Once Upon a Nation

Storytelling & Historic Reenactments

Storytelling & Living History

Once Upon A Nation's storytelling and reenactment season kicks off Memorial Day Weekend!  For more information about locations and schedules, check out our Storytelling Benches and Historic Reenactment pages.

historic philadelphia reenactments


Storytelling Benches

Enjoy true stories from Philadelphia's past!

Learn about our nation's history from award-winning Once Upon A Nation storytellers at any of our 10 storytelling benches located in and around Independence National Historic Park. Best of all, it’s completely FREE!

The Once Upon A Nation storytellers aren’t dressed in colonial garb, but they’ll effortlessly transport you back in time as you sit on spacious and comfortable teak benches.

Stories last just a few minutes each and are told continuously during operating hours. You can start at any of the benches, all clearly marked with a “Once Upon A Nation” sign.


Locate Storytelling Benches »

Fun For Kids

Wherever you elect to start your storytelling journey, be sure to ask your storyteller for a flag. Kids collect one star from each bench they visit; flags complete with stars may be presented for a fun prize at the Historic Philadelphia Center, the Betsy Ross House, or at Franklin Square.

Living History

Meet citizens of 18th & 19th century Philadelphia, and hear first-hand accounts of what it was like to live in colonial times. Watch and listen as history comes to life!

Join them at the Betsy Ross House, Free Quaker Meeting House and the Independence Visitor Center. Pick up an Historic Philadelphia Gazette for a daily schedule.


Historic Reenactments Schedule »