There’s Something for Everyone this Summer in Center City District Parks

-Courtesy of Center City District /

Center City District Parks are welcoming visitors with a full schedule of events and seasonal amenities. Beginning June 1 through the end of August, expect everything from dancing fountains and sprawling lawns to art installations and a splashing pond, plus outdoor concerts, educational programming and movies under the stars. 

In Dilworth Park, the Rothman Orthopaedics Roller Rink remains open daily through Sunday, July 17. The colorful, retro-inspired rink brings old-school cool to the space outside of historic City Hall with a vibrant checkerboard floor and an overhead display of multi-colored beach balls, which was designed and fabricated by Philadelphia’s Lucky Dog Studio. 

Admission is $8 for children 10 and younger and $10 for adults. Skate rental is $5 for patrons who do not bring their own pair. Everyone is encouraged to reserve tickets online for timed, 60-minute sessions at Special events at the Rothman Roller Rink include Pride Skate on Saturday, June 4 and Christmas in July Skate on Saturday, July 9. 

Dilworth Park’s Summer Garden on the Greenfield Lawn is open again this year with even more stationary swings and blooming foliage. The fountain near the PNC Terrace includes Janet Echelman’s immersive public art piece, Pulse, great for kids and for selfies. Once the Rothman Roller Rink closes for the season, the full fountain will be turned on for the remainder of the summer and into the fall. The fountain at John F. Collins Park is on, and at Sister Cities Park, the fountain and Children’s Discovery Garden and Boat Pond are open daily. 

Food and beverage offerings are plentiful in Center City District Parks, including Capriccio Café and Bar in Cret Park and the Sister Cities Café. Options in Dilworth Park include the Dilworth Park Café, the outdoor Starbucks Coffee kiosk, and new this year, Philadelphia-based Dre’s Water Ice has a pop-up shop in the park throughout the summer. 

Also in Dilworth Park, the Air Grille Garden remains open with colorful umbrellas, shaded pergolas and outdoor seating. The menu features snack bar staples with a twist, like fresh fish tacos, cheesesteak egg rolls and a fluffernutter churro. Adults 21 and older can relax in the space while sipping ice cold Haku Vodka cocktails and Bud Light Seltzer. 

Summer programming at all Center City District Parks is listed below and can be found at 

Dilworth Park:

Rothman Orthopaedics Roller Rink Daily, Now through July 17
Skate at one of Philadelphia’s brightest outdoor destinations! This colorful, retro-inspired rink brings old-school cool to the space outside of historic City Hall. Purchase tickets online ahead of time at  

Center City Fit presented by Rothman Orthopaedics Mondays & Tuesdays through October 11 | 6 p.m. – 7 p.m. 
Professional instructors and trainers from Optimal Sport 1315 Walnut lead a variety of free fitness classes for participants of all skill levels, presented by the Rothman Orthopaedic Institute. Mondays are dedicated to Zumba® in June and 305 Dance Fitness in July, with Tuesday night classes changing month to month, including Speed Games, Yoga and Pilates. Please arrive early to fill out a waiver, which can be accessed via a personal smartphone. Tablets will be available if a smartphone is inaccessible. There will be no bag check. 

Matinee Skate at the Rothman Orthopaedics Roller Rink Mondays & Tuesdays | Now through July 12 | 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. 
Early bird gets to skate! Patrons of all ages will receive $5 off during select morning and afternoon sessions at the Rothman Roller Rink

Live @ Lunch presented by PNC Wednesdays & Thursdays | June 1-July 28 | Noon-1 p.m. 
Philadelphia’s eclectic music scene is booming with local artists. Take a break from the office at lunchtime to watch as their talents are showcased during free outdoor concerts. Before the show, grab a bite with coworkers at the Dilworth Park Café or Air Grille Garden, or relax on your own under shaded umbrellas in the PNC Terrace. For schedule of performers, visit  

SIPS at Dilworth Park presented by Hornitos Tequila Wednesdays | June 1-August 31 | 4:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. 
Philadelphia’s favorite happy hour tradition returns with exclusive discounts at the Air Grille Garden, which will transform once a week to the ultimate after-work hangout. Retro pool party décor, live DJ entertainment and an immersive photo experience will keep the energy high for colleagues and friends looking to unwind. Specials include $6 Hornitos Tequila cocktails, $5 wine and $4 Michelob Ultra, plus half-priced appetizers. This event is limited to adults 21 and older with proper identification. 

The Arts on Center Stage Thursdays | Now through August 25 | 6 p.m. – 7 p.m. 
Philadelphia’s robust network of arts and culture organizations will be celebrated every week as they perform in the center of the city. Supported by PNC Bank, the shows will range from orchestral serenades and ballet ensembles to jazz instrumentals and beyond. Attendance is free for all, but seating in the Greenfield Lawn is limited. Bring-your-own blanket or chair encouraged. For schedule of performers, visit  

Philadelphia Marketplace Fridays & Saturdays | Now through October 1 | 12 p.m.-6 p.m.
A rotating lineup of local small businesses and makers pop up weekly with a variety of offerings for all tastes. Guests can support these vendors at their leisure while wandering through the park. 

Pride Skate at the Rothman Orthopaedics Roller Rink Saturday, June 4 | 1:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m. 
June is LGBTQ+ Pride Month, and we’re celebrating with an afternoon of skating fun for everyone. Highlights include interactive performances on the rink, themed décor and special menu items at the Air Grille Garden. Everyone is encouraged to show support of the LGBTQ+ community by dressing up in colors featured on the Pride Flag! 

The Garden Friday, June 10 | 12 p.m.-8 p.m., Saturday, June 11 | 12 p.m.-8 p.m., Sunday, June 12 | 12 p.m.-6 p.m. 
Spend the weekend outdoors surrounded by blooming bursts of foliage and bright colors. Wandering entertainers in floral attire will roam the space while guests hop from selfie spots to the Air Grille Garden, featuring refreshing favorites like Haku Vodka cocktails and Stella Artois. A full menu of seasonal dishes will satisfy every craving. Live DJs and local musicians will play throughout the weekend. Roller skating, a ping pong tournament and kid friendly performances can also be expected. The Garden is free and open to guests of all ages. Planned in conjunction with The Garden, an expanded Philadelphia Marketplace will give guests the opportunity to browse and buy unique finds, handmade gifts and delicious treats while supporting local entrepreneurs. 

Christmas in July Skate at the Rothman Orthopaedics Roller Rink Saturday, July 9 | 1:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m. 
Christmas comes early at the Rothman Roller Rink with a sun-kissed Santa who traded his sleigh for a pair of skates! He’ll be rolling with us all afternoon, and will even take a break to snap some photos with kids. Fun crafts, holiday-inspired snacks and a pop-up snow shower will keep skaters of all ages merry and bright. Instead of a winter sweater, everyone is encouraged to wear their ugliest holiday t-shirt! 

Pictures in the Park Fridays | July 22-August 26 | 8:15 p.m. 
Relax on a warm summer night while watching free blockbuster films on the big screen! Popcorn, candy and other snacks will be available at the Air Grille Garden, plus beer, wine and cocktails for adults 21 and older. Bring-your own chairs and blankets are encouraged. 

Sister Cities Park:

Parkway Pals Mondays, Tuesdays & Wednesdays | June 13- August 17 | 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. 
Children are invited to learn and play outside with friends with help from neighboring institutions along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway! Stop by every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday morning for unique, interactive activities that are both educational and entertaining. This season’s lineup includes: 

– Investigation Station w/ Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University (Mondays, 10:30 a.m.)
– Story Art with the Free Library of Philadelphia (Tuesdays, 10:30 a.m.)
– Creative Movement with the Philadelphia Ballet (Wednesdays, 10:30 a.m.)
– Our History of Art with the Fabric Workshop and Museum (Wednesdays, 11:30 a.m.)  

Live at Sister Cities Thursdays | June 2-August 25 | 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m. 
Unwind and relax on the lawn as local singer-songwriters perform amid the bustle of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Beer, wine and Hornitos Tequila cocktails will be available at the Sister Cities Café, plus snacks and treats for the kids. Pack a blanket, pick a spot and enjoy the show! For schedule of performers, visit  

Cret Park: 

Jazz on the Parkway Sundays | Now through June 26 | 4 p.m.-6 p.m. 
Relax to the rhythm of jazz tunes on Sunday afternoons at Capriccio Café and Bar! Local jazz group Vibe-A Delphia will perform as you sip your favorite cocktail under the café’s shaded outdoor patio. Additional seating for non-café customers is available on the lawn areas of the park. These performances are supported with funds from the Music Performance Trust Fund, American Federation of Musicians, and Local 77.

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