Philadelphia and the Countryside - Press Room

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Mar 19 2013

Sports Bring Competition, Visitors & Economic Impact To Philadelphia

March Madness, U.S. Open, USA Sevens Collegiate Rugby Championship, NCAA Lacrosse Championships & Volleyball Qualifier Score Big

This week, March Madness kicks off sports-filled seasons in Philadelphia, which is playing host to some big events in spring and summer. Fans traveling to the region to watch their favorite teams—or just get in on the fun—will round out their trips with food, museums, art, nightlife and history.

“We’re thrilled to see more of these sporting events coming to Philadelphia,” said Meryl Levitz, president and CEO of GPTMC, which markets to leisure travelers. “New visitors experiencing the city for the first time find reasons to come back again, and repeat visitors take in their favorite sites and add a few more to the list. With that kind of impact, everybody wins. Kudos to the Sports Congress and to all the great organizations who have chosen Philadelphia.”

The Sports:

  • March Madness – This weekend, Duke University, University at Albany, Creighton University, University of Cincinnati, Georgetown University, Florida Gulf Coast University, San Diego State University and University of Oklahoma converge in South Philadelphia for the second and third rounds of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament. Bonus: Philly teams are hitting the road to compete (men’s: La Salle University, Temple University and Villanova University; women’s: Saint Joseph’s University and Villanova University). March 22 and 24. Wells Fargo Center, 3601 S. Broad Street, ncaa.com
  • Northeast Volleyball Qualifier – Volleyball pros-in-training, girls in the 16, 17 and 18 age groups hit the hardwood in Center City and strive to dig, set and spike their way to a win. March 29-31. Pennsylvania Convention Center, 11th & Arch Streets, neqvolleyball.com
  • NCAA Men’s and Women’s Lacrosse Championships – Over the same May weekend men’s and women’s lacrosse teams bring their A sticks to the Philadelphia region. Men’s: May 25-27, Lincoln Financial Field, 1020 Pattison Avenue; Women’s: May 24 and 26, Villanova Stadium, 800 E. Lancaster Avenue, Radnor, ncaa.com
  • USA Sevens Collegiate Rugby Championship – Sixteen of the best college rugby teams converge at the region’s newest stadium for two full days. Families and sports fans can take in up to 39 matches in Chester, Pennsylvania. June 1-2. PPL Park, 1 Stadium Drive, Chester, usasevenscrc.com
  • U.S. Open – “Fore!” will echo through Ardmore, located about 30 minutes outside of Philadelphia, this summer. The best golfers in the world, plus their adoring and respectfully subdued fans, will meet to determine who really rules the green. June 10-16. Merion Golf Club, 450 Ardmore Avenue, Ardmore, usga.org

10 Things To Do Between Plays:

  1. American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition – The National Constitution Center explores the build-up, execution and legacy of the ill-fated 18th Amendment. The exhibition features 100 artifacts and collectables like a 1929 Buick Marquette, a car that was often used by bootleggers; a rumrunner video game; and a reconstructed speakeasy where the Charleston rules the dance floor. Through April 28. 525 Arch Street, (215) 409-6700, constitutioncenter.org
  2. Come See About Me: The Mary Wilson Supremes Collection – The African American Museum in Philadelphia celebrates the glory and talent of one of Motown’s most pioneering and influential musical acts. Featuring more than 30 gowns worn by the iconic trio, the exhibit explores Mary Wilson’s journey to self-actualization as part of an internationally renowned female group whose music crossed over to mainstream audiences and broke racial barriers. Through August 18. 701 Arch Street, (215) 574-0380, aampmuseum.org
  3. The Art of Golf – This Philadelphia Museum of Art exhibit is a study of the sport: its history, enduring popularity and representation in art. One highlight: The Golfers (1847) by the Scottish painter Charles Lees set on the links at St Andrews. Through July 7. 26th Street & Benjamin Franklin Parkway, (215) 763-8100, philamuseum.org
  4. Big Bugs – Sculptor Dave Rodgers made 11 creations using various combinations of trees, cut green saplings, dry branches and other forest materials. Some of the bugs on display throughout the 92-acre garden include a praying mantis, dragonfly, spider, ladybug and grasshopper. April 1-August 31. 100 E. Northwestern Avenue, (215) 247-5777, morrisarboretum.org
  5. Spy: The Secret World of Espionage – The Franklin Institute gives people a declassified peek behind the newspaper headlines and Hollywood movies to decode the real history of spies. More than 200 artifacts, including never-before-seen artifacts from the CIA, bring visitors close to the gadgets, techniques and technologies used by spies throughout the ages. May 4-October 6. 222 N. 20th Street, (215) 448-1200, fi.edu
  6. Glow: Living Lights – The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University takes visitors on a journey through land and sea in pursuit of creatures with the incredible ability to produce their own light. Children and adults alike are enlightened by dramatic videos, live organisms, rare preserved specimens, models and hands-on activities. June 1-September 29. 19th Street & Benjamin Franklin Parkway, (215) 299-1000, ansp.org
  7. Eastern State Penitentiary – Once the most famous and expensive prison in the world, the massive Eastern State Penitentiary welcomes non-criminals to explore its crumbling corridors all year. Former guards and inmates describe life at Eastern State on the Steve Buscemi-narrated audio tour. Famous inmate: Capone. 2027 Fairmount Avenue, (215) 236-3300, easternstate.org
  8. Reading Terminal Market – This indoor market is a one-stop shop for everything from local produce and Amish pickles to cheeses, seafood and to-go meals. While it’s open seven days a week, the Amish vendors, a huge draw for visitors and locals, sell their goods Wednesday through Saturday. 12th & Arch Streets, (215) 922-2317, readingterminalmarket.org
  9. Philadelphia Trolley Works – On this Victorian-style trolley, riders to hop on and off while visiting 21 popular attractions throughout the city. Passes are good for 24 or 48 hours. Tickets are available online, on the trolley or at the Independence Visitor Center. 6th & Market Streets, (215) 389-TOUR (8687), phillytour.com
  10. Independence National Historical Park – Philadelphia is the birthplace of the nation, so first-time (and second- and third-time) visitors love to see where it all happened. The Liberty Bell Center and Independence Hall, a World Heritage Site, are the most popular spots, and they’re both free. At the Independence Visitor Center, people get their timed tickets to the Hall, plus tips from the Philly-loving staff. Between 5th & 6th and Market & Chestnut Streets, (215) 965-2305, nps.gov/inde; Visitor Center, 6th & Market Streets, (800) 537-7676, phlvisitorcenter.com

The Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation (GPTMC) makes Philadelphia and The Countryside® a premier destination through marketing and image building that increases business and promotes the region’s vitality.

For more information about travel to Philadelphia, visit visitphilly.com or uwishunu.com, where you can build itineraries; search event calendars; see photos and videos; view interactive maps; sign up for newsletters; listen to HearPhilly, an online radio station about what to see and do in the region; book hotel reservations and more. Or, call the Independence Visitor Center, located in Historic Philadelphia, at (800) 537-7676.

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CENTER CITY

Benjamin Franklin Parkway:

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Apr 5 2013

Hispanic Heritage Events Bloom In Philadelphia This Spring & Summer

Festivals, Live Entertainment, Exhibits & An International Arts Festival Celebrate Hispanic Culture

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Feeling Festive:

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