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Penn Valley, Pennsylvania facts for kids

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Penn Valley
Unincorporated community
Penn Valley is located in Pennsylvania
Penn Valley
Penn Valley
Location in Pennsylvania
Country United States
State Pennsylvania
County Montgomery
Township Lower Merion
295 ft (90 m)
 • Total Under 4,000
Time zone UTC-5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
Zip Code
Area codes 610 and 484

Penn Valley is an unincorporated community located within Lower Merion Township, Pennsylvania. Penn Valley residents share a zip code with Merion, Narberth, or Wynnewood because the town does not have its own post office. However, Penn Valley is a distinct community whose civic association demarcates the town's boundaries with iconic signs featuring William Penn and a farmhouse in blue or red on white, dating from the town's incorporation in 1930.


Penn Valley is one of the most Historic places in all of Pennsylvania. It houses the Penn Valley Women's Club, which was built in 1826-1828 where it served as a one-room weekday school and a place for Sunday religious gatherings. The original club was replaced with a new building, in 1876. However, that building was torn down, around 1926, but its remains can still be as of today. The original Penn Valley Women's Club is still visible and now houses The Penn Valley Civic Association. It was given repairs in the year, 2016.

Another historic building was located on 200 Fairview Road as a small frame house with a Queen Porch built for the Centennial. Even though the house had Class 2 Historical status the township's Historical Committee reached a compromise allowing the house to be demolished after realizing fire damage from a basement fire would cost an extensive amount to fix. The original house was demolished in August 2013 and a new house was completed in late 2014.


The 2010 Census found that Penn Valley has less than 4,000 residents. Racially, 88% of Penn Valley's residents are Caucasian, 4% are Asian, 2.4% are Hispanic, 1.8% are black and the rest are two or more races, Pacific Islander, American Indian or another race. Of Penn Valley's Caucasian residents, 14.7% have Russian ancestry and 4.0% have Eastern European ancestry.

Penn Valley's median income is more than $100,000 per family, statistically in the top 0.3% of the United States. None of the children in the town live below the poverty level.



Penn Valley Elementary School
Penn Valley Elementary School

Nearly all of Penn Valley's public school children attend Penn Valley Elementary School and Welsh Valley Middle School, which are part of Lower Merion School District. Children and their parents may choose between attending Lower Merion High School or Harriton High School. Nearby private schools include Narberth's Roman Catholic St. Margaret's School; the all-male Haverford School; the all-female Baldwin School and Agnes Irwin Schools; and the co-educational Shipley School.


While no colleges are located directly in Penn Valley, many campuses are nearby. Saint Joseph's University is no more than ten minutes away, with parts of its campus located in Merion and Bala-Cynwyd; and Villanova University, with its main campus along Lancaster Avenue/US Route 30 just west of Bryn Mawr. Other nearby colleges include Rosemont College; Haverford College; and the internationally renowned Bryn Mawr College


Lower Merion Township maintains its recycling and refuse burning center at the foot of Woodbine Avenue in Penn Valley, just beyond the limits of Belmont Hills, the easternmost section of the township that slopes down to the Schuylkill River, flanked by Fairmount Park.

Police and public works are managed in the Lower Merion Township Office Building at 75 East Montgomery Avenue in Ardmore.

Penn Valley is served admirably by the Lower Merion School District, headquartered at the bend of Montgomery Avenue in Ardmore where it meets Church Road, across from Lower Merion High School's Hap Arnold Field.

Train stations

The Narberth train station is located a scant mile from the "business district" of Penn Valley on Montgomery Avenue; Merion and Ardmore stations are roughly three miles to the east and west of the district, respectively. All three have heated, enclosed waiting areas, public restrooms, and pay phones. Taxi service is summoned by telephone. Approximately 10% of Penn Valley's residents take the train to work.


SEPTA's 121 line runs through Penn Valley between Center City and Gladwyne, Pennsylvania, on weekdays.


Both Bryn Mawr and Lankenau Hospital are located within 5 miles of Penn Valley.


Penn Valley is well served by the large and well-endowed Lower Merion Library System, part of the Montgomery County Library System and an affiliate of the numerous excellent academic and professional libraries in Philadelphia and its suburbs. The Lower Merion Library System just renovated (2012) its Narberth Free Library, bordering Narberth Field on Essex Avenue; its Ardmore Free Library on Ardmore Avenue just south of the US Post Office (2013); and the system's central Ludington Memorial Library of Bryn Mawr at the corner of Bryn Mawr Avenue and Lancaster Avenue (Route 30) (2014). Other excellent Lower Merion libraries just a short drive from Penn Valley include the Gladwyne Free Library in the village; the Bala-Cynwyd Library on Old Lancaster Road less than a mile from 54th and City Line Avenue; and the Penn Wynne Library south of Lancaster Pike. Residents of Lower Merion have free access to all of the libraries in the system. All of the libraries have a large variety of books, audio-visual materials, and electronic resources.

Penn Valley has its own Little Free Library, which is a wooden box located on Hagys Ford Road between Margo Lane and Righters Mill Road. One must follow a certain procedure: In return for taking the book you want from the wooden box, you deposit another in its place.

Fire stations

The two closest Fire Departments are The Gladwyne Fire Station where Route 23 meets Rock Hill Road and The Narberth Fire Station on Haverford Avenue just above Narberth Park. The Gladwyne Fire Station's mascot is a dalmatian named Rowdy.

Gladwyne Fire Station
Gladwyne firefighters with Rowdy

Notable residents

  • David J. Adelman, CEO of Campus Apartments and the co-founder and Chairman of FS Investments, grew up in Penn Valley
  • Joe Banner, former General Manager of the Philadelphia Eagles and former analyst with ESPN, lives in Penn Valley
  • Charles Barkley, former professional basketball player for the Philadelphia 76ers, Phoenix Suns and Houston Rockets and current NBA analyst, owns a condominium in Penn Valley
  • Aaron T. Beck, MD, American psychiatrist, creator of cognitive therapy and professor of psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, lived in the Wynnewood section of Penn Valley with his wife
  • Judge Phyllis W. Beck, Esq., American jurist, the first woman member of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's Superior Court and professor of law at Temple University's Beasley School of Law
  • Judith S. Beck, PhD, American psychologist and director of Beck Institute for Cognitive Behavior Therapy at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, was raised in Penn Valley
  • D. Dudley Bloom, Esq., American naval officer and businessman, the US Navy's youngest ship commander during World War II and the inventor of rolling travel luggage, lived in the Merion section of Penn Valley
  • Elias Burstein, American physicist, theorist of solid-state optical telecommunications and professor of physics at the University of Pennsylvania, lived in Penn Valley
  • Gene and Joan Crane, American husband-and-wife television personalities with WCAU Channel 10 in Philadelphia (c. 1950–90), lived in a house on a cliff overlooking the bifurcation of Route 23 into Manayunk Road in the Bala-Cynwyd section of Penn Valley, where they raised their son
  • David Crane, American television producer of the popular sitcom, Friends lived in Penn Valley
  • Oliver Spurgeon English, MD, pioneer of mind-body medicine and longtime chairman of the department of psychiatry at Temple University School of Medicine, lived on Righter's Mill Road
  • Jennifer Fox, American documentary film maker, lived in Penn Valley
  • Richard L. Fox, American lawyer and author, lives in Penn Valley
  • Richard J. Fox, American real estate executive and philanthropist, lived in Penn Valley
  • Walter Deane Fuller, American publisher and businessman, president and board chairman of the Curtis Publishing Company, built his estate, a working farm well into the twentieth century, on lower Righter's Mill Road, which still stands and once included what is now Eco Valley Park
  • Hans Jacob Hagy, American paper manufacturer, supplied Benjamin Franklin paper for publishing Poor Richard's Almanac and other tracts and the US Constitutional Convention (1787) for publication of the Bill of Rights from his mill on Mill Creek, built in 1769
  • Ben Hibbs, American journalist, longtime editor of Country Gentleman and editor-in-chief of the Saturday Evening Post and Reader's Digest, lived in Penn Valley
  • Vincent Kling, AIA, American architect and pioneer of modernism, lived on lower Righter's Mill Road in Penn Valley
  • Josh Kopelman, American entrepreneur, venture capitalist, and philanthropist, lives in Penn Valley
  • David W. Leebron, Esq., American academic, dean of the faculty and Lucy G. Moses Professor of Law at Columbia Law School (1996-2004) and Rice University's 7th president (2004-), was raised in the Weinrott family compound on Bryn Mawr Avenue in Penn Valley
  • Garry Maddox, American Major League Baseball player with the Philadelphia Phillies and television commentator, lives in Penn Valley
  • Gerald J. Marks, MD, American surgeon, professor of surgery and founding chief of the Division of Colorectal Surgery at Jefferson Medical College, lives in Penn Valley
  • Aaron McKie, American professional basketball player, star with the National Basketball Association Philadelphia 76ers and currently head coach of the Temple Owls college basketball team, lives in Penn Valley
  • Marjorie Margolies Mezvinsky, American journalist and politician, US representative from Pennsylvania's 13th Congressional District (1993–95), lives in Penn Valley
  • Mel Richman, American advertising executive, longtime president of Philadelphia's Poor Richard's Club, lived where Righter's Mill Road crosses Woodbine Avenue in Penn Valley
  • Joseph Ritter, MD, American pediatrician, chief of medicine at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and professor of pediatrics at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, lived on Bryn Mawr Avenue
  • George Brooke Roberts, American industrialist, president of the Pennsylvania Railroad and owner of Pencoyd Farm in Penn Valley
  • Percival Roberts, Jr., (1857-1943) American industrialist, civil engineer and gentleman farmer, president of the Pencoyd Iron Works (later part of US Steel), expanded family's Pencoyd Farm to 571 acres and built "Penshurst", his opulent 75-room estate on Conshohocken State Road/Route 23, in 1903.
  • Bobby Rydell, American rock and roll singer, famous for "Wild One", lived in Penn Valley
  • Byron Saam, longtime voice of the Philadelphia Phillies Major League Baseball team on TV and radio, lived where Hagy's Ford Road meets Fairview Road in Penn Valley
  • David Shulkin, American civil servant, former US Secretary of Veterans Affairs under President Donald Trump, lived in Penn Valley
  • M. Night Shyamalan, American writer and director of Hollywood films, grew up in Penn Valley
  • Steve Spagnuolo, American football coach and current Defensive Coordinator of the Kansas City Chiefs, lived in Penn Valley
  • Lawrence H. Summers, PhD, American economist, US Secretary of the Treasury (1999-2001), president of Harvard University (2001–06); chief economic adviser to President Barack Obama (2009–11), and current Charles W. Eliot University Professor at Harvard University, grew up in the Merion section of Penn Valley
  • Samuel Weinrott, American banker, businessman, and philanthropist, founder and chairman of the board of the Industrial Valley Bank (1903–86), built his family's compound where a bridge crosses Gulley Run in Penn Valley

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