Walk Around Philadelphia is an invitation to discover the city by exploring its edges…
Philadelphia is large and contains multitudes. Along the city’s edge, one finds highways & waterways, ruined factories decaying & new housing being developed, a historic mansion alongside prisons. There’s shipyards, scrapyards, graveyards and farmyards. Amidst beautiful parks are piles of storage units, and so much more.
The oddly-shaped boundaries sometimes follow the curves of waterways and other times arbitrary-seeming straight lines drawn by surveyors. In some places, there’s no visual difference between either side; in other areas the contrasts are stark.
Walk Around Philadelphia is an opportunity for adventure and discovery close to home. It provides a physical challenge & sense of personal accomplishment. It cultivates civic pride & a humbling sense of scale. Along the way are opportunities to ponder themes of social & environmental justice, infrastructure & ecosystems, commerce & incarceration, indigenous history & colonization, privilege & access, and of course borders & boundaries.
The project holds space for authentic connection between individuals who might otherwise not cross paths. Rare in our world are opportunities to walk side by side for long, uninterrupted periods of time, and the experience of setting out walking together is in many ways an inclusive one: One participant noted “How easily the numbers ebbed and flowed with people joining for parts of the walk and how accepting and welcoming everyone was when you “landed” in the group.”
On the other hand, there are real barriers to participation ranging from accessibility issues to financial circumstances. These are the barriers that Walk Around Philadelphia has begun to address and will continue to as more resources become available.
Join us in the next steps…
- Ongoing conversations, rescheduled workshops & other invites…
- May is a big month for the walk, & you’re invited!
- Access to nature on the city’s edge: a special conversation
- 7th annual walk complete!
- New year, new walk…
- Seeking a Project Manager
- Airport & Southwest: Recap of final weekend of Fall 2021 walk
Ways to participate:
Walk with us!
Walk Around Philadelphia currently happens twice a year in February and September.
May 11 – Virtual Walk Talk panel discussion @ 5:30pm EST via Zoom: “Access to nature at the city’s edge” w/ special guests from The Schuylkill Center, Cobbs Creek Ambassadors, Riverfront North: http://phillynatureaccess.eventbrite.com
May 14 – Perimeter mapmaking letterpress workshops in conjunction w/ the Penn Program in Environmental Humanities’ Ecotopian Toolkit project.
- 9:30 – 11:30am on 36th St Walk outside Charles Addams Hall on Penn’s campus w/ Common Press
- 2:30 – 5pm at the Independence Seaport Museum in Old City w/ The Soapbox Community Print Studio
May 20th – Reception at Independence Seaport Museum for the Ecotopian Toolkit project. 5:30 – 7pm. Details & RSVP here.
SAVE THE DATES for the next walk:
Aug 1 – Registration opens for walk dates
via this website
Aug 8 – Registration opens for kickoff event & closing party
Sept 8 – Virtual info session / kickoff celebration
Sept 10 / 11 / 12* , Sept 17 /18 /19*, Sept 23* / 24 / 25 / 26*
Weekend days confirmed, Weekday dates subject to change.
Sept 30 – Closing party / celebrating 10th walk (1,000+ miles!)
Partner for a program
I’ve developed a unique retreat offering and the walk can be an amazing addition to your organization’s programs.
One day, three day, and custom retreats available.
On your own!
You can always undertake the walk on your own, although a group of four is recommended for safety.
Get in touch for guidelines & maps, and make sure you tell us about your experience afterwards!