Best Memorial Day Weekend Activities in Philadelphia

Are you looking for unique ideas to celebrate Memorial Day Weekend traditions, but worried about the overwhelming crowds and traffic? Our team has researched to put together a list of the best things to do in Philadelphia this Memorial Day weekend that will help you have an amazing weekend in the city of brotherly love!


Devon Horse Show

When: May 23rd- June 2nd

Where: Devon Horse Show Grounds, 23 Dorset Road, Devon

A time-honored Memorial Day tradition since 1896, the Devon Horse Show is a Main Line must see. The event originally started as a local effort to improve horsemanship and breeding for locals living along the Pennsylvania Railroad’s Harrison Branch. Today, it is a 10-day USEF Heritage Competition where an award is reserved for competitions that are more than a quarter century old. It is an attraction that brings horse lovers from all over the world. The Memorial Day event also has something fun to do for non-horse lovers. The County Fair is just as well known as the horse show itself. Attendees can tour the stables, meet the horses and riders, as well as nibble on treats from local vendors. The horse show also has tons of boutiques set up in cute little cottages with a variety of items such as leather chaps and saddles, blankets, jewelry, socks, paintings, antiques, toys, needlework, pottery, souvenirs, collectibles, local cheeses and jams, etc. The event also focuses on raising money for the Bryn Mawr Hospital. The Devon Horse show is the perfect way to kick off your Memorial Day weekend!


Independence After Hours

When: May 24th- October 19th 2019

Where:Tour departs from the Museum of the American Revolution, 101 S. 3rd Street

The Independence After Hours is the perfect patriotic way to spend your Memorial Day 2019 Weekend. The tour takes you through the shadows of the Independence Hall and gives you the opportunity to go inside at night to experience what it was like for the Founding Fathers in the late nights of 1776. The tour makes you feel as if you were present in 1776 by beginning from the Museum of  the American Revolution and going to the City Tavern for a three course meal where Colonial townspeople would entertain guests. The Colonial host then “sneaks” everyone into the Pennsylvania State House (Independence Hall). Inside the hall visitors see Founding Fathers deep in discussion regarding the creation of the Declaration of Independence.


Comcast NBCUniversal Memorial Salute with the Philly POPS at The Mann Center

When: May 25th, 2019

Where: The Mann Center, 5201 Parkside Avenue


The fourth annual Comcast NBCUniversal Memorial Salute at the Mann features the 65-piece POPS orchestra, Justin Hopkins, The Philly POPS Festival Chorus, Voices of the POPS and a local student chorus performing a line-udp of patriotic anthems. The patriotic theme to the night makes it a perfect way to spend your Memorial Day weekend. It is a community concert honoring the American tradition of service. The event is held the Saturday of the Memorial Day weekend. Particular tickets are reserved for blocks of seats provided for veterans, active military, Philadelphia police, firefighters, and local students and Boy and Girl scouts. To request tickets you must register on EventBrite and ensure that they receive a ticket voucher as a confirmation.


Spruce St Harbor Park

May 10th – September 29th 2019

Developed by the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation the free seasonal park is a typical summer tradition for the locals of Philadelphia. It is the best way to use your Memorial Day weekend to kick off your summer! The seasonal park offers visitors the opportunity to lounge on colorful hammocks, craft brews in the beer garden, games, a vibrant boardwalk with local food eateries, roller skating rink, boat rentals and much more. At night the waterfront lights up with LED lights and even has an entertainment schedule.


US Air Force Band Full Spectrum Concert + Fireworks

When: Saturday, May 25, 2019 | 8-10 p.m.

Where: Great Plaza, Penn’s Landing 

Celebrate the extra long Memorial Day weekend by watching an amazing 8-piece, electrifying  concert and fireworks show at the Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing. The concert displays a high energy “pop & hip hop” sound from the United States Air Force Heritage of America Band. The group consists of Active Duty musicians from all areas of the United States stationed in Air Force Base Langley, Virginia. The band consists of 3 vocalists, keyboards, guitarist, bass, drums, and an audio engineer. Their audio is a mix of “old school” hip-hop and today’s pop music trends, making it perfect for all ages. The concert begins at 8pm and the fireworks show begins at 9:30pm.


Opening of the Morris Arboretum Garden Railway

When: Saturday May 25th, 2019

Where: Morris Arboretum, 100 E. Northwestern Avenue


Morris Arboretum has a beautiful Garden Railway which opens up on the Saturday of Memorial day weekend. Visitors of all ages are stunned by a quarter mile of track featuring seven loops and tunnels with fifteen different rail lines, two cable cars, nine bridges, and bustling model trains. The track includes a bridge you can walk under while the train is running. It also displays local Philadelphia-are landmarks made of natural materials such as bark, leaves, twigs, hollow logs, mosses, acorns, dried flowers, seeds and stones. Together they form a miniature landscape completed with mini rivers.


Parks on Tap at FDR Park

When: May 22-27, 2019

Where: FDR Park, Broad Street & Pattison Avenue


Parks on Tap is a pop-up traveling beer garden series that visits different Philadelphia parks. During Memorial Day weekend they will be stationed at FDR Park in South Philadelphia in the corner of Broad Street and Pattison Avenue. It’s the perfect place to grab a beer and walk around the 100-year old historical park.


Chinese Lantern Festival

When  May 1 – June 30

Where: Franklin Square

Spend an evening during your Memorial Day weekend by going to the mesmerizing Chinese Lantern Festival.  The festival features 28 brand-new giant lantern displays that light up the square. The lantern displays are composed of 2,000 individual lanterns, 20,000 colorful LED lights and 30,000 square feet of delicate silk. The festival is quite a sight to see!