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Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant

West Chester, Chester County

CREDIT: Courtesy of Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant

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A Ziptrip to West Chester

This university town in the Brandywine Valley exudes an energetic, young vibe

In the bustling downtown area of West Chester, casual eateries and food-centric events satiate hungry palates, and throngs of charming shops line the streets. The entire downtown district is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Spend a day strolling along brick sidewalks past the building where Abraham Lincoln began his quest for the presidency; where the great African-American folk artist Horace Pippin lived and painted; where America’s preeminent composer Samuel Barber was born and raised; and actors Claude Raines and Eva Marie Saint spent their days.

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Getting to West Chester

By car

With public transportation to West Chester not readily available, a car is your best bet for the 40-mile, 45-minute drive along I-76 West and 202 South. If you opt to drive, Zipcar is a great option, with more than 350 vehicles and 115 locations in the greater Philadelphia area and a considerable presence in Center City. Metered street parking and municipal lots are available once you get there.
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American Helicopter Museum

The history of rotorcraft flight from the ground up

Yes, West Chester is home to QVC, which offers one-hour guided studio tours for $7.50 an adult, and just a stone’s throw away from there is the American Helicopter Museum. As the former MBB Helicopter Manufacturing Co., it explains why the Bells, Cobras, Boeings and Sikorskys look so at home here. The oldest is a 1946 Sikorsky S-51; the coolest, a tilt rotor Bell Boeing Osprey flown by the Marines. Helicopter rides are available every other month, and cost just $40 for a seven-minute ride.

If you prefer to stick to the ground, 90-minute weekend excursions aboard the West Chester Railroad can be fun for the whole family, especially as the seasons change or around the holidays.
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Chester County Historical Society

History aficionados will enjoy uncovering the American story from a local perspective at the Chester County Historical Society. Explore over 300 years of history through rare documents, photographs and newspapers in the research library, from George Washington and the Battle of Brandywine to the Underground Railroad, Civil War and Civil Rights. One can also learn and uncover history by browsing around the downtown’s over 4,200 structures dating back to the colonial period.
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Avalon

The award-winning Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant is the kind of place where old friends can enjoy a round of brews at the billiards tables, or dine on seared ahi tuna and prime rib. Be sure to try their seasonal beers on tap and if you like those, you’ll want to seek one of their other five locations in the Greater Philadelphia area.

Those looking for something a little different have lots to choose from with Italian restaurants such as Avalon (and its BYOB so bring a local growler or bottle of your favorite); Irish Pubs and Oyster houses; and wine tasting rooms.
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