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July 26, 2023

Butterflies, beer and Shakespeare in the park: Your weekend guide to things to do

Watch a Philly-themed boat parade down the shore, or adopt a pup for just 10 bucks

Weekend Things To Do
Butterfly weekend guide Calvin Mano/Unsplash

Participate in Audubon Mid-Atlantic's yearly butterfly count at the Discovery Center in Fairmount Park on Saturday.

To paraphrase Rob Thomas and Carlos Santana, this weekend will be a hot one. An excessive heat watch is in effect for Philadelphia this Friday, as temperatures are expected to climb into the high 90s and ebb only slightly by Saturday. 

That might make outdoor activities dangerous or, at the very least, extremely unappealing. But for the brave Philadelphians willing to leave their AC, butterflies and Finnish beers await. Check out those weekend activities — plus free Shakespeare musicals, boat parades and a mass dog adoption drive — in the guide below.

Count butterflies at the Discovery Center

The Discovery Center in Fairmount Park has a packed day of programming for Saturday. Between 10 a.m. and noon, Audubon Mid-Atlantic will search the area for as many butterflies as it can find, providing guides, insight and a limited supply of butterfly nets to anyone who joins the annual count. The group will also host a mussel measuring event during that time, while Philadelphia Outward Bound will run a zipline between 10 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Watch a free rock musical take on the Bard

Never choose between bass guitar and Elizabethan comedies again. "Two Gentleman of Verona," the rock musical adaptation of the Shakespeare play of the same name, is coming to Clark Park for free performances all weekend. Each night at 7 p.m., catch the show in the park's bowl at 43rd Street and Chester Avenue. Audience members can also enter a raffle to take home picnic baskets of wine, cheese and snacks.

Drink Nordic brews at SmörgåsBeer

Soak up Scandinavian culture at SmörgåsBeer, the annual summer party at the American Swedish Historical Museum. Between 6-9 p.m., vendors will hawk beers from Finland, Denmark and the local Philly scene on the museum grounds. Swedish candy and lawn games — get ready to knock down some kubbs! — will also be on hand.

Join Jim Gardner for a boat parade in Ocean City

Festooned boats will parade along the Ocean City bayfront on Saturday as part of the annual Night in Venice — and this time, expect plenty of Eagles gear and whiz. This year's theme for participating boats and homes is "It's a Philly Thing." Beloved, recently retired 6ABC anchor Jim Gardner will oversee the Philadelphia-themed festivities as grand marshal, while mascots Gritty, Swoop and the Phanatic will provide additional Philly flair. The parade starts at 6 p.m. near the Ocean City-Longport Bridge.

Adopt a dog for $10 at PSPCA

After rescuing over 170 pups from a Monroe County home, the PSPCA is straining for space. To make room for more furry friends, the rescue organization is offering $10 adoption fees on all dogs 1 year and older this weekend at its Philadelphia center. Head to 350 East Erie Ave. between Friday at noon and Sunday at 6:30 p.m. with a photo ID and proof of address to take home a new pal.

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