The State College Woman’s Club is a philanthropic organization that since its founding in 1894 has donated more than $700,000 to charitable organizations. The objective of the Woman’s Literary Society, as it was originally known, was to discuss “the questions of the day, social, political, literary, and artistic.”
The American Philatelic Society is the world’s largest nonprofit organization dedicated to stamp collecting. Since 1945, the society’s headquarters has been in Centre County. It employs 34 full-time staff in the former Pennsylvania Match Factory in Bellefonte.
The Nittany Valley Symphony is a community orchestra that has been performing in Centre County since 1967. The symphony was organized by Ann Keller of State College to perform at the first Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts. She recruited local musicians, most of whom held other jobs.
St. John’s United Church of Christ is a historic church in Boalsburg that is home to the oldest pipe organ in Centre County. It organized as German Reformed congregation on May 31, 1822 and the current church was built forty years later.
The First Presbyterian Church of Bellefonte was one of the oldest churches in Centre County until it closed in 2021. Its members included many of the early founders of Bellefonte and Centre County, including James Dunlop, Robert Boggs, James Harris, Jonathan Walker, Andrew Curtin, Henry McAllister, and James Beaver.
The American Legion & Auxiliary Junior Drum and Bugle Corps was a popular activity for Centre County youth for about twenty-five years in the mid-20th century. The State College corps won several state championships and, in 1941, a national championship.
The Little German Band is a popular State College-based group that has been performing around Centre County since 1960. The band got its start when a group of HRB-Singer employees who were musicians played Christmas carols in the German “oompah” style.
The presence and impact of Native Americans in what is today Centre County is a matter of both history and popular imagination. Evidence indicates that the region between the West Branch of the Susquehanna and the Juniata Rivers was primarily an area of hunting and transit for Native Americans.
The Centre Daily Times is the daily newspaper in Centre County. During its more than 120-year history, it has published under different names and different owners. Like many daily newspapers in small communities what began as the State College Times began as a weekly newspaper on May 12, 1898.
Militias played a central role in antebellum Centre County, teaching men military discipline and arms skills to ensure their readiness for war. The volunteer companies also served as fraternal organizations that linked members to the communities.