A fun and unique experience to be had by all, the Philadelphia Mummer’s Day Parade is a historical sensation of string bands, sequins, and feathers. The oldest folk festival in the United States, the parade traces back to the mid-17th-century, mixing the traditional Mummers Play from England, and other various European heritages. President George Washington made the Mummers Parade an official New Year’s Day custom during his 7-year residence in Philadelphia.
Today, rather than going door to door asking for cake and ale, the Mummers parade down Broad Street to be judged on their elaborate costumes and individual and group performances. After judgment in front of City Hall, the Mummers continue their jolly trek South of Center City to their club houses down 2nd Street for the unofficial “Two Street Strut”. Locals join in the fun by crowding the sidewalks to cheer, sing, dance, and party with the Mummers on their final strut to their clubhouses. The multi-block party goes on into the early morning, and is quite a time to be had.
Fancy Brigades are viewed and judged inside the Convention Center starting at 11:30. The Fancy Brigade Finale performance begins at 5 p.m. (tickets for $20-$25).
Parade Grandstand Tickets can be purchased at The Independence Visitor Center @ 6th & Market, the website below, or call 1-800-537-7676
Not to be overlooked, the Mummers Museum is located on 1100 S. 2nd St.