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Five Local Events To Get You in The Holiday Spirit

Now that State College is partway through its annual transformation to a frozen tundra, it can be hard to find things to do without freezing your butt off. As the fall semester winds down, here are some things to do in State College to get you into the holiday spirit.

Ice skate at the Pegula Ice Arena

Pegula_Community Rink_Morton Lin

When the men’s and women’s ice hockey teams aren’t tearing up the rink, public sessions at the Pegula Ice Arena are open to skaters of all ages and experiences. Adults skate for $7 while students with a valid Penn State ID can go for $5. Group rates for 15 or more are also available. You can check out the arena’s schedule for available public session times.

Take a photo with Santa


So most of us probably don’t believe in Santa anymore, but that doesn’t mean we can’t still tell him what we want for Christmas, right? Santa will be at the Nittany Mall this month, and you can even bring your pets to take a picture with him from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Mondays.

See a classic holiday film

state theatre

The holidays wouldn’t be the same without Christmas movies! Though you can watch most of these movies on your own, whether on Netflix or at home, seeing a classic holiday film on the big screen has an even more magical effect.

Watch George Bailey see what his family’s life would be like if he was never born in “It’s a Wonderful Life” at the State Theatre. The film will play right before Christmas on Dec. 22 and Dec. 23 with two showings each day, one at 4 p.m. and the other at 7:30 p.m., for $5.

If you’re not into the State Theatre, you can check out the 1954 classic “White Christmas” at the Premiere Theatre by the Nittany Mall. The 2 p.m. matinee on Dec. 14 is $7 per person, and the 7 p.m. showing on Dec. 14 and Dec. 15 is $9.75 for general admission or $8.25 for students. Sure, this film is available to stream on Netflix, but watching this film at home doesn’t quite exude the same magic as it does on the big screen. And after capturing film lovers’ hearts for 60 years, why wouldn’t you want to hear Bing Crosby sing his timeless rendition of “White Christmas” to get into the holiday spirit?

Partake in nearby towns’ holiday events

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State College isn’t the only place that can get festive. Boalsburg and Bellefonte both have their own holiday festivals, featuring horse-drawn carriage rides, caroling, tree lightings, crafts, and various other holiday events to get you all warm and fuzzy inside.

Boalsburg’s Hometown Christmas festival will occur this Friday and Saturday, Dec. 5-6. Horse-drawn carriage rides are $3 per person, and you can ride all the way to the Boalsburg Heritage Museum to enjoy some cider and decorate trees. You can sing carols with community members at 5 p.m. Saturday until the community tree with the tree lighting ceremony at 5:30. The holiday hop is later that evening at 6 p.m. at the Boalsburg Fire Hall and costs $3 per person.

Bellefonte’s Victorian Christmas will occur next weekend on Dec. 12-14. Horse-drawn carriage rides throughout Bellefonte are available all three days for $8 per person. Tickets can be purchased at the Brockerhoff on Allegheny Street. The classic Charles Dickens’ tale “A Christmas Carol” will be performed at the Bellefonte High School all three days, with two 7:30 p.m. performances on Dec. 12 and Dec. 13 and a 2 p.m. matinee on Dec. 14.

Go to the Arboretum’s Winter Celebration

Arboretum winter

The Arboretum will host its inaugural Winter Celebration on Dec. 12 from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. There will be a performance by the Hi-Lo’s, a Penn State a cappella group, as well as tree lightings throughout the H.O. Smith Botanic Gardens. The event is free to attend, and there will be free hot chocolate.

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About the Author

Josh Glossner

Josh Glossner is a first generation Penn Stater majoring in print journalism from Bellefonte, Pa. He shares the same birthday as Jon Bon Jovi and Dr. Suess. You can find Josh rockin’ the 50s attire as a server at Baby’s Burgers and Shakes, where his milkshakes bring all the boys to the yard. He enjoys attempting to twerk in what little spare time he has and performs in local drag shows as Carrie Oakey.


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