Experience Macy's Holiday Light Show in Philadelphia

Through Dec. 31—except for Christmas Day—the Holiday Light Show and Wanamaker Organ Concert at Macy’s will take place every hour on the hour.


Fall can be drab, so brighten up your life by getting out of dodge. Luckily, Philadelphia isn't too far away for fall fun—and our Fall in Philly feature can help guide you there.

If you feel like venturing out a little farther from home, check here for a weekly suggestion of something fun or interesting to do in the City of Brotherly Love. Whether it's a restaurant to try, a festival to attend or special museum exhibits, we'll feature something different every Thursday.

Any day of the week through Dec. 31, with the exception of Dec. 25, the Holiday Light Show and Organ Concert will take place in the historic Wanamaker building, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this December. This annual event has been a Philadelphia tradition since 1956.

The "Christmas Pageant of Lights" features more than 100,000 energy-efficient multicolored LED lights (which create holiday images on the four-story-high velvet curtain in the Grand Court atrium), narration by Julie Andrews and the sounds of the recently restored Wanamaker Organ. The organ is the largest playable instrument in the world, according to Macy's website, and has been a National Historic Landmark since 1980.

Learn more about the organ here, then head to the light show and don't forget to browse the holiday window displays and stop by the third floor of Macy's to see scenes from Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol."

  • Location: Macy's Center City, 1300 Market St., Philadelphia, Pa., 19107
  • Date/Time: Through Dec. 23, 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.; Dec. 24, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Dec. 25, Closed; Dec. 26 through Dec. 30, 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.; Dec. 31, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
  • Price: Free.
  • More Info: Macy's Event Page
Tom Sofield December 02, 2011 at 04:09 PM
When I was younger, the train ride was the best part!
Warminster Joe December 02, 2011 at 04:20 PM
As a child of the 80s, does anyone remember the monorail that went around the toy department? I loved that! It is a shame they took it down.
Tom Sofield December 02, 2011 at 04:26 PM
Growing up I always heard family talk about the monorail at Wanamakers. Here is some information from http://www.wanamakerorgan.com/xmas.php: Wanamaker’s maintained a large Toy Department at the south end of the Eighth floor. It included a real monorail for kids that made a circuit around the department from 1946 to 1984, and a sprawling electric-train layout. The rocket monorail cars have been moved to the Please Touch Museum.
Audie Moran December 05, 2011 at 02:35 PM
I used to ride in that monorail in the 50's and 60's, it was the best part of the store! I ended up working at Wanamaker's in the 70's and actually got to sit at the organ. It was amazing!
Jesseka Kadylak December 30, 2011 at 06:45 PM
I went to the light show yesterday and I'm really glad I went. I was really surprised by how many people were there. Then I headed to the third floor and ventured through Dickens Village, which was also really cute. You still have today and tomorrow to check out these holiday exhibits: Dec. 30, 10 a.m. - 7 p.m., and Dec. 31, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m


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