Thunder Food

Sally Harris of Blairsville (left) and her best friend “Raven“ a Yorkie,  and Veronica Mincucci of Irwin, enjoy lunch and the sounds of Full Kilt in Central Park during first day of Thunder in the Valley on Thursday, June 20, 2019.

Thunder in the Valley would have gone dark Friday – if it weren’t for some timely 11th-hour coordination.

Penelec, the region’s electricity supplier, originally scheduled an up to five-hour outage for switch repairs near Frankstown Road for Friday morning – a move that would have darkened more than 30 streets in Johnstown, including parts of the downtown. 

Penelec crews who plan the outages work outside the region, but were able to cancel the move over the past week once they realized the festival was planned, spokesman Todd Meyers said.

The work, aimed at improving overall electrical service reliability, isn’t canceled altogether. It’s been rescheduled for 8:30 a.m. Monday, Meyers said.

Pre-ordering your drinks

Want a cold beer or mixed drink but don’t want to stand in line?

No problem.

You can skip the line and order from your phone.

To order, go to, enter the code “Thunder” and place your order. You can then pick up your order at the Bbot sign at Peoples Natural Gas Park.

There is a two-drink maximum per order.

Proper identification is required.

Plenty of beer

At least 1,500 cases of beer – including Budweiser, Goose Island IPA and Stella Artois – were iced down and ready to serve when Thunder in the Valley kicked off Thursday afternoon, organizers said.

Alcoholic drinks can be enjoyed downtown in many of the event’s destinations – the Biker Mall included – but Thunder-goers are reminded to have a valid driver’s license, state-issued identification card, U.S. passport card, a military ID with a photo or Canadian driver’s license when they walk up to the event’s outdoor pubs, dubbed “ThunderBolt Saloons.”

Wings winner

Ebensburg’s 15th annual Wheels & Wings event switched up its categories this year for the wing-off, and the entries for most creative didn’t disappoint. 

A panel of five local judges sampled concoctions that included Dorito-crusted wings, raspberry coconut wings, ice cream sundae wings and pickle-flavored wings. 

Pit Stop 271’s smoked wings were the winner of the new category, based on judges’ scores. 

Nine vendors entered their best wings in the competition and judges also selected their overall favorite, best hot wings and best sweet and spicy wings.  

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