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TGIF: State College Weekend Events for Aug. 16-18

by on August 16, 2019 5:00 AM

Happy Friday, Happy Valley!

It's time for the 145th Centre County Grange Fair, and with it plenty of fun each day, including headlining bands each night on the grandstand stage.

Throughout the weekend around the area, you'll find theater, concerts, the State College Brew Expo, three days of fun State College Spikes promotions, family activities and more

We've picked out some of the weekend's highlights below.

There is plenty more around the area for you to enjoy and you can find it all on our calendar page. Explore the weekend's events and add your own if it isn't listed. Or see our Bar Tour and Movies pages for more options this weekend or anytime.


Grange Fair
Each day of the Centre County Grange Fair -- Aug. 16-24 -- is packed from start to finish with music, food, games, rides, vendors, exhibitions, competitions and more. We've featured some highlights for each day below and you can see the complete daily schedules here. Daily admission is $7 each and weekly admission is $20. Daily parking is $6 and weekly parking is $16.

A Midsummer Night's Dream
Fuse Productions presents Shakespeare's classic comedy "A Midsummer Night's Dream" at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 2:30 p.m. on Sunday at Foxdale Village Auditorium, 500 E. Marylyn Ave. 

Uncle Vanya
The Next Stage presents Richard Nelson’s adaptation of Chekhov’s "Uncle Vanya," at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday in the Attic at The State Theatre. 


Rampage Room Grand Opening
State College's first "break room" and VRcade will have its grand opening starting at 10 a.m. in the Nittany Mall. Rampage Room will let customers 18 and older de-stress by breaking stuff, or you can check out a virtual reality escape room and games. For the grand opening, free food and drinks while supplies last and the first 150 customers to book a session in-store receive a free T-shirt that entitles the wearer to 15% off all future sessions. 

Mount Nittany Health Walk
Kick off the Grange Fair with the 10th annual Mount Nittany Health Walk starting at the grandstand. The Health Walk, aimed at motivating the community to add walking into daily life, is a 1-mile course that fairgoers are encouraged to walk each day during the fair. Stop by the library at the Grange Fair any time between 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily to get your passport brochure stamped. Walkers with at least five stamps on their passport will receive a special gift at a concluding celebration, held at 1 p.m. Aug. 23 at Jubilee Grove.

Back-to-School Carnival
Christ Community Church, 200 Ellis Place, will host a back-to-school carnival with carnival rides, bounce houses, food, Kona ice cream, free haircuts, backpacks and school supply giveaways (4-5 p.m. only). Free and open to all. 

Ice Cream Social for Dogs
Every Friday in August, from 6-8 p.m., Wiscoy for Animals, 424 W. Aaron Dr., will be serving up dog friendly ice cream as well as the human version of the cold dessert. Meet other dog lovers, make new friends and enjoy Wiscoy's 24th annual customer appreciation event.

Truck Pull
It's opening night at Grange Fair and the gas and diesel truck pull kicks off the Competition Track event schedule at 6 p.m. Entry is included with admission to the fair.

Bark in the Park
It's the third Bark in the Park night of the year at Medlar Field as the State College Spikes host the Mahoning Valley Scrappers for a 7:05 p.m. first pitch. Bring your pooch out for a night at the ballpark (but know the rules first).

Concert on the Village Green
Lemont Village Association's summer Friday night concert series continues with The Project playing classic piano-based rock, mostly Elton John and Billy Joel, at the new band pavilion on the Village Green from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Bring blankets or chairs. Concerts are moved into the Granary building in case of thunderstorms.

Movie on the Mountain
Enjoy a movie under the stars as the summer Movies on the Mountain at Tussey Mountain presents the 2019 animated hit "How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World." Admission is free. Gates open at 8 p.m. and the movie starts at dusk. Popcorn and candy will be available, as well as hot dogs, and other great food you won't find at regular movie theaters. Soda, beer, and other beverages also are offered. Bring a blanket or lawn chair.

Home Free
Mixing their signature no-instrument, all-vocal music with their quick-witted humor, a cappella country music sensation Home Free covers Nashville country standards and country-dipped pop hits. They headline the Grange Fair Grandstand Stage at 8 p.m. Free with admission to the fair.


State College Brew Expo
Now focused exclusively on craft beers from the commonwealth, the State College Brew Expo is the largest Pennsylvania-only beer festival. The 21st annual expo will be held 5-9 p.m. at Tussey Mountain, with more than three dozen craft brewers and live music. Since 2010, the State College Brew Expo also has raised $75,000 for Coaches Vs. Cancer. [Tickets]

David Taylor Bobblehead Night
The State College Spikes host the Auburn Doubledays for a 7:05 p.m. first pitch at Medlar Field and the first 1,000 fans of all ages will receive a David Taylor bobblehead celebrating the Penn State wrestling great's 2018 world championship. The two-time Hodge Award winner also will be on hand to meet fans and sign autographs. Ike's Kids Zone is free all game and post-game kids can run the bases.

Tractor Pulls
More motor action comes to the Grange Fair Competition Track, with a farm tractor pull at 10 a.m. and farm and hot stock tractor pulls at 6 p.m. Included in price of fair admission.

Comedy Night with Bob Smiley
Christ Community Church, 200 Ellis Place, hosts night of laughs with Christian comedian Bob Smiley. A high-energy, fast-paced comedian, Smiley brings fun for the entire family starting at 7 p.m. [Tickets]

Music on the Beach
Regional favorite The Crooked Line bring their American roots music sound to the beach at Whipple Dam State Park, 3746 Laurel Run Road in Petersburg, from 7 to 9 p.m. as part of the park's summer concert series. $5 donation suggested supports projects at the park.

Penn State Soccer
The Penn State fall sports season is upon us, with the men's soccer hosting an exhibition match against Georgetown at 7 p.m. at Jeffrey Field.

Ben and Noel Haggard
Growing up as sons of a man who defined country music, Ben and Noel Haggard have developed impressive musical careers of their own, having taken the stage with Blake Shelton, Vince Gill and Willie Nelson. They come together on the Grange Fair grandstand stage at 8 p.m. to add their talents to Merle Haggard’s fan favorites including “Footlights,” “Sing Me Back Home” and “Workin’ Man Blues.” Free with fair admission.


Community Picnic
St. John's United Church of Christ, 218 N. Church St. in Boalsburg, invites you to their annual free Community Picnic from noon-2 p.m. The picnic will feature hot dogs, watermelon, salads and other summertime favorites plus a cake walk and other games. The church is also holding a clothing drive for area elementary schools, with school nurses identifying a need for clothes to have at school for unforeseen situations:  Elastic waist sweat pants, underwear, socks, leggings, pants, and sweatshirts; sizes 6, 7, 8, and 10 are in high demand but larger sizes are also helpful. Donations accepted at the church through the day of the picnic.

Spikes vs. Doubledays
The Spikes host Auburn for a doubleheader with the first game starting at 3:05 p.m. One ticket will be good for both games in the doubleheader. It's Coaches Vs. Cancer of Penn State Day and the first 1,000 fans to Sunday's doubleheader will receive a mini-basketball giveaway. Ike's Kids Zone is free and after the twin bill enjoy another spectacular fireworks show.

Colebrook Road
Touring behind their recently released third album, "On Time," award-winning bluegrass band Colebrook Road stops at Elk Creek Cafe + Aleworks, 100 W. Main St. in Millheim, for a 5 p.m. show. 

South Hills Music Picnic
South Hills School of Business and Technology, 480 Waupelani Drive, continues its summer concert series with the Zeropoint Big Band playing from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Grounds open at 5 p.m. and visitors are encouraged to bring a picnic, blankets and chairs. Refreshments and light picnic fare also will be available for purchase.

Velveeta at Grange Fair
State College's favorite party band, Velveeta, takes over the Grange Fair Grandstand Stage for a 7:30 p.m. show. Free with fair admission

Robert Earl Keen
Three decades, 19 albums and thousands of shows into his celebrated career, prolific singer-songwriter Robert Earl Keen shows no signs of slowing down. "The Road Goes on Forever," is not only Keen's signature song, but seemingly a mantra. His road leads to the State Theatre for an 8 p.m. show, with special guest and fellow long-running singer-songwriter Waylon Payne.

Geoff Rushton is managing editor for Contact him at [email protected] or find him on Twitter at @geoffrushton.
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