With re-openings happening left and right, many are gearing up for a somewhat normal summer season in the City of Philadelphia. Typically during this time of year, Philly is filled with outdoor activities, water-side attractions and exciting festivals, and although COVID-19 has shifted the spring and beginning of summer in the City of Brotherly Love, this week still holds a variety of establishments kicking up their gears and getting back to business.
One of those establishments is the Historic Franklin Square. The cultural hotspot has always provided an oasis of sorts for the city and is filled with family-friendly attractions, food and drinks and also is home to some of the most highly anticipated city events including the annual Chinese Lantern Festival. Most of the beloved attractions will be back up and running and circumstances at Franklin Square will ultimately be the same, however, there will be added safety regulations.
According to a release, Historic Philadelphia wants to encourage responsible recreation and healthy usage of this beautiful outdoor public environment. It is proven that being outdoors is beneficial both physically and mentally, and everyone is welcome. Historic Philadelphia will be operating Franklin Square with the health and safety of guests and staff as its most important goal, while also providing peaceful green space and fun for guests. The expansive park is re-opening to provide safe and high-quality open space for the physical and mental well-being of Philadelphians and will keep the attractions open in accordance with City of Philadelphia Health Department recommendations.
Some new protocols being put into place to help ensure everyone’s safety includes requiring staff to undergo health screenings before work, adding hand sanitizing stations and social distancing reminder signs throughout the Square and providing a contactless entrance experience by making tickets available online through your mobile device.
Most activities will still be in full force when visiting Franklin Square including mini golf and the Parx Liberty Carousel, but guests will be required to wear masks when participating. The release also states that health and safety measures are being implemented to maintain physical distancing while entering and playing Philly Mini Golf, buying tickets or riding the carousel. Mini-golf clubs and balls will be sanitized between uses and carousel animals will be marked with masks of which ones can be ridden to ensure safe distancing. The animals that are closed will be covered with a blanket.
To keep guests satisfied while in between activities, SquareBurger will also still be up and operating offering their popular fair of over-the-top burgers, shakes and more.
One beloved and anticipated event that will be returning as well is the famous Franklin Square Fountain Show. Not only will this Philly favorite be returning, it will also be running on an expanded schedule as well. The fountain show will run every 30 minutes from noon to 2 p.m. with evening performances beginning at 6 p.m. and running every 30 minutes until closing. Each performance is a selection of one of six songs that rotate, so each go-around will be a different experience for guests. The fountain is one of the oldest in the country and the show has always provided spectators with a quintessential Philly experience.
This year, of course, has caused hits financially for organizations like Historic Philadelphia. Between Franklin Square and other entities run by Historic Philadelphia, Inc., the nonprofit lost $1.5 million in revenue and also lost its city funding this year. The re-opening of Franklin Square is a necessary step in trying to provide some relief for the organization.
Right now, hours for the historic landmark park will be from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. until Sept. 7. From then on out, Franklin Square will run on a schedule running from Sept. 8 – 30: daily, 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Oct. 1 – 31: daily, 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. and Thursday – Sunday, until 9 p.m., Nov. 1 – 11: daily, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Nov. 12 – Dec. 31: daily (closed Nov. 26 and Dec. 25), 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. and Friday and Saturday until 10 p.m. All hours are subject to change with the weather.
For more information on Franklin Square, visit historicphiladelphia.org