Indiana County, Pennsylvania, located in the foothills of the Allegheny Mountains, features a variety of yearly festivals, each unique in their own way.
The festival season kicks off with May Mart, held on May 21 and 22. Featuring a smorgasbord of horticultural activities, May Mart is one of the area’s biggest attractions, delighting garden enthusiasts for over 40 years. More than 100 vendors will be offering an assortment of plants, garden-related wares, and crafts. There will also be an entertainment stage, children’s corner, and scrumptious food including strawberry pie and mushroom sandwiches.
Sponsored by the Indiana Garden Club, funds raised from the event support community projects and provide scholarships to worthy local students. One of the highlights of May Mart is the club’s “orphans court,” where garden club members bring plants from their own gardens to be adopted by those attending the event.
“The orphans court is a table(s) where struggling plants in need of some extra TLC find themselves,” explains Denise Liggett, the executive director of the Indiana County Tourist Bureau. “They are sold for a minimal amount in hopes that the next owner will have better luck with them and bring them back to full beauty.”
The Delaney Chevrolet Westsylvania Jazz & Blues Festival, held on May 29, marks the beginning of summer in Indiana. The free concert features a lineup that includes nationally and internationally known musicians, regional acts and student musicians — all playing in a classic American small town. Taking place in downtown Indiana, this year’s festival will run from noon to 11 p.m. After the downtown portion of the event is complete, the fun continues in local bars and taprooms.
The annual Pick-A-Dilly Herb Faire takes place at the Dillweed B&B in Dilltown on June 12 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visitors will receive gardening and growing tips and learn how to care for and cultivate their own herb gardens. Fresh produce will be available for purchase with local vendors selling everything from all-natural gourmet herb vinegars, to spice and dipping oils to lavender sugar.
Nestled in a quiet rural village, the Dillweed B&B is a turn-of-the-century home built by the Dill family, early settlers of Dilltown. The B&B sits along a trailhead for the Ghost Town Trail, which was recognized as the number one trail in Pennsylvania by the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. After attending the fair, many families enjoy the beautiful surroundings along the Ghost Town Trail.
Visitors to the cornucopia of festivals that Indiana County has to offer should also consider visiting the tiny community of Smicksburg, home to a sizable Amish population. Tucked away in a secluded section of northern Indiana County, Smicksburg offers an abundance of beautiful country scenery, away from the hustle and bustle of city life.
Driving through the countryside, you will pass rolling farmland and Amish homesteads, Laundry billows in the breeze and horse and buggies traverse the country roads. A number of quaint shops line the route, selling hand-crafted Amish wares.
From festivals to the serene countryside, Indiana County has a lot to offer for visitors. Many come back again and again, each time returning home with a new experience and memory. The possibilities are endless.
Note: At each of the events in Indiana County, all CDC and Pennsylvania Department of Health COVID guidelines will be followed.