State College Travel Guide

  • Welcome to Hockey Valley!
    Welcome to Hockey Valley!
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  • Center ice at Pegula Ice Arena
    Center ice at Pegula Ice Arena
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  • Crowds converge for afternoon hockey game
    Crowds converge for afternoon hockey...
    by starship

State College Things to Do

  • The New Ice Hockey Valhalla at Penn...

    WELCOME TO HOCKEY VALLEYPrior to the 2013-14 ice hockey season, Penn State University had not participated in the NCAA Division I hockey program and played only on a club level. However, thanks to the $100 + million dollar gift of Penn State alum, Terry Pegula '73 and his wife, Penn State broke ground for the Pegula Ice Arena in April, 2012, and...

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  • Centre Furnace Mansion ~ Part I

    Looking for something to do during our few daylight hours of free time, I picked up a brochure listing nearby attractions. One of the local sights that caught my eye was the "Centre Furnance Mansion" right here in State College. Located only two minutes from the edge of Penn State's campus, we were lucky to be here on a Sunday which is one of the 5...

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  • Farmers Market ~ Farm Fresh!

    Our daughter had told us about the Farmers Market in downtown State College, but until our most recent visit we had never been in town on the days it was being held. We were lucky to be there on a summer Wednesday this time and so stopped in to see what was being offered that day.We were able to find parking about a block away so it was an easy...

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State College Hotels

  • Nittany Lion Inn

    While walking around the Penn State Campus I happened upon The Nittany Lion Inn. The Inn is one of...

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  • Quality Inn

    When we came to State College for the East Coast Volleyball Championships, the rooms for the teams'...

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  • Penn Stater Hotel

    This is the modern alternative to The Nittany Lion Inn. It is PSU owned and operated and sits on the...

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State College Restaurants

  • A Pittsburgh Favorite Opens in State...

    Primanti Bros. is a rather famous restablishment in Pittsburgh, and the surrounding environs. However, I would venture to say it's know even farther afield than the state lines of Pennsylvania -- it has been featured on national TV. The star is Primanti's unique sandwich style which features premium deli meat piled high with crunchy cole slaw and...

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  • Extensive Menu and Excellent Craft Beers

    The last time we were in State College (at graduation), our daughter treated us to lunch at a "new" place, "The Deli." The Deli is yet another very popular eatery with both students, parents, visitors and alumni.Although service was a little slow, I attribute that to how busy the restaurant was on the day we visited. While waiting for our order, I...

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  • Eats, Sips and Music

    "Not for Saints.....Not for Sinners"...from Bill Pickle'sDuring our most recent visit to Bill Pickle's Tap Room (May, 2009) we found that the spot is as popular as ever. On the day we visited, the Bill Pickle's Tap Room was nearly full with patrons enjoying their food as well as enjoying at least one of the six wall-mounted, wide-screen TV's which...

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State College Nightlife

  • Player's Nightclub...well not...

    Player's Nightclub...well not my favorite...but one spot I will describe.It's unique in that it has and 18 and over night and a 21 and over night.During the Summertime when Penn State hosts camps for prospective students i.e. teenagers...forget about getting in...the place will be jam packed with these 'wet-behind the ears' individuals. The place...

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  • There are mostly bars and...

    There are mostly bars and night clubs in the downtown area. Sometimes there are theater and concert offerings on campus. During the winter, the Tussey mountain ski area is open at night. Other than that, you're basically stuck with the movies, bowling or country line-dancing.

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  • State College Hotels

    26 Hotels in State College

State College Transportation

  • If you don't drive or catch a...

    If you don't drive or catch a ride from the train/bus stations a ways away from town, you can fly into the tiny little 2-gate airport on a very small little plane like I did. Really isn't very much fun but it gets you there.

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  • There is no 'best way' to get...

    There is no 'best way' to get to State College - it's equidistant from everywhere, close to nowhere. Direct flights go to and from Detroit, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, or D.C. Your next best option is by car - along I-80, or via Harrisburg.Campus buses are free, as is a town loop. Otherwise, the main shopping district and University are walkable.

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  • Don't Forget Insurance

    If your current health insurance doesn't cover you while your abroad, you should consider getting international travel insurance just in case something should go wrong.

State College Shopping

  • If You're a PSU Student, You've Shopped...

    What seems like just another of the ubiquitous College Avenue stores which sells all things pertaining to Penn State, McLanahan's Student Store & Penn State Room has another draw -- especially for students. If you are or have been a Penn State student, you've probably shopped here because it is apparently one of the few stores close to campus which...

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  • Find a special gift

    Biller Crafts and Unique Gifts has hand made and customized specialty items. Baby Gifts, Pillows, Hair Ties, Towels, Christmas Ornaments, Christmas cards, Towels, Special Order Embroidery, Sewing and Crochet. $1.25 and up...

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State College Local Customs

  • by flayaway Written Oct 5, 2002

    Most appreciation for culture stems from the nearby Universtiy Park campus of Penn State.
    However, there is an historical Black church located in nearby Bellefonte, Pennsylvania (about a one-half hour drive from State College). The Church is called, St. Paul's AME African Methodist Episcopal church and a previous stop for the Underground Railroad.

    Interest groups more often meet on campus while their activites spill into State College itself. Throughout the year...Penn State pays tribute to Culture through heritage months, which combine the Campus interests groups with community awareness activities. Penn State activities tend to merge with State College community activities making the distinction between town and campus blurred. Efforts are currently underway to convert State College's stagnant 'State Theatre' building. The Building is under proposition to become an independent entity apart from PSU. If fundraising attempts are successful, it should house Artistic and Cultural events for the State College community and Centre County at large.

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State College Warnings and Dangers

  • Police are generally...

    Police are generally suspicious of College age persons.Caution: All Wal-Marts are havens for Red-necks and hicks....be forewarned that if you don't look like them, you will be stared at!Penn State Employment Opportunities: Most Faculty positions are consumed by local talent and it is difficult to worm into them unless you 'know' a friend of a...

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  • State College is generally...

    State College is generally very safe. Bicyclists should be careful when not using designated bike trails. This is a college town full of teenage and inexperienced automobile drivers; bad accidents are fairly common.Women should be cautious at night while walking in downtown or fraternity areas.

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State College Tourist Traps

  • by flayaway Written Oct 5, 2002

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Penn's Cave is really not all it's cracked up to be. It's cold, damp and the souveniers 'bite'.

    Although the Bryce Jordan Center receives plenty of hype for it's performances..it's really no Big deal.

    Football games: If you've seen one you've seen them all. Good advice not to be anywhere near downtown if you don't drink alcohol during a Penn State f.ball game. You don't need to be among the drunk and rowdy just to get inside scoop on PSU football. Plenty of stations give great coverage minus the headache; besides the town is empty during the game so stay home anyway. You can still hear the fans scream from outdoors.

    Rec-Hall: ...a good place to exercise....but maybe not if you have allergies...

    Penn State Dining Commons Food;....
    Art's Fest: It's cute; but small-town White, Rural, Country culture prevails.

    The Nittany Mall: It's only one-floor and being swiftly overtaken by useless novelty shops.

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State College What to Pack

  • by flayaway Written Oct 5, 2002

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Luggage and bags: it doesnt' matter.

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Just for kicks...ha. ha. : white sneakers, any kind of old weather-worn t-shirt that advertises a long-forgotten rock concert....A Kiss concert would be prrrrrrrfect. Women especially should wear untailored mens shorts and Men should wear dirty beaten baseball caps preferably above the ears. If you're a Teen or Single adult...any kind of Gap or Abercrombie & Fitch, American Eagle will do. and if you have any money...wear khakis, 14ct. gold or Sterling Silver Penn State jewelry, a golf shirt and loafers or Dock-siders to look like you do.
    The weather creates 4 seasons annually. It is generally overcast and rains for weeks here. Waterproof shoes are highly recommended.

    Miscellaneous: If you are going to live here, bring 4 different jackets...one for each season....if traveling...bring a baseball cap and an umbrella.

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State College Off The Beaten Path

  • Yearick's Iron Horse Ranch

    No doubt if you arrive in State College from the east via General Potter Highway also known as Route 322, you cannot miss seeing Yearick's Iron Horse Ranch. While its signature chrome horse sculpture is in my opinion beautiful, it seems to be the only horse we could see on this "Iron Horse Ranch." For years now this large tract of land with its...

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  • The Pennsylvania Military Museum

    "Boalsburg ~ Birthplace of Memorial Day"Just down the road apiece (5 miles) from State College is Boalsburg which is home to The Pennsylvania Military Museum. It's mission is "to preserve history and educate, as well as honore this state's "Citizen Soldier." How appropriate that this museum is located in Boalsburg since it is the place where the...

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  • O.W. Houtz: A place to find...

    O.W. Houtz: A place to find notions and nick-nacks that no one thinks still exist. Such as: endless varieties of knitting yarn, hardware finds, and family heirlooms like Cedar chests and baker's racks, dated collectables, pots, plants and dainty gourmet details.

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State College Sports & Outdoors

  • Penn State Football

    Penn State has a great football tradition and one of the nicest stadiums in the country (and one of the toughest places to play if you are a visiting team). Beaver Stadium in Happy Valley seats over 108,000 people and the crowds are enthusiastic, knowledgeable, friendly, and respectful. Yes, it gets LOUD in there whenever there is a big play....

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  • Paterno means related to the Caring...

    American Football!!!I am not a fan of this sport. However, i used it as easy to understnd metaphora when talking about revolutions. Most of the revolutionary people should learn about american football. A completely different team for each situation: defense team, ofense team, the kickers, the cheer leaders, the informants, the masses.Jo Pa is, I...

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  • State College Hotels

    26 Hotels in State College

State College Favorites

  • the view from atop mount nittany

    the mountain may not seem that tall but campus looks awfully tiny from the top :-)it's a really nice view, especially at sunset

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  • climb mount nittany

    Mount Nittany is the tallest of the large hills that surround State College and is visable from Beaver Stadium. It may look puny but it's actually quite a hike; be sure to get down before it gets dark because it's easy to get lost.

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  • Lions Football

    you MUST go to a Nittany Lions football game at the fabulous Beaver Stadium - one of the biggest in the country - holding more than 110,000 people. It's an experience like no other.

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