Weird Places to See in Pennsylvania

by David Harris , Demand Media

    Most tourists who visit Pennsylvania will flock to Philadelphia to see Independence Hall and eat a cheese steak. However, if you are adventurous, there are plenty of weird places to see throughout the state. Ranging from the kitschy to the grotesque, Pennsylvania's strange attractions will make your trip unforgettable.

    Philadelphia

    The Mütter Museum at the College of Physicians of Philadelphia is one of the city's strangest attractions. Featuring medical oddities such as a giant colon and the attached livers of Siamese twins Chang and Eng, the museum also displays a tumor removed from Grover Cleveland and the thorax of John Wilkes Booth. For creepy, crawling things, visit the Insectarium, housed in an old firehouse. View pet cockroaches and numerous strange insects, alive and dead. The museum is owned by an exterminating business.

    Pittsburgh

    For strange sculptures, visit Pittsburgh, where an 8-foot-tall statue of a Tyrannosaurus rex dressed as Mr. Rogers resides outside the television studio where Rogers taped the show. In the parking lot of the Children's Museum of Pittsburgh are three 15-foot-long, 400-lb. bass sculptures that whirl on poles 14 feet in the air. Check out the "ReCARstruction" while you're there. It's a ball 8 feet in diameter made up of parts of a 1983 Jeep Grand Wagoneer.

    Giant Things

    People driving up U.S. Route 309 near Wilkes-Barre can see a giant cow. Built in the '60s to advertise a dairy located at the spot, the cow is now used as a local landmark. Further south in Chambersburg, you can view a giant replica of a 1921 Selden apple truck. Over 10 feet high and weighing almost 1.5 tons, the truck was built by students at the Franklin County Career and Technology Center as a monument to the roadside fruit stands on U.S. Route 30. If you're near Everett, stop by the Bedford County Technical Center to see a giant quarter. With a diameter of 20 feet and weighing nearly a ton, the quarter was constructed to commemorate George Washington's connection to the county.

    Hauntings

    There is a story that children riding in a bus were killed in a collision with a truck on Gravity Hill in Lewisberry. If you put your car in neutral on the road, the car will roll uphill. Rumor has it that the ghosts of the dead children are pushing the car. Although the rumor is not true, the sensation of the car going uphill on its own is real. This is due to an optical illusion created by the arrangement of the landscape. While the road appears to be going uphill, it is actually going downhill. For more haunted lore, visit the Heisey Museum in Lock Haven. Built in the 1800s on the site of a Revolutionary War fort, it has previously been used as a hotel, a tavern, a doctor's office and a private home. The museum is filled with historic items, such as documents signed by Presidents, an Edison Victrola and Civil War weapons. Employees claim the museum is haunted by three or more ghosts. Some paranormal investigators claim that it is the most haunted site in Pennsylvania after Gettysburg.

    About the Author

    David Harris is a writer living in Portland, Ore. He currently is the editor-in-chief of the online magazine Spectrum Culture. He holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from Sarah Lawrence College.