Pennsylvania Historic Preservation

Blog of the Pennsylvania State Historic Preservation Office

Shouting-Out about the Statewide Conference!


Time for April’s SHPO Shout-Out! I’m going to mix it up a bit this month and Shout Out about something that’s happening soon rather than something that’s already happened or is in the process of happening. It’s not that I don’t have a whole bunch of great things waiting in the wings – it’s just that the 2016 Pennsylvania Statewide Conference on Heritage is a REALLY big deal and I’d be derelict in my duties as Education and Outreach Coordinator if I didn’t make sure that all of our dedicated readers know all about it.2016 Conf postcard_Page_1

Here are the conference basics:

  • The conference is Monday, June 6 through Wednesday, June 8. Heads up!! This is a month earlier than it’s been for the last several years, so don’t think there is still lots of time to register. It’s only a short 6 weeks away! I’ve made it easy for you to register – just click here!
  • We’ll be gathering in historic Lewisburg, Union County, making this conference feel like a vacation at the same time. If you’ve never been, Lewisburg is one of Pennsylvania’s small town gems. Located on the Susquehanna River between Harrisburg and Williamsport, Lewisburg is the county seat and home to Bucknell University. It’s got lots of places listed in the National Register, including the Lewisburg Historic District, a great downtown, and beautiful neighborhoods. The conference sessions and events will be held in some of Lewisburg’s cool historic downtown venues like the Campus Theatre.
  • The Art Deco Campus Theatre is the conference hotspot this year.

      The Art Deco Campus Theatre is the conference hotspot this year
  • Because we’re not doing the conference hotel thing this year, accommodations are on your own. Visit the conference website for a list of places to stay to book a room in one of Lewisburg’s B&Bs, at a local hotel, or even return to your student days and stay in the Bucknell dorms.
  • The conference is being hosted by Preservation Pennsylvania, PHMC, the PA Department of Transportation, and the Pennsylvania Heritage Foundation.  It not only takes a village to raise a family, but also to host a conference!

    PHMC is sponsoring the tote bag this year, which is reason enough to come to the conference!

    PHMC is sponsoring the tote bag this year, which is reason enough to come to the conference!

  • Conference sponsorships are still available! Sponsoring an event or session is a great way to reach the conference’s large and diverse audience. There won’t be an exhibit hall this year, and interested sponsors should check out the conference website to include materials in the conference tote bags or on an information table.

In addition to traditional conference offerings, like an engaging plenary session, a fun reception, and lots of networking opportunities, there are also going to be some new things this year. Read on for information about the sessions and the schedule.

Original 1942 movie poster

Original 1942 movie poster

On Monday, Preservation Pennsylvania hosts their Annual Meeting luncheon at Elizabeth’s Bistro from 12:30 to 2:00 for some good food and fun while listening to Jim Vaughan, PHMC’s Executive Director, give the keynote talk, “So, a planner, a historian, an architect and a politician go to Europe…” After lunch, enjoy one of the special “explore Lewisburg” activities in the afternoon, stop in at the historic Campus Theatre to connect with a “Meet & Eat” dinner group to head out for a fine meal with some preservation-centric conversation starters.  End the day with the 1942 cinematic hit, “George Washington Slept Here,” at the theater.

On Tuesday, start the day off with the opening plenary session, “If the Past Teaches, What Does the Future Learn,” featuring Christopher Wilson from the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation and Jason Illari from the Cumberland County Historical Society. The rest of the day includes lots of options for interesting sessions and speakers on the topics of architectural history, lead paint, archaeology, historic windows, student presentations, highway planning, town & gown communities, community revitalization, and a Preservation50 listening session. I don’t have nearly enough space here to list all the speakers and sessions, so please visit the conference website for the latest and greatest information.

On Wednesday, you’ll have the choice between attending the PA SHPO training or the Symposium on Flooding & Pennsylvania’s Historic River Towns.  While we’re not doing the Cultural Resources Essentials (CRE) training this year, we are offering an in-depth, hands-on tutorial of our CRGIS system and an overview of our newly revised and released Archaeology Guidelines. In response to past conference feedback, we have expanded the CRGIS training time and content and, for the first time, you can bring your own laptop for some hands-on instruction or just watch the demos. Highlighted will be the new Statewide Pre-Contact Probability layer for planners and archaeologists, the spatial search, and advanced data searches. You’ll also get the chance to meet the PA SHPO’s newest SHPO-er, Elizabeth Shultz, and talk about our developing strategy for statewide historic resource survey. Stick around in the afternoon to learn more about the guidelines, how to use them, and get all of your burning questions answered.

The Symposium on Flooding & Pennsylvania’s Historic River Towns is intended for preservationists, emergency managers, engineers, architects, floodplain managers, planners, concerned citizens and property owners, and elected officials, and seeks to foster a common understanding of the critical issues surrounding hazard planning and its challenges, as well as facilitate the creation of new interdisciplinary alliances to address them. For more information on the Symposium’s sessions and expert speakers, please visit the Flood Symposium page on the conference website.

Register through the conference website to attend!

Register through the conference website to attend!

I promise I’ll be back next month with our regular Shout-Outs to let you know about all the great preservation happening in PA. As always, my last SHPO Shout-Out is to thank you for all the good work you do every day to preserve, protect, and promote our historic places!


If you or your friends and colleagues are involved in or hear about great preservation happening in Pennsylvania, please email me at with your suggestions! While I can’t promise that it will get covered in the monthly Shout-Out, I can promise that we’ll add it to our growing list of great preservation work happening across Pennsylvania. Quick reminder: eligible Shout-Outs must be related to SHPO program areas (the National Register, historic resource survey, historic tax credits, Keystone grants, community coordinators/preservation planning, CRGIS, historic markers, and environmental project review/mitigation) and can recognize small baby steps to large milestones, and everything in between, led by the public, an organization, municipality, community group, regional government, or state or Federal agency. Thanks!

Author: Shelby Weaver Splain

Shelby Weaver Splain is the Education and Special Initiatives Coordinator for the Pennsylvania State Historic Preservation Office. Shelby is a native of Bucks County and holds a Masters degree in Historic Preservation Planning from Cornell University and a Bachelor of Arts with Honors in Historic Preservation from Goucher College.

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