When you think of fall fun, you probably think of pumpkin patches, hay rides, corn mazes or maybe even a haunted house, right?
Well, Penn's Cave has something different up their sleeve, and you could call it a bright idea, but that would probably be a misnomer.
"It is a little intimidating when you first get in, and you realize the lights are not going to be on, and you're going 'Oh, this is different'," said Christina Tongyai-Glotfelty, the Education Supervisor for Penn's Cave.
And that's sort of what Penn's cave is striving for with their Friday night Fall Flashlight Tour.
"It is a little eerie when you come into the cave and it's completely dark and you're just like 'Wow, this is all I have light wise,' and at some points we turn the lights off completely, especially in the dark zone so you get a sense of total darkness and what it feels like," said Tongyai-Glotfelty.
So...how dark is dark?
"You can't really see anything in front of us either. This is total darkness," said Tongyai-Glotfelty.
And that can be a little creepy.
"It is quite a different experience to experience the cave as people would have seen it back in the 1800s, so overall, it's a fun experience really," said Tongyai-Glotfelty.
Because when Reverend James Martin discovered the cave in 1795, when he was going for a walk in a peach orchard, all he had was a torch. And when tours started in 1885, that's about what they had too.
But this tour is different, because you get to hear legends and history behind the cave that you don't get to hear during their regular tours. And you get a boat tour of
Of course, you still get to see all of your favorite formations.
"If you point your lights towards the ceiling here, you'll see that our ceiling looks like an upside down snow covered forest. This large rock is called the Rock of Gibralter," said Tongyai-Glotfelty.
And you don't need a flashlight to see the amount of creativity that goes into naming them.
"The Penn State Nittany Lion. Prairie dog or snow owl. We have a small child chasing a brown cow across a suspension bridge. Well, it could also be a rock chasing a rock over a rock. We have the Chinese Buddha, or the Egyptian Sphinx or Jaba the Hutt from Star Wars, Marshmallow man from Ghostbusters, the Michelin man, ice cream cone, melting pine cone, pine tree, Santa Claus holding a baby, Aunt Jemima cookie jar, Mrs. Buttersworth, Pillsbury doughboy and my second grade teacher," said Tongyai-Glotfelty.
And here are some other interesting cave facts for you. An underground spring pumps all the water into Penn's cave. It shakes out to about 11 million gallons of water a day, or 127 gallons a second!
Also, they do have several animals that live inside the cave, most notably 1,200 bats in the winter time.
If you're interested in the flashlight tour, they only run on Fridays at six o'clock through the month of October. You don't have to reserve your spot ahead of time, but they do recommend it. You can visit them online at http://www.pennscave.com.