Historic Philadelphia, Inc. will be filling the month of December with family friendly fun, and romantic date opportunities. HPI is a non-profit organization that oversees Once Upon A Nation, Franklin Square, the Liberty 360 Show in the PECO Theater, and the Betsy Ross House.

Every Thursday this month is Tippler’s Tour: Yuletide Cheers & Beers. It will be departing from the Historic Philadelphia Center for a bar crawl and history lesson in the drinking traditions of colonial times. You’ll sing some songs, hear a few tales, and perhaps learn a couple new phrases for the term “drunk” as penned by one of America’s most beloved wordsmiths, Benjamin Franklin. On the tour you will enjoy drinks and snacks at Salon 401 at Omni Hotel, National Mechanics, Triumph Brewing Company, and the historical City Tavern.

Yuletide Cheers & Beers leaves from the Historic Philadelphia Center at 6th and Chestnut St on Thursday, December 6, 13, 20, and 27th at 5:30pm. Tickets are $40, $35 for seniors/students/military. Must be 21 with valid ID.

Franklin Square is open daily through the month of December for spins on the Philadelphia Park Liberty Carousel, and festive holiday rounds of Philly Mini Golf.  A certain “you know who” will be enjoying the Square on weekends and on Christmas Eve.  Might just be the perfect chance to snag a pic with Santa. Starting December 26 the countdown to the new year will begin at the Square.  Free arts and crafts ushering in the new year will be offered daily.  Monday, December 31st music and crafts will begin at 3pm with things really coming to a head at 6pm with the lowering of the Magic Square  above SquareBurger, as well as the Penn’s Landing fireworks.

Trips to Franklin Square can be made even more memorable by purchasing one of their special holiday packages.  The Franklin Square Individual Holiday Package includes one round of Philly Mini Golf, one hot cocoa, a copy of Patriots, Pirates, Heroes & Spies: Stories from Historic Philadelphia , a holiday craft ornament, as well as two rides on the Philadelphia Park Liberty Carousel and is only $25.  The Franklin Square Family Holiday Package, on the other hand, gives you a four rides on the carousel, four Mini Golf tickets, two copies of Patriots, Pirates, Heroes & Spies: Stories from Historic Philadelphia, four hot cocoas, as well as four holiday craft ornaments and is only $66.  Discount season passes for 2013 are also available.

Franklin Square is located at 6th and Race St. Open daily in December 10am-5pm, with holiday activities happening from 12pm-3pm Saturdays & Sundays and Monday, December 24th. Closed Christmas Day.  New Year’s Eve hours are 10am-8pm.  SquareBurger open weekends in December and on New Year’s Eve.

On Friday, December 7th at 5pm, The Betsy Ross House will be kicking off the yuletide season with a concert by the Waldron Mercy Academy choir and a special candlelight tour of the House.  From December 26th to December 31st a Colonial chocolate maker will be applying his trade and sharing some wisdom from 11am-4pm. On Monday, December 31st, The Betsy Ross House will be hosting Betsy’s Birthday Bash to celebrate the 261st anniversary of the birth of America’s fabled flagmaker.  The Bash will be from 11am to 4pm with free cake, courtesy of City Tavern, at 1pm.

The Betsy Ross House is located at 239 Arch St, open 10am-5pm Tuesdays thru Sundays in December; 10am-4pm Christmas Eve, closed Christmas Day.  Admission is $5 for adults, and $4 for children/students/seniors/military.  Audio tours available for adults $7, $6 children/students/seniors/military, includes admission.

Need a break from the cold?  Come take a break inside the Historic Philadelphia Center.  Free hot chocolate and cookies 12pm-3pm on weekends.  While there you could also take a gander at Liberty 360, the 360-degree, 3D show led by Benjamin Franklin.

Historic Philadelphia Center located at 6th and Chestnut St, open 10am-6pm Monday through Saturday and 11am-5pm Sundays in December, 10am-4pm Christmas Eve, closed Christmas Day.  Tickets $6 adults, $5 seniors/military/students/children 12 & under, $20 family four pack. Duration 15 minutes.

For more information on any of the above Holiday excursions please call (215)629-4026 or visit www.historicphiladelphia.org.  It is also possible to pick up tickets in person at the Historic Philadelphia Center, 6th and Chestnut St.  Tickets also available at Franklin Square, The Betsy Ross House, or the Independence Visitor Center.

On a related note, the Delaware River Waterfront will be opening up for the 19th season of the Blue Cross RiverRink at Penn’s Landing.  Hit the ice and have some fun!  Open from November 23rd – March 3rd.

Blue Cross RiverRink at Penn’s Landing is located at 101 south Columbus Blvd on the Delaware River.  Open seven days a week, including holidays.  Skate rental is $4, Public skate $9, Parking $12.  For more information or ticket purchases visit www.riverrink.com.

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