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November 1st, 2011
Every Family Party

(November 12, 2011)


Philadelphia, PA (October 2011) —Let your favorite wild things loose in the Museum for the Maurice Sendak-inspired Wild About Art Every Family Party on November 12, 2011. This annual extravaganza transforms the Philadelphia Museum of Art into a child’s wonderland.  Guests—and their adults—will make nature-inspired art, enjoy wild performances, and explore the Museum’s collection for unusual creatures among the treasures.

“It has been my privilege for the past four years to be a part of Philadelphia's most exciting children's event, the Every Family Party,” says event co-chair, Melissa Kromdyk McAleenan. “It’s a magical night when children, parents, and grandparents from the city to the suburbs enjoy an evening filled with masterpieces, great food, hands-on crafts and spectacular entertainment.” The evening is presented by PNC Arts Alive, a five-year, $5-million grant initiative of the PNC Foundation designed to support the visual and performing arts.

Family-friendly activities, kid-friendly food, music, dancing, and performances orchestrated by the International Opera Theater will take place from 5:30-8:00 pm in the Museum’s Main Building. Single tickets are $30 ($25 per person in a group of four or more). Children under one year old may enter free of charge. Sponsorships begin at $500 and offer special perks including an invitation the Pre-Party, as well as recognition opportunities. Visit, call (215) 235-SHOW, or use the invitation reply card to purchase tickets and sponsorships. Free community tickets subsidized by sponsors allow children and families from the Museum’s Community Partners to attend this event. Proceeds from the Every Family Party benefit the Museum’s award-winning Education department, which serves more than 85,000 school children and 200,000 adults each year.

The “wild” party will transform the galleries, with engaging activities in every nook. In Gallery 201, children will be the architects and decorators of their own wooden birdhouses. Inspired by rainy-day paintings in Galleries 161 and 164, guests will create musical rain sticks and kids in Gallery 152 can use watercolors to create real paintings on canvas. The “seek and find” game in Gallery 155 is perfect for younger attendants, who can use rhyming clues to search for domestic animals in paintings and watch local musician Soozy Pooch lead a doggie sing-a-long. Children can create their own crowns while watching a royalty-inspired puppet performance in Gallery 247 before moving on to Gallery 204, where stylists will weave feathers into children’s hair while live birds of prey from the Philadelphia Zoo preen their own glossy plumes. An armadillo, a hedgehog, and a tortoise will be on view in the mezzanine of the Great Stair Hall, which will also have lively tunes for dancing.

To recharge, there will be kid-friendly food stations with dessert and dinner buffets, including mac and cheese and a slider station with chicken, veggie burgers, and angus beef burgers, as well as an adult-friendly drink station on the East Balcony and a relaxing room in Gallery 175, where guests will read books and enjoy quiet time.

During the event, the International Opera Theater will present five-minute pop-up performances inspired by Maurice Sendak’s Where The Wild Things Are before staging a wild rumpus in the Great Stair Hall. Children can interact with performers through live video conferencing broadcast during a fun finale presented by the Education Department’s Distance Learning program, dedicated to bringing the Museum into classrooms around the world through interactive virtual fieldtrips. At the end of the day, guests will return home with all of their treasures and creations in a Wild About Art tote bag.

“The Every Family Party is the perfect opportunity for families to learn about art and have fun exploring the wide variety of engaging, hands-on activities offered,” says Marla Shoemaker, the Kathleen C. Sherrerd Senior Curator of Education. “We’re also delighted that we’ll be able to offer tickets free of charge to qualifying Community Partners, enabling more kids and families to participate in the celebration. The Museum would like to extend its gratitude to PNC Arts Alive for their continued support for this community event, as well as to co-chairs Nicole Marshall and Melissa Kromdyk McAleenan for leading our planning committee of more than 40 enthusiastic volunteers.” 

In anticipation of Wild About Art, the Philadelphia Museum of Art is hosting a photo contest. Share pictures of kids at their ‘wildest’ for a chance to win fantastic prizes, including four tickets to the VIP reception prior to the Every Family Party. Starting on Friday, October 28, upload images to the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s Flickr EFP group pool ( with the tag ‘Every Family Party’. Photo entries must be submitted by Wednesday, November 4, and the top 5 images will be posted to Facebook. A grand prize and two runner-up prizes will be awarded to the photo with the most ‘likes’ as of Wednesday, November 9.

Social Media
Twitter/Facebook/Instagram/Tumblr/YouTube: @philamuseum

We are Philadelphia’s art museum. A landmark building. A world-renowned collection. A place that welcomes everyone. We bring the arts to life, inspiring visitors—through scholarly study and creative play—to discover the spirit of imagination that lies in everyone. We connect people with the arts in rich and varied ways, making the experience of the Museum surprising, lively, and always memorable. We are committed to inviting visitors to see the world—and themselves—anew through the beauty and expressive power of the arts.

For additional information, contact the Communications Department of the Philadelphia Museum of Art phone at 215-684-7860, by fax at 215-235-0050, or by e-mail at The Philadelphia Museum of Art is located on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway at 26th Street. For general information, call (215) 763-8100.

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