Philadelphia Chinese Lantern Festival Returns to Franklin Square


A 200-foot dragon, lounging panda and a walk-through Great White Shark Tunnel are just a few of the fun, colorful light installations you’ll encounter during the Philadelphia Chinese Lantern Festival at Franklin Square, on view May 1-June 30.

Now in its third year, the celebration of art and culture features 28 larger-than-life groupings of 1,500 steel-framed, silk-wrapped light installations. While fan favorites such as the dragon and pandas are familiar sights, the rest of the creations are new — including a Fairy Tree, Year of the Dog-inspired works and an interactive elephant lantern where visitors pedal a bicycle to change its colors.

After the kids snap selfies by the sculptures, enjoy authentic cultural performances (think contortion, water-spinning and feet-juggling); check out folk art from sugar painting to aluminum wire weaving; and try traditional Chinese food. The festival will also play host to theme nights and special events: join Chinatown Community Night (May 8 & June 12), bring the family pup on Wag Wednesdays (May 16 & June 20) and get creative during classes led by the Philadelphia Photo Arts Center.

Admission is $18 for adults and $12 for kids. Franklin Square is located at 200 N. 6th St., Philadelphia PA 19106.


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