Weekly Entertainment Guide – Ezra Jack Keats, Shakespeare in Clark Park and summer festivals

    Looking for something to do this week? WHYY’s Robin Bloom has some recommendations on what’s happening in the Philadelphia region. Here are her picks:

    Art Appreciation

    “The Snowy Day and the Art of Ezra Jack Keats”

    “The Snowy Day and the Art of Ezra Jack Keats,” opens this weekend at the National Museum of American Jewish History, the first major United States exhibition to pay tribute to the award-winning author and illustrator. Keats’ ground-breaking book, The Snowy Day, was published during the height of the American civil-rights movement and featured the first African-American protagonist, in an urban setting, in a modern, full-color picture book. Keats is credited with introducing multiculturalism into mainstream American children’s literature, having drawn upon his experience of anti-Semitism and poverty in his youth to create pieces that reflect universal concerns of children. Explore over 80 of the artist’s original works, from preliminary sketches to final paintings that recall his tenement childhood, a brief survey of African-Americans in children’s literature, Keats’ most popular and most introspective work, as well as a display of his palate, brushes, and materials used in collages, through October 20, 101 South Independence Mall East, Philadelphia. A family guide is available along with related programming and events.


    “The Poker Game and Its Circle”

    Opening this weekend at Woodmere Art Museum is “The Poker Game and Its Circle,” an exhibit that pays tribute to a local group of influential artists of the 1960s and 1970s. For 50 years, Armand Mednick, David Pease, Sidney Goodman, Larry Day, Dennis Leon, Jimmy Lueders, and others met once a month to play poker and swap ideas about art and life. A 1970 portrait by Day (pictured) depicted some of these artists and inspired the show, which offers a glimpse of this distinctive part of the city’s art scene with over thirty pieces by the group and others, on view through October 26, 9201 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia.


    “Recognition” at Delaware Art Museum

    The Delaware Art Museum presents “Recognition: Artists of the Delaware Foundation for the Visual Arts,” an exhibit of 35 paintings, prints, sculptures, and collages by members of the Foundation, designed to nurture a new generation of young artists in the “First State.” The display also features 18 drawings by Delaware high school artists, opening July 20 through October 13, 2301 Kentmere Parkway, Wilmington, DE.

    Festivals in and around Philadelphia


    Lancaster Avenue Jazz & Arts Festival

    The 7th annual Lancaster Avenue Jazz & Arts Festival brings together jazz lovers of all ages for a day of free, live music, Saturday, July 20, 1pm-6pm, featuring Tim Warfield (pictured), Hamin Melvin, Najwa Parkins, Jerome, and more, with a craft marketplace, children’s activities, art exhibits, and more, Saunders Park on 39th and Powelton Avenue, Philadelphia. The Festival begins with a community fitness challenge at 10am, an early bird Lancaster Avenue Gallery Hop at 11am. Organized by the People’s Emergency Center.


    The Dog Days of Summer

    In celebration of National Hot Dog Month (July), the South Street Head House District presents the 2nd annual “The Dog Days of Summer,” Saturday, July 20, 12pm-4pm, featuring a hot dog cook-off competition by 11 favorite restaurants, a panel of celebrity judges, as well as an amateur toppings contest, and much more including cold brews and live music at the Historic Headhouse Shambles, 400 block of South 2nd Street between Lombard and Pine, Philadelphia.


    Celtic Heritage Festival at Graeme Park

    The Celtic Heritage Festival returns for the 17th year at Graeme Park, Saturday, July 20, 10am-7pm and Sunday, July 21, 12pm-6pm, celebrating the Scottish Heritage of the Keith, Graeme, and Fergusson families from the 18th century, original, traditional, and contemporary Irish music with headliner Seamus Kennedy (pictured) and Blackwater, along with dancing, Highland athletics, border collie demonstrations, Celtic crafts and storytelling, and much more, 859 County Line Rd, Horsham, PA.


    “Down the Shore” Festivals all down the coast . . . and into New Jersey

    The inaugural Jersey Shore Music & Arts Festival is this Saturday, July 20 beginning at noon, at FirstEnergy Park (BlueClaws Stadium) in Lakewood, New Jersey, showcasing over fifty local and national bands including River City Extension, The Front Bottoms, The Porchistas, Julian Fulton & The Zombie Gospel, and more on six stages, along with over 200 artists, crafters, sculptors, jewelry makers, photographers, and food vendors.


    The 24th Annual Long Beach Island Juried Arts & Crafts Festival is Saturday, July 20, 10am-5pm, and Sunday, July 21, 9am-4pm, offering more than 150 artists and crafters displaying jewelry, basketry, wood, photography, clothing, fine painting, and more, 120 Long Beach Blvd, Loveladies, NJ.

    The Atlantic City Food & Wine Festival is July 25-28, with celebrity chefs such as Robert Irvine, Rocco DiSpirito and the Neelys, along with events including The Grand Market, Blues Brews & BBQ, Beach Soirée, Gospel Brunch, Island Luau, and more at various locations in Atlantic City, NJ. Tickets: $40-$149

    Ocean City’s annual “Night in Venice” (pictured) returns this Saturday, July 20, 6pm, modeled after the traditional boat parades in Venice, as owners decorate their boats and parade through the city’s lagoons and back bays, from Longport Bridge to Tennessee Avenue, Ocean City, NJ, with live music, children’s activities and food. There’s an admission fee but grandstand seating is free. Gates open at 4pm.

    In Wildwood, the NJ Crab Festival is Saturday, July 20, 11am, with blue claw crabs, beer garden, vendors, live entertainment, children’s activities, and more, along Park Boulevard, Wildwood, NJ. 

    Celebrate South Jersey’s maritime history with the 2013 Hereford Inlet Lighthouse Maritime Festival as historians, authors, artists, and even pirates celebrate the Sea in Angelsea, Saturday, July 20, 9am-5pm, and Sunday, July 21, 9am-4pm, with live music, food, crafters, children’s activities and more along Central Avenue, North Wildwood, NJ.

    The 9th annual Cape May Celtic Festival is Saturday, July 20 and Sunday, July 21, 10am-4:30pm, with traditional music, family activities, demonstrations and crafts from the 1800s, rain or shine, Historic Cold Spring Village, Route 9, Cape May, NJ.

    Enjoy some down home fun at the Annual New Jersey Peach Festival and Gloucester County 4-H Fair, Thursday, July 25 through Sunday, July 28, 4 days of peach activities for all ages along with live music, carnival rides, animal shows, craft fair, and much more at the 4-H Fairgrounds south of Mullica Hill, on Route 77, Bridgeton Pike.

    Onstage this week

    “At the Old Place,” at Arden Theatre

    The Writers’ Room, Arden Theatre Company’s Playwright Residence Program, presents “At the Old Place,” by Rachel Bonds, onstage through July 28, directed by Edward Sobel. Following her mother’s death, a literature professor returns to her family home in Richmond, Virginia only to find two young people camped out on her lawn. The funny, poetic tale features Kristen Bailey, Aubie Merrylees, Kathryn Petersen and William Zielinksi, 40 N. 2nd Street, Philadelphia. Bonds’ readings have been performed at McCarter Theater in Princeton and Manhattan Theatre Club in New York.


    “Something Intangible,” at Langhorne Players

    Langhorne Players presents “Something Intangible,” by local playwright Bruce Graham. In 1941 Hollywood, two very different brothers run a movie studio famous for its cartoon dog, onstage through July 27, Spring Garden Mill in Tyler State Park, 1140 Newtown-Richboro Road, Newtown, Bucks County, PA.



    Shakespeare in Clark Park

    Shakespeare in Clark Park returns for an 8th season with the Bard’s final play, “The Tempest,” July 24-28, 7pm. The cast includes Catharine Slusar as Prospero, is directed by Adrienne Mackey, and features original music by Sean Hoots of Philadelphia’s Hoots and Hellmouth, at “The Bowl,” 43rd Street & Baltimore Avenue, Philadelphia. Free. Bring chairs and blankets and flashlights! Rain location at St. Francis De Sales School.


    “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” at East Lynne Theater Company

    The world premiere of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” takes to the stage Wednesday, July 24 at East Lynne Theater Company. The townsfolk of Sleepy Hollow believe that the headless body of a Hessian soldier astride his horse haunts their isolated village. When Ichabod Crane suddenly disappears, is it the fault of the Headless Horseman, or something else? Washington Irving’s supernatural story is adapted by James Rana (last season’s The Poe Mysteries), with a cast of six, through August 31 at The First Presbyterian Church, 500 Hughes Street, Cape May, NJ. After-show opening night party, Wednesday, July 24, after-show Q&A with cast and crew, August 2, ASL interpreted performance, August 23.

    With the kids


    Seafarin’ Saturday at Philly Seaport

    On the 3rd Saturday of the month, the Independence Seaport Museum hosts a hands-on family program with a maritime theme. This Saturday, July 20, catch “Seafarin’ Saturday,” 11am-1pm, included with museum admission. Explore art, artifacts and archival materials that document the diverse maritime history of the Greater Delaware Valley and the history of the Port of Philadelphia with two exhibits “Tides of Freedom: African Presence on the Delaware River,” and “Tugboats: The Art of Dave Boone.” Also, visit Olympia, Admiral Dewey’s famed flagship during his victory at the Battle of Manila Bay in 1898, and the World War II submarine, Becuna, both of which are National Historic Landmarks, on Penn’s Landing, Philadelphia.


    Water Carnival at DMNH

    Cool off from the heat with the Delaware Museum of Natural History’s “Water Carnival,” Saturday, July 20, 1pm-4pm, including water-based games and activities along with the opportunity to explore the exhibit “Water’s Extreme Journey,” through September 2, 4840 Kennett Pike, Wilmington, DE.



    Tree House Festival at Tyler Arboretum

    Explore Tyler Arboretum’s “Totally Terrific Treehouses” with the annual Tree House Festival, Sunday, July 21, 10am-2pm, featuring a raptor show with hawks and falcons, interactive woodcarving demonstrations, tree-climbing activities, and more, 515 Painter Road, Media, PA. Open to the public with cost of admission, rain or shine.



    Star Wars Day at Please Touch Museum

    Please Touch Museum hosts “Star Wars Day,” Sunday, July 21, 11am-5pm, with iconic toys from the 1970s to today from the museum’s collection, Star Wars-themed story times with favorite characters, galactic art activities, dancing and more, Memorial Hall, 4231 Avenue of the Republic, Fairmount Park, Philadelphia.


    Cecily Garber and Ilana Levinson contributed reporting to this week’s guide.

    To submit an event to be considered for the Weekly Entertainment Guide email Robin Bloom at artscalendar@whyy.org.

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