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What to do in Philly Dec. 27-Jan. 2: Watch the Mummers Parade, solve a murder mystery, hear Yasiin Bey, see Mickey at Disney on Ice, and more

Plus an Ariana Grande inspired burlesque show, a Star Wars trivia night, The War on Drugs and more...

Michael Carwile of Golden Sunrise in his mummer suit, which he worked with Isaiah Zagar on.
Michael Carwile of Golden Sunrise in his mummer suit, which he worked with Isaiah Zagar on.Read moreGolden Sunrise (custom credit)

Chill the bubbly, practice those “Auld Lang Syne” verses: we’re at the end of 2019, folks. And there are lots of ways to ease out of this decade and into the next.

  1. The best big parties. We’ve got a full guide to New Year’s parties, whether you’re ready to go all out, want to treat yourself, feel like dancing your face off, want to find fun on the cheap or have kids in tow.

  2. For the day after, we’ve assembled a list of what’s open on New Year’s Day, including museums, shopping, grocery stores and where you can grab a good hair-of-the-dog brunch. And, of course, there’s also the Mummer’s Parade. Our guide has everything you need to know about the route, schedules, road closures, and, if you’re new to town, what the hell is going on.

  3. If you just want to watch the year end from the inside of a dark room, there are some solid movies that are out in theaters, (from Little Women to Star Wars, to, um, Cats).

  4. As we roar into the 2020s, here’s a playlist of some speakeasy-worthy ’20s jazz to keep it all swinging into the new year.

Happy New Year, everyone. See you next year.

— Megan Griffith-Greene (@griffithgreene,


Mummers Parade

Philly’s version of Mardi Gras, the nearly 120-year-old Mummers Parade brings quite the colorful spectacle to Broad Street every New Year’s Day. Dozens of lavishly costumed participants will march and dance their way south, stopping to perform choreographed routines along the way. If you can’t make it out or want to stay in your PJs, you can watch it all live on PHL17 or stream it online at — Grace Dickinson

9 a.m. Wednesday, Broad St. from City Hall to Washington Ave., free,

» READ MORE: HOW TO: Our 2020 Mummers Parade guide to where to watch, road closures, and where this bizarre event comes from


Disney on Ice Presents Road Trip Adventures

Watch Mickey and Minnie Mouse skate their way across the world, traveling to favorite Disney destinations like the sun-soaked Motunui of Moana and safari-ready Pride Lands of The Lion King. Along the way, they’ll meet up with friends like Woody and Forky, creating a vibrant performance on ice. An extra preshow pass will let you score a personal introduction to Moana and Mickey. — G.D.

Dec. 27-Jan. 5, Wells Fargo Center, 3601 S. Broad St., $23 and up,


A Dickens of a Murder Mystery Dinner

The nephew of Ebenezer Scrooge is throwing a party, and you’re invited. So is Sherlock Holmes. The kicker? Scrooge is dead, and you’ve been tasked with helping Holmes investigate his murder. This literary mash-up is suitable for ages 16 and older, and the murder mystery show includes dinner and dessert. — G.D.

6 p.m. Friday, World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut St., $55,


‘Star Wars’ Trivia at Stone & Key Cellars

Calling all Yoda and Skywalker fans, Montgomeryville winery Stone & Key Cellars is hosting a night of Star-Wars-themed trivia to celebrate the newest movie, and all the movies that came before. Grab a local pour, and a bite to eat from Southern Cross Kitchen. Trivia starts at 7:30 p.m. sharp. — G.D.

6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, Stone & Key Cellars, 435 Doylestown Rd, Montgomeryville, free,


A Very Ariana Grande Drag and Burlesque Tribute Show

Some of Philly’s most talented drag queens are banding together in tribute of one of their favorite queens of pop, Ariana Grande. Watch as they put on a lively performance to an Ariana-Grande-only playlist. Spend an extra $3 on VIP tickets for a photo with the cast after the show. — G.D.

7:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Friday, L’Etage, 624 S. 6th St., $12-$15,


Pay-What-You-Wish Yoga at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

Start 2020 on a healthy note with an hour of yoga at Philadelphia Museum of Art on New Year’s Day. The weekly pay-what-you-wish Wednesday class will run on its regular schedule, with instructors from Dhyana Yoga leading sessions at 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. Afterward, you can stick around and explore the museum; the galleries are open until 8:45 p.m. — G.D.

6 p.m. and 7 p.m. Wednesday, Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy., pay-what-you-wish,


Tea and Tarot

What does 2020 hold in store for you? Have your tarot cards read while warming up with a cup of tea at Manayunk’s the Spiral Bookcase. Readings are offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Sign up, then browse the independent bookshop while you wait. — G.D.

6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday, The Spiral Bookcase, 112 Cotton St., $1 per minute for tarot readings,


Yasiin Bey / Talib Kweli

Back in June, Yasiin Bey (the artist formerly known as Mos Def) was a guest at the Roots Picnic, in celebration of the Philadelphia band’s 1999 album Things Fall Apart. Now he’s back celebrating his own 1999 landmark album, Black on Both Sides. Talib Kweli, his partner on the 1998 classic Mos Def & Talib Kweli Are Black Star, will open. The show is at the The Ave Live, the new venue in the space formerly known as Egypt. — Dan DeLuca

8 p.m. Friday, The Ave Live, 520 N. Columbus Blvd., $55-$120,

Chris Ward’s Bon Voyage with David Bazan

Since Johnny Brenda’s opened in Fishtown, Chris Ward has been the club’s talent buyer. The former Pattern is Movement drummer and DJ is moving on (though not leaving Philadelphia) and is celebrating Saturday. The early show features Pedro the Lion singer David Bazan, the subject of the new documentary Strange Negotiations, and there will be a surprise opener. That show is sold out, but it will be followed by a free dance party with DJs Emily Karas, Ashraf Rijal, and Greg Mungan, among others, to send Ward off. — D.D.

8 p.m. (concert) and 11 p.m. (dance party) Saturday, Johnny Brenda’s, 1201 N. Frankford, 8 p.m. show sold out; 11 p.m. dance party is free, 215-739-9684.

The War On Drugs

Philly rock band the War On Drugs present their second annual Drugcember To Remember shows to benefit the Fund for the School District of Philadelphia. The Adam Granduciel-led band is between albums, which ought to make these dates loose and intriguing. Detroit producer Chris Koltay and punk-rock magician Michael Casey open. — D.D.

8 p.m. Saturday, Union Transfer, 1026 Spring Garden St., sold out, 215-232-2100, and 8 p.m. Sunday, the Fillmore, 29 E. Allen St., $45, 215-309-0150.

Ryley Walker / Chris Forsyth / Garcia Peoples

A New Year’s Eve guitar summit in Kensington. Besides maintaining a highly amusing Twitter presence, Ryley Walker is a deeply serious musician, a leading indie-jam guitar player whose music can cast a hypnotic spell. He’s joined by Forsyth, the Philadelphian who released this year’s sterling double LP All Time Present (and who owns Jerry’s on Front) as well as New Jersey band Garcia Peoples. — D.D.

8 p.m. Tuesday, Jerry’s on Front, 2341 N. Front St., $25, 347-526-3325,

Making Time New Year’s Eve

Making Time DJ and impresario Dave Pianka is staging his annual New Year’s Eve party at The Ave Live, the new venue on Columbus Boulevard. The headliner is Berlin-based electronic music producer Avalon Emerson. Dave P and Zillas on Acid are also spinning, with visuals by the Klip Collective. — D.D.

9 p.m. Tuesday, The Ave Live, 520 N. Columbus Blvd., $25-$35, 215-964-9889,

» READ MORE: PLAN IT: Check out our full guide to New Year's Eve events in Philly

Lucy Dacus

Indie singer-songwriter Lucy Dacus has spent the year commemorating holidays, so it’s fitting that she plays three sold-out shows at Johnny Brenda’s between Christmas and New Year’s. As a follow up to 2018’s superb Historian, Dacus released seven holiday singles this year, including both originals (“Fool’s Gold,” for New Year’s; “My Mother & I,” for Mother’s Day) and cover songs (both predictable — a punky “Last Christmas” — and not — an eerie “In the Air Tonight,” for Halloween; a somber “Dancing in the Dark,” for the should-be holiday of Springsteen’s birthday). She’s also working on a third album, so her sets could contain some surprises. — Steve Klinge

8 p.m. Sunday and Monday, 9 p.m. Tuesday, Johnny Brenda’s, 1201 N. Frankford Ave., sold out, 215-739-9684,

Greta Van Fleet

Michigan has a long tradition of hard rock bands, stretching back to the MC5, the Stooges, and the White Stripes. On the basis of their blustery 2018 debut album Anthem of the Peaceful Army, Greta Van Fleet aren’t yet in that illustrious company: they’re too wedded to the lessons they’ve learned from Led Zeppelin, the Who, and Cream. But Zeppelin lite can still be fun, and the young band of brothers (Josh, Jake and Sam Kiszka, plus Danny Wagner) bring their throwback rock to the Met on Sunday and Monday for shows postponed from October. Aaron Lee Tasjan opens. — S.K.

8 p.m. Sunday and Monday, The Met Philadelphia, 858 N. Broad St., sold out, 1-800-653-8000,

Soul Rebels

New Orleans’ Soul Rebels are leaders among Crescent City brass bands who have brought traditional Second Line party music into the hip-hop age. The funky ensemble will play two nights in Ardmore, sharing the stage with Jewish reggae rapper Matisyahu on Monday, and starring in a Roaring Twenties themed New Year’s party on Tuesday. — D.D.

8 p.m. Monday and 9 p.m. Tuesday, Ardmore Music Hall, 23 E. Lancaster Ave., Ardmore, $39-$55 (Monday) and $30-$125 (Tuesday), 610-649-8389,

Gov’t Mule / Allman Betts Band

The inter-band family tree between Gov’t Mule and the Allman Betts Band, who partner at the Met Philadelphia on Friday, is complicated. Guitarist extraordinaire Warren Haynes stepped into Duane Allman’s role when the Allman Brothers Band rebooted in 1989, and Gov’t Mule began as a side project in 1994. The Mule’s variations on Southern rock and power blues, with regular excursions into jazz and reggae, have made them an archetypal jam band, and their end-of-year shows are annual traditions. The Allman Betts Band contains sons of three original Allman Brothers Band members, and they load their sets with songs their fathers played. — S.K.

7:30 p.m., Friday, The Met Philadelphia, 858 N. Broad St., $38-$62, 800-653-8000,