My first memories of Pennsylvania are from a trip that I only remember snippets of, so I must have been on the young side. I think I was maybe 9. The locations I remember are State College, Huntingdon, Hershey, and Gettysburg.
My mom says we went to Raystown Lake as well, but I don’t remember that for some reason. I guess we just played in the sand?
In State College
While here, we went to a 50’s diner for my brother’s birthday. They let us choose music on the jukebox and one of us had them playing “Splish Splash” because we knew it from watching Home Alone.
The whole restaurant surprised my brother by singing him Happy Birthday. I think the booth seats were red. I’d love to go back and revisit this restaurant, which I believe is Baby’s Burgers and Shakes.
My mom’s hometown! We went on a trip down memory lane visiting her childhood haunts. We looked at the house she lived in and visited her church. We played on the playground she grew up playing on and visited the big hill where she had a bike crash. She showed us where all her sled riding hills were too, but we didn’t get to ride them since it was May.
I have two main memories from my first visit to Hershey.
The first is from the Hershey factory. We went on this cool train tour through the factory. After the tour we were full of the smell of chocolate. We went in this kids corner where they had a fake factory production thing. They had us put Kisses in these little boxes, red hearts if I remember correctly, and we then we did a little dance to shake up the love. We shook them high, we shook them low, we shook them out to the side…we shook them round in a circle. And then we sent them off with love!
While we stayed in Hershey, we stayed in this cool “house hotel”, an old house that rented out rooms to guests. I remember being thrilled to stay in a cool old house. By my mom’s good memory, I found out that the “cool old house” is part of Simmons Motel & Suites. I’ll definitely go back to visit sometime!
In Gettysburg, we did this driving tour thing where we followed these plaques with stories telling about the Civil War and Gettysburg’s importance. My mom would stop the car by the plaques (which I think were deep green with gold letters and outline…) and read them aloud to us 5 kids in the back.
I remember visiting a restaurant seemingly set back in the 1860s. The waiters and waitresses were wearing Civil War era clothing, and I loved our waitress’ dress! It had a beautiful full skirt with a ruffle at the bottom. I was very shy at that age and absolutely mortified that my parents made me tell her myself that I liked it. I didn’t have time to research what restaurant that might have been, so I’ll have to share it at a later date.
Thanks for reading and apologies if it was a little boring! Because this trip was so long ago, most of my memories have faded. I hope you can visit the locations I mentioned sometime!
My next blog will be back to My Journey Through Middle Earth and an update on how the journey is going. Next month, I’ll have a post about growing up as a coach’s kid.