Tours Showcase Philadelphia’s Neighborhoods; Newest Tour Addition Takes Visitors To The City’s...

Tours Showcase Philadelphia’s Neighborhoods; Newest Tour Addition Takes Visitors To The City’s Most Beautiful Community Gardens


Philadelphia, PA–(HISPANIC PR WIRE – US Newswire)–April 28, 2004–Beginning on May 8, 2004, the Philadelphia Neighborhood Tourism Network (NTN) will roll out seven of its popular immersion tours of Philadelphia’s neighborhoods. The newest addition to the spring schedule is Urban Oases: The Gardens of West Philadelphia, taking a fun and in-depth look at community gardens and the residents who work together to beautify their neighborhood.

Developed by the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation (GPTMC) in partnership with neighborhood organizations, the tours will be offered every Saturday at 10 a.m. from May 8 through June 26, and then again in the fall from September 18 through October 30, at which time two new tours, Fishtown and Kensington: Traditions of Art and Industry and Urban Oases: Winning City Gardens, will be launched.

“Philadelphia’s diversity is one of its great tourism assets. The Philadelphia Neighborhood Tourism Network takes visitors on an adventure to some of the city’s most vibrant ethnic neighborhoods,” says Patricia Washington, vice president, GPTMC. “The tours offer visitors an opportunity to see Philadelphia in a whole new light as they experience the culture and history of Philadelphia’s richly diverse communities.”

Since the tours began two years ago, more than 600 people have journeyed beyond the colonial icons of Center City into Philadelphia’s neighborhoods, including North Philadelphia, South Philadelphia, Chinatown, University City, Germantown and North Philadelphia’s Latino community. Ethnic food samples, shopping opportunities, performances with local artists and social history told by neighborhood guides ensure an authentic experience for tour participants. Here’s what’s in store for the 2004 season:

— Latin Soul, Latin Flavor (May 8 and October 9, 2004): Learn about the roots of Latin American music and sample authentic Caribbean coffees and pastries during this trip to North 5th Street in the heart of Philadelphia’s growing Latino community.

— Philadelphia’s Civil Rights Struggle (May 15 and September 18, 2004): Recount the moments when racism was challenged in Philadelphia’s streets, classrooms and churches during this visit to the North Philadelphia neighborhood that was the epicenter of the city’s Civil Rights struggle. Hear about the dramatic demonstrations at Girard College and join in a performance at Church of the Advocate.

— Taking a Stand for Freedom (May 22 and October 16, 2004): Witness moving first-person accounts and musical presentations that evoke the drama of the Underground Railroad during visits to two documented Underground Railroad stations, Mother Bethel AME Church and the Johnson House Historical Site.

— The Sound of Philadelphia (June 5, 2004): Listen to an array of musical styles and innovations and learn about the social and cultural trends that have contributed to Philadelphia’s African American musical heritage. The tour, featuring classical, gospel, jazz and rhythm and blues music, culminates with a behind-the-scenes visit to the recording studios of Gamble & Huff.

— Voices of Chinatown (June 12 and October 23, 2004): Get caught up in the excitement of a lion dance, taste dim sum specialties and learn about the curative power of herbs during a visit to a traditional Chinese pharmacy in Chinatown.

— Exotic Cuisine & Esoteric Culture (June 19 and October 9, 2004): Experience a feast of the senses during this visit to University City, where avant garde artists, Amish farmers and a Laotian restaurant are all part of the incredible diversity of cultures found here.

— Urban Oases: The Gardens of West Philadelphia (June 26, 2004): Discover the bountiful array of plants cultivated in the city’s neighborhood gardens, tucked between row houses, plotted on corner lots or tucked in city parks, and meet the residents who work together to stabilize and beautify their community through gardening.

— Urban Oases: Winning City Gardens (September 25, 2004): Sneak a peak at some of the city’s award-winning urban gardens. Flower gardens, window boxes, community gardens and urban farms will be on display in various communities throughout Philadelphia. Tour participants will also have the opportunity to gather secrets from the city’s top gardeners.

— Fishtown and Kensington: Traditions of Art and Industry (October 30, 2004): Enjoy “Philadelphia Made” goods during tours of the Yards Brewery and the Metropolitan Bakery, and visit the cafe and artist studios of the newly opened Rocket Cat. Take home vegetables from Greensgrow Farms’ hydraponic garden and other farmer’s market specialties.

Philadelphia Neighborhood Tours depart from the Independence Visitor Center, located at 6th and Market Streets, at 10 a.m. most Saturdays in May, June, September and October. Tickets are $30 for adults, $25 students and seniors over 65 years old, $25 for individuals purchasing two or more tours, $20 for children 8-12 and $20 per person for groups of 10 or more. Price includes trolley transportation, refreshments and performances. Call GPTMC at (215) 599-2295 for reservations or e-mail to make a reservation.

The Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation (GPTMC), Philadelphia’s regional tourism marketing agency, is a private, non-profit organization dedicated to building the region’s economy and positive image through tourism and destination marketing. For more information about travel to Philadelphia, call the new Independence Visitor Center, located in Independence National Historical Park, at (800) 537-7676, or visit

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Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation

Cara Schneider


Tours Showcase Philadelphia’s Neighborhoods; Newest Tour Addition Takes Visitors To The City’s Most Beautiful Community Gardens