Donald Friary, a widely respected guide to American cities and the former executive director of Historic Deerfield, will lead us on an extraordinary art- and history-filled tour of our country’s birthplace. In addition to its preeminence in the founding of the Republic, Philadelphia encapsulates the complex history of urban and industrial development in the United States and is a city rich with cultural and educational institutions, many of which we will explore. We will also visit important museums, historic houses, and gardens that dot the surrounding countryside.
Our tour of Philadelphia this spring will begin with a late morning arrival on Friday, April 17, and will end with a Tuesday, April 21, departure. While there we will visit the new building housing the Barnes Foundation designed by Tod Williams and Billie Tsien Architects, where the masterpieces collected by the late Albert C. Barnes have been carefully reinstalled to remain true to his original plan; the Philadelphia Museum of Art with its encyclopedic permanent collection and several fascinating special exhibitions; the Rodin Museum containing the largest assemblage of the artist’s works outside of France; the Fabric Workshop and Museum; private collections; and the city’s major historic sites. We will visit Philadelphia’s new Kimmel Center, where we will hear a concert entitled “Modern Fairy Tales” by the world-renowned Philadelphia Orchestra featuring the music of Francis Poulenc, Sergei Prokofiev, Camille Saint-Saëns, and Albert Roussel, and will dine in some of Philadelphia’s top restaurants and a private club.
Our hotel on Rittenhouse Square is within walking distance of several of our
sites. We will be transported by motor coach to other urban destinations
and for our jaunts into the countryside for guided tours of the Brandywine
Museum, the Winterthur Museum and Gardens, and Andalusia, the home of
the Biddle family.
Philadelphia was founded in 1682, and its center contains eighteenth- and
nineteenth-century buildings and walkways. Be aware that some of our routes,
in both the city and the countryside, will cover uneven ground with unstable
footing. Please be sure that you are able to walk over such terrain and that you
are able to board and exit the motor coach without danger to yourself or others.