Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

POSTED: Wednesday, August 20, 2014, 12:36 PM
The giraffes were having fun too at last year's Country Fest. (Courtesy of Elmwood Park Zoo)

You don’t have to live deep in bluegrass country to be a country music lover. Even here in the Philadelphia area, a country twang gets our motors running. For some down home country fun, put on your cowboy hat and head to the Elmwood Park Zoo in Norristown for 92.5 XTU Country Fest Friday, Aug. 22 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Line up for some country dancing with 92.5 XTU, who will be broadcasting live from the zoo with Andie Summers as well as David Duong and Matt Spitko, who will give live performances. Spitko is an emerging artist who will have his first album, “The Light” out this fall.

For you more daring types, go a little buck wild with the mechanical bull. Show your western toughness by seeing how long you can stay in the saddle. If John Travolta can do it in Urban Cowboy, then so can you.

POSTED: Wednesday, August 20, 2014, 10:52 AM
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 14: Lil Wayne and Drake perform at Pepsi Presents Nicki Minaj's Pink Friday Tour at Roseland on August 14, 2012 in New York City. (Photo by Larry Busacca (Getty Images for Pepsi)

What we’re checking out this week!

Thursday, August 21: Drake Versus Lil Wayne

Why versus, you might ask? Good question. It’s a hard choice, Drake vs. Lil Wayne. One started from the bottom, playing a school shooting victim on Canadian TV, then skyrocketed to stardom thanks to his unique flow and YOLO-y outlook. The other was a childhood star, rapping about hot chicks and hot blocks for years, before dreaming up candy fantasies and getting namedropped by Obama (in addition, to, we might add, signing Drake). These days, they’re two of the biggest names in hip-hop, and this Thursday, they’ll go head-to-head live, with audiences determining the battle outcome via a specially-created tour app. The two stalwarts will take turns dropping rhymes; fans will vote on who wins each round and the winner will earn ultimate bragging rights. (Also: there will be ziplines.) Will Drake’s smooth rhymes reign supreme? Or will Lil Wayne cut through the competition with his trademark ‘tude and cool hair? There’s only one way to find out. Let the battle begin!!

POSTED: Wednesday, August 20, 2014, 3:00 AM
The Bellmawr branch of the Camden County Library system hosts an all-day game session. (iStock Photo)

This is living.

For gamers: A wide selection of games, from board to video games, will be available for free play at the Bellmawr Branch of the Camden County Library System from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m.

For a historical afternoon: Before the kids go back to school, let them learn a thing or two at Pennypacker Mills during this free, two-hour hands-on history lesson about life in the 1900s. Get to the Schwenksville, Pa. park by 1 p.m. (And if you miss it, don’t worry — there are two more sessions held at the same time and place tomorrow and Friday.)

POSTED: Tuesday, August 19, 2014, 3:37 PM
Last year's Antique and Vintage Market (courtesy of Phila Flea Market)

If you are a fan of shows like "Antiques Roadshow" and "Storage Wars," then you know the thrill of a good treasure hunt. On Saturday, Aug. 23, you will not want to miss the  2nd Annual Antique & Vintage Market at the Kimmel Center for Performing Arts in Center City. From 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., 40 vendors will be selling antique and vintage pieces ranging from furniture to collectibles. You never know what you might uncover. This is the only indoor event of Phila Flea Market’s outdoor season, so no matter what the weather outside you will be in air-conditioned comfort.

Vendors will include:

American Antique Jewelry Co.

POSTED: Tuesday, August 19, 2014, 3:21 PM
Learn about how the brain is always changing at the Franklin Institute (photo courtesy of Colin M. Lenton)

Good old Benjamin Franklin is recognized as one of the Founding Fathers of our nation. But aside from being a part of our nation’s foundation, he was also an inventor, writer, and scientist. With the Franklin Institute located next to the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, city visitors and residents can check out this massive building dedicated totally to science. Tip your hat to the whiz kids as you look at these current and permanent exhibits.  

On June 14, the Franklin Institute opened its newest permanent exhibition, Your Brain, located on the second floor. Visitors can get an in-depth look at all things brainy as they travel through this exhibit that features an interactive neural network that is triggered by your footsteps. Follow a visual pathway of your brain, test your noggin with illusions, and see why your brain is always changing.

Their current exhibit 101 Inventions That Changed the World runs through Monday, Sept. 1, and visitors can travel back in time and discover how inventions such as Velcro changed the world and why it is used in many clothing items and space suits. After you build up your inspiration during this exhibit, use your smarts to create the next great item that will revolutionize modern life.

POSTED: Tuesday, August 19, 2014, 2:17 PM
Purchase unique items at these shopping events. (iStock photo)

It’s that time of year again: Back-to-school season. Whether you’re still hitting the books or are fully immersed in the 9-to-5 lifestyle, these next few weeks are the perfect time to shop. You might not be able to resist the promise of a unique style find.

Let’s get some shoes. Let’s get some super-discounted shoes. Bus Stop Boutique in Queen Village is holding a four-day mini warehouse sale with discounts up to 75 percent off from Thursday, Aug. 21 through Sunday, Aug. 24 during store hours, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Friday, and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday.  

Continuing with accessories, the Bernie Robbins flagship store in Somers Point, N.J. is pairing shoppers with jewelry experts on Friday, Aug. 22 and Saturday, Aug. 23. Find out which stones will work best with your fall wardrobe from noon until 7 p.m. on Friday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday.

POSTED: Tuesday, August 19, 2014, 3:00 AM
"The Four Seasons Restaurant," a piece by director Romeo Castellucci is a Presented Fringe Festival performance. Learn about the director's artistic repertoire tonight. (Photo by Christophe Raynaud de Lage via Canary Promo)

When was the last time you could party with your dog and make sauerkraut in the same day?  

For an outdoor show: Making ballet attainable to boardwalkers, the Atlantic City Ballet takes to Kennedy Plaza on the Atlantic City Boardwalk at 5 p.m. to show off seldom-seen moves in fresh air — for free.

For socialite pups: All dogs go to the bar. Well, at least that’s true at this “yappy hour” at Loews Philadelphia Hotel where dogs can feast on the hotel’s dog cuisine and take part in a best-dressed dog contest. Two-legged attendees can sip on cocktails and munch on appetizers. The event runs from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Center City hotel.

POSTED: Monday, August 18, 2014, 2:32 PM
Laurel Hill was lit up for last year's Soul Crawl held in October. (Photo Credit: Mark Aksoy via Facebook)

Cemeteries have always been a place of mourning where you go to remember and grieve for your loved ones. They are usually a solemn place where you carefully walk around the tombstones trying not to disturb the dead. The Friends of Laurel Hill Cemetery, however, believe that cemeteries are as much for the living as for the dead and that by bringing the past to life we celebrate life as much as we honor the dead. From 5K runs to picnics, they show that despite our grief, life must always go on. There will be no tiptoeing in this grave site. Laughter, music, and all types of fun are encouraged.

Founded in 1836 and considered a National Historic Landmark, East Falls' Laurel Hill Cemetery is the resting place to many important historic figures, and some of them were known for their handsome visages and built physiques as well. In the tour, Hotties of Laurel Hill: Dead, Gone & Extremely Handsome, on Thursday, Aug. 21 at 6:30 p.m., you can hear stories about heartthrobs of bygone eras including Civil War soldiers and Victorian inventors.

If you prefer visiting cemeteries in the daylight hours, at 10 a.m. on Friday, Aug. 22, you can get a colorful overview of the cemetery’s history during  Laurel Hill: The Hot Spots & Storied Plots. Learn more about the important role it plays in history and in the local community.

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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

Gabrielle Bonghi
Kate Bracaglia Music Blogger
Colin Kerrigan Photographer
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