FYI Philly's final holiday list: Last-minute gifts, family fun, lights, more

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Friday, December 17, 2021
FYI Philly's final holiday list: Last-minute gifts, family fun, lights
FYI Philly has a list of festive fun for the holidays, taking in all the lights, eats and last-minute gifts.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- These Philadelphia light shows sparkle for the holidays

From City Hall to Bucks County, we have a round-up of light shows to take in this holiday season.

The region has more than a few options for a night out among the shining displays.

Electrical Spectacle Light Show Presented by PECO | Facebook | Instagram

200 N. 6th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106

A Longwood Christmas | Facebook | Instagram

1001 Longwood Road, Kennett Square, PA 19348

LumiNature at The Philadelphia Zoo | Facebook | Instagram

3400 W. Girard Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19104

Deck The Hall Light Show | Facebook | Instagram

1 South 15th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19102

Shady Brook Farm Holiday Light Show | Facebook | Instagram

931 Stony Hill Road, Yardley, PA 19067

Tinseltown Lights up holidays with 5 acres of lights

The glow of Tinseltown grabs your attention as you drive down Route 422 in Oaks, Pennsylvania.

The five-acre holiday event has millions of light structures from presents and reindeer to Gritty and the logos of Philadelphia's four major sports teams.

There is a lodge where you can grab a meal or you can grab a bite in one of the huts as you walk around.

Vendors offer a collection of gift ideas throughout the space or you can stop by and see the big man himself at Santa's Workshop.

Mrs. Claus is also on site conducting story time and taking pictures. A synthetic rink at the center of the grounds provides a skating experience for all ages.

Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular | Facebook | Instagram

The Greater Philadelphia Expo Center - 100 Station Avenue, Oaks, PA 19456

Love+Grit project helps struggling businesses, local artists

In neighborhoods throughout the city, businesses that couldn't survive the pandemic now have their windows filled with the work of a local artist.

It is the Love+Grit Storefronts project, a push to shop small Black- and Brown-owned businesses in the city while also supporting local artists and beautifying empty storefronts.

Visit Philly partnered with 12 BIPOC artists on the project; each chose two businesses.

West Philadelphia's Nazeer Sabree selected Yowie, a woman-owned lifestyle shop in Queen Village, as the inspiration for one of his artworks. The two talked about entrepreneurship and the influence of their mothers. That conversation led to Sabree's work of art at 1500 Market, depicting a mother and daughter.

Each piece of art includes a brief bio on the artist and the business, along with a QR code that will take you to the project's website where you can enter the Love + Grit sweepstakes, with a collection of prizes from 24 local businesses valued at $2,000.

The project is part of the city's Shop Black Business Friday initiative, that started last December and is back again this year.

It's also an outgrowth of Visit Philly's Love + Grit podcast. Launched at the start of the pandemic, it shares stories of entrepreneurial resilience.

Sabree hopes the storefronts project can serve as a window for change, sparking creativity in viewers and perhaps inspiring someone to take a risk and start that journey of art and/or entrepreneurship.

Love + Grit Storefronts Project | Map of artwork + businesses| Sweepstakes

Sweepstakes runs through December 30th

The National Christmas Center might be the largest collection of Christmas artifacts in the world and it has reopened with a grand new holiday exhibition.

National Christmas Center home to massive collection of Christmas artifacts in the world!

The National Christmas Center might be the largest collection of Christmas artifacts in the world.

The Center was the vision of James Morrison, also known as 'Santa Jr.' and the 'Keeper of Christmas.' He opened the original center in Paradise, Pa. It lasted nearly 20 years before closing in 2018 because of financial complications.

Enter David Abel, the steward of Stone Gables Estate, who purchased the collection and has spent the last three years reimagining the National Christmas Center.

The center reopened this year in a temporary location featuring many of the artifacts that were featured at the original location plus additions from David's collection and items from Executive Curator John Enterline.

The space is designed as Abel's hometown of Columbia, Pa., from the 1940s with storefronts decorated for the holidays. You can walk around and see collections of Buyer's Choice dolls, the original Woolworths, toy train setups, toy soldiers and doll houses.

It's meant to be a nostalgic experience.

Not far away is a three-mile drive-through light display featuring a covered bridge, an active steam engine train and a forest of Moravian stars.

The entire event has a mission-based purpose with 100% of the proceeds donated to Brittany's Hope, a foundation that aids abandoned children worldwide.

6 Holiday Hangouts: From igloos & greenhouses to getaways & the Grinch

In the shadow of Center City's high rises, the greenhouses are back at Harpers Garden.

The restaurant's new executive chef, Chaz Brown, has created a menu focused on super fresh and seasonal ingredients from local farmers like roasted chicken with white bean puree, seared octopus, parsnips soup, and grilled shrimp with arancini.

There are seasonal cocktails, like the red rum and Spiced Apple Cider

Harpers Garden | Website | Facebook | Instagram

31 S 18th Street, Philadelphia, Pa. 19103

At the new Figo in Northern Liberties, you can get your own private igloo, made toasty by a tabletop heater.

The patio bar is covered for the season and the Snow Queen and her princess friends are popping in for meet and greets, singing, dancing and doing one-on-one interactions with every child.

The spicy rigatoni is the most popular dish on the classic Italian menu but go for weekend brunch and you can also enjoy the honey ricotta toast, prosciutto-wrapped melon, and a breakfast pizza.

There's hot chocolate you can get with or without alcohol, along with an Espresso Martini and flights of wine.

Figo | Website | Instagram | Princess Brunch

1033 N 2nd Street, Philadelphia, Pa. 19123

Brunch with Santa December 19, 10am-230pm

December 21st Dinner with Belle

December 31st, 11 am-4 pm brunch, the countdown to Noon & New Years, ring in the New Year with Cinderella

The holidays at McGillin's Olde Ale House are a 161-year tradition.

The staff starts decking the halls the first Monday after Halloween and people from the city and around the world flock in.

McGillin's Olde Ale House | Website | Facebook | Instagram

1310 Drury Street, Philadelphia, Pa. 19107

Juno on Spring Garden Street has a colorful festive Mexican holiday vibe.

GM Brandon Bunce says it's the city's largest outdoor greenhouse with a giant Christmas tree as a centerpiece.

There are individual private greenhouses too, decorated with Mexican tapestries, and a menu of Mexican eats like the sopa de tortilla, suadero tacos and chile relleno.

Libations include the hot honey Margarita, an espresso martini and the Ponche Navideno, a traditional Mexican drink served around Christmas time.

Juno | Website | Facebook | Instagram

1033 Spring Garden Street, Philadelphia, Pa. 19123


For a European vacation, we head to Assembly Rooftop Lounge and its new winter wonderland called Alpine Heights.

On the 9th floor of the Logan Hotel, it offers a ski lodge vibe with gorgeous parkway and skyline views and food, wine and cocktails from the Alps.

The winter cocktails include beet you to the slopes, a plum spiced old-fashioned, cider spiked with Stateside bourbon, and a peanut butter hot chocolate topped with toasted marshmallow.

Both the drinks and the food are designed to warm you on the inside.

Plates include the chocolate fondue, a four-cheese fondue, a charcuterie board, tartiflette, and carbonade valdostana, the chef's personal favorite.

You can sit inside in your own personal pod or gather around the outdoor fire pits.

Alpine Heights at Assembly Rooftop Lounge | Website | Facebook | Instagram

1820 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, Pa. 19103

Uptown Beer Garden, right across from Christmas Village in Love Park, has been transformed into U-Ville, a play off of Whoville, which is the Grinch.

But it's more nice than naughty with antique sleighs, private heated cabanas and a little holiday magic with snow falling all the time around the 20 foot Christmas tree.

There's a smoking waterfall fireplace, along with giant gifts and roaring onscreen fires for those Instagram moments. And the heated courtyard offers VIP viewing of the Deck the Hall Light Show.

A food truck serves up snacks like the arugula salad, Mac n cheese balls and wings with white barbecue sauce.

Hot drinks include the warm apple pie with Makers Mark, and the Grey Goose in a Tree, served in an ornament

U-Ville at Uptown Beer Garden | Website |Facebook | Instagram

1500 John F Kennedy Blvd, Philadelphia, Pa. 19102


Craftsman Row Saloon, just off Jewelers Row, is all decked out for the holidays with 5,000 feet of garland, more than 3,000 ornaments and a menu of decadent dishes like the Christmas dinner burger-think turkey, stuffing and the fixings all in a double patty burger.

There are Christmas milkshakes for dessert or a meal. Try The Ugly Sweater or the snowman-shaped Ice Baby.

Craftsman Row Saloon | Website | Facebook | Instagram

112 S. 8th Street, Philadelphia, Pa. 19107

Flight On Ice brings outdoor rink to Delco to benefit Lest We Forget Memorial

There's a new skate scene in the suburbs for people of all ages.

At the Energy Transfer Veteran's Memorial Rink, you can glide around on ice skates, have a great day or night out, and honor those who have served - all with one family-fun activity.

The site includes food and beverage options, game tents, fire pits, and skate rentals.

The attraction is slated to stay open now through the holidays, check their website for extended dates for 2022.

Energy Transfer Veteran's Memorial Rink | Facebook | Instagram

Energy Transfer Veteran's Memorial Rink

4901 West Chester Pike, Newtown Square, PA 19073

Mon.-Fri. 3-10pm | Sat. 11am-10pm | Sun. 11am-8pm

Stop by Milanj Diamonds for last-minute Christmas gifts

Diamonds are forever, and for folks who still have some holiday shopping to do, they also make a great last minute gift idea.

Milanj Diamonds is a luxury jewelry store located in the heart of the King of Prussia Mall.

If you got some last-minute shopping, President and CEO Jalil Bami says stop by. You can find shining accessories like the tri-necklace, matching stackable rings, and the chic diamond cuff bangle.

Bami and his team design almost all the jewelry in-house. It's that magic that makes it a special and everlasting holiday memory.

Milanj Diamonds | Facebook | Instagram

The Plaza at the King of Prussia Mall

160 North Gulph Road SUITE 1392, King of Prussia, Pennsylvania 19406

6 local artisans, all women-owned, crafting perfect size surprises

Christmas morning is just a few days away so we decided to give Santa some help finding some stocking stuffers.

Santa's sleigh can stop by these six local artisans who all happen to be women-owned businesses born from the pandemic.

Maker Missya CEO Andrea Misja offers cement planters and home décor. You'll find items from a tiny Franklin Institute-inspired heart planter that's a tribute to health workers to an Aphrodite-inspired incense holder. And a fun David Bowie sculpture planter. The motto here a little bit of color and spice

Stefani Threet of Threet Ceramics and Ceramic Concept in West Philadelphia is featuring hand-built and painted ceramic earrings and holiday ornaments adorned with different designs. Threet is known for her special carvings and vibrant colors and has been making pottery for over 25 years.

Jacqueline Yanni, Founder of Veronica True Image Designs is showcasing handmade polymer clay earrings. The name stems from her grandmother, Veronica, who was dedicated to donating to St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital. Jacqueline's constructing holiday-themed gift boxes called Secret Santa Boxes that contain three pairs of polymer clay earrings. To pay it forward, Jaqueline donates in her grandmother's image.

Alina Chaves went to school for Criminal Justice, but that was derailed when the pandemic hit. That's when she started Messin with Resin. The Christmas Collection includes a variety of earrings and hair clips, artsy book-marks and key chains. As much as Alina love resin, she says her heart is with the force.

Nina Fay has been making string art and macramé for about four years. Then, the pandemic happened and she officially launched Fay String Art. She's crafting mini macramé accessories like mini Macramé plant holders and Chapstick holders.

Sister business Anna and Mary Novak created Get Lit Candles. The pair hand-pour 100% soy wax candles in recycled vessels. Their holiday collection includes Mistletoe, which is a beer can candle that is upcycled compliments of local Dock Street brewery. There's also traditional tin can candles, one called Fraser Fir, and larger glass jar candles, one with seasonal favorite, Gingerbread.

Maker Missya | Instagram

Veronica True Image Designs | Instagram

Threet Ceramics | Instagram

Fay String Art | Instagram

Messin with Resin | Instagram

Get Lit Candles | Instagram