Wednesday, December 17, 2014

POSTED: Wednesday, December 17, 2014, 2:33 PM
Before they perform at the San Francisco and Chicago sketch festivals, The Flat Earth show off new material. (Photo by Tom Lovelund)

Local improv group The Flat Earth have been making us laugh since 2012. The oldest sketch team of Philly Improv Theater, together since 2012’s Fringe Festival, will hit the stage at Philly Improv Theater (2030 Sansom St.) for the last time this year for their brand-new scripted sketch comedy show, sure to make your stomach rumble: “An Evening With Venison Fajitas.”

Utilizing their wit, costumes and fresh ingredients, the players — including Jaquie Baker, Vincent DiCostanzo, Sean Landis, Rich Lee, Matthew Schmid, Molly Silverman, Adam Siry and Harry Watermeir — and director Paul Triggiani put their spin on office lingo, sci-fi TV and more in the new show, hitting the stage at 9 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 18 and Friday, Dec. 19.

Not only is this your last chance to unleash the laughs with The Flat Earth in 2014, it’s the final premiere of new material before the team hits the road, heading to perform in both the San Francisco and Chicago sketch festivals in January.

POSTED: Wednesday, December 17, 2014, 12:47 PM
The first day of Kwanzaa was celebrated today at the African American Museum in Center City with a variety of activities including song, dance, storytelling, arts and crafts and magic. (Ed Hille / Staff Photographer)

The holiday season is in full swing and Philly is bursting with celebrations for all. Here are a few of the latest local Kwanzaa events.

Kids can get an interactive view of the holiday courtesy of Queen Nur’s song-filled presentations at the Garden State Discovery Museum (2040 Springdale Rd., Cherry Hill) from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on both Friday, Dec. 26 and Sunday, Dec. 28.

For two days at the African American Museum in Philadelphia (701 Arch St.), the cultures and practices of the African Diaspora are honored through candle lighting, discussions and activities. From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 27 and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 28, Mlanjeni Nduma and the Amazing Mr. Q will not only take on the candle-lighting duties but also will outline the Nguzo Saba — “Seven Principles — of Kwanzaa through song, dance and other activities. A dance interpretation of the holiday will be performed, and arts and child-friendly crafts will be provided throughout the day.

POSTED: Wednesday, December 17, 2014, 10:29 AM
Tyler the Creator of Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All (OFWGKTA) performs live on the Main Stage on Day Two during the Reading Festival 2012 at Richfield Avenue on August 25, 2012 in Reading, England. (Photo by Simone Joyner (Getty Images)

Concert picks for the week before Christmas!

Friday, December 19: The Making Time $2 Bill with Nothing

Philly’s Nothing craft big, loud, noisy rockers that temper their more aggressive tendencies with a hazy, shoegaze wash — frenetic guitars giving way to melodic keyboards, and head-in-the-clouds, MBV-style vocals. Formed in 2011 following a jail stint for front man Nicky Palermo, Nothing not surprisingly concerns itself with questions of circumstance and redemption, from Palermo’s childhood growing up in Frankford to everyday existences fueled by loneliness, drugs, and depression. Of course, you might never realize any of this without delving into their backstory — on the surface these dudes are mainly loud and expansive, blowing eardrums, speakers, and yes — minds with their rock. They play Making Time’s $2 bill this Friday — show up before midnight and tix are just $2. You know — so you can save some money for Christmas presents booze.

POSTED: Wednesday, December 17, 2014, 3:00 AM
The Dumpsta Players put their spin on '80s soap "Dynasty" tonight at Bob and Barbara's Lounge. (Photo courtesy the Dumpsta Players)

Take your time. Don’t want to cramp up.

For a history lesson: He may see you when you’re sleeping and know when you’re awake, but this exhibit at the Glencairn Museum (1001 Cathedral Rd., Bryn Athyn, Pa.) traces St. Nick’s visual representation in the 1800s. The special display is open from noon until 4:30 p.m.

For a world record: The Congregations of Shaare Shamayim (9768 Verree Rd.) will construct and light the World’s Largest Balloon Menorah, an addition to the titles the Congregation already holds (World’s Largest Hamantasch and Number of People Blowing the Shofar) at 6 p.m. They’re aiming for the structure to stand at 22 feet, two feet higher than the current record holder. Afterwards, come inside for a magic show, latkes and sofganyiot (jelly donuts).

POSTED: Tuesday, December 16, 2014, 3:24 PM
Interior view of Bank and Bourbon. ( DAVID M WARREN / Staff Photographer )

If you got your butt kicked in the kitchen on Thanksgiving and no one else in the family is stepping up to the Christmas Eve/Christmas Day task, restaurants across Philadelphia are open and some are even offering traditional dinners, like the Feast of the Seven Fishes, and holiday pairings.

Leave the cooking for another holiday and choose your favorite from our list:

Hey Chinatown! We didn’t forget about you either. Many Asian and mall restaurants located all over Philly will be open too.

POSTED: Tuesday, December 16, 2014, 2:09 PM
Skaters on the River Rink stop and watch the New Year's Eve fireworks over the Delaware River. The early fireworks show at Penn's Landing is a family event. ( MICHAEL BRYANT / Staff Photographer )

Lauded as one of the biggest party holidays of the year, New Year’s Eve is also the perfect opportunity for kids and families to get in on a little celebratory action. Get ready to welcome in 2015 in style with the whole brood on Wednesday, Dec. 31.

With musicians performing throughout the day in various locations of Longwood Gardens (1001 Longwood Rd., Kennett Square), this horticultural getaway will be the perfect finale to a great year. Fountain shows will run every hour from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and every five minutes from 3:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. See the center’s holiday displays and revel in the festive sights one more time. 

Betsy’s our bestie. That’s why we’re celebrating the First Lady of Flags’ birthday at 11 a.m. on New Year’s Eve at the Betsy Ross House (239 Arch St.). With treats from City Tavern and tons of kid-friendly activities, this party is sure to be happening. 

POSTED: Monday, December 15, 2014, 10:42 AM
Eric & Ryan Berley for Smithsonian (photo by Chris Crisman courtesy of Neff Associates)

Before pigging out on candy canes, cookies and egg nog next week, use this week to experience the wonderful food and drink happenings taking place in Philadelphia.

Those clothes bundled up in your dresser are mad at you because you haven’t worn them in months. Why don’t you do them a favor and give them to someone who will wear them? On Wednesday, Dec. 17, True Voice Media and East River Bank collaborate with nonprofit organizations Cradles to Crayons and Northeast Treatment Centers to host the first Holiday Social that features a clothing drive, benefiting deserving children in Philadelphia, that will be performed as a fashion show. Get this: The event is free and the clothes you donate will be a part of the fashion show. Sweet, right? With an RSVP you not only get to brighten less fortunate families' hearts this year, but you also get to enjoy complimentary food and drinks from Primos Hoagies, Brauhaus Schmitz, The Boiler Room, and more. The event starts at 6 p.m. and takes place at the Neighborhood House (20 N. American St.)

If you’ve had any of the Art in the Age spirits in the past, you know that all four styles pair well with almost every season of the year, and on Thursday, Dec. 18th at Standard Tap (901 N. 2nd St.), discover what mixes are best for winter during Art in the Age Night. Beginning at 6 p.m. and running through 10 p.m., enjoy four specially selected cocktails priced at $6 apiece as well as some AITA food items such as Root sticky buns, and a Snap dish. A portion of the proceeds benefit American Farmland Trust, an organization who strikes to protect farms across the country.

POSTED: Tuesday, December 9, 2014, 4:53 PM
Vintage Arcade games in Keystone Mini-Golf. (Stephanie Aaronson/Philly.com)

With Mother Nature giving us a seesaw effect of wet weather this month, planning outdoor activities on your day off can be rough. Instead of sitting on the couch and using the excuse “It’s gross out, I don’t feel like doing anything,” there are a handful of places indoors to keep us occupied when it rains. Check out these indoor facilities for activities.

Everybody Hits (529 W. Girard Ave.)

Lucky for those baseball players out there, they can start their spring training early. Open daily, this indoor batting facility is the perfect spot to practice that swing you've been working on. Hours: Monday-Friday 2 p.m. through 9 p.m., Saturday: 10 a.m. through 9 p.m., Sunday: noon through 9 p.m. Prices start at 16 pitches for $2.25.

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Discover great events, festivals, museums, parties, music, restaurants, movies, performances, and art happening in Philadelphia. Want to share an event? Click here to submit an event for consideration on Philly.com

Gabrielle Bonghi Philly.com
Kate Bracaglia Philly.com Music Blogger
Allie Volpe philly.com
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