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Letter from The Editor: Rathskeller Special to So Many

by on January 01, 2018 10:13 AM

If you frequent Downtown State College, or even if you pay an occasional visit, chances are you’ve been to the All-American Rathskeller.

If you’ve spent much time there, you no doubt have some great stories to tell.

I was never a regular there, but my experience with the Skeller goes back to the early 1980s, for occasional beverages after class as a grad student a Penn State.

My best memory, though, is going there with my wife and two daughters the night before our oldest graduated from PSU in the late ’90s. We danced to a Kiss cover band playing “Rock & Roll All Nite.” We probably looked a bit silly – well, I did – but it was a special occasion and a fun time.

In recent years my wife and I have actually spent more time at Spats, the restaurant above the Skeller at College and Pugh. For years, for one reason or another, we’d walk past without going in. But once we finally made it through the door we were hooked (for me, it was the blackened duck that did the trick). It’s became a favorite for special nights like anniversaries and New Year’s Eve.

But word came in December that the Skeller and Spats would soon be closing. The building’s new owners had another tenant for the space. While not revealing plans as of our press time (an announcement was expected in late December), they vowed to maintain the special character of the location.

In any case, the outcry at the news that the Skeller in particular would close was swift and strong. Inside, writer Sean Yoder and photographer Darren Andrew Weimert take a closer look at what’s made the Skeller so special to so many.

Also in this issue, we’ll introduce you to four talented residents who make up Happy Valley Improv. I had the pleasure of meeting them at a recent show at the State Theatre. They’re smart and witty – and give new meaning to the term “thinking on one’s feet.” They’ve enjoyed so much success in introducing improv to the area that they’re now looking to grow.

Finally, New Year’s is a time when many of us think about how to do some things a bit differently. We’re doing that here at Town&Gown too. We’re thankful for and appreciative of the nice feedback we hear in the community about the magazine, so it’s nothing major. But beginning with this issue you’ll see some small “tweaks” in our design and content that we hope you’ll like. Please do let us know!


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