‘Ben & Me’ at the National Liberty Museum

Philadelphia’s Liveliest Celebration of Benjamin Franklin’s 300th Birthday

PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 11 /PRNewswire/ — Benjamin Franklin’s next-door neighbor plans a fun – and forward-thinking – 300th birthday celebration: from November 19, 2005 through November 2006, the National Liberty Museum will host “Ben & Me: Keeping an American Hero’s Legacy Alive Today.” “Ben & Me” includes an exhibit, tours, free visitors’ guides and more focusing on Franklin’s famous concepts of good character in everyday life. The National Liberty Museum is located at 321 Chestnut Street in historic Philadelphia … right next door to Benjamin Franklin’s home at Franklin Court!

The “Ben & Me” exhibit will feature eighteenth- and nineteenth-century memorabilia never displayed before for the public, including a rare collection of “maxim mugs,” illustrated with Franklin’s quotations about good character, from the early 1800s. “Lost time is never found again” and “Little strokes fell great oaks” are just a few of the timeless “Franklinisms” featured in the National Liberty Museum’s collection of original Benjamin Franklin memorabilia.

“Ben & Me” tours and visitors’ guides will also focus on his commonsense ideas about morality in everyday life, and how to follow his advice today. Tours and visitors’ guides include fun and useful games and exercises to help visitors incorporate Franklin’s lessons about life and good character into their daily lives.

The extraordinary “Ben & Me” celebration of Benjamin Franklin’s Tercentenary brings a fresh perspective to any commemoration of this American hero. “The National Liberty Museum is proud to offer a truly unique view of Benjamin Franklin’s legacy,” says Executive Director Gwen Borowsky, “Although he is a major player in American history, Benjamin Franklin’s ideas are still alive and powerful today. Visitors of all ages can learn how to use Franklin’s wisdom in their own, everyday lives in the ‘Ben & Me’ exhibit and themed tours. They can learn from his example, just as they learn from the 2,000 other ‘Heroes of Liberty’ celebrated in our galleries.”

“Ben Franklin 300 Philadelphia” refers to the yearlong commemoration of Benjamin Franklin’s 300th birthday in Philadelphia and Its Countryside(TM). The celebration will run from fall 2005 through 2006, and will focus on the world premiere of the international traveling exhibition, “Benjamin Franklin: In Search of a Better World” at the National Constitution Center. The celebration is led by the Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary, a non-profit organization supported by a lead grant of $4 million from the Pew Charitable Trusts. It will include an array of exhibitions, lectures, symposia, concerts and special events and offers at many of the region’s historical and cultural organizations, restaurants and hotels.

The National Liberty Museum is dedicated to celebrating democracy and diversity, promoting respect and defusing violence. Located at 321 Chestnut Street in the heart of Philadelphia’s historic district, the Museum is open 10 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. daily. The facility is fully wheelchair accessible. For more information on the Museum, call (215) 925-2800 or visit http://www.libertymuseum.org/.

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