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Next time you’re visiting the beautiful city of Philadelphia, skip the typical field trip attractions and head towards something a little more adventurous. We’ve all seen The Liberty Bell and do you really want to be that person that runs up the Rocky stairs? It’s time to discover and explore some of the more uncommon attractions around Philadelphia.
The Masonic Temple of Philadelphia
If you are at all interested in beautiful architecture and all the conspiracy theories surrounding the Freemasons (I’m scared just writing that), then you’ll definitely need to stop by The Masonic Temple of Philadelphia. The Freemasons were an institution in America long before America was an actual institution and this Masonic temple began construction in 1868. At the height of their wealthy the Freemasons had this massive structure with multiple rooms built. It’s said that in each room there is one purposeful architectural mistake to show that no man is perfect compared to God. Individual rooms at The Masonic Temple or “The Right Worshipful Grand Lodge of the Most Ancient and Honorable Fraternity of Free and Accepted Masons of Pennsylvania and Masonic Jurisdiction Thereunto Belonging,” as it’s officially known, can be rented out for wedding parties and other non-masonic functions.
The Mummers Museum
The mummers are an extravagant group of people with an interesting history. The term “mummer” means a “disguised person,” and dates back as far as Medieval Times. There are plenty of different groups and traditions associated with mummery now but the most fascinating aspect is all the different costumes. Whether the mummers were parading around, entertaining, or essentially disturbing the peace, they always had on a good costume. The Mummers Museum has collected all of the memorabilia and costumes so you can absorb the vivid history of these jolly drunks.
The Historical Dental Museum
Apparently Philadelphia is home to a few strange museums. The Historical Dental Museum is home to a bucket of teeth and the inspiring tale of a twentieth-century dentist. Located at the Temple University School of Dentistry in Philadelphia, this tiny museum tells the story of Painless Parker, a dentist who took his failing dental practice on the road. With his showgirls, band, and tools all in tow, Painless Parker’s dental circus brought out a crowd at every stop and made his colleagues non to happy.
Love Letter Murals
Take a ride on the Market-Frankford line in West Philadelphia, to view the 50 rooftop murals painted for the Love Letter series. A collaboration between the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program and artist Stephen Powers (ESPO), “these murals collectively express a love letter from a guy to a girl, from an artist to his hometown, and from local residents to their neighborhood of West Philadelphia,” according to Atlas Obscura. You can take a tour, mostly conducted on the train, and see all 50 murals even if it’s just in the blink of an eye.
The Mutter Museum
Does Philadelphia have any normal museums? Of course they do, but who cares! Why would anyone visit a normal museum when you could visit The Mutter Museum? It boasts itself as America’s most famous museum of medical oddities—and for good reason! The museum has exhibits such as the skeleton of the tallest man in North America and a collection of 2,000 objects removed from people’s throat. The most interesting aspect of the museum, though not currently on display, has to be the slides of Einstein’s brain. Can a normal museum really beat that?
What unique attractions to you visit in Philadelphia?