Tag Archives: history

2018 – Sightseeing York-Gettysburg-RV Show

We enjoyed going to the county fair in York, PA. This fair is called America’s First Fair, originating in 1765! We drove in paid our parking and walked toward the entrance wondering where we paid our entry fee and realized later that it was Senior Day and we got in free! We went through many of the buildings. It was fun watching the pig and “Hot Dog” (Dachshunds) races. We saw large and small farm animals ranging from big bulls and beautiful horses down to rabbits and guinea pigs and various birds. In one hall they had pregnant pigs, sheep, and cattle as well as mothers with babies born this week. This was a very popular spot for all ages. One building had an impressive model trains display while another had a wide variety of hand crafted items and art work. It was a fun and tiring day.

The next day, after spending the day at the fair, we headed for the “largest RV show in the country” at the Giant Center in Hershey, PA. The arena floor was filled with vendors of all kinds selling mostly RV/camping related items. The food vendors were doing a brisk business. Outside there were many acres of RVs of all makes and models. We enjoyed both the vendors and the RVs. After a day at the fair followed by the RV show we came home ready for some down-time.

I didn’t know how much food industry takes place here in this area. Many of our well known companies produce products here. We toured two of them. The first was nearby Martin’s Potato Chips at Thomasville, PA. This is mainly an east coast company. Their snacks, we were told, have been stocked on Air Force One through the last several presidencies. Our tour guide started us outside where the potatoes are brought in by huge trucks and started on their way through the factory. We then walked along the production line where the potato chips were being fried, salted, dried, inspected, and packed. The guide brought us some chips, still hot, right off the line. They were delicious, the best we’ve ever eaten. There’s a well stocked factory outlet store and, of course, we took advantage of their low prices!

From the Chip factory we drove to the Snyders of Hanover factory where our guide took us to a windowed corridor above the area where the pretzels and other items are made. It was fascinating seeing all the people keeping up with the automated line and how the items were labeled so they could be sorted by both people with scanners and automated equipment. Of course I had to buy some cookies and taste the pumpkin spice pretzels. It was a very interesting, fun, and tasty afternoon.

Our last major sightseeing trip in this area was to Gettysburg, PA. I was surprised to learn that this famous Battle was only three days long (July 1–3, 1863) yet resulted in a huge loss of life in those few days. We did the driving tour of the Battle of Gettysburg locations. We saw many monuments to the men from both the North and South who fought for what they thought was right. Our last stop was the National Cemetery. We walked to the site where Lincoln gave the Gettysburg Address and saw where many men and women from not only the battle of Gettysburg, but also later Wars and conflicts, are buried. Walking that hallowed ground was a humbling and sobering experience for us. It was also amazing to us to actually be at the site of such historical significance.


See individual photos with captions here.

2018 – Sightseeing Portland, ME and area

We had a wonderful time sightseeing Portland, Maine and south along the coast. We started by visiting Lenny, a life-sized chocolate Moose at Lenny Libby Chocolatier. There was also a bear and two cubs made of chocolate in the diorama. This candy shop has a wide variety of chocolate, salt water taffy, fudge, ice cream and gift items. Of course I bought some chocolate to take with me. From there we went to the Holy Donut shop for a unique experience. We bought a maple bacon and a potato donut with chocolate icing topped with coconut flakes. A tasty treat!

We then caught the city bus and enjoyed seeing the historic homes and buildings we passed on the way to the wharf. There we caught the Casco Bay Ferry Mail boat and rode along on a three hour mail run to several of the islands in Casco Bay. During the summer there are two of these runs a day and many people buy tickets to ride along. We heard a description of the historic lighthouses and other features along the route. It was interesting to see the crew load and unload the cargo and watch the people meet the boat to pick up their items as they were unloaded. Much more than mail was included in the cargo. For instance there were several mattresses and box springs that were loaded into the back of a pickup on delivery as well as a golf cart. A couple of times the sea fog rolled in adding to the adventure.

We also spent a fun afternoon seeing the beautiful coastline and visiting a few lighthouses just south of Portland, Maine. They are all historic but one that stands out is Portland Head Lighthouse. It’s construction was begun in 1787 at the direction of George Washington. We thoroughly enjoyed seeing the parks and beautiful homes in the area.


See individual photos with captions here.

2018 – Sightseeing the Basketball Hall of Fame – Springfield, MA


We had an interesting visit to the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts. We saw many photos and artifacts starting with the very beginning at the Young Men’s Christian Association where, in 1891 James Naismith invented an indoor game to be played at the YMCA. We followed the evolution of the sport from events like the introduction of the sport to women up through the most current inductees. Along with the many displays are interactive sites where you can check your height and arm span compared to famous athletes or see what one’s vertical jump is. My favorite displays were the early women’s uniforms and the peach baskets.


See individual photos with captions here.