Mt. Gretna is one place that brings back memories of summer camp. Located just over the Lebanon County line, off Route 72, it provides the perfect mini-escape for enjoying the waning days of summer.
Summer camp always entails lots of hiking, and Mt. Gretna offers plenty of opportunities to explore the woodlands. You can start your adventure with breakfast at Le Sorelle Porch and Pantry, which will provide the energy you’ll need to hike or bike the various trails that crisscross the area. One of the most notable is the Lebanon Valley Rail Trail. The State Game Lands also offer plenty of trails for exploring. And, don’t miss the Governor Dick Environmental Center’s Clarence Schock Memorial Park, which offers family-friendly activities, guided hikes/nature walks, 15 miles of trails and wildflower meadows.
Swimming is also synonymous with summer camp. At Mt. Gretna Lake & Beach, eight acres of beach and lawn – plus a shady picnic grove – skirt Lake Conewago. The lake, which is open daily through Labor Day, is home to an over-water swing, wooden docks with diving boards, a rather intimidating high-dive platform, and a children’s dock and play area. You can even rent water tubes, canoes and kayaks to paddle around the deeper areas.
S’mores are also a rite of summer camp, and I’ll bet The Jigger Shop has an ice cream treat named in its honor. The salads that dot the menu will make those decadent sundaes and other ice cream confections seem almost guilt free.
Skits and plays are another summer camp tradition. You can explore your cultural side at The Timbers Restaurant & Dinner Theatre, or take in a show or musical performance at the Mt. Gretna Playhouse.
And, we can’t forget arts and crafts. The annual Mt. Gretna Outdoor Art Show will be held August 15 and 16. I love this show for its atmosphere. The walking paths that wind their way through towering trees are filled with people happily sharing their love of art. It is a highlight of my summer.
For details and more ideas, visit mtgretna.com.