Penn Museum Announces PECO World Culture Days in 2010-2011

HILADELPHIA, PA-This fall through spring, PECO joins with the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology to sponsor a diverse and engaging lineup of world culture celebrations the whole family can enjoy.

PECO World Culture Days, all free with Penn Museum admission donation ($10 adults; $7 seniors [65+]; $6 children [6-17] and full-time college students with ID), introduce guests of all ages to the rich cultural traditions that are found throughout the world–and are alive within the diverse Greater Philadelphia community.

“This series will explore rich and diverse world cultures through food, dance, and fun games for all,” said Jeff Gordon, PECO’s manager of Corporate Relations. “We are proud to support the Penn Museum and to celebrate diversity with our customers and communities.”

Held on Saturdays and Sundays, fall through spring, PECO World Culture Days connect visitors of all ages to the rich cultural traditions found throughout the Penn Museum’s galleries and across the globe. Events showcase the artistic and cultural specialties of the region’s diverse communities while inviting guests to also enjoy the Museum’s vast collections, educational resources, and inspiring spaces. PECO World Culture Days offer visitors a full menu of activities to choose from, including international music and dancing, speakers on various topics, family crafts, interactive workshops, and related food demonstrations. Activities are held throughout the Museum’s galleries, classrooms, auditoriums, and gardens.

The 2010-2011 PECO World Culture Days line up runs through late April:

Sunday, November 7, 1:00 to 4:00 pm
Olé! Mexican Fiesta
Celebrate the diverse cultures of Mexico with food, music, traditional children’s games, and crafts. Visitors can discover the Mexico and Central America of ancient times, with a tour of the Central American Gallery. The afternoon is co-sponsored with the Mexican Cultural Center of Philadelphia.

Sunday, November 14, 1:00 to 4:00 pm
Celebrate Japan!
Celebrate the 150th anniversary of the first Japanese diplomatic mission to the U.S. with an afternoon introduction to the rich and unique culture of Japan. This family-friendly event features Kendo and Ninjutsu martial arts demonstrations, Japanese taiko drumming, origami demonstrations, a kimono dressing presentation, a display of the Museum’s collection of samurai armor, and children’s games and crafts taking place throughout the day. The afternoon is co-sponsored by the Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia and the Center for East Asian Studies, University of Pennsylvania.

Sunday, December 5, 1:00 to 4:00 pm
Peace around the World: Passport to Cultures
Penn Museum celebrates its 15th annual, holiday time Peace around the World family-oriented afternoon. Visitors receive a holiday “Passport to Cultures” with an itinerary to visit galleries where Penn Museum International Classroom speakers share holiday traditions of their home countries through music, stories, arts, crafts, games, and more. The afternoon also features international music and dancing, children’s choirs, exotic face painting, balloon art, international family crafts, and free treats for children!

Saturday, January 22 , 11:00 am to 4:00 pm
Celebration of African Cultures

The 22nd annual Celebration of African Cultures comes alive with special programs to delight the entire family. Electrifying African and African American dance, traditional storytelling, music performances, workshops, children’s activities, gallery tours, and more enliven the Museum.

Saturday, February 12, 11:00 am to 4:00 pm
Chinese New Year Celebration

Hop to it, and welcome in the Year of the Rabbit at the 30th annual daylong extravaganza celebration. Visitors can bring the whole family and celebrate the New Year through a wide variety of music and dance performances, children’s activities, storytelling, arts and crafts, and martial and healing arts workshops. The day ends with a drum roll, a roar, and the popular Lion Dance parade.

Saturday, March 26, 11:00 am to 4:00 pm
Along the Silk Road Culture Day
What was life like along the Silk Road a thousand years ago–and what is life like in that region of the world today? Visitors can experience some of the many arts, foods and spices, music, and dance that have originated and evolved along the world’s most famous set of trading routes, linking Eurasian cultures from East and West. One can examine items from the Silk Road in the Museum’s permanent galleries, and take a tour through thousands of years of Silk Road history when they visit the special exhibition Secrets of the Silk Road (optional extra, timed tickets, prices vary).

Saturday, April 23, 1:00 to 4:00 pm
Gladiator Day!
Penn Museum celebrates Rome’s birthday and explores Italy during ancient Roman times with an afternoon schedule of events. Visitors can enjoy gladiatorial bouts, try on helmets and shields, and re-enact battle formations. Other highlights include a lecture on gladiators in ancient Rome by Kathleen Coleman, Harvard Classics professor and consultant on the box office hit “Gladiator,” family-friendly arts and crafts, traditional dancing, and a food demonstration. Enthusiasts can also visit the Museum’s permanent exhibition, Worlds Intertwined: Greeks, Romans, and Etruscans, and learn more about the history of Italy, from Etruscan to Roman civilizations, by viewing over 1,000 artifacts including marble and bronze sculptures, jewelry, gold and silver coins, metalwork, glass vessels, and more.

Based in Philadelphia, PECO is an electric and natural gas utility subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC). PECO serves 1.6 million electric and 486,000 natural gas customers in southeastern Pennsylvania and employs about 2,400 people in the region. PECO delivered 84.3 billion cubic feet of natural gas and 38.1 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity in 2009. Founded in 1881, PECO is one of the Greater Philadelphia Region’s most active corporate citizens, providing leadership, volunteer and financial support to numerous arts and culture, education, environmental, economic development, and community programs and organizations.

The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology is dedicated to the study and understanding of human history and diversity. Founded in 1887, the Museum has sent more than 400 archaeological and anthropological expeditions to all the inhabited continents of the world. With an active exhibition schedule and educational programming for children and adults, the Museum offers the public an opportunity to share in the ongoing discovery of humankind’s collective heritage.

Penn Museum is located at 3260 South Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (on Penn’s campus, across from Franklin Field). Public transportation to the Museum is available via SEPTA’s Regional Rail Line at University City Station; the Market-Frankford Subway Line at 34th Street Station; trolley routes 11, 13, 34 and 36; and bus routes 12, 21, 30, 40, and 42. Museum hours are Tuesday and Thursday through Sunday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, and Wednesday, 10:00 am to 8:00 pm, with P.M. @ PENN MUSEUM evening programs offered weekly. Closed Mondays and holidays. Admission donation is $10 for adults; $7 for senior citizens (65 +); $6 children (6-17) and full-time students with ID; free to Members, PennCard holders, and children 5 and younger; “pay-what-you-want” the last hour before closing. Hot and cold meals and light fare are offered to visitors with or without Museum admission in The Pepper Mill Café; the Museum Shop and Pyramid Shop for Children offer a wide selection of gifts, books, games, clothing, and jewelry. Penn Museum can be found on the web at

For general information call (215) 898-4000. For group tour information call (215) 746-8183.

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