Eastern State Penitentiary's 'Storming of the Bastille' on Saturday, July 10 Features 2,000 Tastykakes Flung From the Prison's Towers

Jun 22, 2010, 12:00 ET from Eastern State Penitentiary

PHILADELPHIA, June 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Philadelphia's Fairmount neighborhood will host its annual Bastille Day Festival on Saturday, July 10th from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. in front of Eastern State Penitentiary, located at 22nd Street and Fairmount Avenue in Philadelphia.  

The festival will reach its climax at 5:30 p.m., when dozens of French revolutionaries, armed with muskets and cannon, and singing "La Marseillaise," will storm the grim walls of "the Bastille" (Eastern State Penitentiary, which has an historic connection to the French Bastille).  They will capture Marie Antoinette (played by Terry McNally, owner of London Grill) and, ignoring her mocking cries of "Let them eat Tastykake!" drag her to a real, functioning guillotine, built for the occasion as 2,000 Tastykakes are flung from the prison's towers.  

The festival will feature kids' craft activities, French themed tents and live music entertainment, as well as a Pet Parade at 2:00 p.m., a French Fashion Show at 2:30 p.m., and the "Tricycle Tour de France" with prizes for best French decorated bikes at 3:00 p.m.

Local restaurants, including London Grill, The Belgian Cafe, Bishop's Collar, Bridgid's Bar & Restaurant, Jack's Firehouse, Luigi's Pizza Fresca, Mugshots Coffeehouse & Cafe, Rembrandt's, Trio, and Urban Saloon will provide great French fare.  Menu items will include crepes, baguette sandwiches, pain au chocolat, croissants, French pastry, Kronenbourg 1664 Beer, French wine and champagne specials.

The Bastille Day Festival is free and open to the public.  Visitors are encouraged to dress as French Peasants or Royalty.  More information about the event can be found at http://www.easternstate.org/events/bastille.php.

The celebration includes tours of Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site (admission fee $12 adults, $10 seniors, $8 students and kids ages 7-12) between 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.  The penitentiary will stay open for special Twilight Tours following the reenactment.  Meant to be a quick introduction to the penitentiary and its history, these abbreviated tours last 20 minutes and are available for $10 (adults) and $5 (seniors, students, and kids ages 7-12).

Eastern State Penitentiary is open every day, year round.  For more information, please call (215) 236-3300 or visit www.easternstate.org.

SOURCE Eastern State Penitentiary