Last week we had the chance to visit and explore the Fairmount Water Works. This historic complex located between the Philadelphia Musuem of Art and Boat House Row has been something I've wanted to explore. I had no idea what it was or the educational programs available. We were invited to get a sneak peak at the upcoming festival FLOW: For the Love Of Water that will be open to the public on September 21, 2014. This free festival for all ages will be a daylong (from 1:00pm to 8:00pm) celebration of water! There will be plenty of hands-on activities to explore, including a Splash Organ, a Fishway, Drip Drums and more. The finale of the day will be the dramatic lighting show illuminating the Water Works exterior.
On our recent visit we had a chance to participate in some educational activities as well as see a preview of some of the activities that will occur in the FLOW festival. The big hit of the day was the Splash Organ, in which kids had a chance to make music with water and interaction with each other. My son loved this activity.
The Fairmount Water Works opened its doors in 1815 as the nation’s first major urban water supply system. It operated for almost 100 years until it was decommissioned.
The mission of the Fairmount Water Works (FWW) is to foster stewardship of our shared water resources by encouraging informed decisions about the use of land and water. We educate citizens about Philadelphia’s urban watershed – its past, present and future – and collaborate with partners to instill an appreciation for the connections between daily life and the natural environment.
The Fairmount Water Works offers many free programs, including a Mommy (or Daddy) and me program for the preschool age group. They offer low cost guided tours to adults and offer various activities for school-aged children as well. Here are a few of the free programs that will be offered in September:
Family Pop-Up Activities (September 6, 13, 20, 27 from 10am - 12 noon) Spy on tiny organisms that lie in the river. You wont believe what you see -- one simple drop is teaming with life aquatic.
Science Saturdays: Waterfowl (September 6, 13, 20, 27 from 2pm - 4pm) Find out what makes the Schuylkill River an ideal hangout for our winged friends like the redtail hawk, bufflehead duck, and the house sparrow. Sessions run every 30 minutes from 2pm 4pm.
Fairmount Water Works Coast Day (Saturday, September 6, Penns Landing) Celebrate Pennsylvania’s coast with FREE marine-themed activities and family fun! Get your face painted, win prizes, make recycled crafts. Watch the Tug Boat Festival, meet Coastie the robot, and tour fire boats and oil spill cleanup boats. Don't miss the free shuttle bus for a round-trip tour to the Fairmount Water Works, to take part in a whimsical way for getting a drink of water.
The Fairmount Water Works is located at 640 Waterworks Drive Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19130. This is a historic part of the city that is not only educational, but a fun place to visit and explore. Be sure to check out one of their many activities and the FLOW Festival!