Introduction to Allentown, Pennsylvania

Allentown, located in eastern Pennsylvania on the Lehigh River, is the third-largest city in the state. Founded in 1762 by William Allen, the city was named after him in 1838. It has traditionally been an industrial city, with its economy depending on iron and mining. As chronicled on the famous 1982 Billy Joel song, Allentown has seen the fall of these industries in recent years. Today, Allentown's economy is diversified among a wide range of products and services, including printing and publishing, food processing, chemicals, electrical and medical equipment, and furniture. Its 110,000 residents already know that Allentown is a great place to live. Located just 35 miles northwest of Philadelphia and a short drive from the Poconos, Allentown offers the comfort and amenities of a small city, with big city attractions and rural splendor both just minutes away.

Allentown Culture

Allentown's cultural attractions include the Allentown Art Museum, the Museum of Indian Culture, Haines Mill Museum and the Civic Theater of Allentown. Mayfair, a five-day multicultural arts festival held each May, is one of the largest of its kind in the country, attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors. Lehigh Valley Blues Festival is a four-day event held each July just north of the city. A wide spectrum of historical and cultural attractions is available in Philadelphia to the southeast and Pennsylvania Dutch Country to the southwest.

Allentown Sports and Leisure

For the sports fan, Allentown is a stone's throw from a lot of action. Nearby Philadelphia offers 4 major league teams that all play in the same complex. The NFL's Philadelphia Eagles play at 68,500-seat Lincoln Financial Field. Baseball's Philadelphia Phillies play at brand-new, 43,000-seat Citizens Bank Park. The Wachovia Center is hosts the home games of the NHL's Philadelphia Flyers and the NBA's 76ers. Adjacent is the Spectrum, former home of the Flyers and 76ers and current home of lacrosse's Wings, hockey's Phantoms, and soccer's Kixx. For more big league teams, the Meadowlands in New Jersey (the NFL's Jets and Giants, the NBA's Nets, the NHL's Devils) and New York City (baseball's Yankees and Mets, the NBA's Knicks, the NHL's Rangers) are just over an hour away. Pennsylvania is one of the North's few hotbeds of auto racing. Nazareth Speedway, known as the "World's Fastest Mile," offers Indy Racing 15 miles away in Nazareth. Pocono Raceway, 32 miles away in Long Pond, hosts the Pocono 500 and the Pennsylvania 500 NASCAR events. Wilkes Barre, about 45 miles north, is home to the Red Barons (minor league baseball), Penguins (AHL), Pioneers (Arena Football).

Allentown Outdoors

Allentown is equally suited to those who prefer to be a part of the action, offering a myriad of recreational sites within a short distance. Nearby Beltzville State Park has nearly 3,000 acres of recreation areas around 949-acre Lake Beltzville. The lake is a favorite for fishing, with several varieties of bass, trout and perch. In the winter, it's a favorite spot for cross-country skiing and tobogganing. Blue Marsh Lake offers hiking trails, boating and fishing in the summer, and ice fishing, ice skating and sledding in the winter. Lake Nockamixon, halfway toward Philadelphia to the southeast, offers similar activities. Literally dozens of other lakes surround the area, providing great swimming, boating and fishing opportunities. The Pocono Mountains to the north provide hiking and camping. Asbury Park (NJ), famous for its beach scene and for being the hometown of Bruce Springsteen, is just 25 miles away. Atlantic City (NJ) is about 100 miles away. Skiiers will find numerous options within an hour's drive, including Bear Creek, Big Boulder, Camelback, Shawnee Mountain and Hidden Valley.

Allentown at Night

Nightlife in Allentown offers the advantages of a small city with access to an array of activities to suit all tastes. Philadelphia to the southeast offers a high concentration of college students and first-rate music, dining and entertainment options for young adults. An aspect of Allentown's nightlife that is of particular interest to males is that the city has an unusually high female population, with 109 females for every 100 males.


Total Population 119,261
Male Share of the Population 48.5%
Female Share of the Population 51.5%
Senior Citizens 11.7%
Employed Population 16+ 47,851
Age of the Population 33


% of people married 34.4%
Average household size 3

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher 15.5%
Median Earnings25+ $26,804
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification $19,817
Median Earnings With High School Degree $24,548


Median Family Income $40,756
% Above Poverty Level 73.5%
% Below Poverty Level 26.5%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time 24 minutes
% Working from Home 3.9%
% Walking and Biking to Work 6.1%
% Using Public Transportation 5.4%


People Living Alone 28.8%
Median Gross Rent $884
Median House Value $126,900


Other(often includes Hispanic and African American) 57.4%
US/American 0%
English 2.2%
Irish 7.2%

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Allentown Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Large City 48 miles N of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
County Lehigh
Metro Area Allentown - Bethlehem - Easton
Standard Zip Codes 18101, 18102, 18103, 18104, 18106, 18109, 18195
P.O. Box Zip Codes 18105
Company Zip Codes 18175
Phone Area Codes 610
Time Zone Eastern (-5 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 40.608
Longitude -75.49

Allentown Climate

Nearest Weather Stations


  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Distance 3.6 miles
Jan Temp 19 to 35 F
Apr Temp 38 to 60 F
Jul Temp 63 to 84 F
Oct Temp 41 to 63 F
Annual Precip 45.1 inches
Distance 12.5 miles
Jan Temp 17 to 36 F
Apr Temp 37 to 60 F
Jul Temp 59 to 83 F
Oct Temp 39 to 63 F
Annual Precip 46 inches
Distance 16.8 miles
Jan Temp 14 to 34 F
Apr Temp 35 to 59 F
Jul Temp 58 to 83 F
Oct Temp 37 to 63 F
Annual Precip 49.7 inches

Neighborhood and Nearby Area Names

According to the US Postal Service, Allentown, its neighborhoods, and/or surrounding areas are also referred to as:

Wescosville (18106)

Note that not all alternate names are acceptable for use in US Post Office addresses.

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Population Median Family Income
Bethlehem 75,004 $58,133
Catasauqua 6,505 $60,129
Coplay 3,216 $64,489
Emmaus 11,342 $70,008

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Allentown Public Libraries

Allentown Public Library
Allentown, Pennsylvania
(610) 820-2400
Parkland Community Library
Allentown, Pennsylvania
(610) 398-1333
Library Web Site

library logo

More Information for Librarians

Allentown Hospitals

(Voluntary non-profit - Other)
(215) 776-4900
Emergency Service: Yes

(Voluntary non-profit - Other)
(610) 402-2273
Emergency Service: Yes

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Allentown High Schools

(Sorted by Number of Students)

Serves 3,277 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 23.1

Title I eligible, not participating.
Serves 2,905 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 19.5

Serves 1,819 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 20.3

Serves 470 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 16.8

A Charter School.
A Title I School.
Serves 175 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 11.9

A Non-traditional School
Serves 13 students.

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