Photo: (from left to right) George Sheldon/Shutterstock and George Sheldon/Shutterstock

9 Differences Between Eastern and Western Pennsylvania

by Brandyn Campbell Sep 24, 2018

Pennsylvania is so large that its eastern and western parts resemble different regions of the country rather than parts of the same state. If you’re wondering what makes Pittsburgh and western locales of the state distinct from Philadelphia, read on. Here are nine differences between eastern and western Pennsylvania.

1. East Coast vs. Midwest

Philadelphia is decidedly part of the Mid-Atlantic region while Pittsburgh, in its proximity to Ohio and the Great Lakes, often resembles more of a Midwestern city.

2. Soda vs. pop

It’s a heated national, as well as regional, debate: What do you call carbonated, sweetened beverages? In Philly, “soda” wins, but in the western portion of PA, “pop” reigns supreme.

3. Eagles vs. Steelers

Your team preference is telling with regard to what portion of the state you call home. Two storied franchises, two rabid fan bases, one state. The state bond isn’t enough to unite black-and-yellow fans with those of midnight green.

4. Wawa vs. Sheetz

These convenience stores each have their own die-hard allegiance. The west of the state swears by Sheetz, while the east has got to have Wawa.

5. Cheesesteak vs. Primanti Brothers

Cheese, steak, and fries are all foods of the heavens. No rivalry here — good food is good food, and both sandwiches fit the bill.

6. Yous vs. yinz

No one said that Pennsylvania was home to proper grammar. In Philly, the plural version of “you” follows the common English language rule of adding an “s.” Make your way west, and at some point “yous” turns to “yinz.” Both terms leave outsiders scratching their heads.

7. Flyers vs. Penguins

Everyone is a hockey fan when these teams face each other. There is no love lost between the Flyers, Penguins, and their fans. And the hatred is fueled anew each and every time Philly fans have to hear or see their nemesis, Sidney Crosby.

8. Pabst vs. Iron City

Cheap beer always has a place in the American landscape, and the choice of the inexpensive brew is deeply personal. Pabst Blue Ribbon is the cheap beer of choice for Philadelphians. Its special place in Philly culture is cemented by its inclusion in the Citywide Special. For its part, Iron City’s longtime origins in Pittsburgh helped create a connection to the beer that survived even as the city’s steel mills closed. It’s nostalgia in a bottle.

9. Jersey Shore vs. Great Lakes

One of the great things about Philadelphia is that the ocean, mountains, and beaches can all easily be accessed, while in the almost midwestern location of Pittsburgh, there’s no quick access to the ocean. But the shores of Lake Erie, and the beaches of Presque Isle State Park, are only a couple of hours away.

Discover Matador

Save Bookmark

We use cookies for analytics tracking and advertising from our partners.

For more information read our privacy policy.