10 things to do this week: Philly Free Streets, the Barnes Jawn(t), Germantown’s Great Road Festival, and more

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Members of Philly Roller Derby posed for photos during last year's Free Streets event, which took place on N. 5th Street. (Bastiaan Slabbers for WHYY)

Members of Philly Roller Derby posed for photos during last year's Free Streets event, which took place on N. 5th Street. (Bastiaan Slabbers for WHYY)

Take to the streets: Philly Free Streets and the Germantown Great Road Festival
August 11, 8 a.m. – 1 p.m.
North Broad Street from City Hall to Germantown Ave. and Butler St.
Free

Get ready, pedestrians. On Saturday, Broad Street from City Hall to Germantown Avenue will be closed to vehicles and open to walkers, bikers, runners, and skaters for the annual Philly Free Streets event. There’s programming all along the route, including a pop-up beach complete with hammocks at Broad and Master. You can see all the events here.

This year the route has been extended a block to Germantown Avenue, giving people a great excuse to continue their journey up into the Northwest. Germantown Avenue will also be closed to traffic between Chelten Avenue and Penn Street for the second annual Great Road Festival, a celebration of Germantown’s 329th birthday. There will be a main stage with musicians and speakers, an antique car show, and a “parent’s village” organized by Tabor Children Services and Parent Power. Over 40 organizations, like the library, will be sharing resources to help parents and kids get ready to go back to school — including with a backpack giveaway.

“Germantown obviously has a vast history, and we wanted to tap into the history but also provide something that’s meaningful to the people who are here now, in a historically under-resourced community,” said David Rose, executive director of the Germantown Special Services District. He wants people from within and outside the community to see the neighborhood in a new way, beyond what they might hear on the nightly news. “It’s a vibrant community, and people deserve to be exposed to that.”

Make believe: The Barnes Jawn(t)
Aug. 14 and 21, 6 p.m.
The Barnes Foundation, 2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia
Tickets: $10

The Barnes Foundation is a cornerstone of Philadelphia’s art landscape. But did you know that Dr. Albert Barnes was a sort of modern-day Robin Hood, who stole paintings to share with the masses? Or that, as a result, assassins made attempts on his life?

Well, he wasn’t. And they didn’t. None of that is true. But if you visit the Barnes on Tuesday nights through the end of August, you might hear such tall tales. In a series of special tours called Barnes Jawn(ts), guest “experts” interpret the collection however they see fit. Upcoming tours guides include interdisciplinary performance artist Morgan FitzPatrick Andrews; owner of Amalgam Comics Ariell R. Johnson; and the Rev. Nicolas O’Rourke.

Not your typical craft market: Sloppy Copy at Fleisher Art Memorial
Aug. 11, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Fleisher Art Memorial, 719 Catharine St., Philadelphia
Free

Artists at Fleisher Art Memorial’s second annual Sloppy Copy event, a celebration of screen printers and other independent artists, aren’t just selling their wares. They’re also offering interactive art experiences, such as live portraits, clothing mending, zine making, and free horoscopes.

“Everyone’s doing these craft markets,” said Adrian Toomey, manager of special events at Fleisher Art Memorial. “We’re breaking the mold.”

Or your typical flea: Punk Rock Flea Market
Aug. 11, noon-7 p.m.
Neshaminy Creek Brewing Company, 909 Ray Ave, Croydon, Pennsylvania
Entry: $5

The Punk Rock Flea Market, which pops up all around the region (and country), is not your grandmother’s flea market. Curated vendors offer up vinyl records, cassettes, and CDs, vintage and original clothing, handmade jewelry, comic books, taxidermy and other macabre objects. Pretty much, anything “punk”. This weekend, the Trenton Punk Rock Flea Market is popping up at Neshaminy Creek Brewing Company, where beer will be on tap throughout the day.

Make something: Hand Bookbinding Workshop
Aug 11, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Historic Sugartown’s Book Bindery, 260 Spring Road, Malvern, Pennsylvania
Tickets: $75, registration required

Learn to bind a book using traditional methods dating back to the first century at Historic Sugartown, a preserved 19th-century village. Participants will learn to hand-sew a hardcover book with a leather or cloth spine and a cover of decorative paper. Sugartown boasts a rich collection of bookbinding tools and equipment, so even beginners can tap into this ancient tradition. For ages 14 and older.

Theater in the open: “The Wiz” in Malcolm X Park
Aug. 12, 19 and 26, 5 p.m.
Malcolm X Park, 5100 Pine St, West Philadelphia
Free

Theatre in the X’s take on the “The Wiz” is a remix of hip-hop, black cinema of the ‘80s and ‘90s, and the classic tale of “The Wizard of Oz.” Originally a Broadway musical, and later a film, “The Wiz” tells the story of Dorothy and her companions — the Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Cowardly Lion — set in Harlem with an African-American cast. In lieu of admission, Theatre in the X is requesting donations to its GoFundMe. Bring your own chair.

Get creepy crawly: Bug Fest at the Academy of Natural Sciences
Aug. 11 and 12, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
The Academy of Natural Sciences, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia
Tickets: $15.95-$26.95, depending on age and entry to special exhibitions

“Creepy, crawly, sticky, prickly, wiggly, yucky. And kinda cute.” That’s how the Academy of Natural Sciences describes insects, the stars of its annual Bug Fest. Visitors can learn about beneficial versus destructive bugs; watch roaches race; see glow-in-the-dark insects in action; and even eat bugs made into candy by Shane Confectionery. While you’re there, you can also check out the Xtreme Bugs exhibition, which features enormous animatronic insects and more information about our weird, wriggly friends.

Learn something: Science on Tap, Untapped Ruins Everything
Aug. 13, 6-8 p.m.
The Penn Museum, 3260 South St., West Philadelphia
Tickets: $10

Let’s face it, science in TV and movies isn’t always 100 percent accurate. The Upside Down in “Stranger Things”? Resurrecting dinosaurs in “Jurassic Park”? Pretty much every forensics show ever made? Is any of that real?

On Monday night, Science on Tap will attempt to answer these questions and others. Experts will play clips from pop culture favorites and explain the real science behind them, which is, at times, surprisingly accurate. Admission includes snacks, and there’s a cash bar.

Listen up: A Conversation with Tarana Burke
Aug. 14, 5:15-7:30 p.m.
Suzanne Roberts Theatre, 480 S. Broad St., Philadelphia
Tickets: $25, $10 for students

Though #MeToo only broke into public consciousness at the end of last year, sexual assault survivor Tarana Burke first used the phrase as a rallying cry for a movement against sexual violence in 2007. One of the “silence breakers” chosen as the 2017 Time magazine’s “person of the year,” Burke was recognized for her early leadership in the movement. She will be in Philly to speak about her work — and the work ahead.

Musical guests: Seu Jorge at TLA
Aug. 14, 8 p.m.
TLA, 334 South St., Philadelphia
Tickets: $35

Perhaps best known in the U.S. for his stellar David Bowie covers in the 2004 Wes Anderson film “The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou,” Seu Jorge is a versatile musician credited with reviving Brazilian pop samba. He’s collaborated with musicians from Beck to Talib Kweli, but he’ll be appearing solo at TLA Tuesday night. It’s an all-ages show.


This article is part of a new effort recommending things to do in the Philly region. Tell us what you think.

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