Armed with an army of innovative and certified shutterbugs, Olan Mills Portrait Studio provides families with high-quality portraits, continuing a mission that was established more than 75 years ago by founder Olan Mills Sr. Skilled in the art of capturing infants, children, families, and bunny-ears-giving ghost orbs on film, Olan Mills’s experienced smile snappers will take a series of poses amid a variety of backgrounds and lighting options. The studio is equipped with a selection of props—including numbers for birthdays, toys, and boxes—and patrons may bring their own photo-enlivening items from home. The resulting photos find their way to prints in natural color, black and white, or sepia tones; they can also be immortalized in the studio's signature Old Masters style, a canvas brushed with highlights to recreate look of an oil painting. Like the gentlemanly mariners of ages past with their full schedule of sea-battles, the photographers welcome appointments, but do not require them.
During the challenge, teams of two or more individuals will run helter-skelter around the city in a frantic race for cash prizes and personal pride, with a first-place award of $200. Not only will participants have to solve strands of interconnected clues that would test the deductive powers of even the most seasoned children's book detective, they'll need to plot spatiotemporal stratagems while exploring undiscovered corners of the city. Although being physically fit is a plus, quick wits and wise planning will ultimately determine the winners. Participation in the challenge gets contestants a clue packet, race-number bib, and T-shirt, and fees go toward the prize pool. The website offers a regular FAQ, as well as a Groupon FAQ detailing the intricacies of the race, what to wear the day of, why it's not okay to bring a boa constrictor, and more.
Pennsylvania Ballet has deep ties to dance history. The company was formed in 1963 by Barbara Weisberger, a protégé of the great George Balanchine. Perhaps due to that remarkable connection, the ballet's mission has always been to celebrate the classics. An annual staging of Balanchine's The Nutcracker and other favorites pay tribute to dance's traditional beauty. But the artists still look to the future of the art form, which surprisingly doesn't involve pieces set to laserbeats. The group is known for innovative takes on canonical fixtures, from a re-imagined Swan Lake to the world premiere of Matthew Neenan's Carmina Burana.
Not only does Moon Bounce Philadelphia deck out parties with more than 20 rainbow-colored inflatables, it also delivers peace of mind. Each of its bounce houses, water slides, obstacle courses, and combo units is registered with the state through the Department of Agriculture and cleaned before anyone sets foot on it. Large or toddler-size bounce houses meet the antigravity needs of a traditional birthday celebration, whereas specialty inflatables such as the pirate-ship combo unit—complete with a faux crow's nest—complement themed parties and train Navy recruits.
Interactive inflatables such as the basketball-shot model sharpen the aim of sports buffs, and a wet-dry slide safely catches fast-moving riders with a bumper wall. The 40-foot Ninja Jump obstacle course, meanwhile, challenges kids and adults to maneuver around horizontal and vertical pop-ups, through tunnels, and over rock walls to reach the end.
In backyards, on neighborhood blocks, and across green parks, The Party Animals Philadelphia’s large inflatables take shape, transforming any space into fantastic fun houses. Those shapes include large, air-filled slides, regal castles, and more, and they can be accompanied by concessions such as popcorn machines and hot-dog cookers. They do the setup and takedown, allowing party people to attend to their birthdays, carnivals, and corporate events. As a special touch sure to delight the little ones, they can also populate shindigs with costume characters such as Elmo and Winnie the Pooh.