because of COVID-19 and was really only looking for a handful of dancers.

She said she wasn’t worried about the heavy winds forecast for the evening. Temperatures were in the balmy 60s in the afternoon with a little bit of sun peeking through. Quach showed up in a T-shirt.

Christine Nelson, 58, a librarian from Philadelphia, said she was participating to support Vidich, whose work she admires.

“Alexandra is really amazing at bringing joy into public spaces in unexpected ways, so I am really happy to be here even if it’s small,” she said.

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While Vidich and her dancers practiced, the party participants, seven in all, were headed into Philadelphia by car and plane. DeWilde, 26, is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School and wanted to come back to Philadelphia for the party. Her wedding is in Texas next weekend.

Her friends lured her to Franklin Square under the guise of watching a light show there. They were to gather by a fire pit and that’s when Vidich’s dancers were due to pounce, or prance.

One of the partiers showed up for the practice, too. “I’m not the greatest dancer, so we’ll see how it goes,” said Michelle Mlacker, 27, also a Penn Law grad, who lives and works in Jersey City.

But soon she had joined hands with the other dancers and was laughing as they spun in a circle. After 90 minutes of practice, the group was ready. Now all they needed was the bride.

DeWilde works as a law clerk for a federal judge in Texas. Her flight into Philly was a bit delayed. Still, it all worked out.

“I’m shocked,” DeWilde said shortly after the show. “I just feel very grateful to have friends who know me so well, that they would know I would love a surprise like this. It’s touching.”

Staff photographer Thomas Hengge contributed to this article.