Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Joe Paterno, the Ratskeller and a stage play

Yesterday's blog inspired an angry comment from "Townie" in State College, who suggested perhaps I am too old to enjoy what Happy Valley has to offer. Well, I AM a certain age and mourn the destruction of wilderness areas in several states I've lived, worked, or visited. Today I'll try to do better.

It's been years since I've experienced a stage play so was thrilled when my State College cousins asked me to accompany them to The Boyfriend. I'm no critic, but the whole production was professionally done and lots of fun. The Penn State School of Theatre and University Resident Theatre Company can take bows all around. The choreography was top notch, the music entertaining. I'm not artistic by any stretch of the imagination, but even I was impressed with the scenery. Cousin Pam Ford is a gifted artist and has worked on numerous stage productions, so she gave me a birds' eye view of why background scenes are important to a production. So, The Boyfriend was educational as well as entertaining. Well done, Penn State. I'm grateful for the opportunity to see your theatrical troupe in action. Thanks to Pam and Doug Ford for taking me along on their evening at the theatre.

Since my last visit to State College, a bronze statue of Joe Paterno has been added to the front of the stadium. I've been an admirer of Paterno for decades, as both coach and human being. When Doug and Pam suggested I have my picture taken with Joe Paterno's statue, I was excited. The statue is beautiful, a fitting tribute to a man who influenced college football forever with his philosophy. Whoever created that bronze is an artist.

No visit to State College would be complete without lunch at the Ratskeller. The ambiance is rather like an old English or Irish pub, nothing fancy, a little worn from years of use, but comfortable. The menu offerings are interesting, prepared by a chef, and well-presented. I had the club salad, which was excellent. And the luncheon conversation was intriguing thanks to cousin Doug Ford, Assistant to the Dean of the College of Health and Human Development, and his boss Fred, the Dean. Pam, Doug, and Fred regaled me with Penn State stories past and present while we ate our delicious meal. Anyone visiting State College or the Penn State campus there should definitely plan a meal at The Ratskeller.

OK, that's it for this segment of my trip. Stay tuned.

1 comment:

Mitts said...

HEY!!Maybe u should post the piccy of u and the Joe Pa statue..get some tongues wagging in Happy Valley?I'm kidding of course..and speaking of football..[huh?]..we will leave an open invite for all "back East" to come and enjoy the hospitality of the HUSKER NATION...Mitts

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I enjoy good writing by writers and poets who are not famous. My mother said I was born a hundred years too late. The older I get, the more I realize how right she was.

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