Philly’s Dîner en Blanc becomes the largest in the U.S.

More than 5,000 white-clad diners wheeled tables, chairs and coolers into Franklin Square Thursday evening for the sixth annual Dîner en Blanc.

Lines of diners filled entire city blocks before the secret location was revealed. It was the largest iteration of the event to take place in the U.S., organizers said.

Shortly after arriving at Franklin Square, Ayesha Bailey of Philadelphia — a first-timer at the event — carefully prepared her table decor of white trees adorned with hanging candles in glass orbs.

As dinner began, Keith Grabowski and the rest of his party spun their napkins over their heads before digging in, while other groups gathered around to watch acrobat Robert Li lift diner Brittany Albertson above his head without breaking a sweat in the August heat.

  • WHYY thanks our sponsors — become a WHYY sponsor

Throughout the dinner, the carousel at Franklin Square was put to good use with hourly “races,” being held for prizes and long lines of diners looking to ride just for fun.

Dîner en Blanc is now held in 70 cities around the world. In Philadelphia, it has taken place at Logan Circle, Broad Street, the JFK Bridge, the Navy Yard and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

WHYY is your source for fact-based, in-depth journalism and information. As a nonprofit organization, we rely on financial support from readers like you. Please give today.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal