11 Neat PA Museums To Visit This Summer

Do you ever get bored of the typical summer to-do list with your pals? Sure you could go the mall again or get some frozen yogurt for the third time this week, but why not spice it up? Take a little roadtrip and visit some museums instead! Museums are the perfect thing for bored and broke college kids in the summer; you can kill a whole day in one if you took your time to admire the artifacts and they're usually pretty cheap! Here's a list of some museums located in western, central, and eastern PA that are defnintely worth the gas money to visit:

  1. 1. Pinball Perfection

    Located in Pittsburgh, this museum stores nearly 300 working and playable pinball machines from the 19030s to the present. Admissions prices are $10.00/hour for unlimited games Monday-Friday, with BYOB on Friday nights. Saturdays the admission prices raises to $12.00.

  2. 2. Mattress Factory

    Located in Pittsburgh, this contemporary art museum is filled with funky visual art exhibits and the occasional interactive piece. None of the artworks here are imported, all of them are created by the artst onsite in the museum! 

    The museum is open Tusday-Sunday and charges $15.00 admission with student ID or $20 regular.

  3. 3. The Living Dead Museum

    Located near Pittsburgh in Evans City, this museum focuses on film history and the paranormal, featuring zombies, props, and tidbits about the Night of the Living Dead and Dawn of the Dead movies. Though the museum itself is small, it holds a lot of charm for fans of the movies and horror fans in general. Additionally, the surrounding town is home to many scenes from Night of the Living Dead, so once your visit is done at the museum, you can spend some more time walking around and visiting the movie set!

    It only costs $5.00 to enter, but the museum is on open Friday-Sunday.

  4. 4. The Willim E. Swigart Jr. Museum 

    Located in Huntingdon in central PA, this museum houses a collection of antique cars and automobiles as old as carriages from 1896. Though the museum curators have hundreds of cars, there is only enough room for only about 30 at a time. This just means you could go back again and again and still see something new!

     Admission is $8.00 per person and the museum is open daily during the the fall, spring, and summer months.

  5. 5. The State Museum of Pennsylvania

    Loacted in Harrisburg, this museum focuses on Pennsylvanian history and natural sciences. It's what you think of when you hear the word 'museum', but the artifacts pertaining to our own state's history and science makes it all exciting.

    Admission is only $7.00 and the museum is open Wednesday-Sunday.

  6. 6. Valley Forge National Park

    This one is a little different, since it is a park and not a physical museum, but this preserved land still holds cabins and homes built during the Revolutionary War. The park is free to visitors, and you can walk around to visit the chapel, cabins, homes, and other monuments. By checking the calendar on the website, you may be able to come watch a reinactment as well.

    The park is open all year round from 7am-sunset everyday.

  7. 7. Central Pennsylvania African American Museum

    Housed in an old African American Episcopal church in Reading, you can view the history of enslaved African Americans in the area as well as the importance of the church in the underground railroad. 

    Admission is $6.00 with student ID or $8.00 regular. The museum is only open to the public on Wednesdays and Fridays, but scheduled tours can be made any day of the week.

  8. 8. Philadelphia's Magic Gardens

    This art museum in Philly offers a surreal experiences as you walk through a beautiful mosaic maze in the middle of South Street. It was built by Isaiah Zagar, who was dedicated to beautifying the city since the 1960s. There are also two indoor art galleries that visitors can spend time in aside from the garden. 

    Admission is $8.00 with student ID or $10.00 regular. It is open Wednesday-Monday.

  9. 9. Eastern State Penitentiary

    You might have heard of this site for it's somber history or more recently for it's Halloween attractions. Located in Philly, this museum focuses on imprisonment history and advocates for making modern day prisons more humane. While visiting, you can take an audio tour, which gives you more history to listen to, and you can visit Al Capone's lavish quarters. 

    It is recommended to purchase tickets online ahead of time for $14.00, but you can buy at the door if there are still teckets available for $16.00. The musem is open daily all year round.

  10. 10. Mütter Museum

    Also locatedd in Philly is the museum of human oddities. See plasters of conjoined twins, weird objects that people have swallowed, oddly shaped organs, and more. This museum is not for the squeamish, but it's certainly interesting regarding medical knowledge and advancements. The museum also has a scenic medicinal garden attatched which doubles as a beer garden after hours in the summers.

    Admission is $13.00 with student ID and $15.00 regular. The museum is open daily.

  11. 11. Mercer Museum & Fonthill Castle

    The Mercer Museum and Library located in Doylestown houses all kinds of outdated, but still to be appreciated, technological advancements from the past. Ranging from printing presses to bathtubs, this museum gives appreciation to pre-industrial revolution inventions that we may now take for granted. On the same campus is the library, which houses journals and blueprints about the inventions, and the Fonthill Castle which is a standing representation of great architecture. There is a lot to look at that is worth of the price!

    Admission for the museum and library is $15.00 and admission to the museum, library, and castle is $26.00. Each building is open daily.

There are many more museums worth a visit in PA alone, and these ones are just a starting point. Make a roadtrip out of it and visit all 11 and more! It's sure to be an exciting and new experience to combat those slow summer days.