Philadelphia is one of the most apt places to celebrate Presidents’ Day weekend. The city is linked with the historic bedrock of the United States, as well as the country’s Founding Fathers and early presidents. Home to the inception of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, Philadelphia was also the home of George Washington and John Adams throughout all or part of their presidencies.
To celebrate the holiday, check out our list of events that offer free museum admission and interactive events that will enlighten and entertain the whole family.
The National Constitution Center is a nonprofit institution devoted to the United States Constitution. For Presidents’ Day the center hosts programming all weekend for the whole family—for free. From February 18th to 20th, visitors can learn the skills needed to be commander-in-chief, participate in a presidential costume contest, and meet the titanic presidents of our nation’s like Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt. Additionally, guests can create presidential masks and seals, take a quiz on the presidents, and join a special tour of the museums main exhibition.
To celebrate Benjamin Franklin on Presidents’ Day, head to the museum created in his honor. From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., guests can explore the museum with free admission. The exploration of the life and legacy of Ben Franklin is divided into five rooms in the museum, and each room possesses a particular trait attributable to the sixth president of the United States. The traits include qualities like ardent, ambitious, and curious, and collections of artifacts, animations, and interactive displays impart the heritage of one of the most brilliant minds of America’s founding history.
All February long, the National Museum of American Jewish History is offering free admission to its impressive exhibits and displays. Presidents’ Day weekend, guests can view George Washington’s original 1790 letter written to the Jewish community of Newport, Rhode Island that outlines the importance of religious freedom. On the holiday itself, interactive storytelling, arts and craft projects, and letter writing to presidents will all be part of the festivities.
For Presidents’ Day Weekend, chef Walter Staib will bring his skills to the Historic District’s City Tavern and cook some of the favorite dishes of our nation’s first presidents. Host of the Emmy Award-winning and James Beard-nominated show A Taste of History, Staib has visited and cooked in each of the first five presidents’ homes. City Tavern, a reconstructed Colonial tavern where servers wear period dress, is the perfect setting for a presidential culinary experience.