We’re not just fans of “The Office”. We’re borderline-obsessed, know-every-quote, watch-it-constantly superfans. So, when we road-tripped out to the Poconos for a long weekend with our family in November, it only made sense that we would visit the city where the show was based.
Unlike one of our other favorite shows, Parks & Recreation – another Greg Daniels/Michael Schur masterpiece – “The Office” is set in a real city: Scranton, Pennsylvania.
As I’ve learned from the Office Ladies podcast, the directors took great care to ensure the show remained authentic to its Scranton setting.
They even went as far as picking up local props (fliers, products, stickers, magnets, restaurant menus and more) to decorate the background of the Dunder Mifflin Scranton set.
Remember that Froggy 101 sticker on Dwight’s desk? Yep, that’s a real radio station in Scranton. What about the club soda featured throughout the show? That was from the Crystal Soda Water Co., a family-run business in Scranton.
These little nods to the former coal town make the show feel like it was really filmed there (despite occasionally seeing palm trees in the background of the driving scenes).
Of course, there are also the more memorable and recognizable Scranton locales featured on “The Office”, including:
- Alfredo’s Pizza Café (not to be confused with the vastly inferior Pizza by Alfredo, which is fictional)
- Cooper’s Seafood House
- Poor Richard’s Pub
- The Marketplace at Steamtown (aka the Steamtown Mall)
- Penn Paper tower
We visited these spots and share all the details below – including which ones were surprisingly awesome and which were sort of meh. Plus, don’t miss our bonus “The Office” locations at the end of the blog!
Now, let’s get this party started!
Alfredo’s Pizza Café
1040 S. Washington Ave.
We all remember the argument in season 4’s “Launch Party” (or should I say “Lunch Party”?) about Alfredo’s Pizza Café versus Pizza by Alfredo. And while the latter is fictional, I can confidently attest to the delicious taste of a pepperoni slice from Alfredo’s Pizza Café.
It’s no wonder the employees were peeved at Michael for ordering the wrong pizza! Even its menu reminds you: It’s “home to ‘the good pizza’ as seen on The Office”.
During your tour of Scranton, be sure to add Alfredo’s to your list. It’s the perfect lunch spot, with plenty of options for everyone. Beyond pizza, they serve salads, wraps, burgers, subs, pasta, steak, seafood and more.
Cooper’s Seafood House
701 N. Washington Ave.
The “business/romantic” Cooper’s Seafood House was mentioned several times in the show, but was featured most prominently in season 5’s “Business Ethics” episode. Though the interior scenes were filmed in Los Angeles, the exterior shot was actually filmed on-site at the real Cooper’s.
Truthfully, I was most excited about visiting Cooper’s during our Scranton tour – not because of the food, but because it’s the only place in Scranton (surprisingly) that boasts a huge collection of “The Office” merchandise. You better believe we left with a bag full of totally necessary merch.
Plus, Cooper’s houses some incredible pop culture memorabilia, so even if you’re not a fan of “The Office”, you’ll have fun wandering the halls and marveling at all the treasures of yesteryear.
Poor Richard’s Pub
125 Beech St.
A favorite of the employees of Dunder Mifflin, Poor Richard’s is mentioned and featured in many episodes, most notably in “Cocktails”, “Local Ad”, “St. Patrick’s Day” and “A.A.R.M.” – the second-to-last episode of the series, in which the office employees head to the dive bar to watch the official airing of the documentary.
Unless you listen to the Office Ladies podcast or live in the Scranton area, it may come as a surprise that the real Poor Richard’s Pub is located inside a bowling alley (South Side Bowl). If you want any Poor Richard’s swaaaaaaag, be sure to stop in the bowling alley, where they have T-shirts and hoodies for sale.
The Marketplace at Steamtown
300 Lackawanna Ave.
Nobody loves the Steamtown Mall more than Kelly Kapoor. So, when Michael Scott takes the ladies to the mall in season 3’s “Women’s Appreciation”, it’s a dream come true for Kelly.
Mike and I, however, didn’t get as much enjoyment out of our visit to The Marketplace at Steamtown. Beyond the lure of its mention on “The Office”, there wasn’t anything extraordinary about it.
There is one benefit of visiting, though. It’s where the “Scranton Welcomes You” sign is located. The sign, which you see in the intro of each episode, was moved to the mall after causing too much disruption on the road – due to people stopping to take pictures with it.
Now on the second floor of the mall, the sign sits on AstroTurf in front of a printed screen of Scranton. Not quite the same as if it were outside, but it’s still a good photo op for “The Office” superfans!
Penn Paper Tower
215 Vine St.
Even if you used to skip the intro on Netflix, the iconic image of the Dunder Mifflin tower still made its way onto your screen.
The first shot shown in the intro was apparently filmed by John Krasinski (Jim Halpert) during one of his early trips to Scranton, according to the Office Ladies. The footage made its way into the intro, becoming the backdrop to one of TV’s most recognizable theme songs.
The tower – actually home to the family-owned Pennsylvania Paper & Supply Company – isn’t far from The Marketplace at Steamtown, so you can walk there to take in the scenery, or drive if you’re pressed for time.
I love that the tower still features the Dunder Mifflin logo, even eight years after the show last aired!
Bonus “The Office” Locales
Electric City Sign, 507 Linden St.
They call it Scranton! What?! The Electric City!
Even though this spot wasn’t featured in the show, it’s still a must-see for “The Office” fans. The sign lights up Scranton’s skyline at night, but even during the day, it will surely remind you of Michael’s “Lazy Scranton” employee orientation song.
Electric City Mural, Central Scranton Expressway on/off ramp exit off I-81
Keep your eyes open for this easy-to-miss mural off the highway. It’s not really a must-see, but it’s worth snapping a photo as you drive by.
Lake Wallenpaupack, 2512 Route 6 Ste 1 Hawley, PA
It’s a booze cruise!
Located just 40 minutes from Scranton is the famous Lake Wallenpaupack, where season 2’s “Booze Cruise” is set. If you have some time to spare, be sure to check it out. The lake is beautiful, and there’s a trail around it that offers scenic views – perfect for couples or families.
Scranton Business Park, Chandler Valley Center Studios, 13927 Saticoy St, Panorama City, CA
California? That’s a far way from Scranton.
OK, OK. This is by no means close to Scranton, but I had to include it! Before we got to see the real-life “The Office” locales, we stopped by the set for a quick photo while we were visiting LA.
And there you have it! While I wouldn’t recommend driving cross-country just to visit these spots, if you’re in the Poconos or surrounding area for a long weekend, add an afternoon in Scranton to your list.
If you can squeeze it in, you won’t regret it…