Women’s History Month 2017: Civic Engagement, Empowerment & Events

by Office of the Mayor

Every March, we observe Women’s History Month.

Philadelphia’s history is filled with amazing women. In fact, many of the city’s parks and playgrounds are named after these local icons.

And, today, women make up over 50 percent of key leadership positions in the Kenney Administration.

This year, events occur citywide that celebrate and honor the contributions women have made on American history.

It’s not all about reflecting on history, though; this month’s events promise to empower and inspire us — into action!


Educate, Empower, and Engage Women in the Political Process
Saturday: March 4 | 9:00 a.m. — 12:00 p.m.
Sweet Union Baptist Church, 1539 North 59th Street
Learn the basis of campaigning, the resources needed to be effective, and the power of civic engagement. This event is free, but registration is required; please register online.

National Park Service Ranger Program: “Lucretia Mott’s Enduring Legacy”
Saturdays: March 4, 11, and 25: 1:00 p.m.
Second Bank of the United States, 420 Chestnut Street
This ranger-led slide program examines the remarkable life and legacy of Philadelphian Lucretia Mott. Discover how her involvement in the anti-slavery movement led to her becoming a leading figure in the fight for votes for women. Free.

#SpeakUpPHL: A Feminist Art Workshop
Saturday: March 4 | 1:00 p.m. — 3:00 p.m.
1307 Locust Street
Sponsored by Blur and ishknits and New Century Trust, this collaborative street event celebrates all that is Women’s History Month! Blur’s iconic “mouth” will be on display in a set of prints, for you to fill up with your words!  If you have feelings and thoughts to be expressed and need to let them out, come to this event to celebrate the 135-year tradition of women speaking their minds.  Once these “voices” are shared, the prints will be posted in various locations and a special hashtag #SpeakUpPHL will be used so the collection of mouths can be viewed across the City.

National Park Service Ranger Program: “Pride and Prejudice and Printing: The Triumph of Women Publishers in the 18th Century”
Sundays: March 5 and 12: 1:00 p.m.
Second Bank of the United States, 420 Chestnut Street
Hear about pioneers such as Ann Franklin and Mary Katharine Goddard who printed an early copy of the Declaration of Independence and other women printers of the 18th century in this ranger-led slide program. Free.

National Park Service House Tour: “Women in the Life of Edgar Allen Poe”
Sundays: March 5 and 26 | 1:00 p.m.
Edgar Allan Poe National Historical Site, 532 North 7th Street
Join a ranger in a special tour of the Edgar Allan Poe house that explores the women in Poe’s life. Discover how the women in his life, from his youth until his untimely death, influenced him in both his personal life and professional career as a writer. Free.

“A Good Night’s Sleep” Reopening
Sunday: March 5 | 1:00 p.m. — 5:00 p.m.
The Colored Girls Museum, 4613 Newhall Street
The Colored Girls Museum is an interactive exhibit which will take visitors on a tour of what it means to be a colored girl in this century.  In the premiere exhibit, “A Good Night’s Sleep”, we see the ways in which Black women spend their days and nights working to create, love, and live while often overlooking the need for self-care. The museum converts into a space resembling an “Urgent Care” medical center.  Healthcare professionals, sleep specialists, theologians, social workers, and artists will share their wisdom through a series of events and installations.  The museum will also offer access to yoga classes, massage sessions, and other self-care modalities through the duration of the exhibit.

Monday Poets: Harriet Levin Millan and Jill Bialosky
Monday: March 6 | 6:30 p.m.
Free Library Literature Department, Parkway Central, 1901 Vine Street
Hear from two inspiring female poets as part of the Free Library’s Monday Poets series. Copies of the featured poets’ books may be available for cash purchase after the reading.  At program’s end, if time permits, there may be a short open-mic session.

Philadelphia Fire Department Women’s Day Conference
Tuesday: March 8 | 10:00 a.m. — 2:00 p.m.
Philadelphia Fire Training Academy, 5200 Pennypack Street
Sponsored by Suffering In Silence (SIS), this free program celebrates women in public service and features discussions, testimonials, food, and informational tables. Registration kindly requested online.

Women in Progress © 2001 City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program / Larissa Preston & Cesar Viveros. 1307 Locust Street. (Photo by Jack Ramsdale.)

Disrupting the Patriarchy 2017: Negotiating and Getting Things Done
Wednesday: March 8 | 6:00 p.m.
Free Library Business Resource and Innovation Center (BRIC), Parkway Central, 1901 Vine Street
The art of negotiating is a critical skill for everyone, especially women. Join us for this unique event where you will walk away with the first steps in how to negotiate and get things done. Registration required.

Author Talk: Patricia Hyatt and Shelah Leader
Thursday: March 9 | 2:00 p.m.
Philadelphia City Institute, 1905 Locust Street
The FreeLibrary, Friends in the City (FitC), and the Philadelphia City Institute (PCI) present this discussion where authors Patricia Hyatt and Shelah Leader talk about their book, “American Women on the Move: The Inside Story of the National Women’s Conference, 1977.”

Women’s History Month Film: “A Ballerina’s Tale”
Monday: March 13 | 4:00 p.m.
Whitman Neighborhood Library, 200 Snyder Avenue
Join us as we watch “A Ballerina’s Tale,” the 2015 film about Misty Copeland, the first African-American woman to be named principal dancer of the American Ballet Theater.

Camille Paglia: Free Women, Free Men: Sex, Gender, Feminism
Monday: March 13 | 7:30 p.m.
Parkway Central Library, 1901 Vine Street
Free Library Author Events presents this conversation with Camille Paglia, who will discuss her new essay collection in which she employs her trademark fiery irreverence to celebrate and chastise modern feminism.

Brown Bag Lunch: Women Entrepreneurship Series
Wednesday: March 15 | 12:00 p.m. — 1:00 p.m.
Philadelphia City Council Caucus Room, City Hall, Room 401
Join Councilwoman Blondell Reynolds-Brown for this friendly, empowering lunch hour discussion. RSVP kindly requested to samantha.pearson@phila.gov.

Message to Our Daughters: Exhibit, Panel Discussion, and Opening Reception
Wednesday: March 15 | 5:00 p.m. — 7:00 p.m.
Conversation Hall, City Hall, Room 201
In celebration of Women’s History Month, Art In City Hall from the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy presents “Message to Our Daughters,” an intergenerational exhibit by local women artists showcasing a diversity of life and artistic experiences. The panel discussion from 5:00 p.m. — 6:00 p.m. highlights local women leaders who run small to mid-size arts organizations in the region.  The discussion will be led by Amie Potsic, Art In City Hall’s Exhibitions Advisory Chair and Executive Director to Main Line Art Center. Space is limited, so RSVPs are kindly requested online. This free exhibit is open to the public and runs March 6-May 5, 2017, in the second floor display cases in City Hall.

Eleanor Roosevelt–Part I: The Early Years Benefit Performance
Thursday, March 16 | 7:00 p.m. — 8:00 p.m.
East Passyunk Community Recreation Center, 1025 Mifflin Street
Written and performed by Rene Goodwin, this dramatization presents First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt as a very human woman who faced personal challenges she overcame to become a world leader and a universal inspiration. Admission to this benefit performance is $5; children under 12 free with adult. Tickets are available for purchase at the door; reservations may also be made by contacting the East Passyunk Community Recreation Center at 215-685-0008.

National Park Service Program: “Landscapes of Allegiance: Space, Gender, and Military Occupation in the American Revolution”
Saturday: March 18 | 1:00 p.m.
Independence Visitor Center, 6th and Market Street
Join McNeil Center Fellow Lauren Duval in a lecture and slide show as she examines gender and compares and contrasts the British military occupations of the cities of Newport, RI; Charleston, SC; and Philadelphia PA, during the American Revolution. Free.

National Park Service Program: Living History, “Women of the Revolution — Heroes and Villains”
Sundays: March 19 and 26 | 1:00 p.m.
Independence Visitor Center, 6th and Market Street
Meet Lydia Darragh and Peggy Shippen Arnold, two women on different sides of the American Revolution. Like men, there were women who emerged as heroes — and others as traitors to the cause. Free.

Work for Yourself@50+
Tuesday: March 21 | 10:00 a.m.
Parkway Central Library, 1901 Vine Street
This program is specifically designed to help people 50 and older learn about what it takes to be successfully self-employed in today’s economy.

Woodford Mansion Women’s History Tours
Wednesday — Sunday: March 22 to 26 | 10:00 a.m. — 4:00 p.m.
Woodford Mansion, Fairmount Park, 2300 North 33rd Street
Celebrate #WomensHistoryMonth at Woodford Mansion, with tours focused on the lives and legends of the women of Woodford, such as Hannah Coleman, Rebecca Franks, and Bilah Abigail Franks, as well as Naomi Wood, whose antiques collection fills the museum.

2017 Moore Women Artists: Women in Animation Film Festival
Thursday — Sunday: March 23 — March 26
Moore College of Art, 20th and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Moore College of Art and Design presents a four-day festival of animated feature and films created by women along with meet-the-artists discussions, an Adobe creative jam, and the annual panel featuring women game designers. All events are free and open to the public.

Mayor Kenney addresses the Philadelphia Women’s March in January 2017. (Photo by Samantha Madera.)

Roxane Gay: Difficult Women
Friday: March 24 | 7:30 p.m.
Parkway Central Library, 1901 Vine Street
Free Library Author Events presents this conversation with Roxane Gay, whose recent story collection, “Difficult Women,” explores the privileged and impoverished, the loved and foresaken — a beautiful cros-section of modern America. The auditorium is sold out, but in-house simulcast seats are available for purchase.

Amplify! Black Women of the Movement Symposium
Saturday: March 25 | 9:00 a.m. — 4:00 p.m.
The African American Museum in Philadelphia, 701 Arch Street
The African American Museum in Philadelphia partners with the Smithsonian Institution, Independence National Historical Park, and Friends of Independence National Historical Park for this celebration of the impact Black women have had on the American framework. It will feature stories of Black women who have re-imagined education, the arts, science, and health in various ways. Register online.

Radio One’s 3rd Annual Be Beautiful Expo
Saturday: March 25 | 10:00 a.m. — 7:00 p.m.
Pennsylvania Convention Center, 1101 Arch Street, Hall D
Boom 103.9, WRNB 100.3, and Praise 107.9 invite you and the entire family for a day of music, empowerment, shopping, and fun. Be Beautiful Expo 2017 features over 200 marketplace vendors, celebrity workshops, live performances, and specialty pavilions. Tickets are available for purchase online.

Betsy Ross House Women’s History Celebration
Saturday: March 25 | 11:00 a.m. — 3:00 p.m.
Betsy Ross House, 239 Arch Street
Visit the Betsy Ross House on Saturday, March 25 to celebrate Women’s History Month with inspiring stories about important women that helped shape our nation. Meet three colonial women: Betsy Ross, Phillis the laundress, and “mantua maker” Sarah Melton. During this highly interactive program, a few lucky visitors will even have the opportunity to be dressed in 18th-century clothing during a discussion of its design and creation.

Trailblazing Women of Philadelphia
Sunday: March 26 | 2:00 p.m.  — 4:00 p.m.

Laurel Hill Mansion, 7201 North Randolph Drive
Moderated by Patricia Jordan and sponsored by the Women for Greater Philadelphia, this Women’s History Month discussion features local trailblazing women, including Lauren Lipton, Zabeth Teelucksingh, Elizabeth Spungen, Alma Jacobs, and Jane Golden. Please register for this free event by emailing events@laurelhillmansion.org or calling Karen Phinney at 215-554-2003.

Living Your Best Mind, Body, and Spirit: WomanUp! Hat & Tea Awards Party
Sunday: March 26 | 3:00 p.m. — 6:00 p.m.
The Cornelia Wells Conference Center, 2000 Belmont Mansion Drive
This year’s WomanUp! event, featuring special guest speakers and live entertainment, provides a platform for ordinary women who are doing extraordinary work to bring about positive change in their community, their business, and their personal lives. Proceeds from ticket sales benefit the American Women’s Heritage Society and can be purchased online.

Dish It Up!
Wednesday: March 29 | 6:00 p.m.
Cescaphe Event Group’s Vie, 600 North Broad Street
Dish It Up! is Philadelphia’s only fundraising event and food competition featuring all female chefs. The funds raised from the event support Women Against Abuse, the city’s leading domestic violence advocate and service provider. Tickets are available for purchase online.

Anne-Marie Slaughter: “The Chessboard and the Web”
Thursday: March 30 | 7:30 p.m.
Parkway Central Library, 1901 Vine Street
Free Library Author Events presents this conversation with Anne-Marie Slaughter, whose latest book rethinks the complexities of international diplomacy in a post-Cold War world. Registration kindly

The State of Women and Girls in Philadelphia: Telling Our Stories
Friday: March 31 | 8:30 a.m. — 1:30 p.m.
Community College of Philadelphia, , 1700 Spring Garden Street, Great Hall, Winnet Student Life Building
This free, half-day summit is an opportunity for Philadelphians of all walks of life to be inspired by the stories of women and girls who are national and local trailblazers in business, politics, education and healthcare. Along with panel discussions and speeches, the event features a presentation of the Philadelphia Commission for Women “The State of Women and Girls in Philadelphia” report; you can follow the conversation on social media using #StateOfWomenPHL. Register online.

Do you have a program or event you’d like to list? Or, do you want to engage with the Philadelphia Commission for Women? Contact Jovida Hill at jovida.hill@phila.gov!


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