Monday, November 1, 2010

It's Fall in Paradise!

The pumpkins are on the porch and the mums,in all their vibrant colors,are arranged just perfectly by the steps,and there's a new fall flag flapping in the breeze at the B&B.

It's a great time to travel the backroads and find the farmers stands offering all shapes and sizes of pumpkins, gourds and Indian corn-What a beautiful time of the year, with a chill in the air that says summer heat & humidity's gone.
Fall's a great time to visit Lancaster County, with wonderful choices to stay over night-just check out http://www.authenticbandb.com/41 outstanding B&B's,each unique to themselves,wonderful hosts and fabulous breakfasts!

This morning,just as I was preparing breakfast for my guests,a Hot Air Balloon went sailing by my kitchen window.

I made a mental note to remind them about http://www.hotairballoon.com/the rides are available from the Bird-in-Hand Reataurant on Rt 340.

I have a list of many things to see and do,using the 2010 Map & Overnight Getaway Guide,we match map to guests' interests! This time of year there's so many choices:

Riding the Strasburg Railroad,spending time at Kitchen Kettle Village in Intercourse,CherryCrest Adventure Farm and wandering through Crackleberry Antiques,to name a few.

So,enjoy the Fall before Old Man Winter comes knocking on the door,blowing snow all over our beautiful farmland.

We look forward to seeing you in Paradise!

Submitted by Lois and Doug Snader, Country Patches Bed and Breakfast

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Youth Reclaimed

There is an old saying that once we have left home and return later in life, it is not our hometown we miss, it our youth!

In 1951 Jay and Ruth Musser purchased a large Victorian home at 214 Marietta Avenue, Mount Joy, PA from the estate of the late Dr. & Mrs. Oliver G. Longenecker. Over the next 40 years the Mussers raised four children in this home. Jay was the Vice President and head chemist for the Kline Chocolate Company in Elzabethtown, Pa. (now the M&M Mars plant). With the children all grown and Mr. Mussers passing, the home was too large for Mrs. Musser. She sold the home and moved to a retirement home in the Hershey area.

After two intermediate owners, Doris and Burt Tyson purchased this intact and private Victorian home in 1997 to turn it into a Bed and Breakfast and also have it as their own home. And so, in June of 1998 it became "The Victorian Rose Bed and Breakfast".

Fast forward to 2010. Early in the year Doris received a phone call from Sue (Musser) Miller. She said that her mother Ruth Musser was going to be 90 years old on August 31st, 2010. She was inquiring about the possibility of renting the entire “Victorian Rose” for the weekend of August 27th, to have a family reunion for Mrs. Musser's birthday. Over the next several months Doris and Sue worked out the details and confirmed the date for Saturday August 28th. The family arrived Saturday afternoon and set up for an outdoor meal on the large porch. They grilled large steaks and had a large assortment of food and beverages. In the evening, for several hours they showed slides of their youth and growing up here. They shared with us some of their deeds and misdeeds.

When they left on Sunday, including Mrs. Musser, they all were ecstatic with the opportunity that most of us will never have, and that is, for even a short period of time they were able to reclaim their youth!

In attendance:
Mrs. Ruth Musser & gentleman friend.
Sue (Musser) Miller and spouse.
Charles “Chuck “ Musser and spouse.
James “Jim” Musser and spouse.
Janet (Musser) Allen and spouse.
Family friend of the Musser girls

Submitted by Doris L Tyson, "The Victorian Rose"

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Christmas in Lancaster, PA

Christmas is in the air and the cold days have everyone in Lancaster PA hoping for a white Christmas. The holiday season is a wonderful time to take that romantic weekend getaway or family vacation that you’ve been meaning to take all year. Just imagine sitting in front of a warm fireplace with a cup of hot cocoa and laughing with the family. Or looking out the window and seeing the rolling hills of Lancaster Amish Country with a fresh coat of snow. You’ll also get personal dinner recommendations and have your concert tickets reserved for you. But the best part of these vacations is sleeping in and having a gourmet breakfast prepared for you! Where can you find this hospitality and comforts of home, you may ask? At 41 unique bed and breakfasts of Lancaster Pennsylvania you can be pampered and get in the Christmas spirit with all the local events and shows.

Heading into the Christmas season there are plenty of shows and concerts to get you in the Christmas spirit! Of all the shows I’ve seen in Lancaster, I’ve been amazed at the talent and creativity that goes into each performance. The American Music Theatre presents their original Christmas show through December 30. It will be another exciting show of singers, dancers, and even a children’s choral and dance group.

Sight and Sound’s Millennium Theatre is showing the Miracle of Christmas. This show recounts the story of the kings, angels, and a faithful couple with brand-new sensory experiences. At the Living Waters Theatre, Voices of Christmas, celebrates the joyful season with carols, dances, animals, costumes, music, and stories.

For more traditional organ singalongs and choral ensembles, Longwood Gardens features daily performances throughout the Christmas season. While you’re there, make sure to visit the beautiful gardens, fountains, and Christmas trees!

As you can see there are plenty of shows to see in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. You just might have to plan more than one visit to see all of the performances! Contact an Authentic innkeeper of one of the bed breakfast inns to book your stay and inquire about reserving tickets for one or more of these shows. Let them take care of the details so you can enjoy your winter vacation!

Adamstown Inns & Cottages

Monday, September 27, 2010

Happenings at Wolf Sanctuary of Pennsylvania

It has been said that “the best wolf habitat resides in the human heart.” Perhaps it is also that the best habitat for our own wildness resides in the heart of the Wolf.

With all there is to do in Lancaster County, would you imagine that there is a Wolf Sanctuary only minutes from downtown Lititz? The tours are walking tours. They last about an hour - sometimes a little longer if the group is larger and there are many questions. This is an all-walking tour that starts with an introduction of how the sanctuary was formed and wolf facts. Your guide will then take you from one pack to the next introducing you to our wolves and answering questions as they are asked.

There are special events throughout the year and holidays tours for the public. Like our Music and Art fest every June and Wolf Awareness Day every October. We also do Full moon tours once every month on the Saturday closest to the full moon.

October 10, 2010, 11am to 3pm. Wolf Sanctuary is observing wolf awareness week on this day. Cost is $10 per person children 12 and under free (yes you read that right) The Myopics a swinging acoustic trio based in Lititz PA. will be performing. There will be barbeque chicken for sale and kettle corn, games for the kids, balloons and face painting. Of course it’s all about the wolves. Come with lots of questions.

October 23, 2010, 7:30pm to 10pm. $20 per person. No children under 16 permitted
Full Moon tour with our wolves and special appearance by Steve Anderson!
Tales From Poe Just in time for Halloween, come and experience stories from—and the story of—one of Pennsylvania’s great authors, Edgar Allan Poe. Experience the madness of “The Tell-Tale Heart,” the grief of “Annabel Lee,” and the obsession of “The Raven.” Meet Mr. Poe in first person, and find out what led him to create such bizarre and chilling stories. Developed with support from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and Jump Street Arts Development.

Don’t forget there are weekend tours on Saturday and Sunday.. http://www.wolfsancpa.com/toursandevents.html. Check the calendar for up-to-date information!

Submitted by Dawn Darlington, Speedwell Forge Bed and Breakfast

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Lancaster County Hosts Art Festivals and Craft Shows EVERY weekend through mid-September

Late Summer is definitely the time for Art and Craft Festivals in Lancaster County. Lititz, Mt. Gretna, Lancaster and Ephrata are all homes to annual festivals that vendors and visitors alike look forward to each year. Every festival is unique, but one thing is certain... art lovers will find a great variety of works while enjoying charm of Lancaster County.

Here's a run-down of the shows coming up between mid-August and mid-September:


Lititz Rotary Craft Show: Saturday, August 14, 2010. 8:00 am – 4:00 pm. Location: Lititz Springs Park, 18 N Broad St. Lititz PA 17543.

One of the biggest and most popular craft shows on the east coast, the Lititz Rotary Club's Craft Show brings downtown Lititz to a halt. Over 700 crafters line Lititz Springs Park as well as Broad and Main Streets with booths of interesting crafts and artwork. Parking is well orchestrated and trolleys run often.


Mount Gretna Art Show: August 21 – 22, 2010. 9:00 am – 6:00 pm Saturday, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm Sunday, Rain or Shine. The show is presented under the oaks of the Chautauqua section of Mount Gretna between Route 117 and Pennsylvania Avenue. www.mtgretnaarts.com

Every year, during the third weekend of August, this community of some 700 homes and cottages suddenly springs to life, welcoming 285 artists chosen through juried competition and 20,000 visitors who—by their presence—acknowledge the role that art plays in their homes, hearts, and lives.


The Weathervane Art Show: August 28, 2010 from 10:00 am – 4:00 pm. The Landis Valley Museum Store is hosting this special day for local artists and craftspeople to demonstrate and sell their work. Food will also be available for purchase. Location: 2451 Kissel Hill Road, Lancaster, PA 17601. www.landisvalleymuseum.org

Artists participating in the event include: Bob Broome (Basket Making), Jen Cavalcante (Photography), Ed Guion (Woodworking, Birdhouse), David Haneman (Pen & Ink drawings), Trudy Kauffman (Scherenschnitte), Mike Keller (Redware Pottery), Margie Maninger (Watercolors), Bob Marquardt (Shaker Boxes).


The Longs Park Arts & Crafts Festival: Labor Day Weekend Friday through Monday, September 3–6, 2010, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm. The festival is in Long’s Park, a lovely, 80-acre park on the northwest edge of Lancaster City. It is conveniently situated at 1441 Harrisburg Pike, off the Route 30 bypass at the Park City Center exit. www.longspark.org/art.html

Experience one of America’s leading fine art and craft shows. The four-day long Long’s Park Art & Craft Festival takes place each Labor Day weekend in a beautiful city park on the edge of Downtown Lancaster. Showcasing 200 top artists and craftspeople from across the United States, Canada and beyond, the show juries applications from more than 1,000 annually. All proceeds benefit the free Long’s Park Summer Music Series.

37th Annual Art & Craft Festival & Restaurant Fair: September 11, 2010 from 9:00 am – 3:00 pm. Downtown Square, Ephrata.

This festival offers more than 200 artisans displaying arts and crafts plus local restaurants offering favorite foods. Exhibits will include all types of handmade art and craft work. All work must be original, not produced commercially or from kits, and must be for sale (unless displayed in the Commercial Vendor area.) Arts and crafts displays will be placed on the East and West Main Streets and South State Streets in Ephrata. Commercial vendor displays will be placed on North State Street. Demonstrations are encouraged.

Submitted by Rebecca Gallagher, Historic Smithton Inn

Thursday, June 17, 2010

The Natural Side of Lancaster County

From neighborhood parks to strenuous hiking trails, Lancaster County offers numerous opportunities to explore the scenic beauty of the county’s natural resources. If you enjoy listening to the birds, sitting by the stream, photographing wildlife or walking through the woods, there are locations near each of our Authentic Bed and Breakfasts. Just ask your hosts!

As hiking enthusiasts, we have a few favorites around the county that we visit whenever we have a chance. At Chiques Rock Park located between Marietta and Columbia, you can walk to the outcropping which is 200 feet above the Susquehanna River. You’ll find wonderful views of the river, Marietta and neighboring York County. There are other trails within the 422 acre park. 
And just like New York City, Lancaster has a Central Park. But ours has a Covered Bridge! The 544 Acres includes 14 miles of trails from easy to moderate difficulty.

If you are looking for trails for the more experienced hiker, try Susquehannock State Park in the southern part of the county. Five miles of trails from easy to difficult wander through the 224 acre park. Our favorite, the Rhododendron Trail, is steep and rocky and in full bloom from late June to early July.

Come explore the beauty of Lancaster County’s numerous parks, natural areas, preserves and rail trails. And keep an eye out for the local wildlife including eagles, hawks, indigo buntings, owls, bluebirds, deer, fox, and coyote, just to name a few!

Submitted by Lark and Michael McCarley, Lovelace Manor B&B

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Beat The Heat in Lancaster County

The north east is experiencing some serious heat these days... which got me thinking about strategies for experiencing Lancaster County while avoiding the whole 'baking in the summer sun' thing! Here are my thoughts:

1. I love exploring the Amish farms and learning about Amish culture by buggy, and while all the buggies around here are air conditioned (by opening windows that is!!), there are other great ways to see the area. The Amish Farm and House has a terrific bus tour with nice big windows, knowledgeable drivers, comfy seats and serious AC. Or, go to Old Order Amish Tours on Eastbrook Road in Ronks and have an old order Mennonite guide ride along with you in your own car to show you the area.

2. I scream, you scream.... Yep, this is dairy farming country so I highly recommend grabbing an ice cream cone somewhere, and my favorite place is Lapp Valley Farm. You can go right to the farm where the cows were milked to make your ice cream, or if you prefer, you can go to their retail location at Kitchen Kettle Village to get a little shopping in while you're at it.

3. Which brings me to shopping, and Lancaster County has terrific shopping! There are plenty of bargains at the Rockvale and Tanger outlets. Or you could do some antiquing in Adamstown, check out the quaint shops in Lititz or take advantage of unique shops in Ephrata, including Ten Thousand Villages!

4. There are certain advantages to living in the "bread basket of the US"... While we're avoiding the heat, our local farmers are harvesting wonderful crops of berries, peaches, corn, spinach, peppers... the list goes on... and our local restaurants take advantage of this. Ben Ash, chef at the Black Horse Tavern recently posted photos of himself picking berries at one of our local 'pick your own' farms... gotta love it! There are a host of restaurants to choose from who 'buy fresh, buy local'... where you can eat in the splendidly cool indoors!

5. And finally, what better way to top off a day of exploring than catching a concert or theater performance! American Music Theater, Sight and Sound, Dutch Apple Dinner Theater, Stitches Comedy Club, Fulton Opera House, Ephrata Performing Arts Center, Mt. Gretna Theater, Hershey Theater... the list goes on. No matter what your taste, we've got a show for you. They don't call us the "Little Apple" for nothing!!!

So come and beat the heat in Lancaster County... you won't be disappointed.

Submitted by Rebecca Gallagher, Historic Smithton Inn.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Lancaster County Authentic Whoopie Pie Recipe

Whoopie pies are a favorite Lancaster County recipe. This is the traditional chocolate variation, but you'll find many other flavors throughout the county.

Whoopie Pies

1 C. shortening
2 egg yolks
1 C. hot water
2 C. sugar
2 tsp.baking powder
1 C. cocoa
2 eggs
1 C. sour milk
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. baking soda
4 C. flour

Make a paste of hot water and cocoa. In large mixing bowl, beat shortening, sugar, egg yolks and cocoa mixture. Sift together flour, salt and baking soda. Add to mixture; alternating with sour milk. Drop by spoonfuls onto greased cookie sheet Bake at 400* for 8 minutes.

Filling:

2 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp.10x sugar
1 1/2 C. Crisco
2 egg whites, beaten
4 tsp. flour
4 tbsp. milk
3 1/2 C. 10x sugar

Beat egg whites stiff. Add flour, milk and 2 tsp. 10x sugar, beat. Add remaining 10x sugar (3 1/2 cups)and Crisco; beat well. Fill cookies.

Submitted by Linda Kromer, Kromer's Bed and Breakfast

Monday, May 24, 2010

Downtown Lancaster offers wonderful Theater and Gardens

The beautiful and historic Fulton Opera House is closing their season with “Phantom” starting June 3rd and running through July 4th. This version is from the book written by Arthur Kopit and the Music & Lyrics created by Maury Yeston. The Fulton Opera House, considered to be the nation's oldest continuously operating theatre, is one of only eight theatres to be named a National Historic Landmark. We have enjoyed all of the shows and look forward to opening night of the Phantom.

For those interested in gardens and historic homes, put the House and Garden Tour on your calendar. It is June 12th & 13th and this year visitors will have exclusive access to both the home and garden of unique Lancaster locations. The "House and Garden Tour" will feature the hosts' creative expression in gardening, as well as in interior design, restoration and remodeling projects, and art and antique collecting. Hours are 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (rain or shine). Tickets are $18 when purchased the day of the tour. We have enjoyed seeing the homes in previous tours and again look forward to getting some fresh air and seeing the homes and gardens on this year’s tour.

Submitted by Janis & Ann
King’s Cottage B&B

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Spring in Lancaster County

Ahhhhh! Spring in Lancaster County! I sat in the two feet deep windows sills of our Bed and Breakfast for the first time since fall...I could smell the freshness of the land and see the birds above me flying in V formation towards the northern end of Lancaster County. All around our B and B, Amish and Mennonite farmers are preparing the soil for bountiful crops.

Our Old Order Mennonite neighbors daughter, Miriam plays alongside of our beautiful adopted Haitian daughter, Taicha. They are picking flowers and racing around our big yard. Occasionally I am amazed at how unusual this scene is. And it makes me grateful once again for the end of winter (and mounds of snow!) and beginning of Spring.

Written by Kristen Hertzog, Hertzog Homestead Bed and Breakfast

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Local Bed and Breakfasts Welcome the First Annual Lancaster County Flower Show

It’s that time of year to start thinking about flowers for the Bed and Breakfast…I keep telling myself this as I look out back here in Lancaster County at the last of the snow slowly melting away. It seems that this year for some reason or other I just cannot wait to get out into the yard.

Each Spring Lancaster County seems to come to life with color. The first of the plants to go out are the pansies. All those fancy colors seem to brighten the grey early Spring mornings. And from there, it continues till the fall.

If you can't find what you are looking for in Lancaster County in the way of flowers, then perhaps you just may not need it! The varieties are endless, the colors are many and the beauty is beyond your dreams. The countryside of Lancaster County is dotted with greenhouses and nurseries. The choices are many and I find myself having to go to all of them in search of the elusive Himalayan Blue Poppy. I still have not found it!

This year I hope to find it at Lancaster’s new event… the first annual Lancaster County Flower Show. The New Holland Rec. Center will host this annual event. With the help of the Country Gardeners of Eastern Lancaster County, this promises to be an action-packed event for the garden enthusiast.

The show will have plenty of activities over the course of three days. From exhibits and speakers to demos and live music, the flower show will prove to be the "go to" event in Lancaster County for any gardener.

The garden show is scheduled for April 15 – 18. To find out more about the show visit the website at www.lancastercountyflowershow.com Happy Planting!

Submitted by Carl Kosko, Harvest Moon Bed and Breakfast

Monday, March 8, 2010

2010 Tour de Tanks of the Wineries on the UnCorkYork Wine Trail

You are invited to 14 area wineries to experience the ultimate wine tasting in Pennsylvania! Located in the center of Pennsylvania’s #1 tourist region, the featured wineries can be found in York, Lancaster, Gettysburg and Harrisburg areas. Taste the new vintages before they are bottled. Meet with the winemakers and learn the process of winemaking.

This special tour will be held on Saturdays and Sundays, beginning March 6th through March 28, from the hours of 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Purchase your ticket for $20 at the participating wineries. Your ticket is good for the whole month, and includes a wine tasting glass and a 10% discount on wine purchases. Visit 5 or more wineries, and enter to win great prizes.

Participating Wineries:
Adams County Winery, Orrtanna, PA www.adamscountywinery.com
Allegro Vineyards, Brogue, PA www.allegrowines.com
Cullari Vineyards & Winery, Hershey, PA www.cullari-vineyards.com
Four Springs Winery, Seven Valleys, PA www.fourspringswinerypa.com
Fox Ridge Vineyard & Winery, York, PA www.foxridgewinery.com
Hauser Estate Winery, Biglerville, PA www.hauserestate.com
Hummingbird Ridge Winery, York Haven, PA www.hummingbirdridgewinery.com
Moon Dancer Vineyard & Winery, Wrightsville, PA www.moondancerwinery.com
Naylor Wine Cellars, Stewartstown, PA www.naylorwine.com
Nissley Vineyards & Winery, Bainbridge, PA www.nissleywine.com
Reid’s Orchard & Winery, Orrtanna, PA www.reidsorchardwinery.com
Tamanend Winery, Lancaster, PA www.tamanendwinery.com
Waltz Vineyards Estate Winery, Manheim, PA www.waltzvineyards.com (Saturday tasting, only)
West Hanover Winery, Harrisburg, PA www.westhanoverwinery.com

More information can be found at: www.uncorkyork.com

Written by Pam Fritz, B. F. Hiestand House

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Lancaster County's Best Kept Secrets Tour 2010

Come, relax and stay at one of our 38 Authentic Bed and Breadkfasts in Lancaster County. Enjoy a good night’s sleep and a sumptuous breakfast then explore, shop and dine at some of Lancaster County’s best kept secrets.

This shopping, food and fun tour will take you to 35 of Lancaster County’s unique and off-the-beaten path businesses.

Your “ticket” to this 2 week event, encompassing 3 weekends, is a tour bag with a guide describing each business and a map showing its location, and coupons from every business participating,. There will be special discounts, drawings, demonstrations or a gift only for tour goers.

What businesses will be participating?

That’s the secret!

There will be home furnishings and gift stores, antique stores, quilt and fabric stores, farm markets, a winery, florals and crafts and cafes.

Go where you want, when you want. The cost for your fun tour bag is $6, $1 of which goes to a local organization serving people with special needs.

This event is very popular. Call Melissa at Carson’s in the Cornfields at 717-354-7343 and reserve your ticket.

You don’t want to miss it!

Submitted by Dolores Walter, Richmond House Bed and Breakfast

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Authentic Passport to Lancaster County

Come to Lancaster County and enjoy the savings! The innkeepers of the Authentic Bed and Breakfast Association of Lancaster County invite you to participate in our Passport Program.

In 2008 we “launched” this program at the PA Dutch Convention and Visitors Bureau and invited Lancaster area businesses to partner with us to offer our guests special discounts when they visit our area. It was a wonderful event and well received by the business community.

And now our guests can benefit in two ways: receive exclusive discounts at more than 70 participating Lancaster area shops, restaurants and attractions starting with your first stay and receive a $50 discount on your 5th stay at one of our 38 Authentic B&Bs. Stay at three or more of our participating B&Bs to receive the 5th stay discount.

Many of our guests have enjoyed the savings offered by our business partners and some have already redeemed their passport for their $50 lodging discount. This program will run through the end of 2013.

To our current passport holders that have acquired stamps on a passport that was to expire Dec 2010, we will honor your passport thru 2013.

Visit us at www.authenticbandb.com/passport.htm to learn more about the Passport Program and see many of our business partners. We look forward to being your hosts in beautiful Lancaster County and to make your stay memorable with our knowledge of things to see and do and sites not to be missed. Come visit us soon.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Folktales, History, and a Latte

What do Captain Barnabas Hughes, Johnny Appleseed, Davey Crockett, King Arthur and The Three Little Pigs have in common? Okay, first you might ask who in the world is Captain Barnabas Hughes? Captain Barnabas Hughes was the founder of Elizabethtown, PA which he named after his wife Elizabeth, but that doesn’t really help you figure out the riddle. While that may get you thinking that the answer might have to do with a place, it is still not much of a clue. Okay, here it is….They are all delicious sandwich creations that are served at the newest coffee shop in Elizabethtown, Folklore Coffee And Company located at 1 North Market St.

Owners Ryan & Dawn Bracken are dedicated to providing an atmosphere you’ll tell tales about. It is a charming place filled with local art and serving locally roasted coffee by craft roaster, Josh Steffy of Square One Coffee in Lancaster.

The creative menu offers breakfast items-bagels, homemade organic baked oatmeal, yogurt served with or without granola & fresh seasonal fruit. Their lunch menu offers organic soups, salads, wraps and sandwiches made with locally homemade organic breads and scrumptious looking desserts. The drink menu is also varied and intriguing. They serve smoothies and many other specialty drinks, including a Hansel & Gretel Chai which I can say was out of this world. Folklore Coffee And Company also features live music. http://www.folklorecoffee.com/

Hours are: 7am – 9 pm Monday through Friday and 8am – 11pm on Saturday.

Tickets are now on sale for an upcoming concert :
Sherwood with special guests Hot Chelle Rae, Black Gold, and Reece. March 13th 7pm
Tickets $10 Advance/$12 at the door
Call 717-361-1658 or e-mail folklorecoffeco@gmail.com for more information.

Submitted by Ann Royer Amanda Gish House Bed & Breakfast

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Middle Creek and Thousands of Geese

Would you be interested in seeing a natural phenomenon that takes place every year in Northern Lancaster County that involves thousands upon thousands of Snow Geese? In a little over one month (starting mid-February running through mid-March) flocks of Snow Geese on their northern migration will be arriving at Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area located in Kleinfeltersville, PA.

Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area is a 6,254-acre area, owned and operated by the Pennsylvania Game Commission. The area is set aside for the protection, propagation, management, preservation, and controlled harvest of wildlife. They have wonderful hiking trails and it’s a haven for bird watchers and photographers. You can even take a Self-Guided Driving Tour of the area. We’ve also enjoyed riding our bikes through the natural landscape. The visitor center is free and features wildlife and environment displays. It’s ideal for an individual needing reconnaissance of nature or a family who enjoys the outdoors. Did I mention that they have resident Bald Eagles? For more information their website is http://www.fieldtrip.com/pa/77331512.htm.

Snow Geese breed in the Arctic Tundra and winter in farmlands, lakes and coastal areas in the American south, southwest and east coast. These geese occur only in North America, and make an annual round trip journey of more than 5,000 miles at speeds of 50 mph or more. Snow Geese winter in immense flocks, sometimes numbering in the tens of thousands. When they take flight, the flock appears as a white cloud or when they are nestled on the ground you may think it’s a snow covered hill (until the snow takes flight).

My personal recommendation would be to take the Willow Point Trail which is paved and only ½ mile from one of the parking lots at Middle Creek Management Area (note that this trail may be closed during waterfowl hunting). At the Willow Point Trail you are able to walk out so that the lake wraps around either side of where you are. The geese are noisy but just take the time to wait for them to become unsettled and listen and watch thousands of Snow Geese take off in flight from the water all at the same time just feet from where you’re standing – what a phenomenon.

Submitted by Liz Ehrhart, Furnace Hills Bed and Breakfast