Question for Philadelphians


February 26, 2009, 06:31 AM

I'm having a trip to Philadelphia planned for me this weekend, so I've been told by the Mrs.

It's been a few years since I was in the city. I know PA carry law pretty well but I'd like to know in advance what "tourist" spots (where it would be otherwise LEGAL to carry) have metal detectors and/or security checks so I can avoid delays and unpleasantness.

The only spot I've been told we're definitely going is the Franklin Institute, but others will be added to the itinerary, I'm sure.

How bout it? Does FI run detectors or have bag checks, etc? Where else have you noticed that kind of thing in the city?



If you enjoyed reading about "Question for Philadelphians" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!
February 26, 2009, 06:35 AM
I don't remember the Mutter Museum being posted; but do be sure to check that place out either way.

February 26, 2009, 06:47 AM
We visited the Mutter Museum when we went a couple years ago.

No detectors or deterrents there.

February 26, 2009, 07:54 AM
When I was in Philly about a year ago, the Mutter Museum definitely did not have any deterrents. I don't think the Franklin Institute did at the time, either, but I was only inside for a few minutes.

The only place I recall seeing any security was Independence Hall. Go figure.

February 26, 2009, 07:58 AM
Thanks guys!

Independence Hall would be part of the National Park, correct? I believe I remember seeing that listed as one of the NPS areas that would remain off-limits after the recent change to the NPS rules about CCW.


February 26, 2009, 08:08 AM

Make a post/do a search on

I bet you'll find some better and more timely responses there, being a PA dedicated forum and all.

February 26, 2009, 08:24 AM
Good idea Ken. Just did that. I ought to be a lot more active on that forum anyway.



February 26, 2009, 09:13 AM
Franklin Institute does have metal detectors. So do all the other places of historical interest you'd want to visit. I live about 45 miles north and east of Philly, going to the city to enjoy the historic sits, pretty much guarantees you'll be unarmed. Great law isn't it. the criminals know if you've visited any of the national park or some of the other historic sites, you'll be unarmed. Gee, I guess criminals don't care about laws now do they? Think our elected crooks will ever get that point?

Enjoy your trip - and stay in zone yellow.:D

February 26, 2009, 09:40 AM
Franklin Institute does have metal detectors.

Well, isnt' THAT unfortunate?



February 26, 2009, 11:23 AM
How would that work at the Franklin? I mean if you are armed legally, could they deny you entrance? Would they call police etc?

February 26, 2009, 11:29 AM
Any private entity can insist that you leave or deny you entrance for whatever policy violation they feel you have committed. You don't have a *RIGHT* to enter.

They cannot have you arrested as you have broken no laws.

If you refuse to leave (or insist on entering) they can have you arrested for trespassing.

Same way with Hershey Park (as an example). They do bag checks and have a "no weapons" policy. But they don't have metal detectors and they don't pat you down. You can (I have) carry there without breaking the state law although you are in violation of their corporate policy. If anyone notices and tells security, you will amost certainly be escorted to the exit, post haste. You cannot be arrested for carrying, but you may not stay if told to leave.


February 27, 2009, 07:20 PM
Franklin Institute does have metal detectors.

O.k. Mugsie, I've asked this question over at the PA firearms owners forum and got a resounding, NO. Including from several folks who've been there very recently.

Did you see detectors there? When (how recently)? So far, I'm at like 25:1 for "no detectors" but I'd like to be sure. (That "1" is YOU.)

For one reason or another, returning to the vehicle to disarm would be mighty awkward in this case.

Not to put you on the spot or anything...:o



Duke of Doubt
February 27, 2009, 07:24 PM
Last time I got caught in downtown Philly, and I swear I am not making this up, it was 1976 during a Revolutionary War re-enactment. Estes Eustis, local time traveler and occasional character, popped up out of a sewer grate and opened "fire" on several uniformed Brits. My handsome visage appeared right in front of Estes in local papers, next day.

Oh yeah, "Rocky" was playing in local theaters. Caught that, too. Frigging Philadelphia Art Museum front entrance.

February 27, 2009, 08:11 PM
Philly is currently in the middle of a war, it feels like once a week that an officer has been shot.

February 27, 2009, 08:29 PM
I live 13 miles outside the city and try not to go there unless I have to. Open carry is not permited within the city limits even though the state law says otherwise. Any historical site you'd want to visit (like the liberty bell) is considered a national park. As JT said, Philly is in the middle of a war. Shootings, muggings, cops being shot has become common place. Like I said, I don't go there unless I absolutely have to.

February 27, 2009, 08:37 PM
Open carry is not permited within the city limits even though the state law says otherwise.

My understanding was that OC is legal in Philly only if you do hold the LCTF.

Or are you saying that you will be hassled if you do it, regardless of the law? (Probably true.)

My trip will be with family who would not be particularly comfortable with the idea of CCW, and I don't want to have to come up with some lame excuse to walk two blocks back to the parking garage if they are running detectors.

But, I have NO intention of walking the Phillthy streets even for an afternoon without a little something along for the ride.


February 28, 2009, 06:59 AM
OC is legal in Philly only if you do hold the LCTF

My understanding is concealed carry only. That kind of forces you to have your LTCF. You could call the sheriff's dept. to be sure. With the rising number of police officers being shot and the dangerous climate in the city, I wouldn't be caught dead without some means of self protection.

February 28, 2009, 08:02 AM
OC in Philly and you WILL miss all the attractions as you are occupied with Phillies Phinest

February 28, 2009, 08:22 AM
Its sad to hear my home town has become a war zone. I do get back there from time to time and Center City and the historic areas sitll seem OK. I wouldn't venture through West Philly like I used to when I went to Penn, and I was unarmed!

Straight Shooter
February 28, 2009, 10:17 AM
Here is a good write up about open carry in Philly with links to the law:

Basically you may open carry anywhere in PA without a LTCF except Philly. You may open carry in Philly with a LTCF.

A LTCF is required to carry concealed anywhere in PA.
A LTCF issued in any PA county is good in all counties including Philadelphia county. I bring this up because there are rumors flying around that a LTCF issued by another county is no good in Philly. This is not the case they are just trying to discourage people from carrying in Philly.

As other have stated Philly is going through a tough time. It does seem like cops are being shot every other day. There have been 7 cops shot since May 2006.

My 2 cents: Don't go waving your rights around. Keep it concealed. Don't make the lives of the LEOs in Philly any harder than it already is.

Duke of Doubt
February 28, 2009, 03:07 PM
I ran into a fellow South Philly guy up here just last year. What a small world.

"Drive to Allen-town, P.A. ... so much to see; so much to say ..."

February 28, 2009, 11:07 PM
I'll put the cap on this thread and it can be closed:

There are no metal detectors at "The Franklin."


If you enjoyed reading about "Question for Philadelphians" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!