With another winter dragging on (…and on…and on), you’re probably in need of some signs of spring. Luckily, Philadelphia’s annual harbinger of warmer days is rapidly approaching. The PHS Philadelphia Flower Show is only a few days away, and we’ve got your guide to all of the floral festivities. –Chelsea Karnash

(credit: Chelsea Karnash/CBSPhilly)

(credit: Chelsea Karnash/CBSPhilly)

THE BASICS

When: Feb. 28 – Mar. 8, 2015

Hours:

Friday, February 27 (PHS members preview) 12:00 pm – 3:30 pm
Saturday, February 28 (PHS members preview) 8:00 am – 11:00 am
Saturday, February 28 11:00 am – 9:00 pm
Sunday, March 1 8:00 am – 9:00 pm
Mon. – Fri., March 2-6 10:00 am – 9:00 pm
Saturday, March 7 8:00 am – 9:00 pm
Sunday, March 8 8:00 am – 6:00 pm

Where:

The Pennsylvania Convention Center
1101 Arch St. (12th & Arch Streets)
Philadelphia, Pa.
215-418-4700
www.paconvention.com

Background: Like the Philly cheesesteak or the Eagles, the Philadelphia Flower Show is deeply rooted in the city’s history. The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, America’s first horticultural society, was founded here in 1827, and the first Flower Show was held just two years later. Originally run by an unaffiliated group of nurserymen and growers, the Flower Show really blossomed (pun definitely intended) once the PHS took over in 1968 and moved its location to the then-new Civic Center. In 1996, the show arrived at its current digs at the Pa. Convention Center, where it now boasts over 250,000 visitors annually and ten-plus acres of exhibits, making it the largest flower show in the world.

Today, the flower show features everything from lectures and gardening demonstrations to culinary presentations and shopping. This year’s theme, “Celebrate the Movies,” spotlights flowers in the movies. Expect to see your favorite Disney flicks come to life in a new way! And while everyone loves movies like “The Little Mermaid,” “Winnie the Pooh” and “Frozen,” there’s something for the more grown-up side of us all, too – an Art Deco-style theater complete with a moving sculpture and thousands of flowers will take over the show’s garden entrance.

TICKETS & INFORMATION

Tickets: Tickets vary in price, depending on where, when and how you buy them. Individual tickets can be purchased online or at certain retailers, including:

AAA Mid-Atlantic
ACME Markets
Giant Food Stores
SEPTA ticket sales outlets
PHS Pop-up Beer Garden

For more info on prices or ticket types or to purchase tickets online, click here.

Donations: All of the proceeds from the Philadelphia International Flower Show support The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society and its acclaimed urban greening programs, including City Harvest.

Hotel Packages & Deals: A number of hotels are offering special prices in conjunction with the Flower Show. Visit the Philadelphia Flower Show website for more info.

(credit: Chelsea Karnash/CBSPhilly)

(credit: Chelsea Karnash/CBSPhilly)

ATTRACTIONS

In addition to flowers and plants as far as the eye can see, the Philadelphia International Flower Show also has some truly spectacular attractions. From the Designer’s Studio to the Gardener’s Studio and the Garden to Table Studio (food!), there’s something for everyone, whether you’re a gardening pro or just tagging along.

For those who’d like to sip on something special during the show, a series of Wine & Spirits Tastings are also on the schedule.

Bringing the kids along? Check out The Butterfly Experience, a room full of winged beauty (1,000 butterflies and 30 species!) that’s utterly enchanting.

SCHEDULE

Special Events:

The Flower Show Black Tie Preview Party will take place on Friday, Feb. 27. Dress in your best and wander the garden displays at the Flower Show while sipping cocktails and munching on hors d’oeuvres, then head into the Grand Ballroom for an elegant sit-down dinner. All ticket proceeds go to the PHS. For more info, click here.

And if you’re still looking to dance the night away after the preview party, there’s also an Afterparty happening Friday, Feb. 27 starting at 10 p.m. Co-hosted by the Philadelphia Film Society, guests can nosh on apps (like “crabby snacks” from “Silver Linings Playbook), sip cocktails and rub elbows with local celebs until the early morning. Tickets are $75.

Members and friends of Philly’s LGBT community are invited for the fifth annual LGBT Party on March 1 from 4-6 p.m. complete with cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and a performance from The Philadelphia Gay Men’s Chorus.

Wednesday, March 4 is the Flower Show’s annual Wedding Wednesday event from 6 – 8 p.m. Brides-to-be and their attendants can check out some of Philly’s best vendors, including Magpie Rentals, Unveiled Philadelphia and Casa Papel. And prior to the event, one lucky couple will actually be getting married AT the Flower Show!

March 5 is Girl’s Night Out from 5:30 – 8 p.m. at the Flower Show, so grab your girlfriends and enjoy shopping and sampling, a goodie bag, wine tastings and much more. For more info, click here.

Thursday, March 5 is also a night the college set can enjoy, with Campus Philly’s Open Arts College Night in the PHS Pop-up Garden. Movies, music, entertainment and giveaways are all on the sched for the 17-24 crowd.

This year, the Flower Show is going to the dogs with the first-ever Fido Friday! Pet-lovers can bring their favorite four-legged friend to this “Yappy Hour” from 6 – 7 p.m. in the PHS Garden, and there will be adoptable dogs on site for those looking to add to the fam.

New This Year:

The Flower Show has two new (and awesome!) features in 2015.

First, there’s the ongoing PHS Pop-up Beer Garden. It’s much like the outdoor version, only, you know – indoors. Expect food ranging from cookies to hand-carved brisket, craft beer, various wines, tastings involving both, movies, and even a “red carpet” entrance. Celebrity appearances are also slated for Friday, March 6, when Dan Aykroyd stops by to sign bottles of his Crystal Head Vodka, and Saturday, March 7, when Christina Milian will be doing the same with her Viva Diva. And for those who fancy Old Hollywood over New, John Wayne’s son, Ethan Wayne, will be popping in on Saturday, Feb. 28 toting some of his father’s movie memorabilia and signing bottles of Duke Bourbon.

For the fitness-inclined, there’s the brand new Run Into Spring 5K, a “fast and flat” dash on a closed course downtown. All runners get a commemorative Flower Show medal, and participants can also upgrade their ticket to get access to a post-run party in the PHS Beer Garden that includes a free drink. Sign up for the race here.

(credit: Chelsea Karnash/CBSPhilly)

(credit: Chelsea Karnash/CBSPhilly)

Want to know when your favorite expert is in attendance, or where to get something to eat? Download the Flower Show App here.

For more info on the Philadelphia International Flower Show, access the show’s social stream here. You can also visit the PHS Blog.