With fresh attractions and milestones to celebrate every year, there’s always something new to see in Pennsylvania – no matter how many times you visit. Read on to learn about just a few things to look forward to in 2016.
Anniversary Celebrations in PA
Celebrate the National Park Service Centennial by visiting one of Pennsylvania’s 18 national parks, seven National Heritage Areas, 167 National Historic Landmarks, and more than 3,000 locations listed on the National Register of Historic Places. From investigating Civil War history at the Gettysburg National Military Park to fishing in the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, there are so many ways to explore federal lands across the state.
York turns 275 this year. York hosted the Continental Congress in 1777, when the Founding Fathers adopted the Articles of Confederation – establishing the United States of America. Learn about the historic city by touring the Colonial Complex, where you can see the 1741 German Plough Tavern and reconstructed Colonial Courthouse, the meeting place for the Second Continental Congress.
February 2, 2016 marks Punxsutawney Phil’s 130th weather prediction. Make the trip to Gobbler’s Knob to see the nation’s cutest weather forecaster in Phil’s Burrow, dance at the Groundhog Ball on January 30, 2016, and attend the 3 AM Groundhog Day bonfire.
State College comes alive with artists, musicians, volunteers, and visitors from all 50 states during the Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts (July 14-17, 2016), which commemorates its 50th year in 2016. Highlights include Italian street painting, a giant sand sculpture, and an excellent juried exhibition of drawings, paintings, photography, and more.
New in 2016
“Samson,” a family-friendly production about the biblical hero who exhibits mental and physical strength, debuts on March 12, 2016 at the Sight & Sound Theatres in Ronks. While you’re in the area, enjoy lovely views of the tranquil Amish countryside via the Strasburg Railroad or classic horse and buggy.
The visitor center at Kinzua Bridge State Park will open in 2016. The park is home to a 300-foot skywalk that provides spectacular views of the Kinzua Viaduct and surrounding valley. The facility, featuring interpretive exhibits and programming, is the perfect first stop before exploring the area.
Philadelphia has a new view from the top. Taking visitors a towering 57 floors (and more than 883 feet) above street level, the One Liberty Observation Deck provides sweeping views of the skyline. The deck offers panoramic views of the cityscape, interactive technology designed to enhance and expand upon points of interest, and artistic installations portraying the story of Philadelphia’s past, present, and future.
Colebrookdale Railroad is on track to open its station in Pottstown. The 1887 depot was disassembled and moved from Birdsboro to Pottstown to be rebuilt and restored. The 9-mile Civil War-era railroad, which connects Pottstown and Boyertown, travels through scenic hills and woodlands. While you’re in town, take a ride on the Carousel at Pottstown, also slated to open in 2016.
The visitor center, learning center and Flight Path Walk are now open at the Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville. The stunning concrete and glass complex honors the 40 individuals who thwarted a September 11, 2001 attack on the U.S. Capitol. Visit the Memorial Plaza at the edge of the crash site – the final resting place of the passengers and crew.