Where to Enjoy Christmas Light Displays in State College

The State College Christmas tree and the intersection of College Avenue and South Allen Street.

If you find yourself in Happy Valley during the Christmas season, here are few of my favorite places to enjoy Christmas light displays in State College.

Nittany Lion snow globe in MLK Plaza State College PA
Nittany Lion snow globe in MLK Plaza, downtown State College.

Fraser Shops

The plaza next to Fraser Shops on Fraser Street in downtown State College is a great spot to enjoy a Christmas light display synchronized to holiday music.

Christmas lights at Fraser Shops in downtown State College.
Christmas lights at Fraser Shops in downtown State College.

The music changes every few minutes, so it’s never the same light show twice.

Christmas lights at MLK Plaza on Fraser Street in State College PA.
Christmas lights at Fraser Shops in State College, PA.

This is also a convenient spot to check out as it is literally right next to the Fraser Street parking garage.

The Christmas light display at Fraser Shops in State College is synchronized to holiday music.
The Christmas light display at Fraser Shops in State College is synchronized to holiday music.

College and Allen

The Christmas tree at the intersection of College Avenue and South Allen Street is another must-see when visiting downtown State College.

State College Christmas tree at the corner of College Avenue and South Allen Street.
State College Christmas tree at the corner of College Avenue and South Allen Street.

Standing on campus, facing the Corner Room, is probably my favorite angle to view this scene from.

Christmas Tree in front of the Corner Room in downtown State College.
Christmas tree in front of the Corner Room in downtown State College.

The Tavern Restaurant

The alley next to the Tavern Restaurant is also a beautiful spot to check out when visiting downtown State College at Christmas.

Christmas lights in the alley next to the Tavern Restaurant.
Christmas lights in the alley next to the Tavern Restaurant.

The Arboretum at Penn State

On campus, the Arboretum is always a beacon of good cheer this time of year.

Christmas tree in the fountain at the Penn State Arboretum.
Christmas tree in the fountain at the Penn State Arboretum.

There are light displays scattered throughout the Arboretum, so plan on spending a half hour or so walking the loop around the grounds.

Christmas lights at the Penn State Arboretum.
Christmas lights at the Penn State Arboretum.

The Children’s Garden is probably my favorite area for light displays.

Christmas lights at Childhood's Gate at the Penn State Arboretum.
Christmas lights at Childhood’s Gate at the Penn State Arboretum.

The greenhouse in particular is always a beautiful scene.

Christmas lights in the greenhouse at he Penn State Arboretum.
Christmas lights in the greenhouse at the Penn State Arboretum.

The Nittany Lion

Although there are no special light displays at the Lion Shrine for Christmas, you can’t really say you’ve been to Happy Valley unless you stop for a quick photo with the Nittany Lion!

The Penn State Lion Shrine on Christmas morning.
The Lion Shrine on Christmas morning.

As a local, one of my favorite days of the year to walk around campus is Christmas morning!

The Penn State Lion Shrine on Christmas morning.
Christmas morning at the Lion Shrine.

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Rusty Glessner is a professional photographer, lifelong Pennsylvanian, and creator of the PA Bucket List travel blog.