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Pennsylvania – Scranton welcomes you! by Ann Treacy
July 10, 2016, 4:47 pm
Filed under: Pennsylvania

We spent the night in Scranton – mostly because it was more than halfway to NYC but also because it was the home to The Office.

We learned that Northern Pennsylvania is mountainous – and has some awesome sunsets.

We actually stayed in Wilkes Barre, home to the Seven Tubs nature scene. Very pretty and very much like Northeast Minnesota. And we toured the town a little – enough to see an old school YMCA (with a “men’s entrance”) and of course some bits of art.

We capped off PA with a picture with the iconic Scranton road sign. They actually moved it to the Mall at Steamtown, because too many people were hopping out of their cars to get the picture on the side of the highway.

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Hershey PA: the road to chocolate by Ann Treacy
March 5, 2012, 3:45 am
Filed under: Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia

We woke up in Pittsburgh. Kate realized that Dance Moms was filmed in Pittsburgh – so we took a detour, an unexpectedly long detour to the Abby Lee Dance Studio. Luckily for some of us it was closed – but it didn’t stop us from getting pictures. And I suspect it may be a trip highlight for some travelers. It was kind of interesting to drive through suburban Pittsburgh. There were lots of windy roads, pretty narrow roads and some nice houses and some not so nice houses. But it definitely didn’t feel like driving through Mac Groveland!

Then from Pittsburgh to Hershey PA. The World of Chocolate was fun. We started by making our personalized candy bars. We got to choose our flavors and design our labels. I realize that I was in the minority in choosing white chocolate (turns our white chocolate really isn’t chocolate – but it’s still my fave). It was fun to get an idea of the process of making a candy bar.

We took the free tour of the history of chocolate, which was cheesy but fun – and a perfect filler while we waited for our next activity – a chocolate tasting class. I wasn’t sure what I was expecting, but I wasn’t expecting to learn as much. We learned that it takes about 10 days to make a regular Hershey bar – from field to wrapper. The darker chocolate and higher quality bars take longer. The Bliss chocolate takes 30 days to make. I was surprised how much I liked the darker chocolate when I took the time to taste it. Although really – white chocolate is still much better – to me.

From the Chocolate World we headed to Richmond. We drove near DC – but it was dark so we basked in the glory of being near DC and enjoyed dinner in a nearby suburb – then on to Richmond where we stayed in a super ritzy resort and conference center. (Thank you Priceline!)

One of the fun parts of the trips has been to see the different terrain as we drive. I took a few good pictures and have included them. And I learned that I shouldn’t live in the mountains – my ears were popping the whole time. I guess that’s the Great Plans upbringing.

State visited today: PA, MD, VA



Rock & Roll Hall of Fame by Ann Treacy
March 4, 2012, 4:28 pm
Filed under: Chicago, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania

The day started about a week ago. We started in Chicago. Drove through Indiana, stopped in Cleveland Ohio for lunch and a tour of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and now we’re sleepy in Pittsburgh. That’s three new states that the girls and I have never visited. (Grandpa has – in fact he mention that the last time he drove this path was September 12, 2001; he was stuck in DC for 9/11 and decided to just start driving West to get home.)

We had lunch at the Great Lakes Brewing Company. It came recommended and was good – although a little loud. Then we headed to the Rock & Roll Museum.I suspect that Grandpa and I may have enjoyed the Museum more than the girls – at least one was a little crushed not to find Justin Bieber anywhere. Sadly you can’t take pictures through most of the museum – but here are some of out highlights (in no particular order):

  • Boy Scout uniform from Jim Morrison
  • Pictures from T Edwards radio program. (Including a picture of Dion; someone remembered when Dion played in Winona.)
  • Album covers from the Midwest including the following: Babes in Toyland, Prince, Husker Du, Jayhawks, Replacements, including a flyer from a show at 7th Street (Lily thought it was sad that I had been there in the last month) and that’s all I can remember.
  • ZZ Top drum set – I told Aine that they decorated the drums with their beards; that’s what it looked like anyways.
  • An undipped acid blotter sheet featuring a picture of Janis Joplin.
  • Boots (and guitar) from Johnny Cash.
  • Dress worn by Katy Perry
  • Michael Jackson’s glove & the Thriller mask
  • The giant hotdog that Phish used to land into one of their shows
  • Janis Joplin’s psychedelic car
  • Figures from The Wall (or as Aine says monster/teacher/Dr Einstein moving doll person) So wish I could have gotten a picture of that!

I’ll let you guess who loved each item. Our only sadness was that we didn’t have more time.

States visited: IL, IN, OH, PA




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