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Labor Day in Philly: Free things to do and see in Philadelphia

From boat rides on the Schuylkill to free admission to museums

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The so-called last weekend of summer is upon us (tear). For many, Labor Day Weekend means one last visit to the shore. But for folks planning to stay in Philly or visit the City of Brotherly Love, we've got you covered, even if you didn't manage to snag a ticket to the Made in America concert. Low on cash? Even better—because here are more than a dozen free things to do in Philly during Labor Day weekend, from boat rides on the Schuylkill River to outdoor movies with a bottle of wine.

These free things to do are listed in order of date. Know of another low-cost event happening over the weekend? Leave a comment or send us a tip.

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1. Enjoy Parks on Tap at Clark Park

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4300-4398 Baltimore Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19104

The mobile beer garden Parks on Tap is extending its stay at Clark Park for another weekend, with extended hours on actual Labor Day. It’ll be at the park from Wednesday, August 30 through Monday, September 4. Relaxing at the park is free, the food and beer is not, but if you start the weekend early on Thursday, 100 percent of all proceeds from food and drinks will be donated to the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund.

Want to grill your own grub? Here are 13 Philly parks where you can barbecue and picnic.

A post shared by Tim Lanza (@timlanza) on

2. Enjoy Parks on Tap at Cliveden Park

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6423 Chew Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19119

Parks on Tap will also set up at Cliveden Park for Labor Day Weekend, from Wednesday through Monday. On Labor Day, there will be special extended hours from 12 p.m. to 10 p.m.

A post shared by GoMtAiry (@gomtairy) on

3. First Fridays in Old City

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Old City
Philadelphia, PA

Labor Day weekend falls on September's First Fridays in Old City, a district-wide event where you can browse all of the neighborhood galleries and shops, while enjoying cocktails and small bites. It's completely free.

Photo by A. Ricketts for Visit Philadelphia

4. First Fridays in Fishtown

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Fishtown
Philadelphia, PA

Can't make it down to Old City for First Fridays? Fishtown's hosting its last First Days of the summer, too. The event where you can explore all of the neighborhood's great galleries and shops has spread to this neighborhood, and most of the participating retailers are on Frankford Avenue. Here's a full list.

First Friday photo from Uwishunu (Photo by M. Kennedy for GPTMC). Hope to see everyone out for August First Friday!

Posted by Frankford Ave Arts on Thursday, July 24, 2014

5. Watch a movie at the Betsy Ross House

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239 Arch St
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 686-1252
Visit Website

Grab a blanket and a bottle wine and head to the Betsy Ross House in Old City to watch "The Amazing Colossal Man Friday, September 1 at 7:45 p.m. For just $5, you can tour the historic house and then camp out in the courtyard to watch the movie. BYOB, wine, and food.

via Wikimedia Commons

6. Go boating at Bartram's Garden

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5400 Lindbergh Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19143
(215) 729-5281
Visit Website

On Saturday, September 2 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. you can grab a boat from Bartram's Garden and cruise around the Schuylkill River for free. Just note: The boat rides are limited to 30-minute excursions. Take a stroll along the new Bartram’s Mile trail, while you’re at it.

7. Free kids tickets at Museum of The American Revolution

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101 S 3rd St
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 253-6731
Visit Website

The new Museum of the American Revolution is hosting a long list of activities over Labor Day Weekend starting on Saturday—and kids under 12 will get in for free. They’ll also receive a free back-to-school packet with colored pencils, a coloring book, and of course, a pocket-sized Declaration of Independence.

Courtesy of MoAR

8. Pay-what-you-wish at local museums

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2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy
Philadelphia, PA 19130
(215) 763-8100
Visit Website

Here's your chance to bask in the air-conditioned goodness of the Philadelphia Museum of Art while everyone else is at the shore. This Sunday, September 3 is the museum's Pay-What-You-Wish day—same goes for the nearby Barnes Foundation. (Do take note of all of the street closures in the area for the Made in American Festival.)

The exterior of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The museum has columns flanking the entryway and a large courtyard in front. Courtesy of Shutterstock

9. Watch fireworks at Penn's Landing

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Penn's Landing
Philadelphia, PA

Sunday, September 3 marks the final fireworks show of the summer at Penn’s Landing. But first, enjoy a free concert by the U.S. Army Band Downrange at 8 p.m. The fireworks follow at 9:30 p.m.

Photo by M. Fischetti for VISIT PHILADELPHIA

10. Blue Cross RiverRink

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101 S Christopher Columbus Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19147
(215) 925-7465
Visit Website

Labor Day weekend is your last chance to hang out at the Blue Cross River Rink's Summer Fest. Admission to the beach-friendly on the Delaware River Waterfront is free, but you do have to fork over a few bucks to cruise around the roller-skating rink.

11. Do yoga on the pier

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Race St & N. Columbus Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 922-2386
Visit Website

The pay-what-you-wish yoga classes on Race Street Pier continue through October. Over Labor Day weekend, roll out your mat for yoga with a view on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. You can view a schedule of exact dates and times here.

12. Hang at Spruce Street Harbor Park

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301 S Christopher Columbus Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 922-2386
Visit Website

Thanks to so much success over the past few years, Spruce Street Harbor Park is open until October 1. So if you just feel like lounging in a hammock all weekend, this is the place to be.

13. Watch a movie at Franklin Square

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200 N 6th St
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 629-4026
Visit Website

Franklin Square is open all during Labor Day weekend, but on Saturday, September 2 there will be a free screening of the Disney flick “Moana.” Movie starts at 8 p.m.

1. Enjoy Parks on Tap at Clark Park

4300-4398 Baltimore Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19104

The mobile beer garden Parks on Tap is extending its stay at Clark Park for another weekend, with extended hours on actual Labor Day. It’ll be at the park from Wednesday, August 30 through Monday, September 4. Relaxing at the park is free, the food and beer is not, but if you start the weekend early on Thursday, 100 percent of all proceeds from food and drinks will be donated to the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund.

Want to grill your own grub? Here are 13 Philly parks where you can barbecue and picnic.

4300-4398 Baltimore Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19104

2. Enjoy Parks on Tap at Cliveden Park

6423 Chew Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19119

Parks on Tap will also set up at Cliveden Park for Labor Day Weekend, from Wednesday through Monday. On Labor Day, there will be special extended hours from 12 p.m. to 10 p.m.

6423 Chew Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19119

3. First Fridays in Old City

Old City, Philadelphia, PA
Photo by A. Ricketts for Visit Philadelphia

Labor Day weekend falls on September's First Fridays in Old City, a district-wide event where you can browse all of the neighborhood galleries and shops, while enjoying cocktails and small bites. It's completely free.

Old City
Philadelphia, PA

4. First Fridays in Fishtown

Fishtown, Philadelphia, PA

Can't make it down to Old City for First Fridays? Fishtown's hosting its last First Days of the summer, too. The event where you can explore all of the neighborhood's great galleries and shops has spread to this neighborhood, and most of the participating retailers are on Frankford Avenue. Here's a full list.

Fishtown
Philadelphia, PA

5. Watch a movie at the Betsy Ross House

239 Arch St, Philadelphia, PA 19106
via Wikimedia Commons

Grab a blanket and a bottle wine and head to the Betsy Ross House in Old City to watch "The Amazing Colossal Man Friday, September 1 at 7:45 p.m. For just $5, you can tour the historic house and then camp out in the courtyard to watch the movie. BYOB, wine, and food.

239 Arch St
Philadelphia, PA 19106

6. Go boating at Bartram's Garden

5400 Lindbergh Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19143

On Saturday, September 2 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. you can grab a boat from Bartram's Garden and cruise around the Schuylkill River for free. Just note: The boat rides are limited to 30-minute excursions. Take a stroll along the new Bartram’s Mile trail, while you’re at it.

5400 Lindbergh Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19143

7. Free kids tickets at Museum of The American Revolution

101 S 3rd St, Philadelphia, PA 19106
Courtesy of MoAR

The new Museum of the American Revolution is hosting a long list of activities over Labor Day Weekend starting on Saturday—and kids under 12 will get in for free. They’ll also receive a free back-to-school packet with colored pencils, a coloring book, and of course, a pocket-sized Declaration of Independence.

101 S 3rd St
Philadelphia, PA 19106

8. Pay-what-you-wish at local museums

2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy, Philadelphia, PA 19130
The exterior of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The museum has columns flanking the entryway and a large courtyard in front. Courtesy of Shutterstock

Here's your chance to bask in the air-conditioned goodness of the Philadelphia Museum of Art while everyone else is at the shore. This Sunday, September 3 is the museum's Pay-What-You-Wish day—same goes for the nearby Barnes Foundation. (Do take note of all of the street closures in the area for the Made in American Festival.)

2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy
Philadelphia, PA 19130

9. Watch fireworks at Penn's Landing

Penn's Landing, Philadelphia, PA
Photo by M. Fischetti for VISIT PHILADELPHIA

Sunday, September 3 marks the final fireworks show of the summer at Penn’s Landing. But first, enjoy a free concert by the U.S. Army Band Downrange at 8 p.m. The fireworks follow at 9:30 p.m.

Penn's Landing
Philadelphia, PA

10. Blue Cross RiverRink

101 S Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19147

Labor Day weekend is your last chance to hang out at the Blue Cross River Rink's Summer Fest. Admission to the beach-friendly on the Delaware River Waterfront is free, but you do have to fork over a few bucks to cruise around the roller-skating rink.

101 S Christopher Columbus Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19147

11. Do yoga on the pier

Race St & N. Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19106

The pay-what-you-wish yoga classes on Race Street Pier continue through October. Over Labor Day weekend, roll out your mat for yoga with a view on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. You can view a schedule of exact dates and times here.

Race St & N. Columbus Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19106

12. Hang at Spruce Street Harbor Park

301 S Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19106

Thanks to so much success over the past few years, Spruce Street Harbor Park is open until October 1. So if you just feel like lounging in a hammock all weekend, this is the place to be.

301 S Christopher Columbus Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19106

13. Watch a movie at Franklin Square

200 N 6th St, Philadelphia, PA 19106

Franklin Square is open all during Labor Day weekend, but on Saturday, September 2 there will be a free screening of the Disney flick “Moana.” Movie starts at 8 p.m.

200 N 6th St
Philadelphia, PA 19106