SPRING GRECIAN FESTIVAL
May 31 to June 4
St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Church of Valley Forge
This family-friendly community event has grown so popular over the years that it now draws 8,000-10,000 people over its five-day run. The campus of St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Church is overtaken by rides, games, a business expo and platefuls of authentic Greek food. Visitors can also tour the interior of one of Montgomery County’s most distinctly architected buildings.
THE MALE INTELLECT: AN OXYMORON?
On a quest to answer the age-old question, “What do women want?” Robert Dubac creates five hysterical boneheads who each offer sidesplitting advice on how to straddle the gender gap. The Male Intellect at Montgomery Theater nudges the battle of the sexes toward a humorous detente with everyone lovingly elbowing each other in the end with laughter and recognition.
THE GREAT AMERICAN VARIETY SHOW
June 1, 15
Valley Forge Casino Resort
The Great American Variety Show is coming to the Valley Forge Casino Resort. These unique acts offer something for everyone, from comedy and magic to acrobats and danger. The cast comprises former finalists from NBC’s America’s Got Talent, making for an evening of one-of-a-kind entertainment.
Ardmore Music Hall
They are attorneys, yes, but they are also talented musicians eager to give back to their communities. Lawyerpalooza, a concert whose performers have all passed the bar, funds legal defense measures for victims who may not be able to afford counsel otherwise. This event at Ardmore Music Hall is no high-priced, pinky-up affair; it’s a high-energy concert experience that no serious music fan could object to.
CIVIL WAR EVENT
Step back in time as the Civil War comes to life at Pennypacker Mills. The two-day program has plenty to see and do: artillery demonstrations, daily battles, exhibits, music, speakers, mansion tours and a soldier enlistment for kids. Also, set a June 25 reminder for Pennypacker Mills to attend the vintage base ball game, played per 1864 rules.
The 2017 edition of Horsham Day is even more spectacular than ever, given the township’s tricentennial celebration. The day begins with an 5K Walk/Run at Kohler Park (Limekiln Pike) followed by a youth fishing contest. The party then shifts to Deep Meadow Park for a business expo, ziplining, extreme bag jump, petting zoo, pony rides, volleyball tournaments and an entire midway of rides. The day ends with a bang, thanks to a blazing firework show.
Steel River Playhouse
Given the success of Beauty and the Beast and Lion King, it didn’t take long for The Little Mermaid to also reach the live stage. The original production featured songs from the film and an imaginative set design; it ran more than 650 performances in New York. Steel River Playhouse’s version offers a party for young Ariel fans. The afternoon meet-and-greet (with photo-ops, snacks and crafts) is a separate ticketed event, but seats to the show are plentiful, which runs June 2-4 and 8-11.
The Fairytale Flyer is solid proof that all princesses don’t live in Orlando theme parks. Take your youngsters on a magical Colebrookdale Railroad ride with Cinderella, Snow White and Sleeping Beauty. The journey includes photos, autographs, games – in a forest setting that looks like it emerged from the pages of a picture book. Little passengers are welcome to wear a princess dress or favorite costume.
Opening June 7
This work came to People’s Light from its national New Play Frontiers Residency and Commission, which identified the script by author Karen Hartman as particularly noteworthy. The seven-women cast of Project Dawn (doubling 14 roles) enacts the story of the Philadelphia lawyers, judges, parole officers and staff workers who transform the lives of women who repeatedly find themselves in the criminal justice system.
SCHUYLKILL RIVER SOJOURN
Lock 60 at Schuylkill Canal Park
The Schulykill River Sojourn is a week-long paddle of the Schuylkill River, starting in Schuylkill Haven and ending in Philadelphia. As the paddlers come to Lock 60, the public can join them for a plentiful pasta dinner that includes a short presentation. Preregistration and payment are recommended; the event is rain or shine.
THE DIXIE SWIM CLUB
Five Southern women, whose friendships began years ago on their college swim team, set aside a weekend every August to recharge. Free from husbands, kids and jobs, they meet at the same beach cottage in the Outer Banks to catch up, laugh and meddle in each other's lives. This touching comedy at DCP Theatre focuses on four of those weekends over a span of 33 years.
MONTGOMERY COUNTY STUDIO TOUR
Fifty-one artists from 20 studios across Montgomery County are linking their creative creations in a weekend full of opportunity to explore, interact and enjoy. The participants’ locations have been conveniently mapped into a drivable journey that art lovers can self-direct online. Whether you’re interested in sculpture, oils, watercolors, photography or something on the unconventional side, this tour is the place to find it.
The Wharton Esherick Museum
Each winter, the Wharton Esherick Museum closes, and each spring, it emerges again like a fanciful butterfly. All summer long – on the second Sunday of every month (including June 10) – docents in each room facilitate self-directed tours of this whimsical museum.
Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania
The dynamic Victorian garden of Morris Arboretum goes stylishly retro, reflecting the time before electricity and fossil fuels, when steam drove adventure and exploration. Art meets science in this engaging day outdoors.
Leave the crabby people at home and get your summer season off to a delicious start. The menu for this bash at Normandy Farm includes Maryland hard-shell crabs, crab cakes, fresh catch of the day, lobster bisque, Old Bay grilled chicken, clams on the half shell, sausage & kielbasa, salads and desserts (waffle sundae bar! Bring it!). The Joe Divita trio provides live music.
AMBLER ARTS & MUSIC FESTIVAL
The 2017 Ambler Arts Festival, hosted by Ambler Main Street, is so extensive that it closes Butler Avenue, giving the main thoroughfare over to more than 70 exhibitors of art, acrylics, watercolor, sculpture, photography, pottery, fiber, wood work, jewelry and hand-crafted items. On the music front, Friday’s live playlist is five hours long, followed by Saturday’s wall-to-wall sound, a full 11 hours of performance.
MARCH-OUT OF THE CONTINENTAL ARMY
Valley Forge National Historical Park
Walk in the footsteps of the Continental Army along the historic trace road used by the army as they departed Valley Forge in June 1778 in pursuit of the British Army. This program at Valley Forge National Historical Park includes historical interpreters in Continental uniform and – hold your ears – firing of period muskets.
THE TRUCK STOPS HERE: MOBILE MADNESS
Boyertown Museum of Historic Vehicles
It’s the third annual Food Truck Fair at the Boyertown Museum of Historic Vehicles. The programming here is extensive, including unique bicycles, a history of food trucks and, of course, plenty of food to nibble on. One of the most popular displays is the museum’s own 1958 Mister Softee ice cream truck, doling out summery treats.
Valley Forge National Historical Park
Set your sights on the heavens at the model airplane field of Valley Forge National Historical Park as members of the Delaware Valley Amateur Astronomers serve as guides to the twinkling lights of summer evenings. From 8:30 – 11 p.m., the public can peer through an array of preset telescopes and see the wonders of space for themselves.
MICHELANGELO: LOVE AND DEATH
June 18, 24
Bryn Mawr Film Institute
The spectacular sculptures and paintings of Michelangelo seem so familiar to us, but what do we know about this renaissance genius? This documentary film at the Bryn Mawr Film Institute takes a fresh look at an enigmatic man whose life is celebrated in every mark and every stroke he made. A giant artistic force and universally loved, discover why Michelangelo is without a doubt one of the greatest artists of the Renaissance – and perhaps of all time.
Country legend Vince Gill, who first rose to prominence in the 1970s as part of Pure Prairie League, went on to record 20 studio albums that sold more than 26 million copies. He has been nominated for 40 Grammy Awards, winning 20 of them. His live concert at the historic Keswick Theater represents a buck-list experience for his legion of fans.
KNEE DEEP IN THE CREEK
Norristown Farm Park
Celebrate the beginning of summer by bringing the family to investigate Norristown Farm Park’s creek creatures. A nature expert will wade into the water – with attendees in tow – to talk about water life in all its forms. Sturdy shoes or old sneakers are recommended (no flip-flops), and preregistration is required at 610.270.0215.
LANDMARKS IN LIGHTS
Bryn Athyn Historic District
This yearly event is one of the most uniquely beautiful evenings in all of Montgomery County. The three jewels of the Bryn Athyn Historic District – Glencairn Museum, Cairnwood Estate and the Bryn Athyn Cathedral – are lit from without and within, radiating in the dark of a velvety June evening. Take a tour, visit the tower or just wander the grounds and enjoy the illuminated grandeur.
The tournament started out in 1991 with just 200 players across 40 nets. It now encompasses a four-day tournament of 3,200 players spiking balls over 150 nets. If you love volleyball – or the competitive spirit of sport in general – you need to be at Manatawny Park in Pottstown. Spectators can witness the world’s largest grass doubles tournament while enjoying opening-ceremony fireworks, gourmet food, clothing vendors, an onsite massage therapist and high-energy music.
TOO MANY GAMES
Greater Philadelphia Expo Center
Calling all gamers! This show at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center isn’t playing around; it’s a premier event highlighting video games, board games, CCGs and tabletop gaming. TooManyGames been known for its video game music concerts, chiptunes, industry panels, panels by famous YouTubers and brand new game releases for established consoles.
THE SOUTHERN EDGE BAND
Green Lane Park
Green Lane Park’s summer program of free outdoor performances is a once-a-month treat, an opportunity to enjoy cooler temps after sunset while snacking on refreshments brought from home. The June 24 performance is by Southern Edge, a five-piece, rock-country group that, for more than a decade, has been getting local audiences on their feet.
A LOVERLY NIGHT
Act II Playhouse
Having covered several productions at Act II Playhouse over the years (including here and here), we know how impressive their work is. That level of stagecraft, however, takes resources, which leads to this first annual fundraiser. Singer-performers Tony Braithwaite and Eileen Cella present a night of all things My Fair Lady: songs, scenes, stories and the history of the musical. Cocktail attire – or perhaps a hat appropriate for the Ascot races – is encouraged.
COLONIAL CAMP 2017
Peter Wentz Farmstead
Okay, so it’s summer vacation and the kids are enjoying the break from school. But that doesn’t mean they can’t learn at least something to take back to class in September. This Peter Wentz Farmstead program for students entering grades 4-6 in fall 2017 is all about childhood activities and crafts of the colonial period. So yes, it’s educational. But it’s also fun. Preregistration is required at 610.584.5104.
BEAST OF A FEAST
Elmwood Park Zoo
Guests at this annual soiree on the savanna will indulge in the culinary excellence, music and animal encounters that have become the cornerstones of one of Norristown's premier events. This year, Crave Montco is co-sponsoring the event so plan on more restaurants, more food and more fun.
ANDREW LLOYD WEBBER TRIBUTE
You don't have to be a fan of Broadway to enjoy and appreciate the most popular composer in the history of Broadway musicals, Andrew Lloyd Webber. Singing the classics will be the world's finest countertenor, Terry Barber, whose vocal range is compared with the tones of Andrea Bocelli and Josh Groban. This tuneful night at Sellersville Theater includes music from Cats, Evita, Jesus Christ Superstar and Hamilton.