Around State College: Spots to hit outside Happy Valley
It’s hard to imagine happiness outside our Happy Valley. What could it possibly look like—joysans the nittany lion roar echoing throughout the stadium, Old Main looming in the distance, grilled stickies melting in your mouth as you sport your favorite blue and white apparel?
Well, we’re here to tell you the outside world isn’t too scary—near State College, a mere few minutes away, lay coves of cozy restaurants serving delicious foods and goods. They are just waiting with open arms for those bold enough to venture out of the valley. Quick detour, great results!
1. Hublersburg Inn
449 Hublersburg Rd., Howard;www.hublersburginn.com; 814-383-2616
Nestled up in Howard, Pa., the Hublersburg Inn is ready to rock your world. That’s right—it’s not just good food but good music that this charming, historic inn offers for its customers.Whether it be Sauce, a popular Bellefonte high school band, or New Rebels, an acoustic group,this inn keeps their shows new and exciting. If that weren’t enough, this inn has a special offer the first Friday of every month: discounted ribs! Bette Toth, the bar manager of Hublersburg for the past five years, can’t get enough of the community that has come into fruition thanks to the staff, customers and overall atmosphere. “There are a lot of locals that come by and I love seeing the friendly faces,” Toth said. “More than that, we offer fresh ingredients and local products—such as our serving beer from local breweries. It’s a big deal for us.” Some of the inn’s acclaimed dishes include the cheesesteak and wings, as well as exciting purchases from nearby Amish farms like the baked camembert, a starter that’ll make your mouth water. “I’m excited for May, when the patio will open for live music,” Toth said. “There’s so much beauty in the world around us and at this inn, you don’t have to go too far to see it.”
2. Taste of the Valley
4417 E Main St. #5, Belleville;www.facebook.com/TastOfTheValley; 717-935-0050
Looking for Belleville’s belle of the ball? Look no further than Taste of the Valley, a quaint and sweet coffee shop just waiting for your visit. Denise Peachy, the shop’s owner, finds every day an exciting adventure in her business. “We are always coming up with new flavors, trying to cater to different tastes,” she said. “The area we’re located in has a really strong community that supports us. This shop is meant for anyone who wants a relaxing atmosphere to hang out with their friends, catch up, talk—anything.” Peachey and her staff are working to bring out new sandwiches in 2019, but for now, her favorite specialty is the Bumper Hill Panini, thanks to the honey mustard that is made from scratch. “I also love our steamers—they’re the perfect hot drink on cold days,” Peachey said. The shop is known for its warm and welcoming atmosphere,for the comforting bible verses on the wall and the serenade of music playing in the background. Happy Valley just might find happiness in this valley too!
3. Governors’ Pub
211 W High St., Bellefonte;www.thegovernorspub.com; 814-353-1008
You don’t have to be the governor to eat at this pub, but you’ll sure feel like a V.I.P when scarfing down the delicious dishes this Bellefonte restaurant has to offer! With hardwood floors and hearty meals, this pub is sure to leave you smiling before, after and during the meal. With an eclectic menu ranging from spinach and wild mushroom lasagna to fish and chips to Hamilton Chicken Pot Pie, you can never go wrong with this comfort food. Drinks include specialty cocktails, martinis and top-quality draft beers. Everything you want, this pub’s got it!
4. The State Burger Co.
101 S Allegheny St., Bellefonte;www.stateburgerco.com; 814-424-7494
Another Bellefonte gem is The State Burger. Your state of mind will be a state of pure bliss when munching down on a burger you yourself get to design. That’s right! All you have to do is walk into the restaurant, take a seat, fill out a survey of what you would like on your burger—what bread, what meat, what toppings, what sauces—and then voila! The best partis you get to pick the name of your burger. Talk about a personalized experience! Finally, the last and honestly, the crowd-favorite step is when the burger you crafted is on a plate in front of you. All under ten dollars, this State burger is a steal and deal. Be sure to check out the dessert menu if you still have the room—the Belgian Sundae is to die for!
5. Duffy’s Tavern
113 E Main St., Boalsburg;www.duffystavernpa.com/wp; 814-466-6241
Considered a true Boalsburg landmark, Duffy’s Tavern offers casual and fine dining, a soothing atmosphere and a bar that raises the bar, so to speak. Owning a rich history, this tavern is here to satisfy your taste buds by also raising the stakes with their special pan roasted bison pub steak, ortheir Yellowfin Tuna steak. Perhaps try out the chicken alfredo, the filet mignon or even the surf & turf. Backtrack a bit to the appetizers and you’ll find yourself drooling over the Ahi Tuna, crab toast or the smoked salmon bruschetta. Burgers, fries, soups, salads, sandwiches and wraps are also great choices—with each category hosting plenty of options. The sky is not even the limit here at Duffy’s Tavern!
6. Port Matilda Hotel & Tavern
201 E Plank Rd, Port Matilda;814-692-4097
Just out of town, you can enjoy Centre County’s best tavern fare with some hometown flavor at the Port Matilda Hotel & Tavern. They just unveiled Breakfast and Beers from 11-9 on Tuesdays. Enjoy pancakes,french toast or their signature “Port Matilda Mess” with a side of scrambled eggs and toast, along with your favorite beer. They also have a full menu with offerings like the “Hot and Wet Sloppy Jimmy” burger served with gravy and fries, but if it's your first time, just get the wings, full stop. You'll definitely be back for seconds. And thirds.