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Our Guide to the Perfect Welcome America Experience

Wawa Welcome America, the annual week-long festival celebrating our nations birth, is about to launch for it’s 16th year! We’ve gone through the full calendar and put together our picks for how to make the most out of each day – but these are just our highlights, if we left off your favorite event, let us know!


Saturday June 29

First Stop: Free Library of Philadelphia
Tour the Rare Book Department starting at 9am.
Philadelphia Library 4th of July Celebration

Filled with historically important books, manuscripts and works of art dating back to 3,000 BCE plus a new exhibition for all ages called Our 5 Senses that will connect the senses to literary experiences across three centuries.


Second Stop: Reading Terminal Market
The Philly Ice Cream Scoop 11am – 5pm
Philadelphia 4th of July Celebration Reading Terminal Market Ice Cream

14 of the regions best ice cream makers – including Sweet Charlies, Franklin Fountain, and Weckerly’s – will be serving up scoops among games, demonstrations, and even a ice cream eating contest all backed by live music.


Sunday June 30

First Stop: Fringe Arts
Circus Midway 11am – 3pm

Philadelphia 4th of July Celebration Fringe Arts Circus Performance School

Join the circus (at least for the afternoon) at Fringe Arts! Teachers and performers from the Philadelphia School of Circus Arts will be teaching basic aerial acrobatics, juggling, plate spinning, tight wire and more.


Second Stop: Independence Mall
Historic District Block Party 12pm – 7pm

Philadelphia 4th of July Celebration Historic Block Party

Entertainment, food trucks, pop-up performances, Kids Zone, and more – this festival takes over the Historic District for tons of fun on Sunday!


Monday July 1

First Stop: Museum of the American Revolution
Free Museum Day 10am – 5pm


Philadelphia 4th of July Celebration American Revolution Museum

Take a moment to learn about the journey that took us from Pilgrims to Presidents.


Second Stop: Penn’s Landing
US Army Field Band Concert & Waterfront Fireworks 8pm – 10pm

Philadelphia 4th of July Celebration Fireworks Waterfront

The US Army Field Band is debuting a new musical and visual celebration of Independence Day called “Let Freedom Ring” followed by fireworks.


Tuesday July 2

First Stop: National Constitution Center
Wawa Hoagie Day 12pm – 2pm
Philadelphia 4th of July Celebration Wawa Free Hoagie

Grab lunch on Wawa at this celebration of all things hoagie and watch Philly’s Finest compete in a Police vs Fire hoagie building competition.


Second Stop: Kimmel Center
Great American Party on the Plaza 5pm – 7:30 pm
Philadelphia 4th of July Celebration Kimmel Center Hamilton Musical Party

Free performances direct from the 2019/2020 season with live performances along Spruce Street, the Broadway casts of Dear Evan Hansen and Mean Girls,ย  and a sing along to the music from the hit show Hamilton.


Wednesday July 3

First Stop: Independence Mall
POPS on Independence 7pm – 9:30pm
Philadelphia 4th of July Celebration Philly POPS Orchestra Concert Independence Hall

We’re taking it easy today to be ready for the big blow out Thursday, so an evening picnic with the internationally renowned Philly POPS Orchestra with the back drop of Independence Hall is the perfect way to relax.


Thursday July 4

First Stop: Independence Mall
Salute to America Independence Day Parade 11am – 12:30pm
Philadelphia 4th of July Celebration Parade Historic Old City

Marching bands, colorful floats, and proud military units will be winding their way through America’s Most Historic Square Mile – the perfect way to start our country’s birthday party!


Second Stop: Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Party on the Parkway 12pm – 10pm
Philadelphia 4th of July Celebration Fireworks Wawa Welcome America July Fourth Concert Party Festival Celebration

Free concerts by huge names, performances by amazing dancers, a Kids Zone, tons of food and activities – all capped off by the best fireworks in the city!


Now that you’ve got our list, let us know what’s on yours over on our Facebook page and be sure to tag @CenterCityListings in all your Instagram posts from the festival so we can be there will you!


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