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PIFA Street Fair Takes Over Avenue Of The Arts Saturday

The 2011 PIFA street fair on Broad Street. (Credit: Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts)

The 2011 PIFA street fair on Broad Street. (Credit: Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts)

John Ostapkovich John Ostapkovich
John Ostapkovich brings humor and wit, and a wealth of experience...
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By John Ostapkovich

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The biennial Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts is wrapping up with an enormous street fair tomorrow.

For the street, they’ve got Broad Street closed from Chestnut to South. For the fair, festival director Jay Wahl says there’s music, artistic welding and rides.

“We also are doing two enormous garden/parks where people can literally just lounge, right in the middle of Broad Street, turning their city into their park, which is how I imagined the Avenue of the Arts should be, where arts and civics intersect.”

PIFA’s theme has been “If You Had a Time Machine…” And, Wahl says, expect a mash-up.

“Well, all those moments should sort of happen simultaneously and they should kind of collide into each other,” Wahl says. “We built a dinosaur petting zoo and we have a robot walking down the street and we have a group called the Blackbird Society Orchestra, which is playing music from the 20’s and 30’s, and it’s this kaleidoscope of moments in time.”

There’s a lot to do for free, says Wahl, and a couple of rides and an obstacle course that will set you back some green.

Wahl says he’s aiming for interaction with art and artists on an intimate scale rather than the show-stopping theatrics that marked the first PIFA street fair two years ago.

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