The Mt. Gretna Newsletter
Mt. Gretna, Pa. "Not a place, but a spirit."
The sun sets over Mt. Gretna, heralding the end of
another year in a community that more than 1,500 residents now consider
their full-time home. For many, the quiet time of winter is one of the
best -- in truth, a season to savor. --
Jane Mourer photo
Why so many
artists live in Mt. Gretna
ONE thing you can
safely say about Mt. Gretna: There are more artists here per square
inch than most places.
I thought about
that last month after spending time with some of them at gatherings
leading up to the holidays. It's a good thing to have artists around --
not just those who paint and draw, but also those who play music, forge
iron works, write, sculpt and weave. They help shape our world and
widen our view.
Christmas Eve 2012 at
the Hall of Philosophy Earl Lenington
interesting people, even the ones who are quiet. If you're an artist,
you don't have to talk a lot. People just seem to sense that deep
inside something interesting's going on. Whether or not you're not an
artist, it's sometimes nice to listen. You usually go home smarter than
you were before you came.
reminded me recently of the "wise old owl that sat in an oak. The
more he saw, the less he spoke. The less he spoke, the more he heard.
Why can't we be like that wise old bird?"
Not all doctors
are in a hurry. I try to schedule mine at the end of the day, when he
dispenses more wisdom than pills.
Christmas morning 2012.
fellow I met last month told me that he believes almost anyone doing
anything can be an artist. He started out as a machinist. Machinists
are more like sculptors -- sometimes a little temperamental, but always
instructive. Now he's a hairdresser and a superior cook. People who
develop talents in their kitchens are among the best of all artists, I
think. Their creations spring straight from the heart.
Why does Mt. Gretna seem to have more artists per capita than most
places? Lately, they are sprouting up from everywhere -- Timber Hills
and Timber Bridge especially, as well as from traditional havens like
the Campmeeting, Chautauqua and Mt. Gretna
Is it because
artists are attracted here? Or does being here spark long-held creative
impulses? What makes people who've never painted before suddenly want
to paint once they come to Mt. Gretna?
Partly it's probably the ambiance. People like to talk about driving
into Mt. Gretna under a canopy of trees and feeling tensions at the end
of a day melt away. Or walking beneath ice-covered limbs that sparkle
to electrify cold winter mornings when the sun breaks through.
Campmeeting entrance on Christmas Eve 2012
Earl Lenington photo
hearing the peal of a bell at the Tabernacle on a Campmeeting
summer Sunday morning.
It's magical, some say. "Not a place, but a spirit" echoes
Marlin Seiders' familiar reminder.
Yes, all of
that and more.
But I suspect it's
also got a lot to do with the simple joys of personal happiness --
which often come from doing the things that we want to do.
A wise old owl
once told me that his idea of the perfect retirement is doing what he wants to
he wants to do it. That's as good a goal to aim for as any I can think
of, whether or not you're retired.
who live here? All are doing what they want to do. Their happiness
probably rubs off on the rest of us. Maybe that's why we like having
that as a New Year begins can make all your days merry and
Sunday night classical concerts
fortifies Music at
Gretna's new strategy
MUSIC at Gretna will have a new look when the season
opens this summer. Well, maybe not so much of a new look as one that
resembles its origins 38 years ago, when gifted musicians came to the
Playhouse on Sunday nights.
Filling a niche --
"Inexpensive superstars" in a July to early September
festival that returns classical concerts to Sunday nights. Audiences
may be smaller, but success doesn't depend on filling every seat.
That's the positive upside to a near calamity last summer,
when sparse audiences and soaring debts created a financial emergency
that forced Music at Gretna board members to dig into their own
pockets. They quickly came up with $65,000 to pay the bills and assure
that the festival, once heralded by TIME
magazine as "one of six of the best" in America, would
Thanks to a successful winter season (now
in progress at Elizabethtown College) and an outpouring of
financial support from donors, it now looks as if the crisis may have
passed. With an annual operating budget of $300,000, the series will
continue, though on a smaller scale and with an intensified focus on
artists whose performance fees haven't yet caught up with their
talents. "Inexpensive superstars," founder Carl Ellenberger
Perhaps the best outcome of the crisis is a decision to
scatter Sunday night classical concerts from July into early September.
That's a shift from a previous schedule that crammed most of Music at
Gretna's summer season into August. "Even if you're a chamber
music nut, two concerts in one weekend is a challenge,"
acknowledged Ellenberger in an insightful blog.
Rather than 17 concerts, the new summer season will be
scaled back to six classical and perhaps two jazz (including the Black
Eagles) concerts. That schedule, alternating concerts between plays,
required the cooperation of Gretna Theatre. "They've been wonderful,"
says Music at Gretna president Susan Hostetter,
"not just in working with us on the schedule but with good
communications and a close working relationship."
The new strategy also demands a sharp focus on finding
extraordinary talent at bargain prices. While it's easier to fill seats
with big names, "we learned that when we present blockbusters to
make a profit and pay artist fees that in some cases approach the cost
of a BMW, any unexpected event -- a thunderstorm, power outage or miscalculation
An unwavering focus on musical excellence.
Filling that niche with little-known but jaw-dropping
talent may be difficult, but not impossible. "It's not necessary
for us to fill every seat to be successful," says co-director Carl
Kane. "We don't have to have huge crowds and we don't expect
to." He estimates that 225 to 325 patrons at each concert will
cover 40% of the costs, with the remaining 60% coming from private
donors, commercial sponsors and foundations.
Will a new strategy spawned by crisis work? Ellenberger,
Kane, Ms. Hostetter and their colleagues are
resolute. "We asked ourselves, has the time come to settle for
other kinds of 'arts and entertainment'? From our board and supporters came
a resounding 'No' in all the ways they could have expressed it,"
be made directly through the website at http://www.gretnamusic.org or mailed to
Gretna Music, 1 Alpha Drive, Elizabethtown, PA 17022.
TOUGHEST assignment of the Christmas
season? Which of these dubious Saturday morning regulars at the Mt.
Gretna Pizzeria had been good all year? Santa dispatched Carol and Paul
Ceresini, two of his helpers from nearby Mt.
Wilson, to sort through the record books of (from left to right) John
Stein, who drops in from Hershey now and then; retired Air Force
colonel Joe Feather; former elementary school teacher Tom Sheaffer; attorney and Pennsylvania Chautauqua
president John Feather; woodworking wizard Gordy Ebright;
Philhaven family therapy chief Michael
Russell; and (in the foreground) globe-trotting adventurer Val Sarabia and man-about-town Bill Andrews. All got
rewards, none a lump of coal -- a verdict that left onlookers
bewildered, dismayed and scratching their heads.
SQUIRREL-PROOF bird feeders are all the rage. Trouble is, the squirrels may be smarter than the guys who
invent the bird feeders.
Lois Herr, who lives at 210 Lancaster Ave. in the
Chautauqua, found a squirrel she quickly named Houdini at the base of
her bird feeder recently.
She doesn't know how he got in, but she's sure he got out.
Maybe he's curled up in a nest somewhere, writing a book.
It'll probably be a best-seller.
Memo to GPS: You can't get there from here.
IN THE middle of a clear afternoon
last month, the scene startled Mt. Gretnans
out for a stroll. Right before their very eyes, a car slowly wending
its way through the Campmeeting headed
straight for the ditch along Pinch Road.
A first-time visitor from Allentown -- using GPS to locate
8th Street in Lebanon -- somehow found himself approaching Eighth
Street in Mount Gretna's Campmeeting.
Amid the sometimes baffling maze of narrow streets and
pedestrian pathways in this 121-year-old historic district, it's easy
to get confused. Especially when one places complete trust in that
electronic genie known as GPS. Although
he wound up in the culvert, no injuries were reported, save perhaps for
a bruised ego.
feather in the cap for Ceylon Leitzel (inset)
of Timber Hills. Winner of the Lebanon Valley Chamber of Commerce 2012
Community Builder Award, Leitzel operates a
family-owned jewelry business and is the only person ever to have twice
been elected president of the Pennsylvania Jewelers Association. He's
also active in the American Lung Association, Mt. Gretna Cicada
Festival and Rotary Club of Myerstown.
Last year's Community Builder Award winner was another Mt.
Gretnan, Dr. Carl Ellenberger, founder of
Music at Gretna.
Mt. Gretna Newsletter composite photo
Years after the gypsy moth invasion, this is the scene atop Governor
Dick Mountain along Pinch Road. To the left, the Pennsylvania State
Game Lands, where foresters removed 10,721 trees on 53 acres. David
Henry, a regional forester with the Pennsylvania Game Commission, said
last month he's convinced that action "was a sound forest
management and wildlife habitat decision."
At right is Governor Dick Park, where officials cut down
only about 4,000 trees on 67 of the park's 1,105 acres.
Now there are plans to take down additional trees in a
49-acre section of Governor Dick Park near Route 72,
the park's winter newsletter reports. Park board
member Chuck Allwein says 749 sawtimber trees (14" or more in diameter) and
451 cords of pulpwood trees (6" - 9" in diameter) will be
removed. Most are tulip poplars and other trees that "dominate the
forest and keep other trees from maturing," he says.
Some local environmental advocates have questioned the
5 Months: The length of time
Penn Dot estimates that it will take to replace a single span bridge on
Route 117 between Timber Bridge and Colebrook
Construction should begin in early April says Penn Dot
assistant maintenance manager for Lebanon County Chris Miller.
Engineers hope to finish the work before the Mt. Gretna Outdoor Art
Show Aug. 17-18.
While the work is in progress, all traffic between Mt.
Gretna and Colebrook will be directed around Mine and Butler roads, the
same detour used during the art show.
Adult Novels You'll Never Outgrow. NPR's favorites includes
by Elizabeth Wein, who cherishes memories of
growing up in Mt. Gretna Heights with her grandmother, Betty Flocken.
Code Name: Verity
climbed into the No. 10 spot on The
New York Times list of best-selling
young adult novels
last month. "This tale of a spy and a fighter pilot during World
War II is at heart a story about female friendship," says the Times.
$9,000 The premium
that homebuyers are now willing to pay to be closer to scenic rail trails
for walkers, hikers, horseback riders and bicycle enthusiasts,
according to a
study by University of Cincinnati researchers. Thanks for
that news go to John Wengert, who lives just
over the hill and founded the 14.5-mile Lebanon Valley Rail Trail which
has a connecting spur to Mt. Gretna.
A coach for wellness at any age
WHY do so
many people flock to Janice Balmer's health,
wellness and exercise classes?
They're not necessarily looking to lure a mate, slip into
a smaller dress size or make a dazzling impression on the dance
Janice Balmer: "I'm not a
nutritionist or therapist,
but I'm a pretty good coach and cheerleader."
Most are in their 40s, 50s or 60s. A few are in their 70s. They're
happy with who they are and realistic about their goals, says Janice,
now 41. Seventeen years ago, she was 50 pounds heavier than she is
Married with two children and a bustling career, "I
couldn't be happier," she says.
An essential part of what accounts for that happiness is
life with husband Brett, a computer whiz and the son of John and
Susanne Balmer, who live in the Campmeeting.
From their home just south of Governor Dick Park, tucked
inside a 35-acre site off Pinch Road, Brett runs a successful computer
company, based near Denver, Colo.
Their two sons -- Logan, 6 and Chase, 8-1/2 -- also
contribute to their full lives together. "Our main goal is to
raise two fine men," she says. "We think the best gift we can
give them is a good example, which is what our parents gave us."
And what is the gift that attracts mostly women (but
recently, one brave man) to her classes and personal training sessions?
That may be the uplifting experience most feel whenever
they come to one of those happy, energetic classes in the fire hall or
to one-on-one sessions which she usually provides in her home gym. Most
of those who prefer in-home individual sessions, she says, like to come
to her gym for a change of both pace and scenery, in a setting where deer
freely roam and occasional wild turkeys come into view by her pond.
"Most of my clients want to make positive, healthful changes in
their lives," she says. "They simply want to be able to get
down on the floor and play with grandchildren, or come home from a
supermarket and place groceries on the shelf without huffing and
puffing. Some want to ditch bad habits, like loading up on daily doses
of sugar-ladened sodas."
Although she's professionally certified as a group
instructor as well as a personal trainer, Janice thinks she's probably
best at being a coach or cheerleader. Those who attend her classes at
the fire hall are enthusiastic. "You can feel her
energy," said Marcia Judd, who regularly shows up for her Zumba classes in the fire hall.
She's one of perhaps 60 students and clients that stay in touch with
Janice through personal or group sessions from week to week. To join
her classes, go to the website gretnamoves.com.
Gretna Residents: Keep this number handy
power outages occur, call Met-Ed:
MET-ED gives top
priority to outages affecting the greatest numbers of people. Your call
not only helps pinpoint the scope of an outage but may also speed
Make the call
even though your neighbors might also have reported the outage, advise company officials.
hot or cold weather conditions, the Mt. Gretna Fire Company provides
emergency shelter in power outages lasting more than three hours. Bring
medications and medical equipment; a sleeping bag or blanket and
pillows; food for yourself and family members; books, games and other
materials to help pass the time and, if the stay is likely to be for
several days, a change of clothes. Sorry, there are no accommodations
cottage owner with a playful view of the world builds garage studio
with a view
YOU can tell a lot about Mt. Gretnans
by the names they give to their cottages.
Rapunzel? When you run across names like that on the outside, you
may be sure that on the inside are people with a lighthearted view of a
sometimes crazy world. They're an essential part of the Campmeeting, in fact, home to some of Mt. Gretna's
most interesting and fun-loving neighbors.
Lynn Reisinger: Loves Mt. Gretna, where people are
isn't yet a full-time resident there, but he hopes to soon become one.
In the meantime, he's launched two major remodeling projects -- at his
cottage on Second Street and another around the corner, at one of his
two garages. It's a second story loft that will soon become his
studio for pursuits such as a
long-delayed plunge into creative writing.
Studio with view on all four sides.
A Perry County native and
former public school and college instructor in mathematics, Lynn for
the past 27 years has overseen vocational and educational studies for
about 3,500 inmates at the State Correctional Institution in Camp Hill,
25 minutes from his current home near Linglestown.
The switch to Mt. Gretna, he figures, would add only about 15 more
minutes to his daily commute.
It's a price he's willing to pay. After living in a
beach house at Rehoboth, a lodge on a 100-acre site in the Tuscarora
mountains, and a Harrisburg home on Front Street that got flooded every
few years, he's ready for more manageable,
smaller-scale and full-time cottage living
That's why he's building a studio loft. It won't
have running water, a kitchen or bath. But Lynn thinks it'll make a
perfect air-conditioned private retreat, complete with windows on four
sides and a cozy fireplace.
How does he come
A name he gives his
up with names like Rapunzel,
which hangs over the entrance to his other garage? "I just like
the sound," he says. Same goes for "Rumplestiltskin,"
the name given to the cottage he purchased nine years ago from Sally Bomberger, who now lives in the Chautauqua.
"I bought the cottage because of Mt. Gretna's
scenic beauty," he says. "Also because of the summer events
and, of course, the people. People here are smiling in this community,
and I can see why. It's a beautiful place, and I'm fortunate to be a part
Lynn sketched out the initial plans for his studio, then turned them over to a professional designer.
"The guys now building my garage tell me they get a lot of
questions. They also took an unofficial poll: 80% of the people who've
seen it like the idea, 10% hate it, and the other 10% are still
scratching their heads," says Lynn, smiling.
THOSE 385 or so Mt. Gretnans who live in Timber Bridge, Timber Hills
and Conewago Hill may want to drop in at the
South Londonderry Twp. supervisors' meetings in Campbelltown
over the next few months. A
long-range comprehensive plan
dealing with neighborhood planning, farmland preservation,
transportation, water quality and environmental concerns is now headed
toward a final vote. Those for and against the proposal, sometimes
called the Roth Plan, are turning out in large numbers to make their
voices heard, the Lebanon Daily News reports.
Although the supervisors usually meet on second Tuesdays
of the month, their next session will be held on Monday, Jan. 7. The
planning commission meets on third Tuesdays (next, Jan. 15); both
normally take place at 7 pm in the Municipal Building, 20 W. Market St.
in Campbelltown. Next month, however,
supervisors plan to hold their meeting at the Timbers in Mt. Gretna on
Wednesday, Feb. 13, starting at 7 pm.
In neighboring North Londonderry Twp., supervisors
a similar proposal,
the newspaper reported.
SELF-DEFENSE classes for seniors start Monday, Jan. 21 at
Cornwall Manor. The sessions teach how to reduce the risk of physical
assault, combat scams, avoid ID theft and other threats that the elderly
sometimes face. Presented without charge by Cornwall Police Dept., the
15-hour course runs 10 am-noon Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays through
Feb. 8. Open to all seniors (whether or not they live at Cornwall
Manor). For details, email administrator and co-instructor Stephanie
Burris, email@example.com, tel. 274-2071.
JOB OPENING next month at the Governor Dick Nature Center
just off Pinch Road. This part-time (12 to 15 hours a week) post calls
for public relations, scheduling, advertising and financial
record-keeping duties (QuickBooks knowledge a plus); also occasionally
teach school groups, update website, supervise weekend staff and
volunteers, and serve as secretary to the Governor Dick Park board.
Ideal for someone in Mt. Gretna. Send resume -- P.O. Box 161, Mt.
Gretna, PA 17064.
Every year, Penny must
face a panel of tough-minded 4-year-olds
Think global warming's
EVERYBODY knows one thing for
sure: The only treat better than homemade chocolate chip cookies and
hot coffee on a cold winter's day is chocolate chip cookes
and coffee served by a groundhog.
Of course, that only happens
once a year in Pennsylvania. And your best chance of finding them on
Saturday, Feb. 2 is in Mount Gretna, so don't waste time looking
elsewhere for handouts from, say, Punxsutawney Phil or Octoraro Orphie.
No, the place to be on
Groundhog Day is along Route 117 in front of Penn Realty's offices.
Penny, the gregarious groundhog, makes her annual appearance, looks for
her shadow and issues her go-to-the-bank-on-it prognostication for the
With Groundhog Day on a
Saturday this year, Penny will have to alter her plans a bit. She'll
show up for her nursery school inquisition a day earlier than usual, on
Friday, Feb. 1 around 11 am. That's where she faces that panel of
tough-minded questioners whose incisive probes rival those of the
Washington, D.C. press corps. Since groundhogs can't talk, teacher
Joanne Gingrich (wife of Mt. Gretna's assistant postmaster) serves as
Questions will likely
include whether Penny has children, where she lives, why her fur has a
vaguely familiar scent of moth balls and -- since groundhogs are
vegetarians -- what she eats if hot dogs are simply out of the
question. On one snowy day a few years ago, Penny showed up in
galoshes, a credibility-stretching glitch that required fancy verbal
footwork. Nothing's quite so hard to quell as a surging tide of doubt
among suspicious four-year-olds.
As for Feb. 2, look for her in
front of the Penn Realty offices along Route 117 from 9 to 11am,
serving her grown-up fans, waving to passing motorists and getting the
most out of a custom-tailored winter outfit that then goes back in the
closet, moth balls and all.
Col. John Theodore Kramers (1917-2012)
John Theodore Kramers, a retired U.S. Army colonel who had lived
in Mt. Gretna Heights with his wife of 14 years, Ellen, died Dec. 4 in
Elizabethtown at age 95. He had been a distinguished World War II
officer, participating in major battles in Europe and Northern Africa.
Following his retirement from military service, he enjoyed a second
career until age 86 as a stockbroker with Wachovia Securities in
Lebanon. He was preceded in death by his wife of 46 years, June Werner Kramers. A complete obituary appears online.
Music at Gretna
founder Carl Ellenberger's tribute, citing Kramers'
with the composer Richard Stauss and the late
Dave Brubeck, also appears online.
Frederick O. Seltzer
Perhaps too few
of us have had the benefit of appreciating their home town from both
sides of a road that runs alongside the seven distinct neighborhoods
familiarly known as Mt. Gretna. Fred Seltzer, who died on Dec. 13, was
one of them. He and wife Linda moved to Timber Hills in 1970. Eighteen
years later, they built a home in the Chautauqua.
survivors are daughter Rebekah, who grew up in Mt. Gretna and still
attends church here, her husband Dev Idgunji, a granddaughter, Katherine Elizabeth Idgunji, and a soon-to-be grandson Samuel Frederick
For 42 years,
wherever he went he was fully engaged in Mt. Gretna life: as a member
of the municipal water authority, a volunteer and usher at the
Playhouse, and as a ticket distributor and money collector for the
outdoor art show. He also helped out at the Campmeeting
playground, converting an ordinary trash can into a Pig's House,
painting the shuffleboards and building picnic tables. That wooden
cross outside the entrance to Mt. Gretna United Methodist Church in the
Campmeeting? Fred created it. "He simply
loved Mt. Gretna," says Linda, whom he met when they were co-eds at
Elizabethtown College, where he starred in soccer and as captain of the
baseball team. A lifelong Philadelphia Phillies fan who followed their
fortunes throughout the farm system from Clearwater to Reading, he also
loved the children he taught as a reading instructor and later as an
administrator in a 32-year career in education. It was a full and
rewarding life. A
complete obituary appears online.
& Stuff to
Italian Night Jan. 19
for winter stroll
Jane Mourer photo
TUESDAY JAN. 1:
New Year's Day
special: A pork and sauerkraut dinner at the Mt. Gretna Pizzeria
(following breakfast), 10 am to 3 pm.
return to Le Sorelle
FRIDAY, JAN. 4:
Sorelle Porch & Pantry
reopens for winter weekends (with Friday
mornings a favorite of locals, when it's easier to find a seat).
Breakfast and lunch menus Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, 8 am to 1
Italian Night at
the Firehall. It's Jason Brandt's annual
pasta spectacular. . . with meatballs the way
only (former Hideaway owner) Brandt can make them.
Italian bread and mouth-watering desserts in this eat-what-you-want,
pay-what-you-want extravaganza that the firefighters hope will be a big
fundraiser to kick off the 2013 season. Starting at 4, continuing
through 7 pm.
MONDAY, JAN. 21:
R.A.D., a class in self-defense for
seniors, begins with sessions scheduled on Mondays, Wednesdays and
Fridays through Feb. 8. No charge for these classes,
sponsored by Cornwall Police Dept. Learn how to reduce risks of
physical assault, combat scams and avoid ID theft. For details, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 274-2071. 10 am - noon at Cornwall Manor.
Mt. Gretna's new year-round
calendar appears online,
a service of the Mt. Gretna Arts Council. Email listings and updates to
Jennifer Veser Besse
newsletters of interest:
Updates -- Issued as warranted to alert local residents
to such matters as temporary road closings, utility repairs, shelter
advisories for adverse weather and other conditions affecting people
who live in the seven neighborhoods served by the Mt. Gretna post
office. Send an e-mail request, with "LOCAL UPDATES" in
subject line, to
This Week in
Mt. Gretna -- Issued during summer months; a week-by-week
listing of local events, sent by e-mail on request. To add your name to
the mailing list, e-mail email@example.com
Arts Council Newsletter -- Now available only online
(no mailed copies). Updated to include news concerning groups dedicated
to the arts in Mt. Gretna, Calendar of Events, Summer
Premier and Arts Council scholarships. Click
bulletins -- E-mailed updates on concert events, schedule
changes and other news. See "Join Our Mailing List" at http://gretnamusic.org/
Area Historical Society Newsletter -- Online at http://www.mtgretnahistory.org/newsletter.php
Bible Festival Newsletter -- Mailed in the spring and
fall without charge. Send request to Bible Festival, P.O. Box 408, Mt.
Gretna, PA 17064.
Park Newsletter -- Online and by e-mail. See
Police Department E-Mail Bulletins -- issued as
warranted to update residents on events of
community interest, including crime alerts. To add your name to the
mailing list, e-mail request to firstname.lastname@example.org
Londonderry Township Newsletter -- of primary interest to Mt. Gretnans in Timber Hills, Conewago
Hill and Timber Bridge; online at http://southlondonderry.org/
Campmeeting Newsletter -- Available online
mailed to residents.
Heights Newsletter -- e-mailed to Heights residents.
Address inquiries to Michelle Shay, email@example.com
PLACE YOU NEVER HEARD OF
WHENEVER I'm someplace a long way from Mt. Gretna, people
occasionally ask me where I'm from. I usually say, "Oh, a little
town in Central Pennsylvania that you probably never heard of."
"Where's that?" they sometimes ask.
"Near Hershey," I say, confident that
everybody thinks they know where Hershey, Pa. is, even if they really
don't. Eating a lifetime's worth of Hershey bars and Kisses gives
people certain credentials that they know the territory.
Only if they press further do I finally mention Mt.
That generally stops conversations right there. We
switch to another topic.
Yet sometimes I'm surprised.
More people than we'd expect already know
about Mt. Gretna. Often that happens a long way from Pennsylvania.
Rosemary Milgate mentioned
Mt. Gretna to her tour guide while riding in a train through the
Arizona desert. It turns out that he was the same guy who had sold her
the Mt. Gretna Heights home that she and her late husband Gary had
bought 40 years earlier.
Joe and Laura Feather of Conewago
Hill, waiting in line for a luau in Hawaii, turned to the people
standing in back of them, introduced themselves and met -- for the
first time -- John and Gaile Del Baugh of
Timber Hills. Joe and Laura pass by their home every day on the way to
A few years ago, Sarah Ellis and husband Jim discovered
that their tour bus driver in Boston had spent several days at the home
of their neighbor who lived right across the street on Village
You may have had similar experiences.
Dan Hottenstein, a retired
radiologist, thinks there may be some entertaining stories here. He and
wife Pat have a nice home on Valley Road, but they like to travel to
New Mexico. Their favorite column in New
Mexico Magazine is called "One of Our 50 is
Missing," about the bank tellers, cell phone providers and
ticketing agents who tell New Mexicans that they reside in another
Mt. Gretnans have the opposite
problem, Dan thinks. We live in a place that's better known than we
suspect. In fact, when he and Pat were in Australia a few years ago,
they met a woman in Mudgee, about 260
kilometers from Sydney, whose grandparents owned a cottage in the Campmeeting. Growing up, she'd spent her summers here.
Tom Mayer, who'll soon move to Florida, says he intends to wear
his Mt. Gretna Fire Dept. volunteer T-shirt wherever he goes in The
Villages. He thinks that will be a magnet to attract folks who already
know about Mt. Gretna.
Maybe he'll turn up stories of a few interesting encounters. You
can, too, if you've had similar stories to share and the spirit moves.
Meanwhile, I'll go back to my usual purpose in this space and
tell you that this newsletter is nobody's official anything. It's just
a retirement hobby that keeps me out of the kitchen.
I use Constant Contact to help keep up with the growing numbers of
people around the world who enjoy reading about Mt. Gretna. To help
your Internet Service Provider distinguish The Mt. Gretna Newsletter
from spam, it's a good idea to add firstname.lastname@example.org to your personal email
addresses on The
Mt. Gretna Newsletter mailing list are not sold, rented,
intentionally shared or traded with any individual or organization.