Founded on Christmas Eve in 1741 by a small group of Moravian settlers and christened “Christmas City, USA” in 1937, Bethlehem shines a light on the past with year-round guided tours and museum exhibits. The 10.9-mile Heritage Trail snakes through 80 historic stops, including two National Historic Landmark and the National Historic Landmark Districts of Historic Moravian Bethlehem as well as Victorian-era homes. On historic walks, guides lead tour groups through the now-defunct site of Bethlehem Steel, the city’s oldest cemetery, and the 1762 Waterworks, known as the first municipally pumped water system in the country.
The Kemerer Museum Of Decorative Arts is one of only 15 of its kind in the country. And located inside the 1741 Gemeinhaus, the Moravian Museum of Bethlehem curates a collection of exhibits about the town’s settlers, including their missionary work, education system, and medical technique—a wealth of information that's earned the museum the title of Best Historic Spot on the Lehigh Valley’s Happening List.
The Lehigh gridiron sizzles with the meaty tackles and scorching sprints of the Yale Bulldogs, who have nabbed the Patriot League crown eight times in the past 20 years. Senior quarterback Chris Lum earned first-team All-Patriot League honors in 2010 after completing 58% of his passes for 2,881 yards, then landed the Sports Network's Offensive Player of the Week title for scoring four touchdowns and stealing the referee's hat at Lehigh's season opener against Monmouth. Having transitioned from linebacker to defensive lineman, senior Ben Flizack hopes to top last year's 36 tackles and 2.5 sacks. Today’s Groupon teams with the United Way of Greater Lehigh Valley to celebrate Educator Appreciation Day with school spirit and a giant, freshly polished apple orbiting above the stadium. Deal-getters can don their new Live United T-shirts and cheer on the Mountain Hawks from the home team's slice of the stadium, located in visitor sections EA–EB.
Since 1979, the staff of Lehigh Valley Racquet and Fitness Clubs has made it their mission to obliterate any barriers keeping their members from working out. Each club is open 24 hours a day year-round, with free childcare available during specific times of day. That commitment to availability helps even the busiest people find time to hop on Hammer Strength and Cybex strength-training circuits, StairMasters, and other equipment. Group fitness classes get students sweating as they execute punches in Turbo Kick cardio-kickboxing sessions or dance to Zumba's Latin-inspired workouts. Full-body boot-camp workouts are also available, mixing in calisthenics, strength training, and agility drills to continuously challenge bodies. All of the clubs’ personal trainers hold bachelor's degrees in health-related fields or have national certifications from accredited organizations.
After their workouts, members can unwind in the whirlpool, sauna, or steam rooms, then drop off their free rental towels for cleaning. For sports lovers, the Allentown location also boasts basketball, volleyball, squash, and badminton courts, as well as 11 outdoor and 8 indoor tennis courts.
Competitors in the Professional Indoor Football League's United Conference since 2011, the Steelhawks prey on the opposition across the 50-yard pitch inside Stabler Arena. With a roster of gridiron stars, many of which were standouts at colleges across the country, the Steelhawks bring a fast-paced style of play to a football-crazed fanbase. The Steelhawks' mascot, Talon, regales fans in the stands during games with signature cheers and seminars on how to build structurally sound nests.
Touchstone Theatre's Young Playwrights’ Festival presents a 90-minute evening of student works penned by third- to eighth-grade playwrights in Touchstone's lab residences. During educational residencies held at various schools, Touchstone's passionate ensemble instructs miniature Shakespeares in the art of playwriting and feather-quill throwing. Seven student plays are invigorated by the creative enthusiasm of community directors, skillfully produced by Touchstone Theatre, brought to life by vital performers, and finally storyboarded in stone by talented masons. After the final curtain, theatergoers can indulge their clapping and cheering impulses throughout a closing awards ceremony.