The Pennsylvania Wilds region is home to more than 2 million acres of public lands. It offers some of the most unique outdoor experiences and plenty of small towns with must-have amenities. Come here for a workcation, or to stay. You'll find the work-life balance you've been searching for.
The Pennsylvania Wilds is a 13-county region that is home to the greatest concentration of public lands in the Commonwealth. The region includes the counties of Cameron, Clarion, Clearfield, Clinton, Elk, Forest, Jefferson, Lycoming, McKean, Potter, Tioga, Warren, and northern Centre. There are hundreds of communities that serve visitors and residents alike, and each community offers a rich history that is woven into the region’s story. These hamlets are the perfect launchpad for residents and travelers eager to connect with nature when work ends.
The Wilds Are Working: A Remote Lifestyle Experience
If you are a remote worker who is able to live anywhere, consider testing out living in the Pennsylvania Wilds! You can experience our communities and all that nature has to offer, all expenses paid.
The Wilds Are Working program allows remote workers to live in select communities for four weeks. Lodging is covered for the duration of the remote worker’s stay, and the remote worker receives a living stipend that can be spent at local small businesses.
The 2023 program features Emporium and Warren. Applications are due by May 3 at WildsAreWorking.com!
2023 Host Communities
Emporium, the seat of Cameron County, is located in the “heart of the PA Wilds” and is situated between the region’s Elk Country and Dark Skies landscapes. With just under 2,000 residents, it is a small but thriving town. Wilds Are Working participants will live in Emporium in July 2023. Details here
Warren, the seat of Warren County, is located in the northwestern corner of the PA Wilds, part of the Allegheny National Forest & Surrounds landscape. With a population of more than 9,000 residents, Warren is one of the larger cities in the region. Wilds Are Working participants will live in Warren in August 2023. Details here
Wilds Are Working Background
Funded by the Appalachian Regional Commission through Ben Franklin Technology Partners and administered by the PA Wilds Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc., this project seeks to help address the issue of outmigration in rural areas by marketing PA Wilds communities as great places to live and work.
Originally piloted in summer 2022 in the PA Wilds communities of Bellefonte and Kane, the initiative allows remote workers to live, work, volunteer, and explore all that the rural region has to offer. Participants could come from anywhere in the world, as long as they have a sense of adventure and the ability to work remotely.
Pictured below: the six remote workers who lived in Kane and the five remote workers who lived in Bellefonte for the 2022 Wilds Are Working pilot program.
More information on the genesis of the program can be found here.
The PA Wilds Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc., is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to integrate conservation and economic development in a way that inspires the communities of the Pennsylvania Wilds. Based in the region, the Center is the lead nonprofit for the PA Wilds Conservation Landscape effort, a 15+year collaborative effort by local, state and federal partners to establish the region as a premier outdoor recreation destination as a way to diversify local economies, attract investment, inspire stewardship, improve quality of life and attract and retain the region’s working-age population.
The Allegheny National Forest began offering an Artist in Residency Program to recognized how the arts have been inspired by the natural world and how art depicting America’s public lands often led to conservation of those lands for the greater good. The artist-in-residence program that seeks to tell the stories of the forest during the 2023 Allegheny National Forest Centennial and beyond.
There are plenty of quiet spots in the Wilds to focus on work – whether outdoors, in your home/lodge, or at an establishment in the community. But when you’re looking for a spot that feels separate from home, free of the coffee shop noise and daydreaming that may come with working outside, consider looking for a coworking space. Work alongside other professionals and gain access to shared office equipment and technology. Here are a few places to consider.
217 W 4th St, Williamsport, PA 17701 | (570) 435-1993 Pine Creek Valley + PA Grand Canyon landscape of the PA Wilds Details here
201 Liberty St, Warren, PA 16365 | (814) 240-2419 Allegheny National Forest + Surrounds landscape of the PA Wilds Details here
NORTH CENTRAL PA LAUNCHBOX
2 E Long Ave, DuBois, PA 15801 | (814) 372-3020 I-80 Frontier of the PA Wilds Details here
221 W High St Suite 1300, Bellefonte, PA 16823 | (814) 548-7532 I-80 Frontier of the PA Wilds Details here
Are you a PA Wilds innovator?
PA WILDS BIG IDEA CONTEST
In partnership with the PA Wilds Center for Entrepreneurship, Ben Franklin Technology Partners is looking for innovators with BIG IDEAS located in the Allegheny National Forest & Surrounds — including Cameron, Elk, Forest, McKean, or Warren County, PA. Entrepreneurs who are developing or crafting a product, process, or innovation related to the maker economy, outdoors and recreation, forest products, manufacturing, and technology, are invited apply by April 18, 2023. Winning up to $50,000 will go a long way in helping you further develop your BIG IDEA and infuse your new startup with much-needed cash. In addition to the cash, the pitch experience you’ll gain, the business training offered, and the contacts you’ll make are just as valuable. Learn more here.
PA WILDS NETWORK
Businesses, nonprofits and communities located in the 13-county Pennsylvania Wilds region are invited to join the Wilds Cooperative of Pennsylvania (WCO). Members are promoted on PAWilds.com, in addition to gaining access to branding and marketing resources, networking and professional development programs, opportunities to sell handmade products on the PA Wilds Marketplace and at PA Wilds Conservation Shops, and referrals to regional resource providers. Perhaps best of all, there are no annual membership dues. Learn more here.
Emporium and Warren will host remote workers in 2023 Wilds Are Working initiative