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Schuylkill County: Tough to Spell but Fun to Visit

Banks of the Sheltered Creek

Schuylkill County came to light in 1811 and was formed with sections of two neighboring counties. While the county itself was named for the Schuylkill River, there are many variations of how the river came to get its name.

Through the years, it’s had shifting names for short periods as people moved through the area. Today, the intact records show that the Dutch West India Company bought the land in 1633 and used the name Schuylkill River. It’s since stuck. It translates to many things, but “sheltered creek” follows the Dutch translation.

With the history out of the way, let’s look at what Schuylkill County has to offer, today.

America Oldest Brewery

One of the first things people associate with the area is the popular beer Yuengling. Their brewery (D.G. Yuengling & Son) is an attraction that draws fans to it on a regular basis. Did you know that the Yuengling Brewery is the oldest operating brewery in America? It was established back in 1829.

In a world where craft brew has become a huge industry, it’s Yuengling that stands among the top. It’s the largest craft brewery today. While it’s home base is in Pottsville, it’s expanded to a second Pennsylvania location, along with one in Florida. But, take in mind, they produce something like 3 million barrels of beer each year! You can learn more about their history via a video here.

Yuengling Brewery, Pottsville, PA

 Yuengling Brewery, Pottsville, PA

Transportation is something we all rely on. If you love learning about the past, and seeing older means of transportation, consider stopping by the Golden Age Air Museum. The neat thing about this small museum is that it focuses solely on the 1920s and 1930s. Feeling adventurous? Sign up for a biplane ride!

Reading Railroad

We’ve all heard of the Reading Railroad, even if you didn’t grow up in the area. It was one of the properties you could buy when playing Monopoly. When visiting the Reading Railroad Historical Museum, you’ll be greeted with a short film and be able to see the railyard, which houses over 70 units, perfect for a rail enthusiast. Once back inside, there’s an exhibit area that showcases historical elements that were part of the systems used. Looking to go for a scenic railroad tour? Check out the Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway.

Looking for something different? The Hawk Sanctuary offers educational experiences and trails. I love their page featuring their latest sightings on the trails. The protected forest has 8 miles of hiking available.

If you’re an outdoor enthusiast looking for some off-roading fun, you’ll want to check out the AOAA trails or the Rausch Creek Off Road Park. Prefer something a little more mellow? We’ve got you covered. You’ll adore these next ideas…

Hope Hill Lavender Farm should be on your list of stops. The farm is actually a steam distillery business that creates essential oils, houses bees for raw honey, and has a lavender store where all their lavender has been hand harvested. Stop by and say hello to their rescue horses and miniature donkeys while you’re visiting. Check out their photo gallery for a peek of what you’ll find.

If you love a good wine festival, add the Schuylkill Wine Festival to your list. But, because that’s an annual event, let’s take a look at some of the local wineries you can visit year-round.

If you’re looking for unique, look no further than Lake Trout Winery. This Bohemian Wine Boutique is truly one of a kind, and you’ll love the wine tasting. After a stop here, enjoy their Disc Golf Course for some fun. Looking for another winery to visit? Galen Glen has 7 generations behind it and still individually bottles their internationally known wine. This gorgeous property is a nice place to unwind with flights of wine available.

Nature and Museums

Pennsylvania has plenty of lush greenery reserved for you to enjoy hiking, biking, and more. Tuscarora State Park has over 1,500 acres for you to explore. Looking for another area to play? Sweet Arrow Lake County Park is a perfect weekend escape. Their park map shows you the different trails available and other day trip areas.

Scenery of Tuscarora State Park

Scenery of Tuscarora State Park

When you’re ready to wind down again, you need to put Jerry’s Classic Cars & Collectibles Museum on your schedule. You’re going to love this place. It has so much cool stuff that will be a flashback. It not only has cars, but also has exhibits such as a soda hop bar area, a kitchen of the past, and even a mini-drive-in. The signage and cool blast from the past will capture your heart and get the memories rolling. (FYI: This is a two-floor building, and a flight of stairs with a railing takes you to the second floor. There isn’t an accessibility option to the second floor such as an elevator.)

With so much to do, you’ll not only enjoy a great day or weekend in Schuylkill County, you’ll want to come back. If you live in the area, be sure to visit some of the local businesses you haven’t checked out yet. And don’t forget to grab your Schuylkill County gear, today!


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