Start the New Year in Style
Prepare to fill your calendar with these “must” events.
by Leigh Stuart

The year may be coming to an end, but the good times don’t have to. The following celebrations, festivals, and other special events will keep you entertained, engaged, and invigorated well into 2019.  

Dec. 31
New Year’s Eve at Valley Forge Casino Resort
Ring in 2019 in style at Valley Forge Casino Resort in King of Prussia. Guests are invited to wear their vintage best to a 1950s-themed affair at VFCR’s Event Center, to dine on surf and turf at the Revolution Chop House, and enjoy dancing and live music courtesy of the band Prime Time. After a night of entertainment and gaming, culminating in a champagne toast at midnight, head upstairs and spend the night in the cradle of comfort.

Jan. 1
The Mummers Parade
On New Year’s Day, Philadelphia’s finest will gather to strut their bold and best stuff in a tradition dating back to 1901. Cold weather won’t stop these brigades and bands, nor will it chill the spirits of the attendees lined up to view the pageantry around City Hall and down Broad Street.

Through Jan. 6
“30 Years: Art at the Michener, 1988-2018”
Celebrate a rich history of visual art with a visit to Doylestown’s storied James A. Michener Art Museum. This special exhibit chronicles the museum’s legacy and takes a look ahead at what’s to come and features works curated by local students. 

Jan. 13 to 25
Center City District Restaurant Week
Fine fare (at fair fees) will abound throughout Center City Restaurant Week, which invites diners to enjoy three-course lunches for $20 and three-course dinners for $35 at restaurants such as Alma de Cuba, Del Frisco’s, and Volver, among many others.

Jan. 19 to 27
Lambertville * New Hope Winter Festival
This celebration of the season dates back 22 years and features a host of ticketed and non-ticketed events. Free fun includes a gallery-and-antiques crawl, family festivities such as a winter bird walk and history walk sponsored by the Bucks County Audubon Society, ice sculptures, and the third annual “Soup-A-Thon” featuring  wares from participating local restaurants.

Jan. 19 to March 24
Orchid Extravaganza at Longwood Gardens
With the Orchid Extravaganza, flower power will be in full bloom at the stunning and storied Longwood Gardens. The exhibit will feature thousands of bold and beautiful flowers of all shapes and sizes, offering a warm oasis in which to escape winter’s chill.

Jan. 26
Jazz for Jay
The proceeds of this fundraiser will go to the Jay Smith Medical Trust, to help local son Jay Smith pay for his medical expenses in his battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS. From 5:30 to 10 p.m. at PineCrest Country Club in Lansdale, enjoy appetizers, a sit-down dinner, and an open bar, as well as music by the Eric Mintell Jazz Quartet. In addition, guests will enjoy a raffle, silent/live auction, and a magician.

Through March 3
Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest 
Through March 3, skaters can perfect their salchows, toe loops, and other skating moves at one Philly’s favorite rinks, Blue Cross RiverRink, which will be ringing in its 25th anniversary in 2019. Guests can warm up fireside, play arcade games, grab a bite to eat, take in the view of our city’s iconic Benjamin Franklin Bridge and, of course, zip around the ice. 

Photograph by J. Fusco for VISIT PHILADELPHIA

Published (and copyrighted) in Suburban Life magazine, December 2018.  

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