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Photo by Melissa Romero

11 free things to do on Black Friday in Philly

There’s more to do the day after Thanksgiving than spending your paycheck

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We get it: Black Friday isn't for everyone. Some folks thrive on waking up at the crack of dawn to snag a discounted flat-screen TV, while others would prefer to stay in bed and do the same on their computers. Our advice? Explore Philly—for free.

While everyone else is hitting up the mall and big box retailers, why not finally cross something off your bucket list? Here are 11 things to do on Black Friday that don't cost a penny, from nearby hikes to family-friendly fun at multiple parks.

Want even more ideas? Here are 26 places to visit in Philly this fall.

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1. Take a hike in Wissahickon Valley Park

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Valley Green Rd
Philadelphia, PA 19128
(215) 247-0417
Visit Website

If you'd prefer a more meandering, hilly hike to burn off some of that Thanksgiving meal, head to the Wissahickon Valley Park. It’s part of the Fairmount Park system and is a great place to spot some last-minute fall foliage within city limits.

2. Find Philly's many murals

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1727-29 Mt Vernon St
Philadelphia, PA 19130

If the weather's fine, explore this city's newest murals by foot. Philly's Mural Arts program is the largest of its kind in the country, which means you're bound to stumble upon mural after mural on seemingly every block. If you need some guidance, we have a map of some of our favorite new murals right here.

Photo by Melissa Romero

3. Celebrate Auguste Rodin at the Rodin Museum

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2151 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy
Philadelphia, PA 19130

This year is the 100th Anniversary of artist Auguste Rodin’s death, so you better believe that the Rodin Museum is marking the occasion. Right now, its main exhibition is The Kiss. The museum does have a suggested fee, but it is pay-what-you-wish every single day it's open, including this Friday. Or, just wander through the beautiful (and free!) garden, which features a number of sculptures by the renowned artist.

Courtesy of Shutterstock

4. Get in the holiday spirit at Franklin Square

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200 N 6th St
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Franklin Square's Holiday Festival has been in full swing since November 9, and it’s a great place to visit to get in the holiday spirit. There's the iconic carousel (free for kids under age 3) among other family-friendly activities, and of course, the epic Electrical Spectacle Holiday Light Show.

5. Be dazzled by the Comcast Holiday Spectacular show at the Comcast Center

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Comcast Center, 1701 John F Kennedy Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19103

The Comcast Center’s annual Comcast Holiday Spectacular kicks off on Thanksgiving Day and runs until January 1, 2018. The 15-minute show, broadcast onto Comcast Center’s 2,100 square-foot video wall, is a holiday LED journey set to beloved Christmas songs. It’s definitely a sight to behold and free to everyone. The show starts at the top of every hour.

During the holiday season, people pour into the lobby of the 58-story Comcast Center for Philadelphia�s high-tech holiday show, The Comcast Holiday Spectacular. Shown on The Comcast Experience video wall�one of the world�s highest resolution LED displays�the free 15-minute show occurs at the top of the hour, 10:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m. (except 5:00 p.m. on weekdays). Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia

6. Return to LOVE Park for the Christmas Village

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1501 John F Kennedy Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19102

The opening of the annual Christmas Village on Thanksgiving Day marks the soft return of LOVE Park, which has been closed and undergoing renovations for more than a year. Christmas Village will set up shop here, bringing its many, many vendors to the park. While all of the goods are for sale, it won’t cost you a penny to window shop and meander through.

A view of the LOVE statue in Philly’s LOVE Park at the Christmas Village. Photo by Russ Brown Photography

7. See the new light show at City Hall

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1 S 15th St
Philadelphia, PA 19102

From November 20 to January 1, 2018, City Hall will light up each night as part of an ongoing “Deck the Hall Light Show”. Klip Collective is the brains behind the show, which goes off multiple times each day and is synchronized to Christmas music. On Black Friday, the show will go off every half hour from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

Photo by Melissa Romero

8. Wander Philly’s beautiful streets

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124-126 Elfreth's Alley
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Last year, Curbed readers picked the most beautiful streets in Philadelphia, including Elfreth's Alley in Old City, Delancey Street in Society Hill, St. Albans Place in Graduate Hospital, Germantown Avenue in Chestnut Hill, and Quince Street in Washington Square West. While most folks are milling about in malls, it might be the ideal time to stroll down these picturesque streets instead.

Photo by Melissa Romero

9. Visit the site where Thanksgiving Day originated

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Independence Hall, 520 Chestnut St
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Did you know that President George Washington proclaimed a national day of Thanksgiving here in Philly in 1789, just a few days after Congress passed the Bill of Rights? So why not visit the storied grounds of our founding fathers? Independence Hall is free, while the National Constitution Center, which will be hosting a whole slew of events starting Friday, is not. But, if you donate some school supplies during your visit this weekend, you'll get $2 off your admission ticket.

Courtesy of Shutterstock.com

10. Cozy up at the Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest

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101 S Christopher Columbus Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Winterfest at the Blue Cross RiverRink brings its fire pits, hot cocoa, and ice-skating rink back to the Delaware River Waterfront for another winter season when it opens at 11 a.m. on Friday, November 24. Get there early so you can snag a spot in front of a fire pit or in a cozy cabin.

11. Wander the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge

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8601 Lindbergh Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19153

Head to the nation's first urban refuge to appreciate the outdoors while you can. Be sure to venture beyond the main bridge over the marsh—there are nearly 1,000 acres to explore. Stay awhile: It’s a great time for some bird watching.

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1. Take a hike in Wissahickon Valley Park

Valley Green Rd, Philadelphia, PA 19128

If you'd prefer a more meandering, hilly hike to burn off some of that Thanksgiving meal, head to the Wissahickon Valley Park. It’s part of the Fairmount Park system and is a great place to spot some last-minute fall foliage within city limits.

Valley Green Rd
Philadelphia, PA 19128

2. Find Philly's many murals

1727-29 Mt Vernon St, Philadelphia, PA 19130
Photo by Melissa Romero

If the weather's fine, explore this city's newest murals by foot. Philly's Mural Arts program is the largest of its kind in the country, which means you're bound to stumble upon mural after mural on seemingly every block. If you need some guidance, we have a map of some of our favorite new murals right here.

1727-29 Mt Vernon St
Philadelphia, PA 19130

3. Celebrate Auguste Rodin at the Rodin Museum

2151 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy, Philadelphia, PA 19130
Courtesy of Shutterstock

This year is the 100th Anniversary of artist Auguste Rodin’s death, so you better believe that the Rodin Museum is marking the occasion. Right now, its main exhibition is The Kiss. The museum does have a suggested fee, but it is pay-what-you-wish every single day it's open, including this Friday. Or, just wander through the beautiful (and free!) garden, which features a number of sculptures by the renowned artist.

2151 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy
Philadelphia, PA 19130

4. Get in the holiday spirit at Franklin Square

200 N 6th St, Philadelphia, PA 19106

Franklin Square's Holiday Festival has been in full swing since November 9, and it’s a great place to visit to get in the holiday spirit. There's the iconic carousel (free for kids under age 3) among other family-friendly activities, and of course, the epic Electrical Spectacle Holiday Light Show.

200 N 6th St
Philadelphia, PA 19106

5. Be dazzled by the Comcast Holiday Spectacular show at the Comcast Center

Comcast Center, 1701 John F Kennedy Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19103
During the holiday season, people pour into the lobby of the 58-story Comcast Center for Philadelphia�s high-tech holiday show, The Comcast Holiday Spectacular. Shown on The Comcast Experience video wall�one of the world�s highest resolution LED displays�the free 15-minute show occurs at the top of the hour, 10:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m. (except 5:00 p.m. on weekdays). Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia

The Comcast Center’s annual Comcast Holiday Spectacular kicks off on Thanksgiving Day and runs until January 1, 2018. The 15-minute show, broadcast onto Comcast Center’s 2,100 square-foot video wall, is a holiday LED journey set to beloved Christmas songs. It’s definitely a sight to behold and free to everyone. The show starts at the top of every hour.

Comcast Center, 1701 John F Kennedy Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19103

6. Return to LOVE Park for the Christmas Village

1501 John F Kennedy Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19102
A view of the LOVE statue in Philly’s LOVE Park at the Christmas Village. Photo by Russ Brown Photography

The opening of the annual Christmas Village on Thanksgiving Day marks the soft return of LOVE Park, which has been closed and undergoing renovations for more than a year. Christmas Village will set up shop here, bringing its many, many vendors to the park. While all of the goods are for sale, it won’t cost you a penny to window shop and meander through.

1501 John F Kennedy Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19102

7. See the new light show at City Hall

1 S 15th St, Philadelphia, PA 19102
Photo by Melissa Romero

From November 20 to January 1, 2018, City Hall will light up each night as part of an ongoing “Deck the Hall Light Show”. Klip Collective is the brains behind the show, which goes off multiple times each day and is synchronized to Christmas music. On Black Friday, the show will go off every half hour from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

1 S 15th St
Philadelphia, PA 19102

8. Wander Philly’s beautiful streets

124-126 Elfreth's Alley, Philadelphia, PA 19106
Photo by Melissa Romero

Last year, Curbed readers picked the most beautiful streets in Philadelphia, including Elfreth's Alley in Old City, Delancey Street in Society Hill, St. Albans Place in Graduate Hospital, Germantown Avenue in Chestnut Hill, and Quince Street in Washington Square West. While most folks are milling about in malls, it might be the ideal time to stroll down these picturesque streets instead.

124-126 Elfreth's Alley
Philadelphia, PA 19106

9. Visit the site where Thanksgiving Day originated

Independence Hall, 520 Chestnut St, Philadelphia, PA 19106
Courtesy of Shutterstock.com

Did you know that President George Washington proclaimed a national day of Thanksgiving here in Philly in 1789, just a few days after Congress passed the Bill of Rights? So why not visit the storied grounds of our founding fathers? Independence Hall is free, while the National Constitution Center, which will be hosting a whole slew of events starting Friday, is not. But, if you donate some school supplies during your visit this weekend, you'll get $2 off your admission ticket.

Independence Hall, 520 Chestnut St
Philadelphia, PA 19106

10. Cozy up at the Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest

101 S Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19106

Winterfest at the Blue Cross RiverRink brings its fire pits, hot cocoa, and ice-skating rink back to the Delaware River Waterfront for another winter season when it opens at 11 a.m. on Friday, November 24. Get there early so you can snag a spot in front of a fire pit or in a cozy cabin.

101 S Christopher Columbus Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19106

11. Wander the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge

8601 Lindbergh Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19153

Head to the nation's first urban refuge to appreciate the outdoors while you can. Be sure to venture beyond the main bridge over the marsh—there are nearly 1,000 acres to explore. Stay awhile: It’s a great time for some bird watching.

8601 Lindbergh Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19153