Bastille Day 2011 Philadelphia Events in Fairmount and More


If you can’t celebrate Bastille Day in France, the best place is right here, where Bastille Day 2011 Philadelphia Events last from Thursday, July 14 – Bastille Day itself – through Saturday, July 17 – the re-enactment of the storming of the Bastille at Eastern State Penitentiary. The entire festival takes place in the rapidly gentrifying, hip neighborhood, north of Center City, that goes by the name of Fairmount.

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Getting to Bastille Day 2011 Philadelphia Events in Fairmount – We Recommend SEPTA and/or the Phlash, Although There Is Parking Available

Due to the large crowds (over 5,000 people, usually) for the Saturday street festival, we strongly recommend SEPTA and/or the Phlash purple trolley (although be advised that the Phlash stops running between 5:30 PM-6:00 PM, so you’d have to take a cab back to Center City, after that). Everything you need to know about taking SEPTA there, can be found in our comprehensive, standalone guide on How to Travel to Eastern State Penitentiary.

Bastille Day 2011 Philadelphia Events – Festival Schedule

Thursday, July 14 – Fairmount French Fling Bar Crawl – 7 PM

Fairmount is loaded with trendy, high-quality bars and taverns, and all will have a Gallic theme for this bar crawl, which takes place on Bastille Day, itself. Eight local establishments will be offering specials. However, not all are equally close to Eastern State Penitentiary. At the bottom of this guide, we'll provide the breakdown of where each of the participating establishments are located, with their distance from the festival.

Friday, July 15 – Fairmount Goes French – 5 PM - ??

In addition, the Philadelphia Museum of Art - located just five blocks west of Eastern State Penitentiary, on 26th Street and the Benjamin Franklin Parkway - has its "Art After 5" program with a French theme.

All of the above establishments will be offering French-themed menu and bar choices. Worth noting is the French Trivia Wheel of Fortune at London Bar and Grill, with prizes for those best versed in French history and culture.

For the family, there will be free movie screenings (Cinema Francaise), at the lawn behind Eastern State itself. Cartoons featuring the famous Warner Brothers amorous skunk, Pepe Le Pew, will be screened at 8 PM, with Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame at 8:30 PM.

Saturday, July 16 – Bastille Day Street Festival – 2 PM to 6 PM

Fairmount Avenue will be closed to traffic, for an enormously enjoyable street festival, celebrating all things French. Everything is free, except for tours of Eastern State Penitentiary. You have two options if you’d like to visit that day:

The ordinary tour is $12, which you can take all day. However, after the storming of the Bastille itself (which begins at 5:30 PM), you can take a Twilight Tour from 6:30 PM to 8 PM; this is a 20-minute, abridged tour, for $10.

Bastille Day 2011 Philadelphia Events Festival - Participating Establishments Within A Stone's Throw of Eastern State Penitentiary

RECOMMENDED - Jack's Firehouse - 2130 Fairmount Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19130 - 215.232.9000

Location - Fairmount Avenue, between 21st and 22nd Streets; it's literally across the street from Eastern State Pen.

RECOMMENDED - London Grill - 2301 Fairmount Avenue - Philadelphia, PA 19130 - 215.978.4545

Location - 23rd and Fairmount Avenue, it's literally down the street from Eastern State Pen, which is at 2124 Fairmount Avenue, on the same side of the street.

RECOMMENDED - Rembrandt's Restaurant and Bar - 741 North 23rd Street, Philadelphia, PA 19130 - 215.763.2228

Location - At the intersection of 23rd Street and Aspen Street, if you walk out the door and look left, you'll be facing the western wall of Eastern State Penitentiary, which runs down 22nd Street.

Mugshots Coffeehouse & Café - 2100 Fairmount Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19130 - 215.500.7650

Location - Directly across the street from Eastern State Penitentiary.


Bastille Day 2011 Philadelphia Events Festival - Participating Establishments Within A Few Blocks of Eastern State Penitentiary

RECOMMENDED - The Belgian Café - 21st and Green Streets, Philadelphia, PA - 215.235.3500

Location - At the intersection of 21st Street and Green Street. The Belgian Café is not located just a stone's throw from Eastern State Penitentiary. It's a 3 ½ block walk.

When you leave The Belgian Café, head north on 21st Street, for three blocks, until you arrive at the intersection of 21st and Fairmount Avenues, where you'll see the front of Eastern State Penitentiary.

Other July 2011 Philadelphia Events - Our Guide

Want to know what else is going on in July? Check out our July 2011 Philadelphia Events Guide.


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