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Johnstown, PA

Johnstown is in Cambria County, Pennsylvania, about 60 miles east of Pittsburgh. The city covers slightly more than 6 square miles and has a population of nearly 22,000. Johnstown is perhaps best-known for its three devastating floods, including "The Great Flood" of 1889 which resulted in the deaths of about 2,200 people after the collapse of the South Fork Dam 14 miles upstream.

During the summer months, Johnstown residents experience median temperatures in the 70s, with the highest temperatures in July (averaging around 85 degrees Fahrenheit). Winter temps tend to be in the 30s but can dip to an average of 20 degrees during January, the city's coldest month. Johnstown's average annual precipitation is nearly 48 inches, and the rainiest month is typically July, which averages 5 inches.

ECONOMY AND INDUSTRIES

In recent years, Johnstown has seen an influx of new businesses due to a proactive local government and aggressive programs to help make Johnstown more appealing. With incentive programs, tax breaks, and a committee created solely to provide the best workforce possible, the city has attracted businesses such as technology firms, bioscience companies, and defense contractors make the decision to Johnstown. Some of the major employers in and around Johnstown include the American Red Cross, DRS Technologies, and Conemaugh Health Systems.

EDUCATION

Despite the city's small size, Johnstown residents have access to colleges and training centers inside the city limits and within close proximity of Johnstown:

  • University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown is the first and largest regional campus of the University of Pittsburgh. It boasts a 19:1 student-to-faculty ration and offers 44 undergraduate majors.
  • Cambria County Area Community College offers classes in liberal arts and career programs, including distance learning and advanced technology areas.
  • Greater Johnstown Career and Technology Center offers a curriculum of vocational and technology classes.
  • Cambria Rowe Business College builds its interactive program on intensive computer training in all fields of study. Classes are only scheduled four days a week.
  • Conemaugh Valley Memorial Hospital is a private, not-for-profit school offering training in nursing, radiology and other health professions.
  • Pennsylvania Academy of Cosmetology Arts and Sciences
  • Lee Hospital School of X-Ray Technology is a private two-year institution with specialized accreditation in radiologic technology.
  • Christ the Saviour Seminary trains priests for the American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese and other Orthodox dioceses in the United States. It is approved to grant the Bachelor of Theology degree.

SHOPPING

There are two main shopping centers in the city of Johnstown, in addition to several small shopping opportunities spread throughout the city limits.

  • The Galleria is a large shopping complex that spans two floors and offers everything from specialty boutiques to national retail chains.
  • Richland Town Center is a mall that offers nationally recognized discount stores and a movie theater. Not to be confused with the Richland Mall, which was torn down in 2003, this mall has around 500,000 square feet of retail space and is located on the Pennsylvania turnpike.

NEIGHBORHOODS AND DISTRICTS

While the city of Johnstown is small in size, there are a few different neighborhoods within the city limits. With the exception of the Downtown Business District, which is largely commercial, the neighborhoods are nearly fully residential areas with small shops, grocers, and restaurants dotting the landscape.

Some of Johnstown's distinct areas include:

  • Downtown Johnstown: The central business district is home to many of the city's signature places, such as the Point Stadium, the Cambria County War Memorial Arena, Coney Island Hot Dog Shop, Central Park, Morley's Dog, City Hall, the Johnstown Municipal Building, the Johnstown Flood Museum, and the Greater Johnstown Tech Park.
  • The 8th Ward: Home to Memorial Medical Center, the 8th Ward has grown rapidly along with the medical center.
  • Woodvale: This largely industrial area in northeast Johnstown is home to the old Bethlehem Steel Mill Buildings. Several newer companies, including two scrap metal collection facilities, now inhabit the large mill buildings.
  • Moxham: This neighborhood is just south of Downtown Johnstown and accommodates many older Victorian style homes and local businesses.
  • Roxbury: A small neighborhood in south Johnstown, this neighborhood is known for Roxbury Park, the city's hub for summer recreation.
  • The Cambria City Historic District: This area features more than 250 historic buildings, most of which were constructed between 1890 and 1920. Nearly 90 percent of the buildings were built before 1941. Cambria City hosts an annual ethnic festival and used to be the site of the annual Johnstown FolkFest.

ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT

  • Pasquerilla Performing Arts Center is located on the grounds of the University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown campus. This center is home to the Johnstown Symphony Orchestra and often hosts the Johnstown Concert Ballet.
  • Bottleworks Ethnic Arts Center has a gallery, a black-box theater, and several activities, such as cooking classes, all designed to promote Johnstown's ethnic diversity. The center is currently working on a new addition, ARTWORKS, a division that will feature artist studios, an art supply store, and a roof-top cafe.
  • Community Arts Center of Cambria County is home to ever-changing displays and educational classes.
  • The Mountain Playhouse, the Allegheny Highlands Regional Theatre, and Arcadia Theatre are all performance centers that put on productions throughout the year and offer a variety of classes and workshops.
  • The Band of Brothers Shakespeare Company provides outdoor performances that showcase William Shakespeare and his work every summer at various parks.

FOR VISITORS

  • Pasquerilla Heritage Discovery Center is home to interactive exhibits that provide a first-hand look at what immigrants to Johnstown went through when the area was first settled.
  • Johnstown Flood Museum/Johnstown Flood National Memorial educates visitors regarding the terrible 1889 flood that devastated the area. At least 2,209 people died in the flood waters and the fires that swept through resulting debris.

EVENTS

  • Thunder in the Valley is a motorcycle rally that is held in downtown Johnstown. The event draws more than 150,000 enthusiasts and features live music, contests, food, a bike show, and a vintage bike museum. This motorcycle rally is typically held in June.
  • Annual Arts Festival is held over Labor Day weekend and is sponsored by the Community Arts Center of Cambria County.
  • Johnstown Folkfest/Cambria City Ethnic Fest are two festivals that are both held over Labor Day weekend. These festivals provide a look at Johnstown's ethnic diversity with art, parades, crafts, and cuisine.

SPORTS TEAMS

The Johnstown Chiefs is an ECHL Premier AA hockey team. The Chiefs play home games at the Cambria County War Memorial Arena.