Philadelphia is well-known for its thriving business district, historical heritage and bustling arts and culture scene. But the city also has no shortage of parks and green spaces, though the focus tends to be on the two most famous ones, Fairmont Park and Rittenhouse Park. Here is a rundown of some of the lesser-known parks that offer Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia living at its best (and its greenest).
Julian Abele Park
You’ll find Julian Abele Park in Graduate Hospital at 22nd Street between Montrose and Carpenter Streets. It was opened in 2008, becoming the first new public park in the city in over 10 years. The park hosts weekly concerts during the summer months, as well as a farmers’ market selling plenty of local produce as well as cheese, honey and freshly cut flowers. The park has been the check-in location to the annual South Philly Food Co-op garden tour, too. This self-guided tour permits you to explore the gardens of Philly’s horticulturists and urban farmers.
The Spring Gardens
Situated just north of Center City in the Spring Garden section of the city, The Spring Gardens is a community garden that allows 180 neighborhood families to voluntarily maintain this block of green space. It was the local residents who created this park in 1995 from the ground up. It enables local families to grow food and flowers for themselves and to donate to others. As well as a horticultural space, the garden also serves as an outdoor classroom where visitors can participate in gardening classes, cooking workshops, farm bike tours, and school education tours.
The Glendinning Rock Garden
The Glendinning Rock Garden takes its name from benefactors Robert and Elizabeth Glendinning. You’ll find it north of Girard Avenue Bridge on Kelly Drive. This is a well-secluded park with a cluster of boulders, small pond and waterfall. It’s a great place to relax, spend the afternoon reading, or have a peaceful picnic.
Benjamin Rush State Park
This 275-acre park is in the Northeast section of Philadelphia. It’s the only state park within the city’s boundary. It’s largely undeveloped apart from the community gardens. Several acres of the park’s northern woodland area borders Poquessing Creek, making it a popular spot for hikers and birdwatchers. Plans are in the works for adding parking facilities and hiking trails and the launch of a reforestation project.
Konrad Square Park
Konrad Square Park is located in Fishtown, at Tulip Street and East Dauphin Street. This is a good park for a stroll or simply hanging out on the lawns. The park hosts flea markets on Saturdays and on Thursdays during the summer there are barbecues and occasional movie nights. It’s maintained by volunteers within the local community.
This list is by no means exhaustive. There are many more parks and green spaces throughout the city. If you’re a resident of Philadelphia living life to the fullest, make sure to take a frequent stroll around your local park and soak up the vibrant natural surroundings. Remember, being outdoors is good for your physical, mental and emotional health.