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The best things to do in Philly this week

Plus Restaurant Week and Dining Days, Fringe Festival, installations at the Navy Yard and more

All are welcome to explore Eastern State Penitentiary by nightfall for its new Night Tours event.
All are welcome to explore Eastern State Penitentiary by nightfall for its new Night Tours event.Read moreEastern State Penitentiary

📅 This calendar is updated every Thursday at noon with the best events for the week. You can always find it at


🎭 Tarzan at Elmwood Park Zoo (Theater / in-person / kid-friendly / multi-day) Swing by the zoo for a socially distant or from-your-car performance (your choice!) of Tarzan by Prism Theatre Center. The all-ages high-energy outdoor show is based on the Edgar Rice Burroughs' novel Tarzan of the Apes and the Disney film and features tunes from the beloved Phil Collins soundtrack. ($20-$30, Sept. 17-20 and 24-27,, map, add to calendar)

🌙 Night Tours at Eastern State Penitentiary (Tour / in-person / ongoing) Arriving in time for the spookiest season of them all is the penitentiary’s brand-new Night Tours, where you can explore the cellblocks by moonlight. The audio tour is narrated by Steve Buscemi, and features large-scale projections, artist installations and more. ($19-32, Sept. 18-Nov. 15,, map, add to calendar)

🌹 Reopening of The Rosenbach’s Garden (Literary / in-person / outdoors) After 20 years of no public access, the Rosenbach’s 1,600-square-foot garden — which is made up of flowers and plants that link to the works of literature and rare books within the museum’s collection — reopens to the public. To celebrate the opening, the museum is offering free entry, but timed tickets are required. (Free, opens Sept. 17,, map, add to calendar)

🌳 Park(ing) Day 2020 (Community / virtual) Every year for Park(ing) Day, artists and activists transform 160-square-foot parking spaces into pop-up parks to celebrate unexpected public spaces. This year’s event is online-only and features a showcase of parklets from past year’s events. (Free, Sept. 18,, add to calendar)

🇵🇷 Raúl Romero: Onomonopoetics of a Puerto Rican Landscape (Art / in-person / ongoing) Taller Puertorriqueño presents an immersive exhibit that transports viewers to Puerto Rico through sound. Sounds of the island’s tiny coquí frog can be heard throughout Fairhill’s El Centro de Oro, emanating from sculptures that celebrate Arecibo’s famous observatory. (Free, Sept. 18-Jan. 10,, add to calendar)

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🎨 M.I.M.O.S.A. at the Navy Yard (Art / in-person / outdoors / ongoing) From Group X, the anonymous art group that brought a cocoon out of tape and a tentacled sea monster to the Navy Yard in years past, Mystery Island and the Marvelous Occurrence of Spontaneous Art lets you explore six new outdoor art installations, including a 1984 Ford Thunderbird decked out in a paper version of the Guatemalan flag, a cross-stitched vine that climbs a building and a Gritty-esque bridge troll decked out in a Jawn T-shirt. (Free, until Nov. 2,, map, add to calendar)

🛍️ Made in Philadelphia Fall Market (Shopping / in-person / outdoors / multi-day) A rotating roster of local crafters, photographers and artisans sell their wares at the Made in Philadelphia Fall Market at City Hall. Masks and social distancing are required. (Sept. 17-18, 24-25, Oct. 1-2 and 9-11,, map, add to calendar)

🎸 Sheryl Crow: Songs From The Big Green Barn (Music / virtual / multi-day) The “If It Makes You Happy” singer will play two full band shows from her property near Nashville. Friday night’s show will be outdoors and electric; Saturday’s early set, timed for overseas audiences, will be an indoor, stripped down, acoustic affair. ($19.99 for one show; $34.99 for both, Sept. 18, 9 p.m. and Sept. 19, 1 p.m.,, add to calendar)

📻 Lyle Lovett and Dwight Yoakam (Music / virtual) Alongside touring with his Large Band, Texas troubadour Lyle Lovett has a sideline trading songs with pals like Robert Earl Keen and John Hiatt. This show pairs him with California honky tonker Dwight Yoakam, who has fashioned an uncommonly consistent career out of an affection for Buck Owens' Bakersfield sound. ($10, Sept 18, 9 p.m.,, add to calendar)

🎥 Antebellum (Movie / virtual) Janelle Monae (Hidden Figures) stars as an author who finds herself trapped in a mystery involving her past, present, and future, and racial injustice. From the producers of Get Out and BlackkKlansman. (Rated R, available Sept. 18 on VOD and streaming)

🎬 All In: The Fight for Democracy (Movie / virtual / documentary) Timely documentary about the history and current reality of voter suppression. Featuring interviews with Stacey Abrams, Marcia Fudge and many others. Directed by Lisa Cortes and Liz Garbus. (Available Sept. 18 on Amazon Prime Video)

🍿 The Devil All the Time (Movie / virtual) Backwoods drama set from World War II through the 1960s about a corrupt town and a man trying to protect his family. Robert Pattinson, Tom Holland and Bill Skarsgard star. (Rated R, on Netflix)


🍲 University City Dining Days (Food / in-person and at-home / multi-day) Neighborhood favorites in University City are offering discounted lunches and dinners with in-person, delivery and takeout deals. Participants include Ethiopian spot Dahlaka, New American eatery Walnut Street Cafe, and many more. (Prices vary, Sept. 19-Oct. 4,, add to calendar)

🛍️ The Craftery Market (Shopping / in-person / multi-day) Shop handmade items, artwork, flowers and antiques from more than 50 exciting vendors at The Craftery’s giant (and socially distanced) market in Furlong, Pa. Food trucks, coffee vendors and live music keep you fueled while you shop. Note that timed entry slots must be reserved in advance and masks are required. (Free, Sept. 19-20,, map, add to calendar)

🎵 David Bromberg Band (Music / virtual) The blues guitar great, all-around-string-instrument wizard and owner of Wilmington’s David Bromberg Violins is celebrating his 75th birthday. This show also supports his new album Big Road, and streams live from the Arden Concert Gild stage. Upgrade your ticket and watch Jeff Daniels interview Bromberg. ($30-$50, Sept. 19, 8 p.m.,, add to calendar)

🎤 Rare Essence (Music / virtual) The Washington band has been one of the chief practitioners of the D.C. brand of funk known as go-go since 1975, though the 45th anniversary reunion tour was pushed back until 2021. But this weekend, they’ll celebrate the release of their new single “Hit The Floor,” featuring Snoop Dogg. ($5, Sept. 19, 7 p.m.,, add to calendar)


🥁 Feria Del Barrio 2020 (Music / virtual / kid-friendly) The iconic North Philly fest goes virtual for the first time in its 36 years. Organized by Taller Puertorriqueño, the event includes a live bomba music performance by Tony Méndez y los Bomberos de la Calle, a ceremony to honor Edilia Gómez O’Hara, the Venezuelan cultural leader who died earlier this year, and information about well being for Latino families during the pandemic, all live streamed on Taller Puertorriqueño’s Facebook Page. (Free, Sept. 20, 6 p.m., and, add to calendar)

🍂 Awbury Arboretum Autumn Harvest Social (Festival / in-person / kid-friendly) The arboretum marks the beginning of fall with live music, a circus performance and farm visits at a fun-filled autumn harvest social. Registration and masks are required. (Free, Sept. 20, 2 p.m.-5 p.m.,, map, add to calendar)

🎶 Susan Werner (Music / in-person) Since her 1993 debut Midwestern Saturday Night, Iowa-born, Philly-based singer-songwriter Susan Werner has moved all over the musical map from 2016′s An American In Havana to last year’s NOLA. Her new Flyover Country was recorded in South Philly and produced by Mike ‘Slo-Mo’ Brenner. He accompanies her at this afternoon drive-in show. ($75 per carload, Sept. 20, 4 p.m. map, add to calendar)


🎼 Mann Center Virtual Party in the Park (Music / virtual) Coronavirus kept Fairmount Park’s Mann Center dark this summer, but the venue is closing out the season with a wide-ranging virtual bill that includes performances from Philadelphia Orchestra concertmaster David Kim and Low Cut Connie pianist Adam Weiner, along with archived clips from The Roots, Phish, Amos Lee, Yannick Nezet-Seguin, and DJ Jazzy Jeff. It’s a fundraiser for the Mann’s education and community engagement programs. ($100-$1000, Sept. 21, 7 p.m.,, add to calendar)


🌎 Philadelphia Environmental Film Festival (Movies / virtual / multi-day) The annual fest goes virtual this year with five days of packed programming, including 50 films from around the world, and discussions with filmmakers and scientists. This year’s program includes Tribes on the Edge, from Celine Cousteau (granddaughter of Jacques), and Beyond the Philth, about this city’s trash problem ($12 for individual tickets, $30 for a festival pass, until Sept. 27,, add to calendar)


👩‍🎤 Philly Music Fest (Music / virtual / multi-day / free) Now in its fourth year, the PMF is scaling back with two nights of shows streamed from the empty Ardmore Music Hall. Japanese Breakfast and The Districts play live on Thursday; Arnetta Johnson and Zeek Burse play pre-recorded sets. The fest, which raises money for Philly music education non-profits, will be broadcast on WXPN-FM (88.5). It continues on Friday with Langhorne Slim and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. (Free, Sept. 24-25, 8 p.m., add to calendar)


🦖 Jurassic Quest Drive-Thru (Event / in-person / kid-friendly / multi-day) The hugely popular kid-friendly experience featuring life-sized dinosaurs along a driveable course continues at the Wells Fargo Center. ($49 per car, until Sept. 27,, map, add to calendar)

🍴 Center City District Restaurant Week (Food / in-person and virtual / multi-day) Whether you prefer a takeout or dine-in (socially distant) meal, Restaurant Week offers prix-fixe deals on lunch and dinner at favorite spots throughout Center City. ($20-$35, Sept. 13-25,, add to calendar)

🎭 Fringe Festival (Theater / virtual and in-person / ongoing) The Fringe Festival continues with a range of mostly online, and some in-person, performances celebrating the most exciting works in Philadelphia’s performing arts scene. Shows range from circus-inspired shows, dance performances, audio-only performances, dramatic theater and more. (Prices vary, Until Oct. 4,, add to calendar)

🚶🏽TrailOff (Literary / in-person / outdoors) Philly’s expansive Circuit Trails are the venue for TrailOff, a free augmented reality audio performance that uses your phone’s GPS to play audio stories created by local authors. The digital, self-paced performance features 10 trail-specific stories, from drama to horror, that put the user in the shoes of the story’s main character. The app is free to download — and a good way to get your steps in. (Free, Until Oct. 4,, add to calendar)

🌱 Greenfest Philly (Festival / virtual / free / multi-day) Enjoy vegan cooking demonstrations, documentary screenings, talks with environmental lawyers and environment-themed quizzo at the all-virtual Greenfest Philly. (Free, until Sept. 27,, add to calendar)

Calendar contributors include music critic Dan DeLuca (music), staff writer Jesenia De Moya Correa, Howard Gensler (movies), and Jane M. Von Bergen (theater).