Spring Hours & Park Safety

Mother Nature is dragging her heels but our Spring cleaning is done and
The Cedars House has reopened!

Please take notice of our new Sunday hours!

We encourage everyone to #OptOutside and enjoy all the Wissahickon Trail has to offer!

Although the Park Curfew has been lifted and the ice and snow is melting, there are a few safety precautions we ask hikers and walkers to consider on the trails.

Dress Warmly

It’s better to dress in layers than one bulky overcoat. One large, heavy coat can hold in moisture and will cause your inner clothing to become damp with perspiration during your hike. By dressing in layers, you can remove clothing as needed and carry in a pack. Warm weather is coming soon, but for now you’re good with three layers:

  • Undergarments: should be snug against your skin and made of non-absorbent material. Cotton is less preferable as it holds moisture close to your skin and cause you to feel colder.
  • Insulation: should be fitted so that air is not circulating and carrying away your body heat.
  • Windshell: outer coat should be loose enough to get over your other layers, heavy enough to keep out wind, and preferably waterproof.

Beware poison ivy

There are still snow mounds bordering the Drive, but it’s never too early to start looking out for patches of Poison Ivy. In the Spring, leaflets sprout up with a red or orange hue. Later in the summer, the leafs will turn green and hairy vines will grow around the stem. Do not be thrown off by their young appearance, leaflet sprouts still weep the highly poisonous oil, urushiol, that dermatologists estimate that roughly 85% of humans are allergic to. To lessen your chance of contracting poison ivy, we recommend enclosed shoes, long pants, and a barrier cream applied to any exposed skin on arms, hands and neck. Our canine friends generally do not suffer allergic reactions from poison ivy, but can transfer it home by way of their hair.

“Leaves of three, let it be”

Situational awareness

Be aware of where you are and what is happening around you in the Park! Avoid accidents by being alert and respectful to others, their pets, and park property. Forbidden Drive and other select trails offer directories to view, but for a more extensive Wissahickon hike, grab a map:

The Friends of the Wissahickon offers a brilliantly detailed map that makes planning a breeze.  You can pick one up for $10 at The Cedars House.

24th Annual Turkey Trot

The Cedars House will be open 7am-11am on Thanksgiving morning

for the 24th Annual Turkey Trot!


Twenty–four years ago, James J. Maguire, Founder and Chairman Emeritus of Philadelphia Insurance Companies and his family initiated the Turkey Trot to benefit the people of Face to Face. What began as a family fun run has grown into a competitive 5 mile race, with a 1 mile fun run/walk. The Turkey Trot is now our largest fundraising event, enabling us to meet the critical needs of the people of Germantown. The popularity of the Trot continues to grow; proceeds have more than doubled over the last five years. In 2012, over 1500 runners registered for this event.

Face to Face is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) human services organization dedicated to the health, well-being, and stability of the Philadelphia community. Face to Face meets basic human needs and reduces suffering. With hospitality, we provide a safe environment and practical tools, which enable the people of our community to confront personal challenges, empower their lives, and fulfill their unique potential.

The race will take place on Thanksgiving Day: Thursday, November 24th
5 mile start: 
1 mile fun run start: 9:15am

Online registration is closed


Runners will be able to register and pick up their pre-race packet at The Cedars House on Wednesday, November 23rd from 3pm to 6pm. Registration fee will be $40.00.
There will also be open registration the morning of the race, beginning at 7am.

Awards will be given out to first, second and third place competitors in male and female categories. Every participant will receive a short sleeve dry-fit race shirt. Light food and beverages will be available at the start/finish line outside The Cedars House. An after party will be begin at 10am at McGerk’s Pub & Grill on Bethlehem Pike.

Please join us in support of this wonderful organization and Philadelphia holiday tradition!

Hungry Education at The Cedars House!


Hungry Education’s Fall Session II Pre-C classes are now open for registration! These Mommy/Daddy and me classes introduce food to children ages 2.5-4 through movement, music, and storytelling. We explore food in a no-pressure setting through sensory-based activities and make a snack in each class. Perfect for picky eaters!

Classes will be held at The Cedars House Cafe. Class runs from Mon, 11/7 to 12/12 from 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM. All classes are peanut and nut-free! We can make accommodations to other food allergies & dietary restrictions whenever possible.

More information and registration can be found on our classes page.


Fall & Winter Hours


ch-hours-2We had a spectacular Labor Day in the Park!

Now that summer is winding down and school is back in session, The Cedars House says good bye to extended hours and returns to being open 8-3 daily.

We would like to welcome new and returning students at Chestnut Hill College. Show your ID at The Cedars House and receive 10% off.

Americana Collection by Carlisle Nostrame


A·mer·i·ca·na (əˌmeriˈkänə)

The style Americana refers to artifacts, or a collection of artifacts, related to the history, geography, folklore and cultural heritage of the United States. This summer, The Cedars House is proud to be  hosting an oil-on-canvas collection from painter, Carlisle Nostrame. For years, she has been know for her amazing ability to bring families intricate pet portrait commissions. Her daughter, Ann Marie, has carefully selected these personal pieces to showcase at The Cedars House.

Nostame’s personal work is a reflection of the animals and faces that helped build the American frontier. This Southwest-inspired collection features beautiful equine, prominent Native Americans and cowboy cameos.

The Cedars House will be displaying these works August through September. All paintings are for sale and Carlisle Nostame is open to offers below listed asking price.

Wissahickon Writing Circles

12068632_884415888279077_8675183166813509815_oSusan Windle’s writing circles are carefully structured for listening,writing and sharing. Susan brings poetry from many sources to guide writers into the deeper places. The surrounding woods add their voices. As weather permits, group members spend time outdoors with the Wissahickon creek, rocks, and trees—to hear the songs and garner the wisdom of this special place.

When • Groups meet weekly for two hours in the late afternoon for 7-week renewable cycles. Where • In a private room of The Cedars House Café on the northern end of Forbidden Drive, at Northwestern Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19118. Fee • $175 per cycle.$160 early bird registration by October 8. Cycle begins October 15 for the Thursday group. With enough interest, a Friday group is also possible.

Contact Susan through Facebook to explore: http://www.facebook.com/wissahickonwritingcircles

Fresh Artists at the Cedars House!

Local students have provided a wonderful gift to the community at the Cedars House in the form of expressive art pieces via the outstanding organization, Fresh Artists!

Founded in 2008, Fresh Artists is a national award-winning nonprofit that empowers young lives through art by engaging vulnerable children as full partners in philanthropy, by widely exhibiting children’s artwork in highly visible and unexpected places, and by providing art supplies and innovative art programs to severely under-resourced public schools. Fresh Artists invites K-12 artists to donate high-resolution images of selected artwork, and then provides corporate or individual donors with thank-you gifts of high-quality digital reproductions of that art in exchange for financial contributions. The talent and generosity of 1000 public school children throughout the country has delivered the value of more than $557,000 in art supplies and innovative art programming to public schools. Fresh Artists’ Print Studio provides large-format printing for under-resourced nonprofits while introducing disadvantaged teens to marketable job skills and potential careers in the creative economy.  Reproductions of children’s artwork have been installed in corporate facilities throughout the country from Washington, DC, to Oregon including SAP, Yahoo, Comcast, Independence Blue Cross, Harvard School of Education, World Café Live, Yale University Children’s Hospital, Drexel University, and the world-famous Philadelphia Flower Show. The children’s art has been installed in 35 homeless and emergency shelters, soup kitchens and child abuse clinics with healing, hopeful children’s art. The Fresh Artists Memory Games, educational, intergenerational games showcasing children’s art, received the Oppenheim Gold Award for Best Toy of the Year and were chosen by Oprah to be featured in “O” Magazine.

For more information, visitwww.freshartists.org.IMG_3800