Our trip to Philadelphia was a fun one. We went to the Franklin Institute (a favorite of mine from when I was a child) and the National Constitution Center. We also saw Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell, as well as the Reading Market and Pat's (King of Steaks!) for a cheesesteak.
The Constitution Center was great:
The kids were sure they were going to be bored, but they had a good time in spite of themselves! There are lots of interactive displays, and it goes through the Constitution from it's founding to the current day. And by current day, I mean they had new displays up questioning the constitutionality of a) the goverment directing cleanup of the Gulf oil spill, b) same-sex marriage and c) the Arizona Immigration law. There are post-it notes at nearby stations, and visitors are encouraged to vote yes or no and stick their post-it on the issue:
Founder's Hall was fun. The hall is filled with life-sized statues of the Founders, and many are in the poses of the iconic painting "Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States". Visitors are encouraged to join the signers by signing a large visitors book and pose for pictures with the various Founders:
Patriotic geek that I am, I highly recommend the Center if you find yourself in Philly. They have created a mall-like complex, with the Constitution Center at one end and Independence Hall at the other, with the Liberty Bell and the excavation of the President's House in the middle.
Make sure to check out the Franklin Institute, too, especially if you have kids. Even my teenager had fun. Check out the planetarium shows, be sure to stop by the rooftop observatory to take a peek at the sun and don't forget to tackle the walk-through heart!
"Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn." - Ben Franklin