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The Quaker State, the Keystone State, the Coal State—Pennsylvania is called all of these. But we like to call it the Weird State, because there's enough strange stuff going on here to fill an encyclopedia, or better yet, a book appropriately called Weird Pennsylvania.

And who better to chronicle this state's roadside oddities, ancient mysteries, ghosts, and bizarre beasts than Matt Lake, who, just like Benjamin Franklin, isn't from our state at all but sure has it in his bones. From the time he first arrived here last century, Matt has traveled thousands of miles, searching out Pennsylvania's best-kept secrets and oddest legends.

Scuttling about by every means available—except maybe the horse-drawn vehicles favored by some of our more famous citizens—and with notebook and camera in hand, Matt has gamely entered haunted houses, trekked lesser-traveled roads, discreetly photographed shoe-shaped houses, and made his way warily through abandoned mental institutions. Sheer force of will stopped him from buying a heart-shaped bathtub at the Mount Airy Lodge auction, but he did explore the wreck of the place so that we, admirers of the weird, could see the sad demise of another bit of Pennsylvania strangeness.

So turn the page and see the Statue of Liberty in the Dauphin Narrows, the dead and buried Corvette near Irwin, the tiny town of Midgetville, the Ape Boy of Chester, and Resurrection Mary in Schnecksville. Traipse through the ghostly Eastern State Penitentiary, listen to the Screaming Lady in Fort Mifflin, and sympathize with Mrs. Snell, who was rained on by mud, lots of mud. Swim with the Monster of Lake Erie, bravely wander down Devil's Road, chat with the Green Man of Pittsburgh, and, if you dare, sit beneath Skull Tree. It's all here, it's all for you, it's all...very weird.

 Weird Pennsylvania is packed with all the info about the Quaker State that your history teacher never taught you. So travel down our state's highways and byways with Matt by your side. It's a great adventure. And we promise: It's a journey you'll never forget.

Matt Lake and Amos the giant Amish statue live in Pennsylvania. Both are tall, dark-haired men known for their unusual facial hair, strange style of dress, and habit of telling groaner jokes in an outrageous accent. Here is where the similarities end. Matt Lake did not stand outside Zinn's Diner for decades attracting customers. For his part, Amos has never taught science in grade school and does not live outside Philadelphia with his extraordinary wife, Caroline, and their son and daughter.
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