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Carbon County

Carbon County - Spring/Summer 2012

Anchored by the town of Jim Thorpe, Carbon County of the Pocono Mountains offers the odd juxtaposition of two distinct elements of Americana -- love of leisure time and the outdoors and our industrial heritage.

Situated in a region filled with clear lakes, wide-open countryside and rugged mountains, Carbon County offers year-round, outdoor activity. With three ski resorts to choose from -- Blue Mountain in Palmerton and Big Boulder in Lake Harmony and Jack Frost in Blakeslee -- winter visitors can find abundant skiing, snowboarding, snowtubing and snowmobiling, plus organized activities for children.

Carbon County is home to three state parks and two recreation areas -- Mauch Chunk Lake Park in Jim Thorpe, Francis E. Walter Dam and Recreation Area between White Haven and Bear Creek, Beltzville State Park in Beltzville, Lehigh Gorge State Park which spans both Carbon and Luzerne Counties and Hickory Run State Park -- which provide prime fall foliage viewing. During spring and summer, visitors enjoy whitewater rafting, hiking, picnicking, sailing, swimming, fishing and mountain biking.

Carbon County's county seat is Jim Thorpe (formerly Mauch Chunk) a town rich with history. This unusual Victorian town was named for the controversial Native American athlete who was forced to relinquish his Olympic gold medals when it was discovered that he had played one season of professional baseball. The town of Jim Thorpe was home to the first railroad in the United States and the men who made their millions from the railroads. One of Jim Thorpe's premier attractions is the Asa Packer Mansion, home of the most famous and most wealthy of the railroad tycoons, and the founder of the Lehigh Valley Railroad and the Lehigh University. This Victorian mansion, built in 1860, still holds its original furnishings.

Visitors may want to plan their time in the Pocono Mountains around one of Carbon County's annual festivals. October's Fall Foliage Festival offers arts and crafts, food and entertainment right in the center of Jim Thorpe. The Olde Time Christmas Celebration provides festive, old-fashioned fun for all ages.

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