If you love people watching, love fountains, and love the history of skateboarding, then chances are you’ll love Love Park when visiting Philadelphia. Officially known as JFK Plaza, the nickname is derived from the iconic “LOVE” sculpture that graces the downtown park. Originally constructed for the nation’s bicentennial in 1976, the sculpture lasted only two years before its temporary removal from the park. It wasn’t until the Chairman of the Philadelphia Art Commission purchased the sculpture and returned it to the park that it was once again open to the public. Though the sculpture is smaller than you’d originally think, what isn’t small is the level of crowds all waiting to snap a photo. Seemingly as iconic as the Liberty Bell and a modern symbol of the city, the sculpture is an artsy, feel-good centerpiece in the City of Brotherly Love. The sculpture, its crowds, and onlookers aside, Love Park is famous as an urban birthplace of the modern sport of skateboarding. Though skateboarding in the park is banned today, skaters still make pilgrimages to the park to see where their idols honed their skills and pulled their most famous tricks. Now, the activities of choice in Love Park are splashing about in the fountain, and soaking up the energetic vibe of the international crowd. As of 2015, the city is planning to give the park a large scale renovation, which will add more green space, clean the park up—and keep the famous sculpture.
Love Park is located by City Hall and is most easily accessed by the city’s metro by stopping at 15th Street station. By train, the closest stop is Suburban station which is accessed by multiple lines.