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View Poll Results: When I think of Pennsylvania...
I generally have a favorable opinion of the state. 95 53.67%
I generally have an unfavorable opinion of the state. 30 16.95%
I have no strong opinion regarding the state. 52 29.38%
Voters: 177. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 09-05-2016, 06:09 PM
Location: IN
20,923 posts, read 36,162,330 times
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Originally Posted by JustMike77 View Post
I have some roots in Pennsylvania, so I have an overall favorable opinion of the state. My Dad was born in a little coal town called Shamokin and later graduated from Bucknell. My Grandmother taught music at Bucknell and also played piano for the Philadelphia philharmonic orchestra. In her later years she was a dormitory house mother at a nursing school in Philly. I've only been there once, but it seemed nice and a lot like Ohio where I was raised.
This was a major news story in Shamokin recently:

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Old 08-08-2019, 02:31 PM
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So I have lived most of my life in PA. Born in Jersey, moved to Ohio as an infant and was living in PA from toddlerhood through college, and a little after college.

I lived in the Philadelphia exburbs as a child and teenager. Mainly in the town where ‘Signs’ was filmed. Cool woodsy areas to explore. Creeks to play in. Trails to ride bikes or horses on if you were well off enough for that sort of thing. Farms turning to housing developments all through my childhood as the sprawl spread north. Mountains to ski on in the winter less than an hours drive. Very suburban though. Especially by the time I was in high school. Strip malls, Sesame Place, enclosed malls, bad highways, worse backroads.

Went to college in rural PA (go Bloomsburg Huskies) and had the small town with classic mainstreet experience for four years. Hilly Pennsyltucky has lots of good trails and camping spots. Incredible views everywhere and good natural beauty. Some well kept buildings and some relics from the mining and farming days. Some fading glory areas around it where the cracks in the social fabric and appearance of the town went a little deeper. With the college there, Bloomsburg, ‘the only town in Pennsylvania’ (charter based on the New England Town model as opposed to city, municipality, township etc.) was insulated from the decline to some extent. And for an odd experience, not far away is Centralia, PA, population 5 or so. A tragic town where an underground coal seam caught fire and has been burning since the 1970’s and is likely to go on for quite some time. An abandoned ghost town with cracked up roads venting steam. Most of the residents left for Ashland nearby except a few hangers on. It’s an odd place and gives the area some charecter points.

After college it was Philly for 5 years, working in the city and living downtown. A year in Fishtown, and four more in South Philly off Broad Street and Washington Avenue. Living in the city had conveniences the burbs and the small town setting did not. Walk to get groceries, coffee, to a good night spot, an awesome restaurant (Philly punches above its weight in food culture) or a local treasure like Jim’s Steaks or DiNics or DiBruno brothers. In the burbs, and especially in the countryside/small towns, these outings always require a car and some distance, all for less quality. Philly does fun things too, free concert at the Art Museum steps for July Fourth. Exhibiting art work from Art Institute students at outdoor venues. Avenue of the Arts pulls awesome shows. Philly was my favorite place in PA, though not perfect. The subway smells like a urinal used daily but not flushed since the Carter Administration. When I lived there, it ran on tokens as opposed to a modern card system like DC Metro. And if you do drive in the city, be on the lookout for urban deer, aka cyclists, on the narrow streets.

But as others have said, it’s got bad, bad roads everywhere. Because of the hot summers, and then cold winters, the pavement cracks like no other. They can resurface annually and by the time a year has gone by, the road is a wreck already. And they don’t resurface annually in any of the places in state I lived. You get used to it. Plus you come to appreciate states where the roads are good. Also, due to the winter mix of snow and freezing rain in the winters, if you can ski in PA, you can ski anywhere. We are used to skiing on ice and dry powder is a luxury, like easy mode.

But we have our prejudices against other states. Our inferiority complex vis a vis NYC and DC. Our feeling of superiority over Baltimore. The natural disinclination towards friendship with New Englanders due to a high chance they are Pats fans. Our stereotype war against Jersey people who don’t know how to pump gas, and ski in their jeans. They’d tell you we suck at driving on account of our Amish upbringing. But it’s a friendly rivalry for the most part. We tolerate them on the slopes, jeans and minimum 2 gold chains visible and all, and they let us pale coal crackers go to their beaches and boardwalks and don’t laugh too hard (to our faces) when we redden with sunburn. When we are together, we can just talk about how happy we are to not be Delaware, with it’s many fine landfills and smoke stacks.

Still always curious how PA people are viewed by outsiders and some good replies here.

Last edited by BurtfromPA; 08-08-2019 at 03:01 PM..
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Old 08-08-2019, 02:44 PM
Location: Chi > DC > Reno > SEA
1,677 posts, read 774,302 times
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I used to have a very positive impression of the state: two major yet very different American cities, old architecture, a ton of history, Ben Franklin, the Amish. It was near the top of my list of states to move to when I was in high school and college.

Lately my perception is a little less positive since the rural areas managed to swing the state for Trump and I've learned from a couple friends who used to live there about the issues with bigotry and closed-mindedness that are present and how much the majority of young people want to get out of there. (I think this is less true of smaller towns in, say, Washington.)
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Old 08-08-2019, 02:47 PM
Location: New York, NY
1,202 posts, read 682,394 times
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As someone from outside the state, I went to college in DelCo for 4 years and lived in Philadelphia for 5 years after that. In all honesty, I don't think there's really anything special about Pennsylvania outside Philadelphia, Pittsburg, State College, and Lancaster County. It's for the most part the same small, insular towns you'd find anywhere else in America. That being said, the unique parts of Pennsylvania are awesome. I absolutely loved living in Philadelphia, and it is undoubtedly one of the best cities in America. Pittsburgh, while small and kind of isolated, is a beautiful city in it's own right and punches above it's weight. State College is a great college town and is a sight to behold on Saturdays during football season. Lancaster County is beautiful and unique with it's strong Amish culture. Outside of that, the rest of Pennsylvania is mostly generic, uninteresting small towns of no significance. I remember driving from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh and just seeing, well, a whole lot of nothing.
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Old 08-08-2019, 02:48 PM
Location: New York, NY
1,202 posts, read 682,394 times
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Originally Posted by GraniteStater View Post
This was a major news story in Shamokin recently:

This is absolute comedic gold.
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Old 08-08-2019, 04:00 PM
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,171 posts, read 103,126,516 times
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Most people here in Colorado think it's part of the eastern megalopolis.
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Old 08-08-2019, 04:06 PM
2,148 posts, read 1,074,240 times
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It has NEVER come up in conversation, except when discussing Philadelphia sports fans. Otherwise, not a once. Kind of like Wisconsin never comes up in the conversation in Pennsylvania, except, most likely, for sports.

Last edited by Enean; 08-08-2019 at 04:17 PM..
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Old 08-08-2019, 04:15 PM
Location: New Mexico
6,854 posts, read 3,789,303 times
Reputation: 12923
I've been through Pennsylvania maybe five times but my opinion is rather ill-informed and is mostly just what I see from the road. I have friends near Harrisburg, been to Gettysburg twice and a wedding in West Chester. Never been to a major city. It looks pretty typical middle America. My opinion is mildly positive.
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Old 08-08-2019, 04:26 PM
Location: Arizona
296 posts, read 207,875 times
Reputation: 593
Amish, Pennsyltucky. Big generic state like Ohio, Upstate NY, etc.
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Old 08-08-2019, 04:39 PM
Location: East Tennessee and Atlanta
3,849 posts, read 8,857,411 times
Reputation: 2670
It's a beautiful state, geography-wise. Rolling hills, mountains, very green. Nice, 4 season state.

Big city in Pittsburgh and major metro in Philadelphia. Smaller cities, cute towns, tourist areas and tons of forested lands.

Fifth most populated state in the US--so it has almost 13 million people strong.

It's one of the most attractive states in the US for geography--easily top 20.
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