With the New Year now in full swing, the city has recently lifted restrictions that were placed due to the pandemic. If you’re anxious to get out of the house and head somewhere safely, here are a few options to check out.
Museum of the American Revolution
The Old City establishment has plans to reopen this weekend on Jan. 8. The Museum will now be open from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Friday through Sunday until further notice and will even be open on select holiday Mondays, including Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and Presidents Day. Advance reservations are strongly recommended for all visitors, including members, to limit capacity and comply with social distancing requirements. Tickets are timed and are available on a first-come, first-served basis, or, groups can book hour-long private tours of the museum for up to 5 people.
The MOAR is also offering a “once-in-a-lifetime experience” where you and your group can have the galleries to yourselves for two hours to explore in safety and solitude. While there, visitors can check out the MOAR’s latest exhibit, ‘When Women Lost the Vote.’ The exhibit offers a unique look into history, one that isn’t that far off in time but seems way off in ideals. According to the release, ‘When Women Lost the Vote’ features more than 65 original objects including textiles, manuscripts, and works of art, and will bring to life the forgotten stories of women who first pioneered the vote. Also featured in the exhibition will be several of the recently discovered poll lists that feature the names of 163 female voters and four Black male voters, tracked down by the museum’s curatorial team during an extensive examination of voter records. Prior to this discovery, little proof of women or people of color voting during this period was known to exist.
101 S. 3rd St., amrevmuseum.org
The Mütter Museum, known as “America’s finest museum of medical history,” has announced plans to reopen next Friday, Jan. 15. However, Philadelphians can purchase tickets now in advance to check out the collections of anatomical specimens, models and medical instruments in a 19th-century setting. The Mütter Museum will resume normal hours of 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., but until further notice, the museum will not be open to visitors on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. In accordance with the guidelines set by city and state health officials, capacity will be limited to 25 people in the building at one time and all staff and visitors over the age of two will be required to wear a face-covering over their nose and mouth.
19 S. 22nd St., muttermuseum.org
The historic site recently re-opened to the public, and has even extended their special exhibit past the original end date. The building stands today just a few blocks from Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell, and many people don’t know just how much historical significance this building holds.
Artifacts wise, Carpenters’ Hall houses two original Windsor chairs, including one used by the president of the First Continental Congress, Peyton Randolph. Most recently added to the hall is a sketch of a mural by renowned artist Allyn Cox documenting the First Continental Congress, which he created for the U.S. Capitol before his death in 1982.
However, the site’s latest exhibit is something most visitors didn’t get to see before the second wave of shutdowns. ‘Places for the People: WPA Travel Poster Exhibition’ historic travel posters features different Philadelphia and Pennsylvania landmarks, such as the Betsy Ross House, Memorial Hall, Fairmount Park and Independence Hall. The posters were all commissioned years ago in the 1930s by the Federal Art Project of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) to promote tourism in Pennsylvania and to also provide artists with paid work during the Great Depression. The most intoxicating draw to the exhibit is the fact that several of the posters have never been on display to the public.
320 Chestnut St., carpentershall.org
Betsy Ross House
The Betsy Ross House re-opened to visitors this week, and will now run 10 a.m. through 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Things will be run a bit differently however—according to the release, guests will be admitted to the courtyard in reduced numbers to allow for social distancing. While in the courtyard, visitors will then meet Betsy Ross, who will be wearing a mask while she tells her life story twice each hour.
For those guests who choose to tour the house, limited numbers of people will be admitted at intervals designed to allow at least one room of space between groups. Interactive exhibits have been temporarily removed and surfaces will be sanitized throughout the day. Only self-guided tours will be offered at this time and the Museum Shop will also be open.
239 Arch St., historicphiladelphia.org