This month, Philadelphia is launching a year-long+ celebration of the creation of our own version of the Champs Elysees—the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. While it may never be as grand as Paris’ great boulevard, it is a mile-long artery lined with superb cultural institutions and the site of many local celebratory events each year. The tree-lined boulevard is home to the Barnes Foundation, the Rodin Museum, the Franklin Institute, the Academy of Sciences, the historic Free Library, and the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul. All topped off by the amazing Philadelphia Museum of Art.
The Parkway celebration, which will run from September 8, 2017 to November 16, 2018, will begin with a parade of illuminated pedi-cabs created by artist Cai Guo-Qiang. The people-powered cabs will be decorated with hundreds of colrful Chinese lanterns in the form of animals, emojis, rockets, vehicles, and food. The pedi-cabs will provide free rides along the Parkway four nights per week between September 14 and October 8, 2017.