TGIF: State College Weekend Events for Oct. 11-13
Fall festival season is in full swing around Centre County.
This weekend has plenty of ways to celebrate autumn with a plethora of festivals — Punkin' Chunkin', Apple, Pumpkin, Downtown State College and Olde Europe, to name a few — and Halloween-themed events.
Plus there's terrific theater — "The Book of Mormon," "Heathers," "She Kills Monsters" — concerts, community events and a packed sports schedule.
That's just a bit of what's going on. We've picked out some of the weekend's highlights below.
There is plenty more around the region 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.
FESTIVALS AND FALL FUN
The Arboretum at Penn State's Pumpkin Festival is a two-day event. From 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday see the lighted jack-'o-lantern display as hundreds of carved pumpkins are arranged on the event lawn for viewing. A panel of judges will present a variety of awards. The festival continues from 3 to 9 p.m. on Saturday with family activities from 3-5 p.m., Western Range performing from 5 to 8 p.m. and the pumpkins again on display until 9 p.m. Food vendors will be on hand both nights.
Haunted Flashlight Maze
If you dare, enter the haunted maze at Harner Farm, 3191 W. College Ave, from 7 to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Tickets are $7 and you must bring a flashlight. No one admitted after 9 p.m. Hot dogs, cider and cocoa will be available. Benefits Starkey Hearing Foundation. The Haunted Flashlight Maze will be held again Oct. 25-26.
Way Fruit Farm, 2355 Halfmoon Valley Road, hosts is Apple Festival 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday. Take a ride to the pumpkin patch and pick your own pay-by-the-pound pumpkin. Check out a craft show with a variety of local vendors. Try lunch items and baked goods from local civic organizations. Kids can enjoy a bunny barn and garden tractor barrel rides. Plus there will be kettle corn, apple sling shot and much more. Continues Oct. 19.
Downtown Fall Festival
The 20th annual Downtown State College Fall Festival takes place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday on the 200 block of South Allen Street. Free pumpkins and activities for kids, pony rides, a bounce house, Tumble Bus, face painting, photo station and more are part of the day. Several food vendors will be on hand and Webster's will provide hot apple cider.
Punkin' Chunkin' Festival
Howard Fire Company's 9th Annual Punkin' Chunkin' Festival is a day of fun for all ages, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at Bald Eagle State Park. Attractions include craft and food vendors, hay rides, pie-eating contest, mini punkin chunkers for the public to launch and, of course, large punkin' chunkin' trebuchets and cannons taking aim at floating targets in the lake. Admission and parking are free. Donations are welcome. All proceeds benefit the Howard Volunteer Fire Company.
Wasson Farm Fall Fest
Wasson Farm, 2545 Shingletown Road, hosts its annual Fall Fest 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Take a hayride to the pumpkin patch and pick your own pumpkin for $6 per person, any size pumpkin included. Enjoy homemade soups by steam engine andhomemade apple butter. And you'll be able to have a Taste of PA, with samplings of wine, honey, maple syrup and more, all made in the state and also available for purchase. All payments are cash or check only.
The 12th Annual Cranberry Festival at Black Moshannon State Park is happening from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday. Activities include a bog walk to pick cranberries, leaf prints, pine cone bird feeders, colonial candle-dipping, cranberry drop game, and pumpkin painting. After painting a pumpkin, enter it into the pumpkin races. (Wear shoes that can get wet and bring a container to put cranberries in. Cranberries grow very close to the ground so you would be kneeling a lot to pick them.)
Penn State Office of Science Outreach presents Haunted-U, the annual Halloween-themed science festival, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Saturday at Whitmore and Osmond Laboratories. Tour the transformed labs and classrooms and participate in hands-on activities and demos designed and run by Penn State faculty, students, and staff. See the schedule here. Free and open to the public, however, the Forensic Science Club Haunted Cottages (7:15-7:45 p.m.) require a $5 fee. Activities will be first-come, first-served.
Penn State Lion Ambassadors will host their annual ghost tours and haunted house from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Saturday starting at Hintz Family Alumni Center. Explore the haunted history of Penn State and State College with ghost tours around campus and downtown and check out the haunted house in the historic University House, one of the oldest buildings on campus.
Olde Europe Renaissance Festival
Celebrate fall in central PA with a Renaissance theme of delicious foods, crafts, and music at the Olde Europe Festival from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday at Columbus Chapel and Boal Mansion Museum, 163 Boal Estate Drive. Enjoy the culture of the six European countries with which the Boal family is affiliated, with an artisan village, specialty food and drink, horse-drawn carriage rides, armored medieval combat, archery and fencing demonstrations, tours of the chapel and museum, live music and dance performances and much more. Admission is free, with a $5 per car parking fee to support the live entertainment.
THEATER AND MUSIC
Book of Mormon
The national tour of nine-time Tony-winning comedy "The Book of Mormon" — dubbed "the best musical of the century by the New York Times — continues its run at Penn State's Eisenhower Auditorium with shows at 7:30 p.m. Friday, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets and info
Heathers: The Musical
Penn State Thespians present the dark comedy "Heathers: The Musical" based on the cult-classic 1988 film, at 7:30 p.m. Friday and 1:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday in Schwab Auditorium. Tickets are $4.98 for students and $12 general admission, cash at the door.
She Kills Monsters
Penn State Centre Stage performs Qui Nguyen's "She Kills Monsters," a comedic romp into the world of fantasy role-playing games, at 7:30 p.m. Friday and 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday in the Playhouse Theatre, University Park. Shows continue Monday through Thursday, 7:30 p.m. each night. Tickets are $25 evening/$20 matinee and $12.50 for students.
The State Theatre screens the Metropolitan Opera HD Live broadcast of Puccini's final masterpiece, "Turandot" at 12:55 p.m. Saturday.
Kinobe & Wamu Spirit
Ugandan singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Kinobe brings his soothing African rhythms, understated vocals and powerful world-roots-dance melodies to Elk Creek Cafe + Aleworks, 100 W. Main St. in Millheim, at 8 p.m. on Saturday. Tickets.
Join the Society for Indian Music and Arts (SIMA) and Nritya for "Rituchakra: A Musical Journey through the Seasons," at 4:30 p.m. Sunday in The State Theatre. This unique student production features a beautiful melange of original music, dance, story-telling, and art work, performed by student artists from SIMA and Nritya, and by well-known visiting artists from India. Tickets are $6.50/adult, $5.50/student
Museum Concert Series
Following the Olde Europe Festival, Boal Mansion Museum kicks off its 2019-20 concert series with a performance by members of Allegria Ensemble at 5:30 p.m. Sunday. The concert will feature music of the Renaissance by Italian composer Federico Fiorillo, Russian composer Reinhold Gliere and contemporary American composers Mark O'Connor and Jeremy Cohen. Tickets are $40 in advance, $45 at the door.
Maine-born and Texas-based singer-songwriter Slaid Cleaves stops at Elk Creek Cafe + Aleworks, 100 W. Main St. in Millheim, at 5 p.m. on Sunday. Tickets
Out in the Night
Penn State's African American Studies Department presents a screening of the documentary "Out in the Night," at 7 p.m. Friday at The State Theatre. The film is about four young African-American lesbians who defend themselves when violently and sexually threatened by a man on the street. They were charged and convicted in the courts and in the media as a "gang of killer lesbians." Admission is free but registration is required.
In Search of Earth's Secrets: A Pop-Up Science Encounter
From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday in the Schlow Library parking lot, explore a 45-foot-long walk-through inflatable model of the JOIDES Resolution research vessel that features a video-wall presentation showing how science allows us to travel back in time and discover what happened in Earth's past. Presented by Discovery Space of Central PA.
Palmer Museum Community Day
The public is invited to join staff and volunteers of the Palmer Museum of Art at Penn State from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, for its annual Community Day event. This year’s theme, “Bridging Art and Culture,” invites visitors to enjoy a variety of programs that inspire creativity and reflect on the active role of art in shaping culture and change.
Centre County’s Outstanding Young Woman
Dating back to 1965, Centre County’s Outstanding Young Woman Scholarship Program is held annually in the fall to honor the county's outstanding high school junior and senior young women. Finalists based on their interview, scholastic & achievement records, creative & performing arts, fitness and presence and presentation. The final performance will be at 7 p.m. Saturday at The State Theatre.
The annual THON 5k on Sunday supports the organization's year-round effort to fight pediatric cancer. More than just a race, it's a day full of family fun. Registration starts at 8 a.m. near the Bryce Jordan Center, activities begin at 9 a.m. and the fun run/walk starts at 11:30 a.m. Sunday Advance registration and more info.
CROP Hunger Walk
All congregations, community groups, student groups, and individuals are invited to join the CROP HungerWalk to end hunger in State College and around the world. The easy 5k walk through downtown State College begins at 2 p.m. Sunday at Grace Lutheran Church, 205 S. Garner St. Register and donate here.
Join the Centre County Historical Society at 2 p.m. Sunday at Centre Furnace Mansion, 1001 E. College Ave., as author and Penn State history professor Amy Greenberg discusses her book "Lady First: The World of First Lady Sarah Polk." Part of the Henszey-Pyle Author Series, the program is free and open to the public. Donations are welcome.
State High Homecoming
State High football hosts Central Dauphin for homecoming at 7 p.m. Friday at the South Track field.
Penn State Sports
- Women's hockey vs. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 2 p.m., Pegula Ice Arena
- Men's swimming and diving vs. West Virginia, 5 p.m., McCoy Natatorium
- Field hockey vs. Northwestern, 6 p.m., Field Hockey Complex
- Men's hockey vs. Sacred Heart, 7 p.m., Pegula Ice Arena
- Women's volleyball vs. Maryland, 7:30 p.m., Rec Hall
- Women's swimming and diving vs. West Virginia, noon, McCoy Natatorium
- Women's hockey vs. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 1 p.m., Pegula Ice Arena
- Men's hockey vs. Sacred Heart, 4:30 p.m., Pegula Ice Arena
- Men's soccer vs. Northwestern, 7 p.m., Jeffrey Field
- Women's volleyball vs. Ohio State, 8 p.m., Rec Hall
- Field hockey vs. Iowa, noon, Field Hockey Complex