Independence Day: All-American Celebration
Eleven years before the Constitution was drafted, Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence, in which he described certain essential human rights. What would you include in a list of rights that you think are important and why?
At The Museum
The National Constitution Center will offer an array of patriotic festivities over Independence Week, Saturday, June 29, through Thursday, July 4, in celebration of freedom and America’s independence. Visitors can participate in a variety of family-friendly programs and activities, including flag etiquette and flag folding workshops, arts and craft activities, and interactive shows.
Wawa Hoagie Day with Free Admission
Tuesday, July 2, 9:30 a.m. – 8 p.m. Free admission courtesy of Wawa
The National Constitution Center and Wawa celebrate the 27th annual Wawa Hoagie Day honoring America’s troops. Attendees will enjoy a nine-ton hoagie salute of free Wawa hoagies served at noon to the crowd on Independence Mall, a performance by the U.S. Army Field Band, and a hoagie building competition between military teams, police, and firefighters. Wawa invites all visitors to enjoy FREE ADMISSION to the National Constitution Center. In addition to the museum’s exhibits and family-fun Independence Week programs, special programs celebrating Hoagie Day will include:
Finding the Founders Scholarly Talks and Walking Tours
Tuesday, July 2, 10:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
The National Constitution Center is partnering with neighboring sites throughout Historic Philadelphia for the annual Finding the Founders event. Scholars will share their insights on equality and freedom through the lens of the American Revolution. The program will provide an expanded understanding of Independence Day—one that sees the holiday as both a celebration and an acknowledgment of America’s ongoing struggle to achieve the ideals expressed in the nation’s founding documents.
Revolutionary War Encampment
Tuesday, July 2 – Thursday, July 4, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Front and Side Lawns and Grand Hall Lobby
At the recreated military encampment at the National Constitution Center, visitors can step back in time to watch a blacksmith forge iron, practice being a Revolutionary-era soldier with a wooden musket, stop by the medical tent to visit the surgeon, and observe Continental Army soldiers march and drill on the grounds. Presented in partnership with the 6th Pennsylvania Regiment.
Independence Week Concert
Wednesday, July 3, 2 p.m., Front Lawn
Visitors can enjoy a festive, free, outdoor concert performed by the USAF Heritage of America Concert Band. The Concert Band is comprised of over 40 professional Airman-musicians who captivate audiences on regular tours throughout the East Coast with a variety of renditions of great orchestral classics, marches, Broadway hits, jazz standards, movie music, and patriotic favorites. Presented in partnership with the U.S. Air Force Heritage of America Band.
$5 After 5 p.m. Trivia Night
Wednesday, July 3, 5 – 8 p.m.
After 5 p.m., visitors can participate in an evening of trivia, based on iCivic’s popular online, educational games, like “Do I Have the Right?” Admission to the museum is $5 after 5 p.m. Presented in partnership with iCivics.
Family Fun Activities
Saturday, June 29 – Thursday, July 4, All Day
Visitors can: Don colonial outfits and pose for one-of-a-kind photos. Play graces, hoop and stick, nine pin, and other games popular during the Revolutionary era. Step inside an actual voting booth and cast their vote for their favorite founding figure. Presented in partnership with the Philadelphia City Commissioner’s Office. Create arts and crafts projects to take home.
Independence Day Show
Saturday, June 29 – Monday, July 1, 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. Tuesday, July 2, 10 a.m., 12 p.m., 2 p.m., 4 p.m., and 6 p.m. Wednesday, July 3 – Thursday, July 4, 10 a.m., 12 p.m., 2 p.m. Grand Hall Overlook Stage
From parades to protests, cannons to flags waving, explosive words to fiery demonstrations, this show takes an in-depth look at the celebration of freedom from the early days of American independence to the present day.
Giant Flag Folding Challenge
Saturday, June 29 – Thursday, July 4, 3:30 p.m., Front or Side Lawn
Visitors can help members of the museum’s staff fold a giant 20-by-30-foot American flag.
Hamilton’s Early Life
Tuesday, July 2 – Thursday, July 4, 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 2:30 p.m., Main Lobby
In conjunction with the Center’s feature exhibit, Hamilton: The Constitutional Clashes That Shaped a Nation, this interactive lobby show introduces visitors to the story of Alexander Hamilton’s early life. Visitors will learn about his experience growing up in the Caribbean and his journey to the United States, his struggle to obtain an education, and his time as a Revolutionary soldier at the right hand of George Washington.
The Road to Freedom: The Story of Slavery in America
Tuesday, July 2 – Thursday, July 4, 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 3 p.m., Main Lobby
At this interactive program, visitors will learn about the story of slavery in America, from the period of the Constitution’s signing in 1787 up to the beginning of the American Civil War. The program will examine how the initial clauses and compromises over slavery were built into the original union and how these fractures would eventually become so wide that the nation as it had previously stood ceased to exist.
Admission during Independence Week includes access to the National Constitution Center’s new permanent exhibit, Civil War and Reconstruction: The Battle for Freedom and Equality; the interactive main exhibit, The Story of We the People; the signature multimedia, theatrical performance of Freedom Rising presented in the Sidney Kimmel Theater; and the iconic Signers’ Hall, featuring 42 life-size, bronze statues of the Founding Fathers. Visitors also have access to the Center’s feature exhibits, including American Treasures: Documenting the Nation’s Founding, an intimate look at the rarest early drafts of the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights; Constituting Liberty: From the Declaration to the Bill of Rights, highlighting the three most important documents in American history; and the Center’s Hamilton: The Constitutional Clashes That Shaped a Nation exhibit, which highlights the competing ideas of Alexander Hamilton and his legendary rivals.
In the Classroom
- American Flag Pinwheels
- Design Your Own Flag
- Lady Liberty Hats
- Liberty Bell Sun Catchers
- Patriotic Wreaths
- Uncle Sam Hats