Friday, April 19, 2013

17-30 (of 100) Reason why Lititz deserves it's Coolest Small Town of 2013 honor

Spring is arriving in Lititz Pa and the streets are lined with the most beautiful spring blooming trees. Every year when they start to flower I am thankful to be living  a midst such beauty. Our thousands of daffodils here at Swiss Woods are delighting guests and passers by as well as the  forsythia  blooming bright golden along the borders of our property.  Every warm day will bring out more of our floral display and we are not alone.  Many Lititz homes are beautifully landscaped with bright blooms.
As I continue on with the list of 100 I am once again impressed with how much Lititz has to offer.. this cool town of ours.

17. Hoovers Farm Market and Greenhouses located on Erbs Bridge Road is a local favorite. Not only  is the drive across the Erbs bridge,( one of our magnificent covered bridges), beautiful, but the produce here is wonderful much of it home grown.   In addition you can find all the plants you need for your flower boxes, planters and garden in their well stocked greenhouse.
18.  Lititz Historical Society.  With all of the rich history it is not surprising that we have a Historical here.
 The museum, the Jacob Muller House and  gift shop are open for visitors to learn all the details of the varied and deep history of Lititz.  For your next visit be sure to find a
19. The Wolf Sanctuary of PA. We are especially pleased to have this one of a kind sanctuary right in our ‘back yard’. Every month they have a full moon tour in the evening complete with music and a bon fire. Guests rave about this unique experience.
20.  Frizz and Freeze. Every small town worth it’s salt needs a good ice cream place. We have several but I just love the raspberry twist cones they serve here.
21.  Appalachian brewing company.   Make sure if you want to eat here on a weekend that you have reservations!  Great beer, fabulous atmosphere and good food. Right near the Moravian Church Square.
22.  Hendrick’s Flowers. You might ask why a flower shop makes the list.  They are comprised of  6 greenhouses with around 70 varieties of cut flowers and there than the strikingly beautiful and uber fresh arrangements to be had here, they are the only carnation grower left in the United States.  They are located right behind the High School.
23. Moravian Manor and Luther Acres United Zion Home and Audubon Villa.  Within our borders are 4 retirement homes. Count them .. 4. Wow.  Landscaped grounds with excellent care and living facilities, make these wonderful places to retire!
24.  Warwick School District. All 4 of our children graduated from this district so I may be a bit biased. Great administrators and teachers and lots of volunteers.
25.  Andy Smith, artist.  Well known for his beautiful watercolors, his work is one of a kind. We are proud that he calls Lititz, home!
26. Pots by De Perrot.  Steve De Perrot posts some of the most beautiful items. Examples of his work can be found all as part of the Lititz Public Library This is a must see while here as is a visit to his pottery studio.
27. Randolph pottery and school. Not only do they have amazing pottery to purchase, you can sign up for classes here.
28. Dennis Maust Ceramics, just outside of downtown on Fairland Rd. Beautiful pieces. At his open house this year I added a few pieces to my dishes.
29. The Mousetrap.  Woodstream Company, parent company to Vector, is one of our stellar Lititz companies and they make.. yep.. the mousetrap! Right here in Lititz. Who knew! Here is a great article telling how they helped our troops in Afghanistan stay rodent free.
30. Mortons Fine Furniture. Right on Main Street is a small shop that makes some of the most beautiful well crafted furniture you will find anywhere.  Using locally grown sustainable wood, Thomas Morton certainly fits the bill for why Lititz is such a cool small town!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

1-16 (of 100)Reasons why Lititz, PA deserves the title of 'Coolest Small Town in the US'

It has now been a few weeks since the voting finished and from a start of over 900 small towns, narrowed down to 12 finalists, Lititz PA prevailed by a significant margin to win the Coolest Small Town in the US in the competition.   Those of us who live and work here were not surprised. Lititz is amazing from its one end to the other, but trying to convey the “why” to someone who doesn’t live here is difficult if for no other reason than there is just so much to tell. So, I decided to gather 100 reasons why I believe Lititz deserved this honor. I am sure that others could add many more. As I started this project I realized it will not all fit in one blog post so, this is the first of however many it takes for me to tell the “Lititz” story!

1.       Pristine and well kept, Lititz is straight off of a postcard
2.       Location. Lancaster County is well known for its beauty but Lititz is also close to Hershey and a short drive from both Gettysburg and Philadelphia.
3.       Wilber’s.      If you have not experienced a Wilber Bud, you have missed one of the best chocolate experiences ever. The store and museum attached to the factory is a must see.
4.       Lititz Springs Park..  This deserves a whole post all it’s own. The venue for the best 4th of July event  anywhere, along with programs all year long at the bandstand.    Not only is 4th of July home of the Queen of Candles pageant , they also always light the stream with candle towers (hence the name Queen of the Candles)  prior to the best fireworks display anywhere. Other events find there way there throughout the year including family movie nights, an antique show, the annual art show and many more.
5.       Bull’s Head Pub.. OK, I have this one high on the list because it is one of my personal favorites.  If you   You don’t enjoy beer?? No problem. The menu is excellent and the dining room one of our favorites and they have serve wine and cocktails too. Guests love their meals here.
Great beers on tap at the Bulls Head Pub

are trying to learn and understand the craft beer that has swept the US in the last year or so, or want to understand and try some world class cask beers.. this is the place to be. The food is good, the beer is stellar and the bartenders know their stuff.
6.       You didn’t have enough chocolate at Wilbers? Well.. the Chocolate CafĂ©   is next on your list!  Make sure to try their organic no sugar added truffles. Wow.. words will never capture how wonderful these are. 
7.       Pretzels.. Lancaster County is known for pretzels but Lititz has Sturgis, America’s first pretzel bakery.   Just down Main Street across from the Moravian Church, you can twist your own pretzel and learn all about the history of pretzel making. I just love their cheese pretzels.
8.       Linden Hall,   the oldest girls boarding school in her Majesty’s colonies. Don’t you just love that? Founded in 1746 this school has not missed a step. If you want to be impressed check out their fast facts. Any school would be proud of those numbers!! With a diverse student body representing 16 nations and 19 states (including students from Lititz!) Linden Hall is a true cultural experience. Amazing. Located right across the street from the Julius Sturgis Pretzel house on the east side of Lititz. 
Cherry Acres is just one of our favorites
9.       Downtown Main Street.    I would love to mention each and every one of the shops that line Main Street and I may in some later posts. Time and again guests return to the Inn raving about a “find” in one of them. Antiques, fun decorative stuff, funky clothing, vintage clothing, and even.. clocks!  Wander Main Street and it’s tributaries ( Sturgis Lane.. etc) in and out of really exciting and fun small shops.
10.   Great businesses.  Both Clair Brothers and Tait Towers are located in Lititz. One is a sound company, doing sound for some really big names and the other working often in tandem designs sets.  Both are known to Lititz as really amazing wonderful people. Support for the High School and its drama/music presentations as well as the annual 4th of July celebration. I am sure that I d not have a clue of the half that these 2 fine companies contribute to their small town.  And they are not the only ones. I would love to list all of the “big business” we have within our borders, all who contribute resources to help us all thrive.
11.   Our very own farmers market! Every summer on Water Street, farmers and local vendors bring their produce and homemade products to sell at this outdoor market. Raw honey, fresh veggies, amazing baked goods.. Plan to take some home!
12.   Bakeries!  What small town worth it’s salt doesn’t have a few bakeries. Make sure to visit Dosie Dough’s for bagels and coffee. Locals hang out on the patio here to visit and catch up over a good cup of coffee. Then go and pick up a drop dead beautiful cake at … Rebecca’s Heavenly Goodies.  
13.   Savory Gourmet..   it is not every small town that has a shop selling bison, alligator and ostrich steaks! Everyone loves this little shop located right across from Wilber’s that sports a wide variety of exotic meats and some really amazing cheese! Just up the street from Rebecca’s.
14.   Rolex.. let’s just say they have a big presence in Lititz and we are proud to have them here.
15.   The Lititz Watch Technicum teaching the art of Swiss watchmaking! A one of a kind school right here on the edge of town.
16.   The Moravian Church  Starting with the magnificent building that seems to be the center of the Christmas celebrations with their trombone choir carols it is also home to the Moravian Stars that adorn so many homes around Lititz during the holiday season. Moravian Stars .. follow the link to see what they look like and their history, are common here. On our way when our 4 children were small we would count Moravian Stars. Werner would take varying routes on the way home from anywhere to make sure that we got them all. It was not unusual to arrive home with a count well over 100. We love that star and many of our guests purchase one in Lititz before going home.  Take a tour of the beautiful cemetery and find the final resting place of Johan Augustus Sutter.. our most famous resident.. (think gold rush CA.. ask Werner for all the fun details of this  interesting Swiss citizen who is buried in Lititz.  Visiting Lititz the last weekend of April?  Make sure to stop in at the all Moravian Craft show and sale, 9-4 in the Brothers House on Moravian Square.

That is it for the first installment with 16 reasons. Stay tuned for the next 15 reasons that Lititz is cool, and in the meantime plan a trip to Lititz and a stay at Swiss Woods!