Dowtown Bellefonte, PA 16823
By Serge Bielanko
Summer doesn't 'officially' end for a few weeks yet, but let's face facts: once you're stuck behind that first school bus picking kids up in the morning on the way to work, you know that summer has 'unofficially' died a sudden death. But listen, put your big person pants back on and don't mourn her too much. She'll be back again next year. And if you cut down on the red meat and booze...who knows...you might just be around to bask in her sweet sunshine once again.
But how about one last summery evening in downtown Bellefonte, eh?
Downtown Bellefonte Inc. (DBI) has been throwing special Friday in the 'Fonte nights for a while now and they're always a lot of fun. You can take the kids, you can go on a date,...heck, you can even head down there solo- dressed to the nines in your annual GOODBYE SUMMER one piece body suit made out of recycled hemp twine and fly fishing line and people are gonna be glad to see you, happy to serve you up some delicious food or a very god deal.
Because this is all about celebrating the small businesses and cultural life that Bellefonte has been cultivating just so people like YOU can feel relaxed and happy at least once a month. Believe it or not, a smallish town in the middle of a state- kind of far from big cities- is one of the more perfect places for American life to be redefining itself in ways that are new and fresh. I'm serious. Towns like Bellefonte, with their extraordinary combination of people, independent shops and businesses, progressive eateries, gorgeous parks and architecture, and super-active community groups sponsoring an endless year-round array of activities and events for everyone from toddlers to senior citizens, these kinds of towns aren't exactly growing on trees, you know?
And yet: we're seeing more and more old historic towns following in Bellefonte's footsteps. Places once looking done for, rusted out and glazed over by economic distress and depression are finding new life via the rallying of community groups and local governments who are embracing new ideas in place of the same old worn-out ways that once worked...but don't anymore.
We should be proud of that. Bellefonte, whether you realize it on your daily rounds or miss it because you're too close to the flame, is a town other towns emulate. Which is due in large part to the extensive imagination and work of the many who live around here who believe in the possibilities that exist for the town as a whole.
Anyways, if you come out for Friday in the 'Fonte on August 30th, you'll see exactly what I'm getting at here. You can't help but recognize that kind of low grade electricity in the air, believe me. I mean, sure, Friday nights are always kind of juiced up, we both know that. But spend one strolling the streets of a town that recognizes that fact and is embracing it, and you suddenly feel the evening being upped a few amps for sure.
This month, a slew of downtown small businesses are participating in the night and that's a testament to all my preaching above, I figure.
Among the highlights?
- Reynolds Mansion Bed and Breakfast, 101 W Linn St. From 4 to 9 p.m you are invited to tour one of Bellefonte’s most unique bed and breakfasts. This mansion, built in 1885, is both a historic charmer AND an architectural jaw-dropper!
"We enjoy having a bed and breakfast specifically in Bellefonte because of the history and small-town charm here," says Tricia Andriaccio, who owns and runs the bed and breakfast with her husband, Mike. "The Reynolds family (who built the mansion) were big contributors to the making of the town. They were instrumental in building the Match Factory, St. John's Episcopal Church, the old armory, and Reynolds Bank. Colonel William F. Reynolds also met the pilots of the first airmail stop in Bellefonte."
And opening up the doors to the street-strolling public for one special night makes sense, she says.
"It is nice to be able to share the original features of the mansion with our guests as well as community members who may never have the opportunity to see it. We tell everyone the history of the home, types of woodwork featured, and describe all of the fireplaces."
Don't miss your chance to get an up close and personal look at one of Bellefonte's true gems.
- Wander over to Hello Social Co./ 3twenty9 Design, 221 W. High Street., from 5 to 8 p.m. for an exclusive Friday in the ‘Fonte for a Pop-up Shop presented by By a Thread Boutique of Tyrone. They’ll be serving delicious beverages from a local craft beverage producer (TBA).
- Okay, so have you heard about the PA Girl Gang?!?! They're a group committed to empowering Pennsylvania girls and ladies with recognizing and reaching their career goals through inspiration and community. And quite frankly: they are incredible. So grab your daughters AND your sons, and anyone else you know and swing by Lydia Shafer Photography’s studio ,
136 West High Street, from 4-6pm to find out more about this amazing project and snag some merch during a pop-up event. And as a bonus: Lock Haven's Skeleton Key Boutique will have a bunch of their trendy clothing available. Perfect place to grab some back-to-school fashion.
And that's just the beginning of all the excitement.
Check out the Downtown Bellefonte Inc. full roster of Friday in the 'Fonte August participants and activities below!
Then get out of the house on Friday, the 30th and come see why so many other towns across Pennsylvania are really starting to dream about being just like Bellefonte.
Friday in the 'Fonte
Friday, August 30th, 2019
Downtown Bellefonte, PA
ACTIVITIES & TOURS
Reynolds Mansion Bed and Breakfast, 4 to 9 p.m.
Have you ever wanted to tour one of Bellefonte’s most unique bed and breakfasts? On Friday in the ‘Fonte, stop by for free history and a tour of the mansion.
Bellefonte Art Museum, noon to 7 p.m.
At the museum, you’ll find fine art and handcrafted items. Browse around, or shop their store!
Jake’s Cards & Games, noon to 11 p.m.
25% of all in-stock Board Games during Fridays in the Fonte’. Want to try a newly released game? Jake’s will have it!
Helen Foxx and Co., 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Come celebrate fall fashion at Helen Foxx!
Pop-up Shop at Hello Social Co./3twenty9 Design, 5 to 8 p.m.
Stop by the agencies’ office on Friday in the ‘Fonte for a pop-up shop with By a Thread Boutique of Tyrone. They’ll be serving beverages from a local craft beverage producer (TBA). 221 W. High Street.
Pop-up Shop at Lydia Shafer Photography, 4 to 6 p.m.
Have you heard of the PA Girl Gang? Find out more about it and snag some merch during a pop-up at Lydia Shafer Photography’s studio. Skeleton Key Boutique will be selling their trendy clothing.
Verizon Wireless Made Simple, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Get 20% off accessories and a free Samsung Tab A with service*.
Plumb’s Card and Gift, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
For Friday in the ‘Fonte, get 25% off your Gift Shop purchase. Plumb’s features unique gifts for all occasions.
FOOD & CRAFT BEVERAGES
Brazilian Munchies, 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Start Friday in the ‘Fonte off right with a delicious lunch from Brazilian Munchies. They’re open for lunch on Dunlop Street next to Bella Vino Wine Bar.
Bella Vino Wine Bar, 4 to 10 p.m.
Find $1.00 off wine and cocktails at this Bellefonte-favorite stop! Find unique crafted cocktails and wine.
Bonfatto’s Italian Market and Corner Cafe, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
On Friday, get $1.50 single scoop ice cream cones. Bonfatto’s boasts the most awesome food, coffee and atmosphere; true authentic Italian Market products; and a friendly and helpful staff.
Pizza Mia!, 9 a.m. to midnight
At Pizza Mia, you’ll find pizzas, subs, wraps, salads, dogies, wings, burgers, strombolis, calzones, breakfast pizzas, sweet treats, various appetizers and Coke products! On Friday in the ‘Fonte, buy one dessert, get a second dessert of equal or lesser value 1/2 off.
The Governor’s Pub, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
The pub features appetizers, salads, sandwiches, entrees, homemade desserts, soda, beer, and cocktails. Try one of their daily specials during Friday in the ‘Fonte.
This month is the absolute perfect time of year to check out...or re-introduce yourself to all that BAM has to offer.
Remembering a Bellefonte Pennsylvania African-American soldier who served and died in the Civil War.
Two Centre County women who have taken it upon themselves to bring something to the streets of Bellefonte that is long overdue.
Part coworking space, part community gathering place which means you will find yourself a reason to visit this place before long.
There's a real movement around here to embrace the future while never forgetting all of our past.
Over the course of a 130-year lifespan, the school sent a dizzying array of lads out into the world, quite a few who were destined for great things.
Ritual Masks and Figures of Mexico from the Althouse Collection is much more than it even sounds in title.
Experience More of Bellefonte in the Story Archive
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