Holiday gift ideas from local museums, artists, organizations and more

Support local artists and organizations in the Philadelphia area this holiday season! Find gifts for all ages and price points, ranging from one-of-a-kind ceramic and wood pieces to memorable experiences and theater tickets. This guide, courtesy of our friends at En Route Marketing, features unique items and crowd-pleasers for everyone on your list!

Andalusia Historic House, Gardens & Arboretum | Membership 
Nestled along the Delaware River in Bucks Country, Andalusia Historic House, Gardens &  Arboretum (1237 State Road, Andalusia, PA 19020) offers the perfect respite from the city.  Located just 13 miles from Philadelphia, this destination is the ideal day trip for those looking to  spend time outdoors. The 50 walkable acres of lush foliage are the ancestral home of the Biddle  family and a natural paradise of native woodlands and spectacular formal gardens. Over 1,000  trees and 250 unique specimens and cultivars from around the world make Andalusia Historic  House, Gardens & Arboretum a year-round destination. Overlooking the Delaware River, the  “Big House” is an early 19th-century Greek Revival mansion with a monumental columned  porch that was added to the National Register of Historic Landmarks in 1966.  

This holiday season, give a membership to Andalusia Historic House, Gardens & Arboretum.  Membership provides many unique perks, including admission to Open Saturdays, complimentary tickets to public tours, tours inside the “Big House,” and a subscription to The  Column, Andalusia’s bi-annual newsletter. Friends of Andalusia Memberships start at just $50.  

Tickets are now on sale for the inaugural Andalusia Garden Symposium on May 4, 2023. They  are the perfect gift for the garden enthusiast, horticulturist, or landscape designer on your  holiday shopping list. Attendees will have the unique opportunity to hear lectures from world renowned experts Fergus Garrett, Annie Novak, Frances Palmer, and Xa Tollemache. The  Andalusia Garden Symposium speakers represent a cross-section of expertise, from garden and  floral design to urban gardening to integrating ornamental plants into the natural environment.  The lectures will be followed by an exclusive afternoon reception at Andalusia Historic House,  Gardens & Arboretum with afternoon tea, book signings with the speakers, and ample time to  explore the magnificent grounds. 

Bristol Riverside Theatre | Tickets  
Give the gift of live arts and entertainment this holiday season by purchasing gift certificates or  a 3-show or flex pass subscription package to Bristol Riverside Theatre (BRT), located at 120  Radcliffe Street in Bristol, PA. BRT is home to award-winning performance artists, boasting over  200 productions annually, including five shows featured on their mainstage. 

Featured shows on the BRT mainstage include the upcoming 2023 performance of the Tony award-winning classic musical based in 1920s Berlin, Cabaret, coming to the stage March 21 to  April 16, 2023. Douglas Lyon’s laugh-out-loud comedy, Chicken & Biscuits is the final show of  the season, running from May 16 to June 4. The show follows contentious sisters, Baneatta and  Beverly as they bury their father and encounter newly unleashed family secrets. Cabaret and  Chicken & Biscuits offer various pre- and post-programming, including catered receptions, cast  meet and greets, Wine Down Wednesdays, and Thirsty Thursdays.  

The Center for Art in Wood | Membership and Gift Shop Ideas 
This holiday season, shop at The Center for Art in Wood (141 N. 3rd Street, Philadelphia, PA  19106) for custom handmade wood-crafted gifts. The museum shop features one-of-a-kind art  in wood, jewelry pieces, stationery, hand-crafted furniture, homewares, and accessories from  more than 50 talented artists. 

Spread holiday cheer with distinctive hand-painted ornaments, including a stunning, turned  holly piece by local artist Robert Rosand. Make a statement with wearable art by emerging  artist Morgan Hill and her Bad Habits collection, known for its witty, edgy beauty. For avid art  collectors, shop a series of one-of-a-kind sculptural letter openers featuring rich woodgrains  and vibrant colors from artist Norm Sartorius. At The Center for Art in Wood, there’s something  for every craft enthusiast. 

Give the gift of membership this year, starting at $55, and includes discounts on museum and  online store purchases, conferences and workshops, and invitations to events and openings.  

Shop virtually or in person every Wednesday through Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. The Center  for Art in Wood will also be open for extended shopping days from December 18 to 23. On  December 24, The Center for Art in Wood will be open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Online orders  must be received by December 12 to ensure delivery by December 25.  

Chestnut Hill Business District | Chestnut Hill Gift Certificates 
‘Tis the season to surprise a loved one with a Chestnut Hill Business District gift certificate to  one of over 200 retailers, businesses, and professional members. Many are independently  owned and feature uniquely hand-crafted items from local artists. Available in convenient $10,  $25, and $50 denominations, printed certificates are perfect for anyone who enjoys distinctive  boutique shopping, delicious culinary experiences, and luxurious personal services against the  charming backdrop of Philadelphia’s urban village. Chestnut Hill gift certificates are a great way  to support the neighborhood.  

Order gift cards by visiting the Chestnut Hill Business District at 8514 Germantown Avenue, by calling 215-247-6696, or by purchasing them online.  

The Clay Studio | Gifts and Classes 
Shop in the heart of South Kensington or online at The Clay Studio (1425 N. American Street,  Philadelphia, PA 19122) for one-of-a-kind ceramics, including tableware, decorative art objects,  jewelry, tiles, books, and boutique items. The Clay Studio features handmade gifts from over  100 local and national artists to make your holiday season special.  

The Clay Studio’s Ornaments From the Artist’s Studio collection celebrate the holiday season  with handmade ornaments starting at just $14.50. Decorate your tree with original pieces,  including Peter Morgan’s homage to hometown pride with his ‘ILL’ Christmas creation or Maria  Albornoz’s intricate hand-drawn designs depicting studio pets. Resident Artist Ruth  Easterbrook’s incredibly soft and delicate surfaces are a delight to use. Her functional art  includes serving platters, bowls, vases, and the perfect mug, guaranteed conversation pieces  for any collection.  

For the children in your life, The Clay Studio offers Holiday Ornament Decorating Kits – fun for  the whole family, available for $25! Inspire the joy of ceramic art in your little one with kits that  include four blank handmade ornaments, two brushes, and paints.  

Gift cards make for an excellent present for artists practicing at any level. Gift cards may be  used to purchase classes or to participate in a fun and casual experience, Date Nights, where friends or couples can enjoy beer, wine, and light fare while learning how to throw clay. Date  nights are for adults aged 18 and over, and tickets must be purchased in advance.   

Fifty percent of all purchases from The Clay Studio go directly to the artists. The additional  proceeds return to the non-profit operations of The Clay Studio, which serves 35,000 people  each year with the highest quality artistic, educational, and community programs.  

Online orders must be received by December 12 to ensure delivery by December 25.  

CraftNOW| Craft Capital: Philadelphia’s Cultures of Making Book 
This holiday season, give the gift of craft by purchasing Craft Capital: Philadelphia’s Cultures of  Making, edited by Glenn Adamson. The book commemorates Philadelphia’s dedication to art  and history from 1751 through 2019 and tracks the transformation of Philadelphia’s expanding  craft world. The book highlights the evolving history of Philadelphia and its skilled artists using  photo essays from more than 10 local contributors. 

The title of the book highlights not only Philadelphia’s prominent role in this creative arena, but  also the concept of “cultural capital” – the way that a city’s makers serve as anchors for  community and generators of many different kinds of value. 

Independence Seaport Museum | Gift Shop and Membership 
The Independence Seaport Museum of Philadelphia (ISM) located at Penn’s Landing offers year round activities and fun for the whole family, making a family membership the perfect gift this  holiday season! 

ISM hosts one of North America’s largest maritime art and artifact collections. Visitors can  explore award-winning interactive exhibits, watch shipbuilding in progress at The Seaport Boat  Shop, and view ship models. Visitors can also take daily tours of the oldest floating steel  warship, Cruiser Olympia, and World War II-era Submarine Becuna

A family membership includes free unlimited admission to the Museum, guided tours of Cruiser  Olympia, and Submarine Becuna, discounts on Paddle Penn’s Landing boat rentals, exclusive  discounts on ISM programming and events, and a 10% discount at the Museum and Online Gift  Shop.  

Shop in person to purchase exclusive items available inside the Independence Seaport Museum  Store, including Philly-themed scented soy candles, locally-made jewelry from As the Crow Flies  and Co., Maison ceramic fish plates, GoSili reusable silicone items, and Madd Capp jigsaw  puzzles for your holiday haul. Shop 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Christmas Eve until 3 p.m.

North Bowl and South Bowl | Gift Cards  
Rock and bowl all winter long at North Bowl (909 North 2 Street, Philadelphia, PA 19123) and  South Bowl (19 East Oregon Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19148), premier entertainment and  bowling complexes. Gift cards for North Bowl can be purchased HERE, and gift cards for South  Bowl may be purchased HERE. In addition to bowling, North Bowl and South Bowl offer arcade  games, pinball machines, billiards, bar areas for viewing sports, and menus featuring elevated  pub fare. Menu options include wood-fired pizzas, burgers, wings, tacos, and a selection of  loaded tater tots, salads, and vegetarian options. 

Rittenhouse Grill | Gift Cards  
Slice into a tender cut of pure holiday joy, served in the classic, fine-dining atmosphere at  Rittenhouse Grill (1701 Locust Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103). Adjacent to Rittenhouse Square,  Rittenhouse Grill is a staple of Philadelphia’s food scene, having served customers in the exact  location for 24 years. The restaurant is the perfect combination of a traditional steakhouse  infused with a twist of modern dining. Guests can choose from the signature prime rib dish,  indulge in fresh seafood options, and peruse the extensive wine and cocktail menu. Diners can  also enjoy live music from Wednesday through Sunday, 6 to 10 p.m. 

Souderton Connects | Souderton Gift Cards  
Spread holiday cheer with a Souderton Connects Gift Card in convenient denominations or  custom amounts. A digital gift card is the perfect way to support Souderton businesses and  restaurants while shopping for the holidays. Gift cards can be mailed with a personal message,  printed out, or sent as a digital card card by email or text to family, friends, or colleagues.  Participating businesses range from eclectic restaurants, to art galleries, theaters, and retail  stores full of unique selections with every family member in mind. 

See the full list of participating Souderton Connects businesses, or visit the inviting walkable  town of Souderton, a holiday lover’s perfect getaway.  

Theatre Exile | Gift Certificates
This year, give the gift of gritty and provocative theater! Recently honored by Philadelphia  Magazine as “Best of Philly: 2022 Theater Subscription,” Theatre Exile offers gift-givers the  opportunity to purchase single tickets or a subscription for their friends and loved ones.  Upcoming shows include The Light and Abandon.  

The second show in Exile’s season, The Light, takes the stage from February 2 to 26, 2023. The  play, written by Loy A. Webb and directed by J. Paul Nicholas, looks at what happens when a  marriage proposal goes awry. What starts as the happiest day of a loving couple’s lives quickly  unravels when ground-shifting accusations from the past resurface. The Light is a real-time  rollercoaster ride of laughter, romance, and despair that uncovers how the power of love can  be a healing beacon of Light. 

Abandon is the final show of the 22/23 season and opens on April 27 and runs through May 21,  2023. The play, a highly-anticipated world premiere written by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright  James Ijames and directed by Brett Ashley Robinson, explores themes of shame and acceptance  through two intertwining souls, Luella and Joshua. One winter night, these two people collide.  Luella is looking for redemption; Joshua is looking for family. By the following day, these two  lonely souls are meshed together into an American Family in its truest sense. Abandon is sometimes violent, sometimes healing experience with a gossamer veil that separates the worlds of the living and the dead.

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