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Possible visit to State College and Philadelphia August

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Possible visit to State College and Philadelphia August

We've been invited to a wedding to take place in State College in August 2006. I can't imagine going without also visiting Philadelphia.

I'd appreciate information on distance and transportation between these 2 towns. Is the best ting to do is rent a car or are there airshuttle services between them?

Any must sees in State College?

Your help is much appreciated.

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1. Re: Possible visit to State College and Philadelphia August

It may be easier for you to rent a car and drive to Harrisburg, then take Amtrak to 30th Street Station, Philadelphia. And to reach the heart of Philadelphia from 30th Street, take the Market-Frankford line or subway-surface trolley routes 10, 11, 13, 34, and 36.

I'm not so sure if the closest Amtrak station

toward State College is at Huntingdon, Tyrone, or Altoona.

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2. Re: Possible visit to State College and Philadelphia August

PCC:

Thanks for your reply. Can you give me an idea on the time it is likely to take to travel to Harrisburg by car and then by train into Philadelphia.

Much appreciated.

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3. Re: Possible visit to State College and Philadelphia August

Fearful -

I can tell you that it is about a 2 hour car ride from State College to Harrisburg, and a 2 hour train ride ($24 one-way, per person) from Harrisburg to Philadelphia (30th Street Station) (see www.amtrak.com) Incidentally, it also happens to be a 2 hour car ride from Harrisburg to Philadelphia, if you are up for the drive (practically all turnpike).

I'm not very familiar with State College, although it's in a lovely setting.

Good luck with your trip planning, and enjoy your visit.

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4. Re: Possible visit to State College and Philadelphia August

Sophie: Thanks for your reply and helpful information.

We are also considering bringing along a 13 year old boy who is a basketball and sports nut. Can anyone inform me as to what sports events might be on in August 2006.

Your input is much appreciated.

Philadelphia...
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5. Re: Possible visit to State College and Philadelphia August

Be prepared to walk - the campus is huge. You'll want to be sure to see the Nittany Lion "shrine" (a statue of a mountain lion that everyone poses on or in front of), and get some of the delicious ice cream at The Creamery (true story/not urban myth: Ben & Jerry took a short course from Penn State to learn to make their ice cream. Dinner at The Tavern is affordable compared to the prices you'll find in Philadelphia.

There is small plane service between State College & Philadelphia (under the auspices of USAir) but it's pricey.

As for sports, are you talking about Philadelphia or State College? Penn State's website (or a call to the athletic department) can tell you what's going on in August (the football team will be starting practice, I'm sure). If your son likes baseball, a trip to the new baseball stadium in Philadelphia could be a fun night out (www.phillies.com)

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6. Re: Possible visit to State College and Philadelphia August

A new Class A Minor league baseball team will also be playing in State College this August ion the Penn State campus.

Sellersville, PA
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7. Re: Possible visit to State College and Philadelphia August

I would probably do a car rental for this trip. State College is about 2 hours west of Interstate 476 (Northeast Ext. of PA Turnpike). I476 headed south is another two hour jog to Philadelphia area. It is typically a trouble-free and direct route. There is toll on I476. To me, it would be preferable to making the trip to Harrisburg, paying for parking there, and buying a couple of train tickets. The route just described is also fairly scenic.

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8. Re: Possible visit to State College and Philadelphia August

Thank you all for your valuable information. We are still weighing the advantages of going there. We have dualing family commitments. Your advice will certainly inform our decision.

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9. Re: Possible visit to State College and Philadelphia August

I am from a suburb of Philadelphia and have a buddy that goes to Penn State. I drive up to State College all the time, and I will tell you, it is not a bad drive.

I would assume you are flying into an airport near State College for the wedding? If this is the case, I would recommend renting a car right off the bat and telling them you will be returning it at the Philadelphia Airport. Get the GPS that the rental car company offers, because you will be driving a lot, and it has saved me from getting lost on vacation time and time again.

Penn State has a very nice college campus. They call it the "Happy Valley" because, that what it is. Everyone is friendly, nobody fights or argues and as far as I have seen and crime is not much of a worry. The things that have been recommended to you up there seem pretty good, and I can't tell you much more. If I were you, I would actually contact the college, www.psu.edu. Someone there would be more than happy to tell you what there is to see, and what sporting events are going on at the time. There really isn't going to be much there in August, because it is the summer.

Once you are done with the wedding, hop in your rental car and drive down to Philadelphia (76 east). It normally takes 3-4 hours to drive to Philadelphia from State College, but it isn't a bad drive. Other people recommended taking public transportation to Philadelphia, but I personally hate doing that when I am on vacation because I have to rely on public transportation or a taxi to get me anywhere. If the weather is bad, I don't want to have to walk anywhere. If I were you, I would find a hotel in Philadelphia with parking available. If I may recommend staying somewhere in the historic district. There is a lot there to see. Go see the Art Museum (the famous "Rocky" steps), the Liberty Bell, and the Franklin Institute. Take a horse drawn carrige tour of the city. Edgar Allen Poe's house and the Betsy Ross house are also here. Check out the Constitution center. Go to Pat's and have a Cheesesteak. Check out the sports stadiums in South Philadelphia. They are all within a block of each other. Try to catch a Phillies game (August is a great time to do that). You can NORMALLY get cheap tickets right at the gate, and it is a beautiful ballpark. While you are in South Phila, go check out Penns Landing. There is something there every weekend during the summer.

Unless you feel like getting shot, I would stay out of North Philadelphia and Southwest Philadelphia. If you are a AAA member, get a few of their tour books and see if you can take a walking tour based on their recommendations. However you do it, take a tour of Old City.

If you have the time, take a trip to the Jersey shore. Atlantic City, if you like gambling. Wildwood is nice and has a lot of rides, or Ocean city which is great for the family. All of these places have a boardwalk like nowhere else. If you have never been to the Jersey shore, it is worth the trip. It is only about 90 minutes away from the city. Perhaps make this a third leg of your trip, or take a day trip there.

Those are a lot of suggestions, but do NOT miss the historic district (take a tour), the liberty bell, and enjoying a Cheesesteak at Pat's.

When you are all done, drive to the Philadelphia airport, return your rental car and fly home. Have a great trip!

Alexandria, VA
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10. Re: Possible visit to State College and Philadelphia August

While I appreciated the detailed information that kid320 shared, I respectfully disagree with some statements.

Center City Philadelphia is one of the more walkable downtowns anywhere. Unless extreme weather or general mobility is an issue, one could conceivably walk from one end to the other in about an hour. The flipside is that the roads are fairly compact and traffic is constant. Also you would have to factor in an additional parking fee at your hotel or a nearby garage. Even if you find it most convenient to drive into the city, you may want to leave your car inside the hotel/garage unless you plan to do some sightseeing outside the downtown area. On-street parking is usually metered and is not inexpensive.

I have to say that I am concerned about your characterization of local neighborhoods. Granted neither North nor Southwest Philly are known to cater to tourists (although the later does have hotel - often with free surface parking! - at its airport area edge), but to say that one is likely to get "shot" if visiting those areas is, in my opinion, an unfair generalization. While crime is an unfortunate fact of life in a major city, it can happen anywhere. To advise people that an area isn't tourist-friendly is one thing; to assume the likelihood of bodily harm is something else.