Welcome to the "Beyond the Bell" calendar page! We currently have special events scheduled for the months of May and June, and with Independence Day coming soon, you know July will be hopping in Philadelphia. There are a number of ongoing events. You can also look to take advantage of the improving weather situation by enjoying the various outdoor activities.
Until Further Notice ...
Second Bank Closed for Renovations
There's a note on the Independence National Historical Park website stating that the Portrait Gallery at the Second Bank of the United States "will remain closed to visitors through the winter while curators and conservators clean the paintings, and work to preserve this building." Sorry, folks!
Saturday, May 16th
Armed Forces Day
Special programs all day. Military personnel in uniform get into the Independence Seaport Museum free and special discounts will be available for families.
Independence Seaport Museum
Penn's Landing, Columbus Blvd & Walnut St.
10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Armed Forces Day at the Independence Seaport Museum
Thursday, May 21st
Summer Hours/Putting Boats on the Water
Starting on this day, the Independence Seaport Museum settles into its summer-time hours. It's also the day that they start renting boats, so you can take a kayak, a rowboat, or even a swan boat for a paddle, a row, or a pedal around the basin for a better look at its historic vessels.
Fridays in May
A House Divided
Although better known for its role in the War of Independence, Philadelphia also played a major role in the preservation of the Union during the Civil War. This tour focuses on the latter war and its impact on the Christ Church congregation. (weather permitting)
Monday, May 25th
Memorial Day Ceremony
Join the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War as they honor all of those who died in service to the United States.
Monday, May 25th
Memorial Day Ceremony/Plaque Unveiling
At noon, Christ Church remembers the Americans that paid the ultimate price in service to our country. The tribute includes a plaque unveiling ceremony at the gravesite of Major Charles Mc Euen, who headed the 6th Union League Regiment in the Civil War, and the ceremonial placing of 13 star flags at the gravesites of the Revolutionary War dead.
Daily, May 30th - June 4th, Fridays in June
Brew N History Tours
After debating the Declaration of Independence all day, the Founding Fathers continued the discussion in the taverns and pubs of colonial Philadelphia. Follow in their more festive footsteps with this tour that focuses on Philadelphia's beer brewing history. (weather permitting)
Sunday, May 31st
Songs From The Struggle
The Mother Bethel Mass Choir presents "Songs From The Struggle" a FREE concert featuring spirituals, anthems, and gospel songs that center around the current social justice issues facing our community. The concert is free and open to the public.
Sunday, June 14th
Flag Day Ceremonies
Celebrate Flag Day and the birthday of the United States Army with pomp, parade, and even skydivers! There'll be lots of events taking place all throughout the day.
Thursday, June 25th
Stolen, Smuggled, and Sold
If you think the hoarding of stolen art and cultural treasures started in WWII with the Nazis, you have a lot to learn. Attending this lecture by Nancy Moses would be a great way to start the learning process as she relates what she found while prowling through museum records, newspapers, and interviews to uncover stories. It goes all the way up to a missing copy of the original Bill of Rights. (Reception and book signing follow the lecture.)
Thursday - Sunday, June 25th - 28th
Tall Ships in the Harbor
Some of the great sailing ships of the world pay a visit to the Philadelphia and Camden waterfronts for the weekend. Featured vessels include France's L'Hermione, a replica of the 145-foot-long Concorde-class frigate that carried General Lafayette to the United States in 1780, and the Coast Guard's Barque Eagle, a three-masted tall ship boasting 21,350 square feet of sail and a full 295 feet of length from bowsprit to stern.
Now thru December 2017
Opening on Bill of Rights Day (December 15th), 2014 and continuing through to almost the end of 2017, the National Constitution Center will be featuring the founding documents of our great republic. Starting with a first edition stone engraving of the Declaration of Independence, the exhibit includes a rare copy of the first public printing of the U.S. Constitution, and rounds it out with a special display of one of the 12 surviving copies of the Bill of Rights.
Outdoor History and After Hours Tours
Historic Philadelphia offers outdoor history tours, after hours events, and pub crawls. All of the details are on our Shows and Tours page.
Radios Made in Philadelphia
Roy Shapiro, who was the general manager of KYW 1060 AM when it went to an all-news format, was more than a maker of radio history. He also collected it. His collection took the form of vintage radios, specifically those made in and around the Philadelphia area. Thirteen of these radios, made in the 1930's and 1940's make up the collection, which shows the city's leading role in the rise of, and the "Golden Age" of, radio in America.