Philly's annual celebration of the city's unique, 10,200-acre park system is back this year with eight days of service projects, events, educational programming, tours and more. LOVE Your Park Week kicks off on May 10 with a day of service that will draw thousands of volunteers into parks across the city. To join in the cleaning, greening and beautifying efforts, visit the LOVE Your Park volunteer page.
In addition to the volunteer day kickoff, the week is jam packed with activities. We've highlighted a handful that will appeal to Eyes on the Street readers, and the full calendar of events can be found on the LOVE Your Park website. Enjoy!
Saturday, May 10. Wissahickon Park, Bell's Mill Rd. and Forbidden Drive. Help Friends of Wissahickon document A Day in the Life of the Wissahickon by taking a photo in the Wissahickon on May 10. Photographers can choose their subject, and prizes will be awarded. Photos must be submitted by May 31.
Saturday, May 10. 9am. Wissahickon Park, Forbidden and Lincoln drives. After flowing south for about five miles, the Wissahickon takes an abrupt turn west near Monoshore Creek and continues west to the Schuylkill. Ever wonder why? In this "mildly strenuous walk," Scott Quitel will answer that and some of the other rock-related questions that have shaped the Wissahickon as we know it. Registration required.
Saturday, May 10. 9am - 11am. Fairmount Water Works. The third in a new tour series launched by Fairmount Water Works, this tour will explore The Fairmount Water Works - one of only three sites in the country to be awarded all three National Historic Landmark designation. Attendees will visit the dam, gazebos and garden before entering the water works itself. Cost: $10.
Saturday, May 10. 1pm - 4pm. Philly Pumptrack, 53rd & Parkside. The masterminds behind the Philly's first pump track and many helpful volunteer hands have been busy building Philly's first pump track (a looped course of dirt berms and "rollers" that cyclists can ride without pedaling either for fun or skill building). The track's grand opening is Saturday, May 10 and offers course riding, pro demos, raffles, give aways and music.
Saturday, May 10. 2pm. Wissahickon Park, Chestnut Hill Avenue entrance at Seminole. The Friends of the Wissahickon invite you to enjoy a walk and "talk story," a Hawaiian expression meaning an informal chat. Shelly Brick will lead the walk and let the group set the pace. Registration is required.
Sunday, May 11. 12pm, 1pm and 2pm. Schuylkill Banks, under the Walnut Street Bridge. Treat mom to a special day on the Schuylkill with this relaxing boat tour to Bartram's Garden. Tours depart at 12pm, 1pm and 2pm.
Sunday, May 11. 1pm. Wissahickon Park, Northwestern Ave and Forbidden Drive. Hike approximately four miles along Forbidden Drive to Bells Mill Road and then along the orange and white trails to the Indian Statue. The group will return to Northwestern Avenue along Forbidden Drive. Merritt Rhoad will offer insight into Wissahickon history and nature. The hike will be moderately difficult and about two to two-and-a-half hours long. Registration is required.
Tuesday, May 13. 6:30pm - 7:30pm. Ned Wolf Park, McCallum St & W Ellet St. "More Groundcover, Less Mulch!" In another walk and talk event, guests will be able to listen in on a lecture about the award-winning perennial gardens of Mount Airy's Ned Wolf Park. Attendees are invited to take away tips and tricks for growing their own perennials.
Friday, May 16. 8pm - 10pm. Laurel Hill Cemetery, 3822 Ridge Ave. Photo enthusiasts are invited to trek through Laruel Hill after hours with their cameras, tripods and flashlights. In this unique opportunity, photographers are invited to capture the ethereal wonders of Laurel Hill after the sun goes down. The guided stroll will take attendees to some of the most photogenic spots. Cost: $20.
Saturday, May 17. 9am. Fairmount Park, Forbidden Drive and Northwestern Avenue. The annual Rebuilding Together Philadelphia fundraiser coincides with LOVE Your Park Week this year. The 5K run and 2-mile walk courses travel through the park on Forbidden Drive, meaning it will be easy on both the feet and the spirits. Proceeds from the event go toward making critical repairs and home safety projects for low-income homeowners. Cost: $30 pre registration through May 1, $35 after May 1 and day of. Day of registration opens at 7:30am.
Saturday, May 17. 12pm - 4pm. Morris Park, North 68th Street. Help Overbrook neighbors celebrate Morris Park's 102nd anniversary as a Fairmount Park system park. There will be a fundraiser for the Friends of Morris Park with fun activities, music and more. The friends group is working to restore the original 147 acres of woodlands to their original state.
Saturday, May 17. 3pm. Valley Green Inn, Valley Green Road. If you missed the geology hike with Scott Quitel or just can't get enough of the Wissahickon's rock formations, join Sarah West for a 1.5-mile hike on Saturday, May 17. West will lead discussion on the formation of Wissahickon's rocks. Registration is required.
For a full calendar of LOVE Your Park Week events visit loveyourpark.org
From 2012-2014 Christine covered transportation, writing about everything from pedestrian concerns to bicycle infrastructure, bridges, trail networks, public transit and more. Her favorite assignments sent her bushwhacking through Philadelphia’s yet-to-be-cleared bike trails, catching a glimpse of SEPTA’s inner workings or pounding the pavement to find out what pedestrians really think. Christine also covered community news for Eyes on the Street, where her work ranged from food sovereignty to public art and urban greening. She first joined PlanPhilly in fall 2011 as an intern through a partnership with Temple University’s Philadelphia Neighborhoods website.