Park Events

Special Events in April
Independence National Historical Park has a lot going on in April. There are many activities and programs planned for National Park Week and National Junior Ranger Day, as well as the 150th anniversary of the end of the American Civil War and President Lincoln's assassination. Join us as we celebrate, play, and remember.
Young girl standing next to person in Buddy Bison costume.

Buddy Bison will be making appearances at Independence National Historical Park all throughout National Park Week.

NPS Photo by Thomas M. Strom

Celebrate National Park Week

Dates: April 18-26, 2015
Times: Throughout the day
Location: Areas throughout the park
Cost: FREE

Join Independence National Historical Park as we celebrate National Park Week with special ranger programs, events, and free fee days at the Benjamin Franklin Museum. You can participate in our "selfie" scavenger hunt, play games, meet our rangers and staff to find out it's like to work for the National Park Service, and win prizes. You might even get to meet the National Park Service mascot, Buddy Bison! The week will culminate with our Junior Ranger Day celebration (see below). Please visit our friendly park rangers at the Independence Visitor Center for times and locations.
Young boy playing colonial hoop game.

On Junior Ranger Day you can try your hand at rolling hoops, an ancient game known and played by many of the nation's founding fathers when they were kids.

NPS Photo

Junior Ranger Day

Date: Saturday, April 25, 2015
Time: 10:00am to 3:00pm
Location: Locations throughout the park
Cost: FREE

Kids (of all ages) can find something fun to do as Independence National Historical Park celebrates Junior Ranger Day. Enjoy colonial games, crafts, hoop races, and other fun next to the Liberty Bell, out on Independence Mall. Make sure to keep your eyes peeled for our K-9 "Bark Ranger," Ken Franklin, or say "Hi!" and get your picture with Buddy Bison, the National Park Service mascot. Then, head on over to Franklin Court on Market Street and help Benjamin Franklin with some of his electrical experiments. Or, visit our park archeologist and see what kind of history can be found underground. You can top off your day by catching Disney's animated short Ben and Me, showing all day at the Benjamin Franklin Museum. Admission to the Museum is free for kids all day.

President-elect Lincoln on a platform, surrounded by a large crowd in front of Independence Hall.

President-elect Abraham Lincoln visited Independence Hall in 1861 on his way to his inauguration. He came to raise an American flag with the nation's newest star, the one for Kansas. Discover this and many other stories in the new exhibit on Independence in the Civil War.

Image courtesy the Library Company of Philadelphia

Special Exhibit: Independence in the American Civil War

Dates: Thursday, April 16 thru Monday, May 25, 2015
Time: 9:00am to 5:00pm
Location: Liberty Bell Center, between Market and Chestnut Streets, and 5th and 6th Streets
Cost: FREE

For more than 19 hours, tens of thousands paid their last respects to President Abraham Lincoln, as his body lay in state in the room where the Declaration of Independence was signed. Four years before, standing in that same room, Lincoln claimed that he would rather be "assassinated on the spot," than to give up the principles enshrined in that document. Discover this and other stories about the roll Independence Hall played during the American Civil War in a temporary exhibit commemorating the 150th anniversary of the end of this defining conflict.

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