As the oldest town in Bucks County, Bristol has a rich and varied history with much of that history still visible in the architecture.
Established in 1681, Bristol has been a commercial hub for over 300 years. Through the many years of change, the Delaware River has been a constant influence on this river front town.
The Delaware River enabled raw materials to be shipped to Bristol and finished products and goods to be transported to markets near and far. The Delaware Canal, the superhighway of its era, had its terminus here. The full barges could easily be rafted together and shipped to Philadelphia from Bristol. In 2016, look for construction to begin on docks to be built on the Delaware River for daytrippers to enjoy the easily-accessed downtown with its local shops, diverse festivals and outstanding eateries.
Today, Radcliff Street that parallels the River is part of the Bristol Historic District in the National Register of Historic Places. Anchored by the Margaret R. Grundy Memorial Museum and the King George III Inn, this street tells the colorful story of Bristol with its buildings. Visitors are invited to take a self-guided walking tour to learn about the colorful local history that reflects the greater changes that were happening in the fledgling nation.
Today, Bristol is once again transforming itself. The Bristol Riverside Theatre offers a full season of award-winning theatrical performances with equity actors and many special musical and theatrical events throughout the year. Mill Street, which saw a decline with the rise of shopping centers and malls in the suburbs, is seeing a return of retail and dining establishments. Customers have found an authentic downtown experience of shopping local, the beauty of dining, and relaxing along the Delaware River. Festivals and other events are held on regular schedule through the warm weather celebrating the many ethnic groups who have made Bristol their home. Bristol celebrates its past while creating its future.
Because you deserve the most up-dated businesses listings, we suggest that you check the website of our partner for the most up-to-date listings for Bristol businesses.
Metered parking is available on Mill and Radcliffe Streets with free public lots along the riverfront, behind the shops on Mill Street.
“Bristol Riverside Theater is dedicated to being a premiere regional theatre for Bucks County and surrounding communities. We believe theatre has an essential contribution to make to our quality of life. OUR MISSION IS: to engage audiences and artists alike with exceptional performances, inspired writing and superior productions that motivate us to think harder, to feel more deeply, to laugh more joyfully, and to reflect on ourselves and the world in which we live.”
Bristol Riverside Theatre (BRT) is a professional regional theatre in the historic district of Bristol Borough. The theatre, located in a renovated movie house, combines the excitement of a large stage with the intimacy of a 300-seat theater, along with outstanding lighting and sound technology. Since 1986, BRT has brought consistently acclaimed professional theater to Bucks County and maintained a long-term commitment to finding and developing new plays.
BRT is the recipient of over 81 nominations for the Barrymore Awards for Excellence in Theater, given annually by Theatre Philadelphia.
Now in its 29th season, the theatre has grown to produce over 200 performances every year, including five Mainstage productions, three presented events, a summer music fest series, a play reading series, a Christmas concert, and a summer camp every year. BRT has produced 135 works, premiered 23 plays and musicals, and developed international touring and producing relationships.
The Mill is a shared studio space where artists who are serious about their craft can come and go freely and create in a community environment.
It is a place of creative proximity where the potential for dialogue, giving and receiving feedback, and drawing inspiration from others is possible.
Learn more at their website.
Silver Lake Nature Center
The Silver Lake Nature Center inspires connections with nature for people of all ages, interests, and abilities through education, recreation, preservation, research, and advocacy.
Explore 235 acres of woods, lakes, wetlands, and meadows.
The Nature Center grounds have about 4.5 miles of Nature Trails which are routed through or near the various habitats. The grounds are maintained to enhance the diversity of plant and animal life. The habitats include the Coastal Plain Forest, Lake, Marshes, Swamp, Stream, Ponds, Unglaciated Bog, and Meadows. Protected within the park are 43 Pennsylvania Species of Special Concern. Silver Lake provides refuge for the Red-bellied Turtle while the marsh is home for the Coastal Plain Leopard Frog.
Check out their website for wealth of information about their programming, events, workshop and so much more.
Silver Lake Nature Center is owned by Bucks County.
A walk along the 60-mile long towpath of Delaware Canal State Park is a stroll into American history. Paralleling the Delaware River between Easton and Bristol, this diverse park contains an historic canal and towpath, a 90-acre pond, many miles of river shoreline, and 11 river islands including the Morgan Hill group (3), Loors, Whippoorwill, Old Sow, Raubs, Lynn/Frog/Rock group, and Hendricks. From riverside to farm fields to historic towns, visitors to Delaware Canal State Park enjoy the ever-changing scenery along its corridor.
The Delaware Canal is the only remaining continuously intact canal of the great towpath canal building era of the early and mid-19th century.
.Bristol Borough Walking Tour
This tour was made possible by a United Way Community Impact Grant and is a collaboration of the Bristol Borough Community Partnership, Bristol Cultural and Historical Foundation, Bristol Riverside Theatre, Conwell-Egan Catholic EAST Program, Margaret R. Grundy Memorial Museum and Library, and The Artists of Bristol on the Delaware.
There is much to see and do in Bristol Borough. A self guided audio tour of the Historical can be downloaded from tourbristol.org.
It can be played on your cell phone or you can pick up an MP3 player at the Grundy Library. You can also obtain a guided tour brochure at several location in town including the Grundy Library and Grundy Museum.
The Gallery at Lower Bucks Campus of the Bucks County Community College offers accessible and affordable cultural opportunities to the lower Bucks County community, increases visibility and awareness of the arts and local artists and raises resources for Bucks County Community College and its students.
All of our exhibitions are open to individual artists and artist groups.
Check the website for details about participating in a show and for a list of current and upcoming shows.
Nestled into the banks of the Delaware River in historic Bristol Borough, The Margaret R. Grundy Memorial Museum was home to the Grundy family whose ancestors were among the first European settlers in Bucks County. The Grundy Museum allows a visit to the world of this wealthy late Victorian-era family. This world is interpreted through the furnishings and objects in the home, all of which were owned and used by the Grundy Family.
Admission to the Grundy Museum is free and includes a guided tour of the Grundy family home, its riverfront gardens, and access to any current exhibit(s) at the adjacent Grundy Library. Tours last approximately 45 minutes.
Admission is always free. We welcome guests of all ages.
April – December
Tuesday – Thursday and Saturday: Tours at 1:15p,. 2:15pm, and 3:15pm
Other times available by appointment. Please call 215-788-7891 (ext. 13) or click here to request a tour.
January – March
The Grundy Museum is closed.
Rooftop Patio & Riverfront Park Hours
Monday-Thursday, 8am to dusk
Friday-Saturday, 8am to 4pm
The Margaret R. Grundy Memorial Library is located on the banks of the Delaware River in historic Bristol Borough, Pennsylvania. Open to the public, this full service library serves as a bustling community center offering information to community members and visitors alike with exceptional, personalized service.
Its professional and knowledgeable staff make this an ideal place for families, researchers, job seekers, and many others to work, play, visit, and enjoy. It offers a place for quiet contemplation, group meetings, leisure reading, listening and viewing, and informative and fun programs for all ages. The library provides free access to the internet through computers and a wireless network, which is available both inside the library and outside on the grounds. Its special collections include local history and genealogy materials, job and career resources, a visitor center, and a nonprofit resource center.
Located in the heart of Bristol’s business district, we are a vibrant and unique art gallery for local and regional artists. As part of the Cultural Corridor, the Centre For the Arts promotes artistic achievement of all kinds and annually inducts an artist into the Centre For the Arts Hall of Fame. Gift shop on premises and studio space and a reception room available for artistic, corporate and social events.
Days & Hours of Operation:Sun 12 pm-3 pm, Mon 12 pm-6 pm, Closed Tuesday, Wed 12 pm-6 pm, Thurs 12 pm-6 pm, Fri 12 pm-6 pm, Sat 12 pm-7 pm
Imagine an organization that is dedicated to showcasing and supporting local artists. One that is well underway to creating a supportive community for the artists.
Their mission is for the promoting and providing exposure for Artists to enhance the legacy of arts, culture and education in the local community.
Open to all artists of Bristol, they meet at 7 pm on the 2nd Wednesday of each month at Silver Lake Nature Center, 1306 Bath Road, Bristol, Pa.