What To Do: Ridin’ the rails with the Easter Bunny

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By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times

West Chester Railroad

The Easter Bunny is known for hopping around but not always. Sometimes, he opts for a different form of locomotion – with real locomotives.

Sometimes, instead of bouncing along the ground, the big happy rabbit rides a train. This weekend, the holiday bunny will be riding trains all around the area.

One of the best train rides with the Easter Bunny is the one presented by the West Chester Railroad (Market Street Station, West Chester, www.wcrailroad.com).

The special “Easter Bunny Express” trains will run on March 30 and 31 at noon and 2 p.m. each day.

The 75-minute journey on the trail line’s heated decorated train travels through Chester Creek Valley. The Easter Bunny will be greeting everyone at Market Street Station and then going along for the ride to Glen Mills.

Adult fare for the West Chester Railroad trips is $30. Tickets for children (ages 2-12) are $25 while toddlers (ages 9-23 months) get to ride for $10.

The Wilmington & Western Railroad

The Wilmington & Western Railroad (2201 Newport Gap Pike, Wilmington, Delaware, 302-998-193, www.wwrr.com) will run its “Easter Bunny Express” on March 29 and 30 at 12:30 and 2:30 p.m.

The Easter Bunny hops aboard the train for a 1.5-hour round-trip ride to Ashland and hands out special treats to all of the kids onboard.

The Easter Bunny will visit everyone aboard the train and pose for pictures. This is a great way to welcome Spring and bring the family out for a fun time on the rails.

This event is powered by one of the rail line’s historic first-generation diesel locomotives.

Tickets for these trains are $27 for adults, $26 for senior citizens and $25 for children.

The New Hope and Ivyland Railroad (32 West Bridge Street, New Hope, 215-862-2332, www.newhoperailroad.com) is running its annual Easter Bunny Express on March 30 and 31 with departures at starting at 11 a.m.

The Easter Bunny is going to ride onboard the train where he will visit with each child, hand out special treats and pose for pictures. Coach tickets start at $47 for adults and $45 for children (ages 12-plus) and $10 for toddlers (under 2).

The train ride departs from and returns to the New Hope Train Station. Riders can take in the sights of early spring as the Easter Bunny visits with all of the children handing out special candy treats and posing for photos taken by the railroad staff.

The Strasburg Rail Road (Route 741, Strasburg, 717-687-7522, www.strasburgrailroad.com) is running a special train on Saturdays and Sundays in March – the “Wine & Cheese Train.”

Passengers can enjoy the luxurious, climate-controlled first-class accommodations and a tasting of select wine, cheese, and crackers as they travel in style down the tracks from Strasburg to Paradise and back. The train departs at 6 p.m. and the total trip time is 45 minutes.

“Wine & Cheese Train” boarding is 30 minutes before the scheduled departure. Riders must be 21 or older and have their photo ID ready when they board.

Featured wines are carefully selected from Waltz Vineyards, and cheeses are paired accordingly. Beer and select non-alcoholic beverages are also available for purchase upon request. Riders can purchase a souvenir wine glass on board the train if desired. Glasses are $7 each.

In accordance with Pennsylvania law, alcohol is only served during the train ride. We are not permitted to serve alcoholic beverages while the train is berthed in the station.

This popular train is available on select Friday and Saturday evenings throughout the season. Tickets are $65.

The Strasburg Rail Road is also running its “Easter Bunny Train” from March 29-31.

The Northern Central Railway (2 West Main Street, New Freedom, www.northerncentralrailway.com) is running its “Eggspecially Fun Bunny Run!” on March 29 and 30.

The special excursion will take passengers to Glen Rock and back – allowing them to take in views of the scenic Heritage Rail Trail County Park. The Easter Bunny’s Helper will be on the train for photo ops.

After returning to New Freedom, children can participate in an egg hunt (weather permitting). Each child will receive a free treat bag, including a bunny pretzel donated by Smittie’s Soft Pretzels.

Departure times are 10 a.m. and noon on Friday and 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m. on Saturday.Tickets prices are — Adults (13 and older), $26.99; Children (3-13), $19.99.

The coaches are pushed and pulled by the rail line’s vintage PRR GP9 Diesel Locomotive, built-in 1959.

This is a one-hour excursion. Tickets will be printed and available for pick up at the ticket booth on the day of the excursion.

The Colebrookdale Railroad (South Washington Street, Boyertown, www.colebrookdalerailroad.com) is running its “Easter Eggs-press” on March 30.

A good way for families to make Easter memories that will last a lifetime is to join Peter Cottontail aboard this special ride on the Colebrookdale Railroad!

Kids can visit with the Easter Bunny outside and join other children in the search for Easter eggs. Children will enjoy a complimentary Easter themed coloring book and 10 prefilled Easter eggs.

Tickets are $35.

The Middletown & Hummelstown Railroad (136 Brown Street, Middletown, 717-944-4435, www.mhrailroad.com) will be running its “Easter Bunny Express” trains on March 29 and 30.

The trains will depart at 1 and 2:30 p.m. on Saturday.

The Easter Bunny has a special surprise for all kids aged 11 and under – and will also be posing with children for keepsake photos of the event.

The ride is a 1.5-hour round trip.

Ticket prices are Adults (Ages 12+), $22; Children (Ages 2-11), $18; and Infant (Under 2 years, lap-held), $6.

Highland Orchards (1000 Marshallton-Thorndale Road, West Chester, www.highlandorchards.net) is presenting “Hayrides to Easter Bunny” on March 29 and 30.

Participants can enjoy a leisurely hayride to visit the Easter Bunny, hear a story about spring and receive an egg with a coupon for a treat to be redeemed back in the Market.

The event takes about 30 minutes with wagons leaving about every half hour. Event hours are from 10 a.m.-2:30 p.m. each day.

The bunny doesn’t come out in the rain! Hayrides run weather permitting. No refunds, but you can visit a different day.
Reservations are encouraged but not required.

Tickets can be purchased in the Farm Market on the day or in advance. The cost is $8 per person.

Linvilla Orchards (137 West Knowlton Road, Media, 610-876-7116, www.linvilla.com) will be presenting “Hayrides to Bunnyland” on March 29 and 30.

There’s no place quite like Bunnyland at Linvilla Orchards.

Visitors can hop aboard a hayride as it carries them through the woods to visit the Easter Bunny’s house where they will have the chance to meet Linvilla’s Easter Bunny.

One of Linvilla’s Bunny friends will tell a magical story and guests will receive a special treat.

As an added attraction, the Easter Bunny likes to take pictures with all special guests.

This hayride lasts approximately 20-30 minutes.

Tickets are $13 for ages 5 and up and $10 for ages 1-4.

“Easter Brunch at Elmwood Park Zoo” (1661 Harding Boulevard, Norristown, www.elmwoodparkzoo.org) is sacheduled for March 30 and 31.

Participants can enjoy a delicious breakfast, participate in Easter activities, and meet one of the zoo’s beloved education animals. They can also take a picture with the Easter Bunny and then enjoy exploring the Zoo.

Tickets include admission to the Zoo, brunch, a photo opportunity with the Easter Bunny and more.

The Easter menu features Strip Steak, Pork Loin, Carved Turkey, Sausage, Turkey Sausage, Red bliss Potatoes, Waffle Bar with Fried Chicken, Pasta Primavera, Mac and Cheese Shells, Omelette Bar, Scrambled Eggs, Quiche Danish, Cinnamon Buns, Dessert Cart, and various beverages.

Prices start at $115 for a table of two.

Sesame Place (100 Sesame Road, Langhorne, www.sesameplace.com) may be closed for park rides and activities but there’s still furry fun to be had.

The amusement park in Bucks County will celebrate Elmo’s Eggstravaganza now through April 7.

Guests can visit Sesame Place Philadelphia for a hoppin’ good time with exciting rides, entertaining shows, the Sesame Street Party Parade and special Easter fun with everyone’s favorite furry friends.

Visitors can enjoy soaring, spinning, whirling and twirling on Sesame Street-themed rides, get photos with your favorite friends in their Eggstravaganza attire, meet and take photos with the Easter Bunny, go on a scavenger hunt for Easter Eggs around the park, and so much more.

They also will be able to dance and sing along to the Sesame Street Party Parade, the Furry Friends Bunny Hop Dance Party and The Magic of Art.

Theme Park admission and parking fees are not required for entry.

Peddler’s Village (Routes 202 and 263, Lahaska, 215-794-4000, www.peddlersvillage.com) will present the “Fifth Annual “PEEPS® in the Village” now through April 14 (except on Easter Sunday).

The popular event showcases the creative talents of regional residents–and the longstanding allure of the colorful candies. There will be more than 130 marshmallow masterpieces carefully crafted with bright bunnies and chicks in inspired, inventive settings.

The event will start at 10 a.m. each day except on Sundays when it opens at 11 a.m.

Weekday and weekday evening visits are strongly encouraged. Lines and wait times can be long on weekends.

Longwood Gardens (Route 1, Kennett Square, 610-388-1000, www.longwoodgardens.org) is now featuring one of its popular annual special events – “Spring Blooms.”

Right now, the “star” bloom is the Blue Poppy a.k.a. “Meconopsis ′Lingholm′.”

Longwood Gardens forces blue poppies to flower every year in March. This cultivar, ‘Lingholm’, produces large flowers that are four inches in diameter on average. Blue-poppies, native to the high elevations of the Himalayan Mountains, are infrequently cultivated outside their native habitat. Given the right conditions, however, they can thrive in gardens located in the northern regions of North America and Europe.

Other showcase blooms this week are Glory-of-the-snow (upward facing, sky blue flowers), Silver-squill (small, bulbous plants that are a striking dark gray with vivid green patches and a deep violet underside), Yulan Magnolia (a deciduous tree native to central and eastern China), Clivia (lightly fragrant, buttery yellow flowers with overlapping petals that produce a beautiful floral display) and Star Magnolia (early blooming deciduous with fragrant, double white flowers).

Inside Longwood’s Conservatory, visitors can check out the towering Clerodendrum schmidtii (chains of glory) as well as nearly 300 blooming orchids on display in the site’s newly renovated Orchid House.

A new attraction this year is Longwood Gardens’ “Science Saturdays” series.

Beyond the boundaries of the formal gardens, Longwood stewards a rich variety of natural habitats. The rolling terrain of the Pennsylvania piedmont and changing ways people have used land over time provide us with diverse conditions for plant and animal life. Dr. Lea Johnson, Associate Director, Land Stewardship and Ecology, will reveal how patterns in the landscape reveal both history and potential futures for biodiversity.

As always, admission by “Timed Ticket” — tickets issued for specific dates and times. Timed ticketing limits the number of people in the Gardens at any given time and allows guests to enjoy minimal lines and a better viewing experience.

You may enter the Gardens up to 30 minutes prior and 30 minutes after your designated time. Make every effort to arrive at your designated reservation time. Earlier or later arrivals may not be accommodated.

Admission to Longwood Gardens is $25 for adults, $22 for seniors (ages 62 and older) and college students, $18 for active military and veterans and $13 for youth (ages 5-18).

A popular venue where you can enjoy flowers up close is Tyler Arboretum (515 Painter Road, Media, 610-566-9134, www.tylerarboretum.org).

The arboretum’s schedule for this weekend features the “Saturday Wildflower Walk: Early Spring Edition” on March 23 at 1 p.m.

At the “Saturday Wildflower Walk,” wildflower expert Dick Cloud will lead an informative two-hour hike that will take visitors through meadows, woods, and occasionally streamside. These walks are for those who have a love of plants, their role in ecology, or for those who want to learn more.

Admission to Tyler Arboretum is $18 for adults and $10 for children (ages 3-17) and Military with valid ID.

Every Saturday and Sunday in March and April, the Chaddsford Winery (632 Baltimore Pike, Chadds Ford, 610-388-6221, http://www.chaddsford.com) is presenting “Reserve Tastings – Wine & Cheese.”

Guests will join the CFW Crew for an intimate and educational 60-minute experience in the Barrel Room. The trained staff will guide them through a pre-selected tasting of five widely diverse and award-winning wines from across our portfolio. The selections will be paired alongside seasonal local cheeses and other accoutrements to enhance your tasting experience.

The staff will also discuss topics such as grape growing conditions at our partner vineyards and the onsite winemaking process from production to aging and bottling.

The 2024 Pairing Line Up is ’22 Sparkling White paired with Éclat Blood Orange Pâte de Fruits, ’22 Dry Rosé: Redux paired with Fresh Chèvre with Local Spring Honey, ’21 Harbinger paired with Sea Salt Kettle-Cooked Potato Chips with Wild Mushroom Confit, Good Vibes Only paired with Noble Brie and Small Batch Sour Cherry Spread, and Revolution (the winery’s very first port-style fortified wine).

Reserved seatings are $35 per person.

This month, Penns Wood Winery (124 Beaver Valley Road, Chadds Ford, 610-459-0808, Penns Woods Winery – HOME) is pairing wine and cupcakes.

Every weekend in March, visitors will be able to experience the winery’s highly anticipated annual pairing with out-of-the-box custom flavors developed in partnership with the Food Network’s Cupcake Wars winning shop Dia Doce!

Reservations are required to enjoy in person or you can order a Take Home Pairing Kit for a fun night in.

Tickets are $36.

The Philadelphia Zoo has been a habitat for an amazing array of animals ever since its opening day in July 1874.

The Zoo welcomed a new inhabitant this week.

Philadelphia Zoo is excited to announce the birth of a white-handed gibbon, an endangered ape species native to Southeast Asia. The Zoo team has named the baby boy Eros after the asteroid that orbits Mars.
The Zoo’s animal team says the baby boy, born just before keeper staff arrived on Thursday, March, 14, is healthy and continues to nurse from mom who’s demonstrating all the right behaviors caring for him. The baby, born to 35-year-old mom Phoenice (pronounced fuh-NIECE) and 34-year-old dad Mercury, has two older siblings at the Zoo: 5-year-old brother Polaris and 2-year old sister Ophelia.
The baby’s birth is a part of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan (SSP) breeding program to ensure the survival of this species and maintain a genetically diverse population.
White-handed gibbons are listed as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) with threats including hunting, the pet trade and habitat loss.

Additionally, for the next two-and-one-half months, the Zoo will be home to a sextet of Trolls.

Now through April 15, the Philadelphia Zoo (3400 West Girard Avenue, Philadelphia) is hosting the East Coast debut of Thomas Dambo’s “TROLLS: Save the Humans,” produced by Imagine Exhibitions. This represents the first-ever winter feature experience at Philadelphia Zoo.

The world’s leading “recycle” artist has created these six, folklore-inspired Trolls using repurposed wood. The Trolls are on a mission to inspire humans to take better care of nature. The Trolls, ranging up to 15 feet tall, will be located throughout the Zoo’s 42-acre campus.

“TROLLS” were created by artist Thomas Dambo, who currently lives and works in Copenhagen, Denmark.  Born in Odense, Denmark in 1979, Dambo’s mission is to create art that inspires people to explore, have adventures in nature, and show that recycled goods can be turned into something beautiful.

Dambo’s colossal troll sculptures range in height from 16-50 feet and ‘live’ as permanent or semi-permanent installations in parks, greenspaces, industrial parks, and in other site-specific locations around the world. Each folklore-inspired sculpture is imbued with expression and character and is built entirely from reclaimed materials.

Each Troll has a unique name and story. There are six Trolls who will be taking up residence at the Philadelphia Zoo through April 15.

They all believe rethinking how we live our daily lives will help save the planet for all animals, including humans, and they want to share their ideas. They want all humans to reduce trash, reuse everything, and recycle when they can. The Trolls believe that these actions and others to protect wildlife and wild places are important steps to help save the planet for all animals, including humans.
The exhibition is included in admission to the Zoo.

At Philadelphia Zoo, the Zoo moves around you.

Pioneering Zoo360, a first-in-the-world system of animal exploration trails, Philadelphia Zoo has inspired more than 70 zoos around the globe to design new ways to invite animals to travel and roam through their own campuses.

Passing through treetops, crossing over pathways and connecting habitats, Zoo360 provides Philadelphia Zoo’s beautiful big cats, playful lemurs, and lively monkeys. Visitors can check out the Zoo’s sloth bear cubs in Bear Country, the new Ankole cattle hillside, Amur tigers at Big Cat Falls, western lowland gorillas in PECO Primate Reserve, Victorian crown pigeons at McNeil Avian Center, and hippos, zebras and white rhino throughout African Plains.

They can also share a space with critically endangered lemurs as they wander through our new Lemur Island, look up as they feed the world’s tallest animal at Giraffe Experience, or get up-close as they hand-serve colorful birds their meals at Wings of Asia.

Philadelphia Zoo is one of the region’s foremost conservation and education organizations and home to endangered, and in some cases extinct, animals in the wild. By connecting people with wildlife, Philadelphia Zoo creates joyful discovery and inspires action for animals and habitats.

Admission prices start at $19 for adults and children. Tickets are now available on philadelphiazoo.org.

“Under the Canopy: Animals of the Rainforest,” which will run now through September 2 at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University (1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, ansp.org), is an immersive exhibition introducing visitors to the fascinating world of rainforests and the animals that inhabit them.

You can learn about unique plants and rainforest ecology as you encounter a live sloth, boa constrictor and other animals that call these habitats home. You will see the importance of rainforests to the planet as you explore interactive discovery stations, dynamic displays and engaging programming.

Presented in English and Spanish, “Under the Canopy” will engage students of all ages, with accompanying curriculums on rainforests, water cycles, the science of diversity, deforestation and soil, how kids can save the planet and so much more. Hands-on interactives are complemented by life-size, climbable animal sculptures, including a gorilla, tortoise, crocodile, red-eye tree frog and Banyan tree.

All exhibits are included with the purchase of a general admission ticket.

Admission prices are — Adults (Age 13 and above), $22; Children (Age 2 – 12), $18.

The newest exhibition at the Brandywine Museum of Art (1 Hoffman Mill Road, Chadds Ford, brandywine.org), “Jamie Wyeth: Unsettled,” opened last weekend and will run through June 9.

“Jamie Wyeth: Unsettled” will trace a persistent vein of intriguing, often disconcerting imagery over the career of renowned artist Jamie Wyeth (b. 1946).

This major exhibition — organized by the Brandywine and five years in the making — features more than 50 works drawn from museum and private collections across the country that focus on the artist’s arresting, visceral imagery, revealing fascinating insight into Wyeth and the art of visual storytelling. Following its debut at the Brandywine, the exhibition will travel to four additional art museums around the United States.

“Jamie Wyeth is a renowned American painter who has created his own legacy and redefined what it means to be a Wyeth,” said Thomas Padon, the James H. Duff Director of the Brandywine Museum of Art.

“This exhibition takes a fresh look at the artist’s oeuvre and with remarkable nuance plumbs a rich vein of the uncanny throughout Wyeth’s six-decade career,”.

As the title suggests, “Jamie Wyeth: Unsettled” focuses on a single through line in Wyeth’s work — one in which ominous stillness, postapocalyptic skies, frightening shifts in scale, and strange vantage points seem to highlight the vulnerability of the human condition. With his startling compositions and a masterful use of media, color and texture, Wyeth creates an immersive, synesthetic experience that both engages and upsets visual and emotional equilibrium.

While frequently countered and even hidden by the artist’s fuller body of work — particularly his well-known coastal views, farmscapes, and portraits — a consistent thread of darker, more troubling imagery has been a constant in the artist’s work over the past 60 years. His work has evolved from the ultra-realistic visions and virtuoso brushwork of his youth into a mature expressionism in which intense color and dramatic use of paint electrify his canvases.

As this exhibition demonstrates, Wyeth is at home with uneasy subjects and a master of the unsettled mood in each of these stages of his career.

The exhibition immerses viewers into natural and supernatural worlds, from works inspired by the artist’s time spent in Maine—which frequently acknowledge the power of the sea and its fearsome ability to render humans helpless—to forest-based works from Pennsylvania that delve into the supernatural side of nature.

“Jamie Wyeth: Unsettled” is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue co-published by Rizzoli Electa and Brandywine.

Following its presentation at the Brandywine, the exhibition will travel to the Farnsworth Art Museum (Rockland, ME), Greenville County Museum of Art (Greenville, SC), Dayton Art Institute (Dayton, OH), and the Frye Art Museum (Seattle, WA).

Museum admission is $20 adults, $18 seniors (65+), $8 children (ages 6-18) and students with ID and free for children (ages five and under).

On March 29 and 30, Rockwood Park & Museum (4671 Washington Street Ext, Wilmington,  Delaware, 4671 Washington Street Ext, Wilmington, www.newcastlede.gov/431/Rockwood-Park-Museum) is presenting “Guided Museum Tours.”

Explore the grandeur, history and beauty of Rockwood Mansion, home of the Shipley, Bringhurst and Hargraves families for 120 years. This tour emphasizes the magnificent mansion interiors and stories of the families that lived there. Reservations are suggested. Tour involves stairs. All ages.

Tickets for the 90-minute guided tour are $10.

Tours will take place at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m.

Historic Odessa (Main Street, Odessa, Delaware, 302-378-4119, www.historicodessa.org) is both a scenic and an historic site in Delaware.

On March 1, Historic Odessa reopened for spring tours and celebrated the beginning of its 2024 season.

Known in the 18th-century as Cantwell’s Bridge, Odessa played a vital role in commercial life along the Delaware River as a busy grain shipping port.

Today, visitors can stroll along tree-lined streets and admire examples of 18th- and 19th-century architecture in one of the best-preserved towns in Delaware. They can also tour a remarkable collection of antiques and Americana preserved in period room settings and quaint exhibits.

Historic Odessa is open to the public from March through December, Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. and Sunday from 1-4 p.m.  The site is also open Monday by reservation.

Now through March 31, Historic Odessa presents “Women of Courage, Independence and Perseverance,” as it celebrates Women’s History Month.

“Women of Courage, Independence and Perseverance,” a special petite case exhibit in the Wilson-Warner House will be offered as part of the general tour. It will explore the lives of four extraordinary Wilson and Corbit women who exemplified perseverance and courage at a time when women faced many barriers to their independence.

Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library (Route 52, Wilmington, Delaware, 800-448-3883, www.winterthur.org) just opened its 2023 season.

Visitors are invited to celebrate the early bulb display of the March Bank with self-guided garden tours.

On Saturdays and Sundays in March, Winterthur is hosting an event called “Take a Hike!”

Hikers will be able to explore the site’s trails with Winterthur estate guides. Winterthur’s 1,000-acre estate features 25 miles of walking paths and trails and 10 miles of roads to discover.

The walk, which runs from 2:30-4 p.m., is included with admission.

Winterthur is turning blue as the glory-of-the-snow and scilla are appearing throughout the garden, especially on the East Terrace. Warmer than normal temperatures have pushed us into “early April,” and the Winterhazel Walk is budding with the lavender and pink flowers of the Korean rhododendrons along with Lenten roses and fragrant viburnums. The Quarry Garden is filled with the sunshine-yellow cornel dogwoods, daffodils, and mahonia, with forsythia bursting into bloom nearby.
The white arrow tour has returned for the season! When the Winterthur Garden was first opened to the public, Henry Francis du Pont had white wooden arrows placed in the garden to direct visitors during spring tour to the “must-see” flowers that week. The self-guided tour starts at the Visitor Center Patio and winds through the garden, highlighting the changing colors of spring and leading guests back to the Visitor Center. The path will change weekly as the color progression dictates.

Admission to Winterthur is $22 for adults, $20 for seniors (age 62 and older) and students, and $8 for children (ages 2-11).

Hagley Museum and Library (Buck Road East entrance via Route 100, Wilmington, Delaware, 302-658-2400, www.hagley.org), a 230-acre historical village on the site of the original du Pont Company gunpowder mills in northern Delaware, has a popular ongoing attraction – “Nation of Inventors.”

Additionally, there will be three special events over the next few days “Science Sparks!” at 11 a.m. on March 29, 30 and 31, “Cannon Firings” on March 31 at 1, 2 and 3 p.m. and “Walking Tour” on April 1 at 11 a.m.

Science Sparks is a drop-in family program encouraging innovation and creativity as visitors are given a hands-on engineering challenge to complete. Visitors may build, test, and redesign their creation as they take on the role of engineer.

“Cannon Firings” demonstrations take place next to the Millwright Shop in the historic powder yard.

Demonstrations take place at 1, 2, and 3 p.m. and are included with admission and free for Hagley members.

Please note that cannon firings are weather-dependent.

With the “Walking Tour,” participants can walk through history during an in-depth, 90-minute guided tour each Monday morning from March through December. This week’s topic is  “Workers’ World Walking Tour.”

“Nation of Inventors” celebrates the American spirit of ingenuity by taking visitors on a journey from the early years of the patent system, in the 1790s, through the “golden age” of American invention, in the late 1800s. The exhibit features more than 120 patent models from Hagley’s unique collection highlighting the diverse stories of inventors from all walks of life.

Patent models are scaled representations of inventions and were part of the patent application process for nearly 100 years. “Nation of Inventors” showcases patent models representing innovations in a variety of industries from transportation and manufacturing to food preservation and medical devices.

In the exhibition, visitors will enjoy engaging experiences around every corner, testing their knowledge of innovation and hearing personal accounts from inventors.

The patent models in “Nation of Inventors” were created between 1833 and 1886. “Nation of Inventors” not only features patent models submitted by inventors from the United States, but also models from inventors in England, France, Ireland, Russia, and Spain, demonstrating an international interest in America’s intellectual property system.

“Nation of Inventors” includes patent models from well-known inventors and companies like Ball (Mason Jars), Jim Beam, Bissell, Corliss, Steinway, and Westinghouse. The exhibit presents important topics and timely themes including women inventors, Black inventors, immigrant inventors, improvements in urban living, and the ways Americans learn about and understand progress and change.

“Nation of Inventors” is located on the first two floors of Hagley’s Visitor Center. Visitors can plan to spend about 30 minutes on their self-guided tour of the exhibition.

Admission to Hagley is $20 for adults, $16 for students and seniors (62+) and $10 for children (6-14).

Spring has officially arrived, and things are coming back to life. Flowers are blooming and outdoor attractions are beginning to open for the 2023 season.

April 2 is “Opening Day 2024” for Nemours Estate (1600 Rockland Road, Wilmington, Delaware, nemoursestate.org). The entrance is located on the campus of Nemours Children’s Health, follow signs for Nemours Estate.

Originally constructed in 1910, Nemours Mansion is one of Delaware’s grandest buildings and includes the largest formal French garden in North America.

Nemours Estate comprises an exquisite, 77-room Mansion, the largest formal French gardens in North America, a Chauffeur’s Garage housing a collection of vintage automobiles, and 200 acres of scenic woodlands, meadows and lawns.

Nemours was the estate of Alfred I. duPont.

Alfred named the estate Nemours, after the French town that his great-great-grandfather represented in the French Estates General. While looking to the past and his ancestors for inspiration, Alfred also ensured that his new home was thoroughly modern by incorporating the latest technology and many of his own inventions.

The Gardens is one of the estate’s prime attractions.

The two elk at the top of the Vista are the work of French sculptor Prosper Lecourtier (1855–1924), a specialist in animal figures. Lined with Japanese cryptomeria, pink flowering horse chestnuts and pin oaks, the Long Walk extends from the Mansion to the Reflecting Pool.

The 157 jets at the center of the one-acre pool shoot water 12 feet into the air; when they are turned off, the entire “Long Walk” is reflected in the pool. The pool, five and a half feet deep in its deepest section, holds 800,000 gallons of water and takes three days to fill. The Art Nouveau-style, classical mythology-based “Four Seasons” around the pool are by French-born American sculptor Henri Crenier (1873–1948).

Admission to Nemours is $23 for adults, $21 for seniors and $10 for children.

Andalusia Historic House, Gardens and Arboretum (1237 State Road, Andalusia, www.andalusiapa.org) will have its “Season Opening” on April 1.

Located on a wooded promontory overlooking the Delaware River, Andalusia has been a stately presence on this stretch of water, just north of Philadelphia, for more than 200 years. The ancestral home of the Biddle family, Andalusia is also a natural paradise of native woodlands and spectacular gardens that have evolved over time.

Placed on the National Register of Historic Landmarks in 1966, the Big House — one of the finest examples of Greek Revival architecture in the United States — provides an unparalleled look into our nation’s past, while also offering a glimpse into the life of a family that helped to shape its future.

Its surrounding gardens delight the senses all through the year, from the tumbling, brightly colored leaves of fall to the floral extravaganza of spring and the abundance and scent of summer.

Self-Guided Garden Tours will be available Mondays through Wednesdays through November 4 (excluding holidays) at 10 a.m. or 1 p.m.

Visitors can stroll the spectacular formal gardens and native woodlands during a self-guided garden tour at their leisure and enjoy sweeping views from the banks of the Delaware River. Picnics are allowed on the grounds (with a “carry-in, carry-out” policy).

Ghost Tour of Philadelphia (215-413-1997, www.ghosttour.com), Ghost Tour of Lancaster (717-687-6687, www.ghosttour.com) and Ghost Tour of Strasburg (717-687-6687, www.ghosttour.com) operate throughout the winter and offer an eerily entertaining evening of true ghost stories and real haunted houses.

The Ghost Tour of Philadelphia, which is based on the book, “Ghost Stories of Philadelphia, PA.,” is a candlelight walking tour along the back streets and secret gardens of Independence Park, Society Hill, and Old City, where ghostly spirits, haunted houses, and eerie graveyards abound.

Participants can discover the ghost lore of America’s most historic and most haunted city with stories from the founding of William Penn’s colony to present-day hauntings.

The activity is open year-round – weekends, December-February; every night, March-November. Tickets are $24.

The Ghost Tour of Lancaster and the Ghost Tour of Strasburg are based on the book, “Ghost Stories of Lancaster, PA.”

Participants in the Ghost Tour of Lancaster explore the long-forgotten mysteries of one of America’s oldest cities, with haunting tales of otherworldly vigils, fatal curses, and star-crossed lovers. The tour provides the opportunity to experience 300 years of haunted history from the Red Rose City’s thorny past. Tickets are $20.

The Ghost Tour of Strasburg is a candlelight walking tour of the quaint and historic town of Strasburg in the heart of Pennsylvania Dutch Country. Visitors will experience an entertaining evening with a costumed tour guide spinning tales of haunted mansions, eerie graveyards, and spirits that roam the night … in a town lost in time. Tickets are $20.

Grim Philly’s “Dark Philly History Tour” (www.grimphilly.com) will be held every evening throughout the winter.

Participants can walk with tour guides from the grounds of America’s first White House, Congress, and Liberty Bell to homes and sites of Hamilton, Washington, Franklin, Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, and more than 10 other Founding-Fathers. The surprising dirt of espionage, murder, sexual license and blackmail highlight the secrets of 1776 with a ghost story or two along the way. This tour is highly researched. And your guide is a historian.

Tickets are $35.

Wonderspaces at the Fashion District (27 North 11th Street, Philadelphia, philadelphia.wonderspaces.com) is an experiential, interactive arts venue.

Building on the success of annual pop-up shows in San Diego, and its first permanent location in Scottsdale, Arizona, Wonderspaces opened a 24,000 square foot gallery space in Philly two years ago.

Wonderspaces features 14 art installations that all play with the idea of perspective.  New artworks are rotated in every few months, creating an ever-evolving, year-round show.

Tickets are for entry at a specific date and time. Visitors are welcome to stay as long as they please during operating hours. The average time spent experiencing the show is 90 minutes.

A few installations contain flashing lights, images, and patterns that may trigger seizures for people with photosensitive epilepsy. All visitors must sign a waiver prior to being admitted into the space. Adult supervision is required for visitors under 16.

 

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