What To Do: Old Fiddlers’ Picnic celebrates 90 years

By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times

Imagine turning 90 and still be bursting with energy.

Well, that’s what is happening with the Chester County Old Fiddlers’ Picnic (Hibernia County Park, off Route 340, Wagontown, 610-383-2812, http://dsf.chesco.org/ccparks). The lively annual event, which is scheduled for August 11, is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year.

Known originally as the “Chester and Delaware Counties’ Old Fiddlers’ Picnic,” the event began at Crystal Springs Park outside Parkesburg and later moved to Lenape Park, which is located just south of West Chester. When Lenape Park closed in 1980, Chester County Parks and Recreation offered to sponsor the Picnic at Hibernia County Park.

This year’s edition of the festival will run from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. with Open Stage registration beginning at 9:15 a.m. Remington Riders, the Old Fiddlers House Band, will kick things off with a performance from 10-11 a.m.

When Remington Riders’ set concludes, a constantly changing lineup of individuals and groups will take the stage and perform for the audience. Solo acts are allotted 10 minutes on stage while groups get as much as 20 minutes to perform.

The primary source of live entertainment will be the sounds emanating from the stage but there will also be plenty of other musical offerings throughout the park — especially Fiddlers’ Field.

In the wooded areas near the stage, there will be impromptu jams taking place throughout the day. Musicians of all ages are invited to stroll along the lane and join in with other musicians to make fresh, live music of their own.

The festival features a full slate of fun activities including square dancing, country line dancing, wagon rides and kids’ activities. Guided tours of Hibernia Mansion, the 19th century Ironmasters’ home will be available at 1, 2, 3 and 4 p.m. A donation of $3 per person is requested for the tour.

There will also be a large number of vendors with crafts, beverages and food items such as BBQ, sandwiches, ice cream, fries, funnel cakes, smoothies and more. Lawn chairs and blankets are encouraged. Tents, canopies and alcohol are prohibited.

There will be free admission, but parking is $5 per car. Rain date is August 12.

There are other options locally to hear live music performed in an outdoor setting.

Donna the Buffalo

The Eagleview Summer Concerts on the Square at Eagleview Town Center (Wharton Boulevard, Exton, www.ineagleview.com) will present Donna the Buffalo with David Jacobs-Strain and Bob Beach on August 14, Greg Sover and Dalton & the Sherifs on August 21, and Nik Greeley & the Operators on August 28 (with fireworks).

Another opportunity for outdoor music can be found for a few more weeks at the Shipyard Summer Concert Series (Dravo Plaza, Justison Street, Wilmington Riverfront, Wilmington, Delaware, 302-425-4890,www.riverfrontwilm.com).

This free concert series is held on Thursday evenings from 7-8:30 p.m. under the colored cranes at Dravo Plaza which is located on Justison Street next to the Shipyard Shops.

The remainder of the 2017 schedule is: August 16, The Larry Tucker Band (R&B and Motown oldies); August 23, The Barbone Street Band (New Orleans jazz and DixieLand), and August 30, Voodoo Deville (blues, boogie and swing).

Bethlehem’s Musikfest (downtown Bethlehem, 610-332-1300, www.musikfest.org) is a special event — an event that is more than just another popular summertime festival in the Lehigh Valley.

Over the years, Musikfest has established itself as one of America’s top annual music festivals an event that offers big name headliners as well as a wide variety of folk, rock, pop and ethnic music acts. It also sports some impressive numbers.

The festival, which is celebrating its 33rd anniversary this year, features free music performances on most of its indoor and outdoor stages.

Musikfest, which is running now through August13, presents over 300 live musical performances and draws over one million people to the Lehigh Valley every August.

The main concert stage at Musikfest is the Sands Steel Stage which features national touring acts with tickets are required for all shows.

The following is this year’s main stage schedule: Aug. 10: Brantley Gilbert; Aug. 11: All Time Low & Dashboard Confessional; and Aug. 12: Jason Mraz.

The will also be a multitude of free concerts with acts such as Nalani & Sarina, Squirrel Nut Zippers, Marc Broussard, Marshall Crenshaw, We Are Scientists and The Original Wailers.

Musikfest is much more than just festival offering a wealth of music. It also features interactive arts and theater activities for children along with a large number of concessions offering a wide array of food and beverage treats.

Later this month, area fans of country music will have the opportunity to hear many top-flight country acts perform live at a three-day, open-air festival.

Citadel Country Spirit USA (Ludwig’s Corner Horse Show Grounds. 5 Nantmeal Road, Glenmoore, countryspiritusa.com) will run from August 24-26 and feature a huge array of country stars including Alabama, Toby Keith, Trace Adkins, Brad Paisley and Cassadee Pope.

On August 11, Beech Community Services will present the 12th Annual Jazz on the Ave Music Festival (Broad Street and Cecil B. Moore Avenue, Philadelphia, 215-763-8868, www.jazzontheavephilly.com) from noon-8:30 p.m. Patty Jackson and Dyana Williams will host the event.

The main stage lineup will include Clef Club Youth Ensemble. Laurin Talese, Charisa The Violin Diva, Algebra Blessett and PJ Morton. The Philly Soul Stock stage will feature seasoned and up-and-coming, young artists.

The free festival will take place along a four-block stretch on Cecil B. Moore Avenue from Broad to 17th streets. The festival will feature health and wellness screenings, HIV/AIDS testing, moon bounce, clay sculpting, mechanical bull riding, vendors, food, giveaways and live music on two stages.

Cirque Italia, a world-acclaimed circus show, is returning to Delaware this weekend with a series of performances in Newark (132 Christiana Mall, Newark, Delaware, 941-704-8572, cirqueitalia.com/tickets).

The circus will have seven performances now though Sunday – August 10 at 7:30 p.m.; and August 11 and 12 at 1:30, 4:30 and 7:30 p.m.

Cirque Italia is a show like no other. It is the first traveling water circus in the United States.

The circus’ stage holds 35,000 gallons of water and features a dynamic lid which lifts 35 feet into the air, allowing water to fall like rain from above as fountains dazzle below.

This incredible show takes place under “Grande Tenta” — the circus’ majestic white and blue big top tent which came all the way from Italy.

Manuel Rebecchi, Cirque Italia’s owner and founder, has a deep-seeded history in the circus industry. His late aunt, Moira Orfei, ran one of the largest circus shows in Europe.

When Rebecchi came to the states several years ago, he wanted to create something special and memorable. He was actually inspired to create the water stage while drinking a bottle of water one day.

This production is a European style circus show with no animals and a Las Vegas style water show. It’s a water spectacular similar to a smaller-scale Bellagio fountain show.”

Beginning in 2017, Cirque Italia, the first traveling Water Circus, introduces a second unit, the Gold Unit — a luxurious experience where technology and preforming arts are mixed to create a one-of-a-kind show.

This new performance will feature an ultra-modern water curtain that controls every droplet of water meticulously. A careful casting selection has united the best artists from all over the world.

This production will feature acts all the way from Russia to Mexico including Argentinian twin jugglers and a contortionist who is able to bend her body in ways you would never imagine.

Video link for Cirque Italia – https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B2q89BETs63PVHROd0tXemY0bGc/view?usp=drive_web.

Ticket prices range from $10-$50.

Bartram Gardens

There is a water attraction in Philadelphia that is definitely worth checking out – Schuylkill Banks (Schuylkill Avenue and Locust Street Philadelphia,
www.schuylkillbanks.org) Riverboat rides to Bartram Gardens.

Riders can cruise to Bartram’s Garden and learn how three generations of the Bartram family helped Philadelphia become a mecca of natural science, education, and government. Their explorations of the wild American frontier not only altered the horticultural landscape of a young America itself, but also Great Britain, Europe, and the rest of the world.

Participants will be able to take a quarter-mile walk up the meadow to see amazing views of the skyline and explore the garden, community farm, and recreational trail. This three-hour tour includes a two-hour stop at Bartram’s Garden with guided tour of the 1731 house and Ann Bartram Carr garden.

Snacks and beverages are available for purchase on the boat, and there are picnic tables and a lawn area at Bartram’s Garden for those who wish to bring a picnic lunch.

This tour involves a 10-minute walk up the Bartram’s Meadow (approximately a quarter-mile) to reach the Garden. Ticket prices, which include guided house tour, are $30 for adults and $17 for children (12 and under). Tours run on select Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays now through October.

You can get a look back at another era by attending an event called “Milling Demonstration Days” which will take place on August 11 at Mill at Anselma (1730 Conestoga Road, Chester Springs, 610-827-1906, http://anselmamill.org).

The Mill will be fully operational from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on the second Saturday of each month.

Visitors to the Mill will be able to meet Anselma’s miller and hear him talk about how the gears work and what they do. There will also be interesting technology tours that focus on how different parts of the mill work.

Additionally, there will be special interactive activities for the children — including learning how to sift flour. Kids will also have the opportunity to operate a pump on a smaller water wheel.

The event will run from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Admission is $5 for adults, $4 for seniors (60 and older) and children (ages 4-14). Active Military and children (under 4) will be admitted free.

On August 11 and 12, the Academy of Natural Sciences (1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, 215- 299-1000, www.ansp.org) is hosting an annual event that promises to be a lot of fun — unless you suffer from entomophobia (fear of insects).

Bug Fest

The Academy’s 11th Annual “Bug Fest” features live insects representing 60 different species along with a large and impressive sampling of specimens from the Academy’s world-renowned Entomology Collection — a collection that features more than four million insects.

Hundreds of live invertebrates will be on display throughout the museum. — beetles, true bugs, millipedes, centipedes, scorpions, stick insects, cockroaches, caterpillars, tarantulas and other spiders, and more.

Visitors can check out live invertebrates’ “gross factors” as they examine blister beetles, venomous spiders and scorpions, millipedes, grasshoppers, and stinkbugs.

Some insects do bad things. There are those who spread diseases such as Zika. And, some insects — like the emerald ash borer — damage plants.

Entomologists from the Academy and the American Entomological Society will be on hand to answer questions about these topics and also to give walking tours outside the museum in search of bugs. Some live invaders and also specimens from the Academy’s research collection of more than 4 million insects will be on display.

“Bug Fest,” which is free with museum admission, will be open from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. both days. Museum admission is $19.95 for adults, $16.95 for seniors and $15.95 for children (ages 3-12).

The Goschenhoppen Folk Festival (Henry Antes Plantation, Colonial Road, Upper Frederick Township, 215-234-8953, www.goschenhoppen.org) visits the past but also has a long history of its own. This year, the popular annual event celebrates its 52nd anniversary.

Attending the Goschenhoppen Folk Festival is like taking a trip way back in time — back to the 18th and 19th centuries.

The Goschenhoppen Historians presented the inaugural Goschenhoppen Folk Festival in East Greenville 51 years ago and it has steadily evolved into a cherished summer tradition in eastern Pennsylvania.

The festival, which honors the oldest existing Pennsylvania German community in the United States, maintains a strictly traditional atmosphere. There are no amusement games or rides, no commemorative t-shirts or beer mugs, no modern snacks, no ATM machines and no Wi-Fi.

This year’s festival, which is being held August 10 and 11, will feature several hundred craftsmen presenting live demonstrations of more than 150 skills of the 18th and 19th centuries.

Dressed in authentic costumes of the periods (many of which are loaned from the Historians’ extensive wardrobe), the participating artisans use authentic tools in recreating traditional home skills, trades, pastimes, foods and folk music.

The Historians also display the area’s largest collection of traditional foods, crafts, trades, music and folk itinerants.

There will be a variety of old-fashioned foods and Pennsylvania Dutch meals available for purchase at the festival — everything from full dinners to chow-chow and from red-beet eggs to faschnachts (doughnuts served with molasses). The list of tasty beverages for sale includes raspberry shrub, lemonade and birch beer.

The 2018 Goschenhoppen Folk Festival, which has been honored as one of the premier noncommercial folk festivals in the country, will be staged on Friday from noon-8 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. at the Henry Antes Plantation.

Admission is a $12 donation for adults ($18 for a two-day pass) and a $3 donation for children (ages 6-15).

This weekend, Peddler’s Village (Routes 202 and 263, Lahaska, 215-794-4000, www.peddlersvillage.com) will be hosting its annual Peach Festival and Summer Sidewalk Sale

Peddler’s Village’s 2018 Peach Festiva

Peddler’s Village’s 2018 Peach Festival, which is slated for August 11 and 12, will feature a sidewalk art show as well as live music, a stilt walker and the always-entertaining pie-eating contests. As usual, there will be peaches served in all sorts of tasty variations, including peach pies, peach butters and artisanal jams.

Live entertainment on Saturday will be presented by Spinning Straw, Trinidelphia, Bellevue, Toby Mochel, BC Discoveries Dance & Theater, Acoustic Road, Galena Brass Band and Give & Take Jugglers. Sunday’s schedule features Rendition Jazz Band, Give & Take Jugglers, Nassau Brass Band, Galena Brass Band, The Giant Flying Turtles, Lolly & Yoyo, and Audiopilot.

The site’s annual Peach Festival and Sidewalk Sale, which is a celebration of National Peach Month will run from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. each day. Admission and parking are free.

New Hope Car Show

If you’re making the trip to Lahaska in central Bucks County for Peddler’s Village’s Peach Festival, you might want to also check out the annual New Hope Car Show (New Hope-Solebury High School, Bridge Street, New Hope, 215-862-5665, www.newhopeautoshow.com) on August 12.

Featured vehicles include Senior Cars, Vintage Antique, Cars of the 20s-30s, Cars of the 40s-50s, Cars of the 60s, Cars of the 70s, Cars of the 80s, Alfa Romeo, Antique Motorcycles, Antique Trucks, Auburn/Cord/Duesenberg/Pierce-Arrow/Packard, Austin Healey,
BMW, Corvair, Corvette, Datsun/Nissan, DeLorean, Foreign Exotic, French Connection, High Performance Production, Historically Preserved Original,
Jaguar, Lincoln Continental: Lincoln, Continental, Zephyr, and Lotus.
The huge line-up also includes Mercedes Benz, MG, Military Vehicles, Model   “A” Fords, Model “T” Fords, Morgan, Mustang, Porsche, Professional Specialty Cars, Racing Cars-Domestic, Racing Cars-Foreign, Rolls-Royce/Bentley, Shelby, Specialty Class Cars, Studebaker, Thunderbird, Triumph, TVR, Viper, Volkswagen, and Woodies.

Because the show is conducted on school grounds, consumption of alcoholic beverages and the use of tobacco products in any form are strictly prohibited at all times.

Admission to the show is $10 for adults and $5 for seniors (age 62 and older). Children under 12 accompanied by an adult are free as are active duty military and their dependents. Parking is free.

The Festival of Fountains at Longwood Gardens (Route 1, Kennett Square, 610-388-1000, www.longwoodgardens.org), which is running now through September 30, is always one of the area’s prime summertime attractions.

With fountains that jet as high as 175 feet, gardens filled with colorful summer blooms, shade-friendly trees, exotic day- and night-blooming waterlilies, and live music outdoors, Longwood gardens has something for everyone.

The fountain project took two years and $90 million in renovations. The fountain features more than 1,300 jets and streams, a similar number of LEDs, a variety of flame features and a wide array of plants from around the world.

Longwood’s popular Main Fountain Garden has returned for a second season after attracting more than 600,000 guests last year with its 1,719 jets twirling and dancing to music. The fountains perform daily at 11:15 a.m., 1:15, 3:15 and 5:15 p.m.

At night, Illuminated Fountain Performances return featuring a selection of dynamic new shows and past favorites. New fountain shows include the rhythmic “Carmina Burana,” the soulful “Sounds of Motown,” a contemporary take on American classics in the “American Songbook Reimagined,” and the jazz-infused “In the Mood.”

Illuminated Fountain Performances are Thursday-Saturday evenings at 9:15 p.m. from May-August and at 8:15 p.m. in September. In addition to the Main Fountain Garden, Longwood is also home to a collection of other fountain gardens, including the enchanting Italian Water Garden and Open Air Theatre fountains, which also perform daily.

The ultra-popular Festival of Fountains features the gardens in their summer splendor. Flowering annuals and perennials abound, as well as the breathtaking Waterlily Display that showcases aquatic plants from all over the world.

Visitors can take a walk in the expansive Meadow Garden or enjoy a shady stroll among Longwood’s historic trees. The outdoor Children’s Corner features a garden designed just for kids, while the Idea Garden is a showcase of plant combinations, innovative vegetable gardens, and unusual plant varieties to inspire guests to try at home.

The Beer Garden is open Thursday-Saturday evenings with alfresco dining and Longwood Signature Brews created by Victory Brewing Company using ingredients grown at Longwood. Regional artists perform live in the Beer Garden from 6-9 p.m. May through August and 5-8 p.m. in September.

Admission to Longwood Gardens is $23 for adults, $20 for seniors and $12 for youth (ages 5-18).

There will be several featured attractions this weekend at the Morris Arboretum (100 Northwestern Avenue, Chestnut Hill, 215-247-5777, www.morrisarboretum.org).

On August 11 and 12, Morris Arboretum’s Garden railway will welcome special guests.

Thomas the Tank Engine will arrive to celebrate the summer weekend with his multitude of fans – young and old.

Visitors to the arboretum can look for their favorite train characters among the whole steam engine gang from Sodor as they take over the Railway for the weekend.

If you’re up with the sun, you can start your day with an early morning visit to Morris Arboretum. Starting at 8 a.m., visitors are invited to find the shining dew on more than 12,000 labeled plants in the Arboretum’s living collection.

Admission is $19 for adults; $17 for seniors (65 and older); $10 for students (ages 13-17 or with ID), active military and retired military; and free for children (under 3).

On August 10 and 11, Laurel Hill Cemetery (3822 Ridge Avenue, Philadelphia, 215-228-8200, www.thelaurelhillcemetery.org) will host “The Ghostly Circus: Fire and Aerial Theater.”

This summer, 7textures will return to Laurel Hill for a fifth year of enchanting fire and aerial performances with the Ghostly Circus. In this theatrical presentation amid the tombs, artists will build their stage evoking and encompassing the spirit of Laurel Hill while drawing upon themes from Dante Alighieri’s epic poem, The Inferno.

This unique, other-worldly show features contemporary circus arts with live music and a Dance-with-the-Dead After-Party. Bring your own blankets or beach chairs and enjoy an evening under the stars. Food vendors will be onsite, along with a bar sponsored by Magic Hat Brewing Company.

The event will take place on Friday, August 10 and Saturday, August 11 at 8 p.m. (with pre-scheduled rain dates on Friday, August 17 and Saturday, August 18). Late arrivals are not guaranteed entry. Guests are encouraged to arrive at 7 p.m. to enjoy the full Ghostly Circus experience. Check-in is at Laurel Hill Cemetery’s Gatehouse entrance at 3822 Ridge Avenue.

The cost is $30 per person in advance, or $40 perperson on the day of the event. Children under 12 are $15.

Historic Germantown

On August 11, it will be time for Second Saturday in Historic Germantown (http://www.freedomsbackyard.com).

The 16 sites and museums of Historic Germantown will open their doors on Saturday for the neighborhood’s seasonal Second Saturday event.

Visitors can enjoy self-guided tours of the area’s historic places including Johnson House Historic Site (a stop on the Underground Railroad), Cliveden (the location of the Battle of Germantown), Wyck (a beautiful garden) and more.

The event will run from noon-4 p.m. on August 12 at various locations around the 6300 block of Germantown Avenue.

The Brandywine Zoo (1001 North Park Drive, Brandywine Park, Wilmington, Delaware, 302-571-7747, www.brandywinezoo.org) is inviting people to come to the Zoo on August 11 to partake in “Breakfast with the Beasts.”

Visitors to the zoo, which is located in Brandywine Park along the banks of the Brandywine Creek in downtown Wilmington, will be able to enjoy their breakfasts as the animals get theirs.

The event will also feature a special story and a live animal presentation. The festive pancake breakfast will be served in the zoo (weather permitting). Tickets are $15.

Wilmington will also be a good destination if you’re in the mood for a few brews.

If you’re a beer drinker, there is nothing better than a frosty mug of malt beverage on a hot summer afternoon. That’s why there is a proliferation of brew festivals every summer.

Beer aficionados can quench their thirst for fresh suds this weekend at the Downtown Brew Fest, which will be held on August 11 at the Chelsea Tavern (821 North Market Street, Wilmington, Delaware,www.chelseatavern.com).

Tickets are $40.

In Philadelphia on August 6, South Street between Broad and 16th streets, will be the site of the Jamaican Pennsylvania Association’s celebration of Jamaica’s 56th year of independence.

Attendees will be able to enjoy a wide variety of Jamaican food, purchase goods from vendors specializing in Jamaican fashion and arts and crafts and win a prize for performing their favorite Bob Marley song.

The Jamaican Pennsylvania Association is a non-profit charitable organization whose mission is to promote and sustain Jamaica’s Motto “Out of Many, One People.” Also known as JamaicaPhilly, the organization produces and promotes Jamaican cultural and heritage activities throughout Pennsylvania.

The event in Philly on August 6 will run from noon-8 p.m. and is free and open to the public.

The 164th edition of the Reading Fair (1216 Hilltop Rd, Leesport, 610 372-2649, http://www.thereadingfair.org) is running now through August 11.

The Midway will feature “The Fearless Flores Thrill Show.”

Traditional festival activities include a “Corn Cobb Toss,” a “Pie Eating Contest,” “Raw Egg Toss,” “Hay Bale Throwing,” a “Round Ball Bale Contest,” a “Water Balloon Toss” and a “Pedal Power Tractor Pull.”

There will also be auto racing throughout the week along with tractor and truck pulls on August 9 and 10. And, there will be the always-popular Beer Garden from 5-10 p.m. each night.

The live entertainment schedule includes The Large Flowerheads on August 10, and the Blues Brotherhood on August 11.

General admission is $5 — $4 for senior citizens and military.

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