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Students Get Spirited At Shaver’s Creek Fall Festival

If you aren’t quite satisfied with all the fall festivities offered up by downtown State College then you might want to check out the Shaver’s Creek Fall Harvest Festival. For those of you that don’t know, Shaver’s Creek is an educational nature center located in Petersburg, PA (about 20 minutes from State College), which is home of birds of prey and live reptile exhibits, as well as nature hikes and student-run programs.

More than 100 Penn State students are volunteering at the festival this year, with a lucky few landing the responsibility of wearing 1850’s inspired clothing to educate kids about old fashioned cider pressing, while others get to run the non-scary Children’s Halloween Trail (all for academic credit).

The Halloween Trail is a Shaver’s Creek tradition, with this year being the 25th year of operation. There is a lot for kids to do, as stated by the website:

“Children (and their families) are led by guides to different sites along the trail with costumed characters who help children understand the season and the cultural items we use to depict it. Children learn about natural history associated with Halloween, like why we use images of owls, spiders, corn stalks, and pumpkins during this time of year. The walk lasts about 45 minutes to one hour. The Halloween Trail stations are staffed by Penn State students, bringing outstanding energy and creativity to the festival. Each year they create new, exciting, and activity-filled stations that cover topics such as pumpkin and jack-o-lantern folklore, the non scary truth behind bats and spiders, the origin of trick-or-treat, and more.”

Along with the trail there is also live music, storytelling, and face painting. This year there are also several competitions, including a baking challenge, a children’s costume contest, and a pumpkin carving contest.

The festival itself is free, but admission to the trail will cost you $5. The trail runs from 11:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. daily.

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About the Author

Catie Simpson

Catie is a junior majoring in Human Development and Family Studies. She's also the resident townie and culinary enthusiast due to a brief stint at the CIA (the culinary school not the secret government agency). She currently works at a Baby Temperament Lab on campus where she tries to get babies to do dangerous things. She's also on the twitter.


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