Things to Do:
Indiana County’s parks and trails system is one of the best in Pennsylvania with over 64 miles of rails to trails. In addition, three regional parks, four historic sites, three natural areas and four covered bridges are located throughout the county providing scenic and natural beauty. Visit http://www.indianacountyparks.org/ for more information.
Yellow Creek State Park is a great recreation spot where visitors can enjoy a sand beach, picnicking, fishing, geocaching, hunting and educational programs. The park features a 720-acre lake for boaters and anglers, three hiking trails and 12 miles of single track mountain bicycle trails. For more information, contact www.dcnr.state.pa.us.
Step back into time as you travel to Northern Indiana County, home of a large Amish population which has grown to over 300 Old Order Amish families. The Amish pursue a simpler lifestyle, operating farms and other businesses in ways that have changed little in the past century. Find out more at http://www.smicksburg.net/.
Indiana County was one of the major routes for the Underground Railroad in the early 1800’s. To depict this movement, the History Center houses exhibits such as “Freedom in the Air: A Day in the Life of an Enslaved Child.” The Underground Railroad History Center, located in Blairsville, is open May through October and makes for great field trips, group outings and a backdrop for events. More information is online at http://www.undergroundrailroadblairsvillepa.com/.
The Jimmy Stewart Museum is dedicated to the world renowned actor and Indiana’s native son, Jimmy Stewart. The museum commemorates his career and personal life with film industry exhibits, local Stewart family artifacts, a 50-seat movie theater, and gift shop. Indiana celebrates the Stewart heritage with a festival at the Jimmy Stewart Airport each spring and with the It’s A Wonderful Life festival each November in Downtown Indiana. Visit http://www.jimmy.org/ for more information.
Indiana County has 24 sites on the National Register of Historic Places – historical towns, historical societies, historic landmarks and covered bridges give you a formula for a region rich in history. To top it off visitors can mix other activities, like bike riding or hiking with a history lesson. See more at http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~paicgs/.
The county boasts 31 fairs and festivals; each is held annually and most have been around for quite some time. Each festival is unique in its own way promoting the local culture, history, agriculture, heritage, and just plain fun. One of the biggest is the Indiana County Fair, a tradition for more than 150 years, held the week before Labor Day every summer. Visit http://www.indianacountyfair.com/ for more information.
Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s College of Fine Arts and College of Art, Music, Theater and Dance are the anchors of fine entertainment in Indiana. The university’s Lively Arts program maintains a year-round schedule of shows by student and professional performing and visual artists in music, dance, stage and exhibits. Find out more at http://www.iup.edu/livelyarts.
Chestnut Ridge Golf Resort and Conference Center is located in the foothills of the Laurel Mountains just 45 miles east of Pittsburgh. The resort includes two 18-hole championship golf courses, three beautiful banquet facilities, a hotel, a restaurant and a sports bar. Visit http://www.chestnutridgeresort.com/ for details.
The Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex adjacent to the IUP campus in Indiana is a hub of activity, with concerts, sports events and conventions. The complex has a 5,000-seat arena, a 650-seat theater, and a cutting edge conference and corporate training center. See http://www.kovalchickcomplex.com/ for what’s going on now at the KCAC in Indiana.
Indiana County has long been known as the “Christmas Tree Capital of the World.” The area is well adapted to the growing of various species of evergreen trees popular during the Christmas season, and the county’s many evergreen farms are seasonal destinations for family Christmas tree selections. Get more information at http://christmastreecapital.com/.