Easter is one of the foremost holidays within the Christian faith, celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
While spending time in church for Easter services are an important part of the holiday, it seems that Easter meals are also a focal point for many families.
Most restaurants aren't serving special Easter dinners, but there are plenty of brunches to satisfy your holiday hunger.
For a family friendly Easter afternoon meal, one option is the Nittany Lion Inn. The quaint on-campus hotel will have a big buffet open from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
"We set it up in an atrium that passes between our ballroom and restaurant," manager Matt Triveri says. "We open up a bunch of rooms including our main dining room so it'll be spacious."
It's a fairly standard brunch buffet with an Easter twist. The Inn will have a carving station, standard breakfast foods, an omelet station, Easter candy, and more.
There is a separate kid's buffet that's low to the ground in order to cater to families, serving up children's favorites like chicken bites and macaroni and cheese. There will also be a cupcake-decorating station to keeps the kids occupied.
Triveri says that the Inn's Easter brunch buffet is booked solid at about 800 reservations, but call 814-865-8590 to add your name to the wait list.
The Penn Stater is offering a similar family-oriented Easter brunch. Restaurant supervisor Laura Sullivan says that there will be plenty of Easter candy spread throughout the dessert buffet.
"We do decorate our buffet line and add a little kid’s buffet that’s at their level with pizza and food like that," she says. "We have an Easter bunny that will come that can take pictures with the children. He’ll be handing out candy as well as little coloring books and activity books."
For the Southern food lovers out there, Gigi's Restaurant and Wine Lounge will offer a unique Easter brunch on Sunday. The eatery, located at 2080 Cato Ave., is putting a classy touch on the usual Easter brunch fare.
Gigi's is serving honey-drizzled Southern fried chicken, skillet lamb hash with spring onions and eggs topped with Béarnaise, and raspberry-stuffed French toast with lemon pastry cream and candied lemons.
The restaurant recently added paintings from the Fraser Street Art Gallery with bright, Easter-like colors, but don't expect to see bunnies and painted eggs. You can call 814-861-3462 to reserve a spot at Gigi's this Sunday.
Another popular Easter brunch location in State College is the American Ale House, which resides at 821 Cricklewood Dr. The Ale House is serving a buffet from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. It will cost $25 for adults and $13 for children ages 10 and under.
The buffet will serve up unique options including a mint pea soup with smoked bacon, Adobo roast pork with cotilla cheese and mole suace, and a butternut squash ravioli. The carving station is fully stocked with maple mustard-glazed Berkshire ham, mint-crusted leg of lamb, and red wine and herb infused prime rib.
"It is pretty extensive, we have quite a long list of stuff on the menu," assistant manager Dave Burkhard says. "It’ll be all decked out with decorations. We have a florist come in and put flowers all over the buffet and there will be some baskets and Easter bunnies around."
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