Staycation All You Ever Wanted… Right in Butler County!
With summer near many are planning their vacations. Some may go to the beach, take a cross country trip or go abroad…but maybe that’s just not in your budget!
Or maybe you don’t have enough time to take off for a whole week. That's OK; you can plan a staycation right here in Butler County! Many who have lived here their whole lives are unaware of the hidden treasures right outside their door.
Now of course what’s the most popular summer vacation? The beach! The closest beach access we have is a few hours north in Erie, with the larger beaches being over six hours away on the the east coast. Butler County’s top attraction, Moraine State Park, offers two beaches for swimming; Pleasant Valley Beach and Lakeview Beach — giving you that “sandy toes, sun-kissed nose” kind of feeling. The Pleasant Valley Beach is located on the South Shore and is a 1,200-foot turf and sand beach with a sand volleyball court on the west side of the beach. Lakeview Beach is on the north shore and is a 550-foot sand beach.
Moraine offers more staycation ideas like boating, windsurfing, fishing, disc golf and even camping in a cabin! You can bring your own boat (up to 20 hp permitted) and use one of the ten public launches within the park or rent one from Crescent Bay Boat Rentals! Choose from pontoon boats, motorboats, kayaks, canoes and rowboats at budget friendly options! Lounge on the boat, grill, or fish all while exploring Lake Arthur, the largest man-made lake in the state.
Another unique way to see Moraine is by boat tours on Preston's Pearl, an enclosed pontoon boat operated by the Moraine Preservation Fund. Most visitors see Bald Eagles as they tour Lake Arthur from the Nautical Nature while learning about the area’s natural history. Brunch and dinner cruises are another fun option to consider when booking your tour.
SurfSUP Adventures is a staple for the adventurer. Located in Sarver, they offer standup paddleboarding lessons, guiding, eco-tours, board rentals and sales. Paddleboarding may seem intimidating if you’ve never done it before, however you’ll find friendly and personal instructions so you can relax and go at your own pace while you explore the lake.
Camping is another popular vacation idea. There are endless affordable campground options throughout the county. Bear Run Campground has been family-owned since 1975 and offers camping, cabin and RVing for lodging. They have a wide selection of activities for the whole family like an arcade, camp store, concessions, modern restrooms, showers, fishing, ball fields, rec center and horseback riding. For a list of more campgrounds in Butler County, check out Butler County Tourism Camping.
For history buffs, there is an abundance of historical information to be absorbed. Head to the Harmony Museum founded in 1943 with over 250 years of history just waiting to be discovered. The museum has presentations that include George Washington's 1753 mission, Harmonists, Mennonites and the Ball Collection of sporting rifles by 19th-century Harmony gunsmith Charles Flower. To find out what else you can learn about the history in Butler County, visit Butler County Tourism History and Heritage.
Hiking is a summer staple and with the numerous trails available in the county comes opportunities for not only hiking, but birding, biking, geocaching, photography and wildflower walks! Found in Moraine State Park, the North Country National Scenic Trail stretches from New York to North Dakota over a route of 4,625 miles making it the longest of the country’s eight scenic trails! The section of the trail in Butler County is 15 miles along Lake Arthur to Jennings Environmental Education Center, all maintained by the Butler Chapter. For a list of more trails, see Butler County Tourism Trails.
If you love to swim, but don’t want to swim at the lake there are many outdoor swimming pools to choose from. If you are looking for an outdoor pool and some family fun, go to Alameda Park. Their pool offers tube slides, diving boards, a new Aqua rock wall and a separate pool area for toddlers. The whole family is sure to enjoy this water on a hot day!
All this right here in Butler County...hard to believe! So don’t be upset if you weren’t able to go on a vacation this year because there's fun for the whole family just minutes away. Whether it’s paddleboarding at Moraine or going on a pony ride for the kids at Bear Run Campground, there's so much to do for your own personal staycation!