PHILADELPHIA MUSEUM OF ART
Why: You can’t blame them for moving the Rocky statue off to the side (though we wouldn’t have)—the Art Museum has been the jewel in the city’s crown since first opening its doors in 1877. East Asian art, American crafts, medieval armor—go get lost there all day.
Honorable mentions: Franklin Institute, Mutter Museum, Penn Museum.
Favorite Music Venue
TROCADERO, UNION TRANSFER (tie)
Why: Union Transfer, Philly’s newest large music venue, has quickly become the place for far-reaching out-of-town indie acts. And the Troc—aside from presenting karaoke hosted by Skeletor—was the only venue in the city to feature back-to-back nights with Lagwagon and the Misfits (new lineups notwithstanding).
Honorable mention: Johnny Brenda’s.
Favorite Radio Station
WXPN 88.5 FM
Why: Those folks at UPenn know what they’re doing, that’s why; public radio rarely gets this good. Whether you’re listening from Center City or the Lehigh Valley, programming so sonically diverse really should come with a price tag. But shhhh!
Honorable mention: WMMR 93.3 FM.
Favorite Theater Company
PIG IRON THEATRE COMPANY
Why: Fearless, original productions as daring and edgy as the troupe itself. The first English-speaking company to premiere a play by Japanese playwright Toshiki Okada, Pig Iron draws audiences in far countries, but they’re proud to call Philly home.
Favorite TV Station
Why: We wouldn’t want to suggest it’s solely because they have the best-looking, sweetest-talking news personalities in the city. But damn, y’all are fine.
[ PERSONALITIES ]
Why: You may not agree with Bradley Cooper being the sexiest man alive, but dammit the man can act. He made that movie Limitless, where he had shit for brains (hard to play that), and now he’s getting cred for being bipolar in Silver Linings Playbook (also hard).
SCOTTY HARTNELL, RYAN HOWARD (tie)
Why: Sure, the Phillies sucked this year, and Howard’s less-than-half season post-injury didn’t help, but still, consider the big picture: The Big Piece has won Rookie of the Year, led the league three times in RBIs, twice in home runs and has an MVP and World Series under his belt. As for Hartnell, well, as Canadian hockey analyst Don Cherry said in 2009 when Hartnell was accused of biting a Pittsburgh Penguin’s thumb: “You’re in a fight and Hartnell finds a finger… what’s he supposed to do, kiss it?”
Why: He captures the emotion of the American experience writ large and small: on the metropolitan scale (A Prayer for the City), the rural-town scale (Friday Night Lights) and the intimate human scale ( Father’s Day). Also: genius Twitter troll.
Why: His website Geekadelphia has grown from a simple blog to a cultural force in this metropolis, its annual Philly Geek Awards drawing a black-tie crowd to the Academy of Natural Sciences for a ceremony of uber-nerdian proportions.
PW's Summer Guide 2014