Beyond a potential Super Bowl win, February brings plenty to celebrate. Four different holidays spawn events of all kinds this month, from colorful parades to musical performances to date-and-skate night opportunities for you and your sweetheart. Below, find five fantastic ways to make the shortest month of the year also one of the best.
Black History Month
Black History Month brings events to venues citywide all month long in celebration of African Americans and the role that they’ve played throughout history. Happenings include the opening of Black Pulp!, an exhibition exploring black identity through imagery at the African American Museum of Philadelphia; a discussion with award-winning author Dr. Cornel West at the Central Library of the Free Library of Philadelphia; Henry Box Brown: A Hip Hop Musical starring the Roots’ Dice Raw at the Community College of Philadelphia; and the world premiere of Cycles of My Being by composer Tyshawn Sorey, lyricist Terrance Hayes, and Opera Philadelphia artistic adviser Lawrence Brownlee at the Kimmel Center.
Black Pulp!, opens Friday, African American Museum of Philadelphia, 701 Arch St., $14, aampmuseum.org; Dr. Cornel West, 7:30 p.m. Feb. 10, Central Library of the Free Library of Philadelphia, 1901 Vine St., libwww.freelibrary.org; Henry Box Brown, select dates Feb. 1-17, Community College of Philadelphia Bonnell Auditorium, 1700 Spring Garden St., $30-$50, henryboxbrownmusical.com; Cycles of My Being: 7:30 p.m. Feb. 20, Kimmel Center for Performing Arts, 300 S. Broad St., $25, kimmelcenter.org
Valentine’s Day Happenings
From an expert card-making event at Fleisher Art Memorial to a Cupid’s Undie Run at World Cafe Live to Sweetheart Skate nights at both the Rothman Institute Ice Rink and Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest, love is set to fill the Philly air in all sorts of ways surrounding Feb. 14. Missing a partner in crime for Valentine’s Day? Before turning to Tinder for the night, consider checking out Stratus Rooftop Lounge’s “Be My Valentine Bash” speed-dating event.
Fleisher Art Memorial, 8-10 p.m. Feb. 9, $15-$25, fleisher.org; World Cafe Live, noon-4 p.m. Feb. 10., $40, 3025 Walnut St., cupids.org; Rothman Institute Ice Rink, 4-8 p.m. Feb. 14, 1 S. 15th St., buy one admission ($5), get one free, $10 for skate rentals, centercityphila.org; Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest, 7-11 p.m. Feb. 14, $25, 121 N. Columbus Blvd., delawareriverwaterfront.com; Stratus Rooftop Lounge, 8 p.m. Feb. 14, 433 Chestnut St., $39.95, dorelish.com
Mummers Mardi Gras Parade in Manayunk
Celebrate Mardi Gras Philly-style with the Mummers Parade in Manayunk. On Feb. 25, find 16 string bands strutting down Main Street from 1 to 3 p.m., after which spirited events will keep the festivities alive through 7 p.m. The day brings a chance for those of all ages to meet and snag a photo with the Mummers, while serving to raise money for the Philly institution. Past years have raised up to $75,000 for the Philadelphia Mummers String Band Association.
1-7 p.m. Feb. 25, Main Street in Manayunk, free, mummersmardigras.com
Chinese New Year
The Year of the Dog kicks off on Feb. 16, ushering in a ton of Chinese New Year celebrations here in Philly. While various museums and cultural institutions are hosting events throughout the city, the crux of the festivities take place in Chinatown, beginning with Philadelphia Suns’ annual Midnight Lion Dance embarking from 10th and Race Streets on the night of Feb. 15. For those whose bedtime falls before midnight, a daytime parade unfolds the following Sunday, Feb. 18, with the Philadelphia Suns starting at 11 a.m.
Game of Thrones Musical Parody
Watch Daenerys and her dragons (along with many other fan-favorited and -hated characters) sing and dance onstage in the Philadelphia Theatre Company’s Musical Thrones: A Parody of Ice and Fire. The musical will take its audience to Westeros for a night of satirical savagery and plot twists in the Seven Kingdoms.
Feb. 9 and 10, 480 S. Broad St., tickets start at $25, myptc.philadelphiatheatrecompany.org