Located in the northeast corner of Pennsylvania, Lackawanna County offers something for every group. The county, named for a picturesque river that flows through it, encompasses both city and countryside, and offers a wide variety of itinerary options.
“There is something for everyone in Lackawanna County,” said Alexa Peregrim, sales manager at Lackawanna County Visitors Bureau. “Each season is filled with events, attractions and activities. We also pride ourselves on customizing itineraries based on the group’s interests, so they are guaranteed a great time. We love to help group planners design a trip that is unique and provides unforgettable memories.”
Lackawanna County Visitors Bureau can provide groups with custom itineraries, logistical planning, marketing materials, housing assistance and welcome bags.
“We hope groups truly enjoy their time in Lackawanna County,” Peregrim said. “We want to make it a memorable experience full of laughter, relaxed fun, reconnection to themselves and their friends, while also making new friends in the area.”
History on display
Interactive historical sites and museums showcase Lackawanna County’s past. The county, including its largest city, Scranton, saw rapid development at the turn of the 20th century by producing coal during the growth of steel production. The region played a paramount role in the Industrial Revolution. At the time, mining opportunities in the region drew immigrants from around the world, and that culture and heritage is still prevalent today.
At Steamtown National Historic Site in downtown Scranton, the only national park dedicated solely to the history of steam railroading, groups see steam locomotives on display, as well as restored cabooses, freight cars and passenger coaches. The 52-acre site includes a roundhouse with an operational turntable and an active locomotive repair shop. The museum complex features a visitor center, history and technology museums and a 250-seat theater that shows the park’s orientation film, “Steel and Steam.” Groups can even hop aboard a historic steam locomotive for 15–30-minute round-trip rides.
Also located on the Steamtown National Historic Site grounds, Electric City Trolley Museum features interactive exhibits and displays, including vintage trolleys. The museum commemorates the first successfully operational electric-powered streetcar system in the U.S Groups can ride on an authentic 1926 or 1932 antique trolley for a 5½-mile trip.
The region’s mining history comes alive at The Lackawanna County Coal Mine Tour. Visitors descend 300 feet into the earth in a mine car while watching the sky slowly disappear. Guides then lead an underground walking tour through gangways and tunnels while explaining the history and methods used in the mining process. Afterward, groups should visit the Anthracite Heritage Museum to learn the history of hard coal mining, its related industries and the immigrant culture of Northeastern Pennsylvania.
Savor and sip
In Lackawanna County, pizzerias reign supreme. The county is home to more than 160 locally owned pizza shops, with many among them serving a style of pizza unique to the region, called Old Forge. The new Lackawanna County Pizza Trail spotlights 63 of the best pizzerias (chosen by locals), many that easily welcome tour groups. A pizza trail passport is currently being developed.
“We will have a list of group friendly locations that can fit large bus groups as well as a list of take-out locations, so if a group wanted to go to an attraction and try some pizza places nearby, we can give them some takeout options,” Peregrim said.
Another fun trail option is the Lackawanna County Wine Trail, which features 10 wineries and tasting rooms throughout the region. Groups can sip and sample unique blends and styles of wine, many with recipes that have been passed through generations.
Just for fun
For some, the city of Scranton is synonymous with the hit NBC TV show The Office. Fans of the show can participate in The Office Self-Guided Walking Tour, which features spots made famous by the series. Try out the Dunder Mifflin staff’s favorite pizza at Alfredo’s Pizza Cafe; order a lobster dinner at Cooper’s Seafood House; or grab a drink at the Dunder Mifflin crew’s favorite bar, Poor Richard’s Pub. There’s even a Dwight Schrute mural on the side of the building that houses On&On marketplace, where groups can find one-of-a-kind vintage, handmade and repurposed items.
Touted as the only building devoted to Harry Houdini in the world, the Houdini Museum in Scranton is a rare treat and group favorite. Groups can take a guided tour of the 150-year-old historic building before enjoying an hourlong stage magic show with professional magicians and live animals. The museum even features rare film footage of Harry Houdini not seen anywhere else.
For more information, call 570-468-8625 or visit visitnepa.org.