Petrarca says new Mister Rogers Trail will highlight area tourism
LATROBE, June 29 – With today's announcement of a new Mister Rogers Trail, state Rep. Joseph Petrarca said it will show the rest of the state and beyond what many in the area already know about its sneaker-wearing, cardigan-sweater-clad hometown legend.
"This tourism trail will allow visitors to see and experience the numerous iconic locations in Latrobe, Ligonier and Pittsburgh that are affiliated with Fred Rogers, the loveable and entertaining host of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, who appeared in many homes every afternoon for decades with his 'Neighborhood of Make-Believe' and a colorful cast of neighbors," Petrarca said.
“More than any other children’s show, Mister Rogers’ left a mark on generations of children, teaching civility, patience and respect for others. But Latrobe native Fred Rogers did more than that -- he taught kids that it was OK to express their feelings and frustrations and that they would still be safe and loved. It’s hard to imagine more important life lessons.”
The trail is a three-day road trip that starts in Latrobe and ends in Pittsburgh, where Rogers filmed his TV show, with many stops throughout, including:
- Fred Rogers Center at Saint Vincent College: featuring recorded interviews with Rogers, a look at his life "before the sweater" and other memorabilia.
- Fred Rogers Statue in James H. Rogers Park: an opportunity for visitors to take a selfie while sitting on the bench with a statue of Rogers.
- Latrobe High School: houses a large display of items from Rogers’ school years and Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood production memorabilia.
- Latrobe Area Historical Society highlights the history of Latrobe, its heritage firsts, and famous citizens, including Rogers and golf legend Arnold Palmer.
- Latrobe Presbyterian Church: attended by Rogers and his family.
- Unity Cemetery: Rogers’ place of burial.
- Latrobe Art Center: where Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood and Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood merchandise is available for sale.
- Idlewild & SoakZone: an opportunity for guests to take a trolley through Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood.
- Senator John Heinz History Center: home to the largest collection of original items from the Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood television set.
- Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh: showcasing a new addition, the Fred Rogers & Us exhibit.
- Duquesne Incline: an opportunity to ride a trolley, which was featured on Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.
- Tribute to Children monument: a 10-foot bronze statue of Rogers sitting down and tying his sneakers.
- WQED Studios: the location where Mister Rogers Neighborhood was filmed and produced.
- Pennsylvania Trolley Museum: where Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood filmed the iconic episode, “Grandparents.”
- Buttermilk Falls Natural Area: a 45-foot drop waterfall that was owned by Rogers’ grandfather from 1931 to 1956 and was used as a family retreat.
The Mister Rogers Trail was created by the Department of Community and Economic Development, VisitPittsburgh and the Laurel Highlands Visitors Bureau, along with input from Fred Rogers Productions and the McFeely-Rogers Foundation.
"This trail is a wonderful way to honor the show and keep Mister Rogers' achievements and memory alive," Petrarca said.
Petrarca also paid tribute to Rogers in March when the House unanimously adopted his resolution that commemorated Mister Rogers' Neighborhood's 50th anniversary.