Spruce Street Harbor Park - Philadelphia
When I was doing my research for our trip to Philly, pictures of this pop-up park, well, popped up all over the internet. Little did I know, it has been lauded as one of the best urban beaches in America! Let me tell you, in a city filled with incredible history and awesome sights, the last thing I expected to be on my list of favorite things was a park. But, this place, is so much more than just a pop-up park!! This is hammock-filled heaven, with ping pong, shuffleboard, life-size chess,...
...and a very excited little girl! Well, she is not a permanent installation at the park, but she sure had a blast at this colorful, relaxed, fun place.
The hammock garden was one of our favorite spots. It has these cool LED lights that change color throughout the day, some seating with umbrellas, and plenty of colorful chairs and tables for more seating. The whole vibe is relaxed and creative.
The views from the park are beautiful and the park is a very family-friendly place. They have large, life-size toys for the kids to play with like LEGOs, Connect the Dots, wooden blocks, etc. There are also ample lounging chairs to relax, grab a bite, and listen to the music, as the sun sets.
As we were exploring this amazing place, a group of people dressed in colorful t-shirts started setting up something in the rotunda area (I'm not sure what it's called but I'm from DC, so, obviously, I would use the word 'rotunda' to describe something round :D). After a few minutes, we learned that it was a pop-up clay art studio that was open to the public and free. They bring all the materials you would need to mould your herb planter, and you just get to join in a communal art project with complete strangers and find it absolutely freeing. At least, it was for me, and it really spoke to my creative side and the carefree nature of a vacation.
If there is a paint pot and a brush lying around anywhere, you can expect to find Gracie there. She was the youngest painter but all ages are welcome. She loved painting her planter and took her job quite seriously.
I think I am going to have to make this a regular activity when I get home. All three of us enjoyed it!
Right after I had taken this picture, a couple took over the ping pong table, and we didn't get a chance to actually play. But, it was so great to be surrounded by fun things and share the moment with my sweet, little, adventurous family.
Gracie was in explorer heaven - colors, shapes, sounds, smells, games, people, art, stairs to jump from and space to run around, water, boats and birds. What more could a toddler ask for?
This is one of my favorite pictures of her!
We had some of the most delicious french fries at this place! Gracie devoured more than half of my share and came back for more.
Oh yeah, just in case you get bored with the other stuff at the park, there is paddle board yoga!! Please don't mistake the exclamation points to mean that I would be exerting any mind of muscle power to exercise, it's just that it's cool to see this as an option for fun :D
As if there aren't enough options for fun, they also have an arcade for kids, weekend local vendor sales, local musician showcases, great food, and an endless amount of fun!
The crazy part about this whole thing is that come September 25th, this will all be gone and replaced with something else! Yeah - I guess that is what a pop-up park means. I didn't know this till after I got back and looked up this place and I am so glad we went when we did!!! (These exclamation points are for real.) Wish they had something like this in Virginia!
We are already planning our next trip back here! You should, too :)