Archive for the ‘Gettysburg & York County’ Category

Gettysburg Bed and Breakfast (includes ghosts)

November 6, 2012

In the spirit of keeping Halloween alive, I thought I’d mention an interesting accommodations option in Gettsyburg that might not make it onto the town’s usual hotel listings. It’s a cozy wood-paneled room in the David Stewart Farmhouse, a private home whose owner opens up to visitors who don’t mind two dogs, four cats, and some ghosts who date back to the farm’s former life as a Civil War hospital.

The room, which includes a queen-sized bed, private bath and use of the home’s charming kitchen and family room, is listed on AirBnB.com for $100 a night. Not bad, when you consider that some of Gettysburg’s sterile chain motels go for that much. (I used AirBnB.com for a weekend stay in NYC earlier this year and had a great experience.)

Here’s what the owner has to say:
“I will be your only “living” host, but there are many others who reside with me. They have lived at the farm for many many years, some for hundreds of years. Yes, the house is haunted, but they are all friendly! I have been here for 30 years and have lots of interesting stories that I’d be happy to share with you if you are interested.”

Other things to know: there’s a four-night minimum, the stay includes use of a nearby fitness center, and the house is about four miles from the center of town.

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5 Ways to Celebrate the Pretzel

May 31, 2012

Philadelphians eat about twelve times as many pretzels as the average consumer does. It’s not surprising — soft pretzels are one of Pennsylvania’s greatest products, though they often get overshadowed by the glitzier cheesesteak and Italian hoagie.
Pretzels (scandalously) didn’t make Parade magazine’s recent Memorial Day list of all-American classic foods, but I miss them desperately when I am out of the area (those mall kiosks just aren’t the same). Here are some favorite stops along the state’s unique pretzel network. I’ll save the sublime ice cream and pretzel cone combo for another post.

• The Sturgis empire. Julius’ side runs America’s first commercial pretzel bakery in Lititz, where visitors can check out the original 19th-century ovens and learn how to twist dough. Brother Tom’s side operates the factory and outlet store about 25 miles away in Shillington. Here, you can sample all types of pretzels, from cinnamon-dusted to spicy jalapeno and buy huge tins at a discount (but there are no tours).

Philly Soft Pretzel Factory. This 14-year-old franchise has won a slew of awards, and its storefronts are everywhere from Chalfont to Reading. Plus, it had the audacity to invent the cheesesteak pretzel. So wrong, but so good.

• Hanover, Pa. The factory tour of Snyder’s of Hanover is a must – a front-row look at the conveyor belts and mammoth machines needed to mass-produce salty snack foods — but the smaller, more personal Revonah (Hanover spelled backwards) is also worth a stop.

• Don’t let the humble name fool you. Gettysburg’s lively Pub on the Square sells a terrific appetizer simply called Pretzel Twists. Served hot with marinara sauce and dusted with garlic, it’s a perfect way to carb-load after a day of biking or walking the battlefields.

• Sweet pretzels in Amish country. Pretzel purists may object to this one, but there’s something about the butter/sugar combo they slather on the dough that is heavenly. I don’t even know the name of the small shop that sells them, but it’s next to one of the biggest tourist attractions in the area: Plain & Fancy Farm.