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Exploring Philly: 6 Things to Try This Semester

      A new semester has begun, which means students are once again facing the stress of schoolwork, attending classes, and most importantly, answering the question, “What are you doing this weekend?” While Eastern University is situated nicely next to the quaint town of Wayne and only a half-hour (if traffic is good) from Center City Philadelphia, finding new, fun, and affordable activities and events to attend during the semester is not always an easy task. However, there are some interesting and unique arts events happening in the area which are definitely worth checking out.

      1) Frankenstein and Dracula: Gothic Monsters, Modern Science. This exhibit, housed in the Free Library of Philadelphia, commemorates the 200th anniversary of Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein. This exhibit will include manuscripts borrowed from the Bodleian Library at Oxford University, Stoker’s very own notes he wrote while authoring Dracula, and other manuscripts borrowed from organizations across the country. Visitors will also be able to experience the Frankenstein Digital Museum via interactive portal. This exhibit ends Febr. 11, 2018.

      2) Enhancing Views of History: Terracotta Warriors and Augmented Reality. The Franklin Institute is “enhancing the visitor experience” of its Terracotta Warriors of the First Century exhibit with augmented reality. This AR technology will provide computer-generated images that display what 10 full sized ancient statues might have looked like when they were first built. This exhibit closes March 4, 2018.

      3) Philadelphia Art Museum. In addition to their pay-what-you-will Wednesdays and first Sunday of every month, the Philadelphia Art Museum is currently hosting the Johnson Collection, which includes pieces by Botticelli, Titian, Rembrandt, Monet, and Bosch. George G. Johnson left his sizeable art collection to the city of Philadelphia in 1917, and the collection is still being studied and scrutinized to this day. This exhibit will be featured in the museum until Febr. 19, 2018.

       4) Campus Philly. Campus Philly is an organization that encourages students from schools all around Philadelphia to participate in the life of the Philadelphia region. This organization hosts certain events throughout the year, such as a college skate night at the Blue Cross RiverRink on Jan. 31st, with free admission and skate rental for registered college students. In addition to sponsoring events like these, Campus Philly also provides free or discounted tickets to events in the Philadelphia area as well.

       5) Philadelphia Art Week. From March 7-11, local craftsman from the Philadelphia area will be exhibiting their work, free to the public, and attendees will be able to view the artwork and meet the artists.

      6) Concerts. While not always entirely budget friendly, Philadelphia hosts a wide variety of artists, some more famous than others. Some artists playing in the area over the next couple of months include The Killers, Stick Figure Parking, Walk the Moon, Lana Del Ray, Milky Chance, Sleeping with Sirens, and countless others.

      Though a few of these events might be a drive or a train ride away, most are free or relatively inexpensive. These events also provide students with the opportunity to view rare or priceless paintings, perhaps an opportunity few people are able to have. While going out to Pipeline Taco or Jules Pizza might never get old, if you’re looking for a change in scenery for your weekend plans, these events are worth a try!

      Sources: eventbrite.com; pcah.us; philamuseum.org; campusphilly.org; vividseats.com.

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