Two Gayborhood locations in PoliticalFest

The Gayborhood boasts two of the seven locations the public can visit as part of PoliticalFest, which opens today and runs through July 27.

The Library Company of Philadelphia, 1314 Locust St., has an exhibit on presidential archives featuring a life mask of George Washington, a death mask of Abraham Lincoln and memorabilia from 19th-century African-American political conventions, among other things.

The Historical Society of Philadelphia, 1300 Locust St., will display founding documents including a constitution of the Women’s Suffrage Association with a note by Susan B. Anthony and a lithograph of the Emancipation Proclamation, among other artifacts.

“It’s a great way to get some residents out and about and to get attendees to parts of the city they might not otherwise explore,” said Angela Val, deputy executive director of Philadelphia 2016, the host committee for the Democratic National Convention. The convention is not open to the public.

Tickets for PoliticalFest, which anyone can attend, cost $15 and offer access all six days.

As mayor of Philadelphia, Ed Rendell created the event for the Republican National Convention when it came to the city in 2000. All activities took place at the Pennsylvania Convention Center. Organizers wanted to branch out to more locations to show off the museum-quality institutions that have sprung up in Philadelphia in the last 16 years.

LeapStarr Productions, a women-owned company from Moorestown, N.J., earned the contract to produce PoliticalFest.

“Having the opportunity to be a part of such a historic political event in our hometown is certainly a privilege beyond our wildest expectations,” Elizabeth Jenkins-Santana, LeapStarr’s CEO, said in a statement. “We look forward to representing Philadelphia on a national platform.”

The hub of PoliticalFest will be at the National Constitution Center, 525 Arch St. At the main stage, attendees can watch two political-themed game shows and an interview series called, “Executive Powers: Celebrity Q&A,” during which actors who have portrayed the president or other political heavyweights will be interviewed. Highlights include Tony Goldwyn from “Scandal” and Melissa Fitzgerald from “The West Wing.”

The other locations include Hall F of the Convention Center, 1101 Arch St.; the National Liberty Museum, 312 Chestnut St.; the Philadelphia History Museum at the Atwater Kent, 15 S. Seventh St.; and the Heritage Center at the Union League, 140 S. Broad St.

Philadelphia expects to see 50,000 people come to town for the convention. That’s less than the 70,000 people who flood the city during an Eagles home game. Val said she hoped Philadelphians would stay in town for the convention to take advantage of PoliticalFest and other public activities.

“We wanted to make sure all the residents are acting as hosts,” she said, “We wanted to make sure people felt involved even if not on the convention floor.”

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit http://www.phldnc.com.

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