PSU news by
Penn State's student blog



Your Guide to Fall Activities in State College

With fall just around the corner, the leaves are starting to change colors, people are breaking out their warm clothes, and, like any other time of the year, State College will be hosting a ton of seasonal, non-drinking activities for people of all ages. Here’s the rundown of the things you can and should be looking forward to this fall in Happy Valley.

Screen Shot 2014-09-24 at 12.13.39 AM
Image: Penn State

Pumpkin Festival at H.O. Smith Botanical Gardens

If you thought the Arboretum was beautiful during the summer, you just wait until it’s filled with dozens of lit jack-o’-lanterns. You actually don’t have to wait too long because it’s coming up this Oct. 10 and 11. From 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on that Friday, lighted jack-o’-lanterns will be on display, while Saturday (4 p.m. to 9 p.m.) will include festival activities, music, and food vendors. The best part of this event is that you can partake for free! Free pumpkins will be given away to contest entrants on Sunday, Oct. 5 starting at 1 p.m. until supplies last. You can register your pumpkin for the contest between 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 9, and from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 10. Contest rules and other information can be found at the Penn State Arboretum website.

Screen Shot 2014-09-24 at 12.27.57 AM copy

Dark in the Park at Sunset Park (850 McKee Street)

There’s really nothing quite like a campfire in the fall – when it’s cold enough to actually enjoy a fire. The Centre Region parks & Recreation and Schlow Centre Region Library will be cosponsoring the 19th Annual Dark in the Park event from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 15. Take advantage of a little relaxation while listening to a campfire story or two. However, you will have to provide your own munchies and blankets. More information can be found on its website.

Screen Shot 2014-09-24 at 12.17.10 AM

Downtown Fall Festival on Allen Street

Information on this event is pretty sparse but, since it takes place on Allen Street, one can only imagine that it’s similar to what goes on on Allen Street during Arts Fest. The event page on states that the 15th Annual will be hosting “lots of fun and games for the whole family.” This year’s iteration will take place on Saturday, Oct. 4, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. So, go check that out if you’re feeling adventurous.

Screen Shot 2014-09-24 at 12.18.45 AM

Punkin’ Chunkin’ at the Howard Volunteer Fire Co. Fall Festival

If you have a car or know someone with one, I can personally testify that this event is worth the 20-minute drive to Bald Eagle State Park (149 Main Park Road, Howard, PA). It will takes place on Saturday, Oct. 18 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and is a sight to see. According to, it will include live bands, food and craft vendors, hayrides, pie eating contest, fire apparatus display, activities with the park naturalist, and “chunkin’ machines hurling punkins at floating targets in the lake”. Might I add that this festival is entirely free, although donations will be accepted to benefit the Howard Fire Company?

Screen Shot 2014-09-24 at 12.20.20 AM

Fall Harvest Festival at Shaver’s Creek Environmental Center

If you’re a big fan of the fall season but are looking to spend it productively, Shaver’s Creek Environmental Center hosts a Fall Harvest Festival featuring a Children’s Halloween Trail, which is a great opportunity for Penn State students to earn a bunch of volunteer hours. If you’re interested, contact Shaver’s Creek ASAP. If you’re just in it for the fun, that’s fine too. It hosts a slew of festival challenges, including harvest baking and pumpkin carving. According to the Shaver’s Creek webpage on the Fall Festival, “Festival goers can enter the baking challenge with their favorite fall-themed desserts [and] we will have pumpkins on hand awaiting your most creative carving skills for the carving contest.” You can download entry forms from the website but they’ll also be at the festival, which will be taking place on Oct. 18 and 19 at 11 a.m..

Just like any other special time of the year in Happy Valley, there’s dozens of ways to celebrate and these are only a few of the awesome things it has to offer this fall season. Check out some more here!

About the Author


More by Maddie

James Franklin Goes To Class

Instead of sticking to his normal duties on the football field, Coach Franklin popped by Professor James Tierney’s Economy 104 class yesterday morning to talk to students about Leadership.

Sigma Chi Kicks Off Annual ‘Derby Days’ Charity Competition

Penn State Medium To Star In ABC Family Reality Show


Reports: Tony Carr To Begin Professional Career In Italy

Tony Carr might have to wait a little longer than he had hoped to make his NBA debut.

Penn State Hockey’s Aarne Talvitie Showcases At Devils Development Camp

Penn State Hoops Releases 2018-19 Non-Conference Schedule

Forward Abdou Tsimbila Commits To Penn State Hoops

Penn State Volleyball Trio Representing U.S. At Pan-American Cup

Student Life

Penn State Student Dies Of Allergic Reaction To Peanuts

Max McGlinchey had just finished his freshman year studying finance.

Freshman 101: On-Campus Life

Student Farm To Commemorate Summer Solstice With Second Annual Celebration

Plans Submitted For New KFC In State College

Developers have submitted preliminary land development plans to build a new KFC restaurant at 1780 S. Atherton St. in State College.

Skeller Replacement Best We Could’ve Hoped For

The last thing we need is an Applebee’s, so maybe this is the best we could’ve hoped for, after all.

Playa Bowls To Open State College Location

Famous on the Jersey Shore for its brightly colored bowls and smoothies, Playa Bowls’ menu includes everything from açai and pitaya bowls to fresh juices.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Doggie’s Rathskeller And Garden Opens With Hopes Of Returning To Its Roots

The All-American Rathskeller is no more and Doggie’s Rathskeller and Garden is officially in business — opening with its “sneak peak” at the new bar Thursday afternoon in time for Arts Fest.

Send this to a friend