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Exploring the Streets of Philadelphia

Free Library of Philadelphia

In addition to being an incredible resource for any student, the Free Library of Philadelphia offers several events, both ticketed and free.

The multiple-story building holds any type of book imaginable, as well as an extensive collection of music, movies and newspapers. All of these resources can be signed out with a student identification card.

Numerous authors will grace the library’s floor throughout the fall, including Robert J. Shiller (Sept. 11), Garrison Keillor (Oct. 5), Anne Rice (Oct. 10) and a graphic novels panel?(Nov. 6), all beginning at 7:30 p.m. For a complete listing of author events, visit www.freelibrary.org.

More recently, a scene from the new Transformers movie was filmed on the library’s ornate staircase.

Hidden on the library’s third floor is a unique collection of rare books. The section is closed off with glass doors and guests are asked to lock up their personal belongings before they look around. Amongst the old compositions sits Grip, Charles Dickens’ pet raven, now stuffed, that inspired Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven.”

Rodin Museum

One of the lesser known, and cheapest, museums within the Art District is the Rodin Museum. If walking along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, one only needs to look for the famous sculpture of “The Thinker” to find the entrance.

Just past the hunched man is a peaceful courtyard with a pond and short paths leading to the door of the museum. A box located inside suggests a three-dollar donation, after which guests are free to meander through the rooms displaying Auguste Rodin’s sculptures, including the well-known “Gates of Hell.” Free public tours are also available. The museum is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday.

Franklin Institute

One of few museums to have state of the art sound and great picture focus, the Franklin’s Tuttleman IMAX theater attracts visitors on its own. The new Batman film, The Dark Knight, will be showing until Sept. 29.

Franklin’s current feature attraction, “Real Pirates,” began on May 31 and continues until Nov. 2. The exhibit includes the Whydah, a authentic pirate ship that was discovered in American waters, and more than 200 artifacts, such as gold, jewelry and coins.

Tickets for the museum vary, depending on one’s age and preferred attractions. However, every third Wednesday of the month the Franklin offers free admission from 5 to 8 p.m.

Philadelphia Museum of Art

The Philadelphia Museum of Art celebrates the end of each week with Art After 5. The Friday event combines the sounds of emerging Jazz musicians and refreshments with the beauty within the museum’s walls.

The museum costs ten dollars for students during the week, but is free on Sundays.

In addition, students may be interested in the popular College Day on the Parkway, Sept. 27, when numerous vendors and groups run booths along the road, handing out gifts, and entrance to many of the above attractions is free.

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