Destination PA: Joe Biden Tour

Destination PA

(Photo by ROBERTO SCHMIDT/AFP via Getty Images)

The first family has roots across Pennsylvania from Philadelphia to Scranton.

“Presidential historians and history buffs that go to presidential libraries, to home towns of presidents. All of these types of things. So we’re going to see some tourism based on being the hometown of President Joe Biden,” Curt Camoni, director of Lakawanna County Convention & Visitors Bureau.

In Scranton, the self-guided tour starts at the former Biden family home. It’s just one of five stop along “The Biden Trail” presidential road trip.

Hosted by the Pennsylvania Tourism Office, the three-day, 14 stop journey kicks off where it all started for President Joe Biden in the 1940s at his grandparents’ home, which is now privately owned by the Kearns family. A place he still visits, remembering where he came from, writing on election day 2020, “From the house to the White House. With the Grace of God.”

According to Camoni, self-guided tours have become very popular since the pandemic.

“It was great to be able to greet him throughout the summer, but also on Election Day when he came to Scranton and since then we’ve put up ‘Joe Biden Way’ across the street from his childhood home. We know that’s become a stop for people that are from Scranton. People that live here now and then people traveling through,” Mayor Paige Cognetti (D – Scranton) said.

From the house, the trail then takes you to where eight-year-old Biden played Little League. In 1951, Biden’s father helped establish Green Ridge Little League where Biden played with one of his friends, Jim Kennedy, whose name graces the dugout. In the past, the president even stopped by for a photo session.

Then, if you’re hungry, grab a bite to eat at his favorite hoagie shop. President Biden frequently stops at Hank’s Hoagies when he visits the Electric City. Pictures on display inside the restaurant capture it all.

“It was one of the bigger places that were all over the news that he would come in and get food here and like I said, there are multiple pictures behind me here of different incidences that he has come here,” Morgan Theobald, Hawley, said.

While you’re in the same neighborhood, you can also visit St. Paul’s Church where the Biden’s were active members of the parish. Across the street is the church’s school where the president attended.

At the end of the trail, your taste buds may be craving ice cream. Manning’s Dairy Farm’s two locations are the last stop in Scranton. In case you are wondering, President Biden has a fondness for chocolate chip ice cream.

“Scranton is on the map for a variety of reasons, but now we are very proud that we are the hometown of the president of the United States,” Cognetti said.

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