Houseboating in Raystown Lake, PA

When we told people we went houseboating last weekend, we got a lot of questions. A lot of questions means a lot of interest, hence here’s what you need to know if you want to rent a houseboat in Pennsylvania on Raystown Lake!

One of the houseboats at Raystown Lake. Copyright Deborah Abrams Kaplan

My travel planner (i.e. my husband) planned this rental out probably six months in advance. These things book up quickly, so if you’re interested, don’t wait. Continue reading “Houseboating in Raystown Lake, PA”

Review: Lincoln Caverns in PA

For cave lovers like me, Pennsylvania is a hotbed of cavern activity, with eight commercially developed caves in the state. I have a lot of driving to do!

We checked out Lincoln Caverns after houseboating at Raystown Lake. Lincoln Caverns were discovered in 1931. The William Penn Highway was being built just above it, and a large steam shovel machine fell through into the caves during the blasting process. It fell into what is now called Devil’s Pit. I’m not sure what damage it die to the formations below, but that area is full of wonder after wonder.

One of the formations in Lincoln Cavern. Copyright Deborah Abrams Kaplan

Continue reading “Review: Lincoln Caverns in PA”

What You Will Learn on a Maple Sugar Tour

Every winter we see listings for maple sugaring tours, and every year we seem to be busy or forget to go. This year we finally went. What will you learn on a maple sugaring tour? A lot!

We went to the Great Swamp in New Jersey for our education. They were offering two sessions on a weekend afternoon – for $3/person (though no one asked for or collected money – and we checked in at the outdoor education center desk).

Follow the maple sugar leaf signs to the sugar shack at the Great Swamp. Copyright Deborah Abrams Kaplan

While there’s no way to know for sure who discovered maple sugar, Continue reading “What You Will Learn on a Maple Sugar Tour”

Saks Fifth Avenue Holiday Windows 2016

If you haven’t had a chance to check out the holiday windows, what are you waiting for? Here are some of my pix from Saks Fifth Avenue. Though I didn’t go at night, they have a lovely light display on the building, above this candy entrance.

Saks Fifth Avenue front holiday entrance
The front entrance of Saks Fifth Avenue. Copyright Deborah Abrams Kaplan

Their theme this year is Land of 1,000 Delights. It’s a fun pairing of sweets and some awesome clothing. Continue reading “Saks Fifth Avenue Holiday Windows 2016”

Stony Hill NJ Corn Maze: Review

We usually do a NJ corn maze every year, and it’s often the Stony Hill corn maze. This year was no exception. Why Stony Hill? They have a lot of other activities to do there, many included with the basic admission. The corn maze is well done also.

When we went on a recent Saturday, they had live music, which we could hear inside the maze. They also had a face painter. Not sure if you pay extra for that.

This year’s theme is Rutger’s 250th anniversary.

Rutger's 250th anniversary corn maze at Stony Hill. Copyright Deborah Abrams Kaplan
Rutger’s 250th anniversary corn maze at Stony Hill. Copyright Deborah Abrams Kaplan

Continue reading “Stony Hill NJ Corn Maze: Review”

Fossil Hunting With Kids at Big Brook

Did you know that October 12 is National Fossil Day? With a few days off this week, and fall break/teachers’ convention coming up next month, you may be looking for day trip ideas. Think about going fossil hunting in New Jersey! Turns out there are a couple of places that are easy to get to, where you can wade through streams looking for sharks’ teeth, oyster shells, squid fossils, and other items that are millions of years old. Even though you’re not by the ocean, this area was once covered in water.

Big Brook Preserve. Copyright Deborah Abrams Kaplan
Big Brook Preserve. Copyright Deborah Abrams Kaplan

Continue reading “Fossil Hunting With Kids at Big Brook”

Review: Camelback Ski Resort With Kids

Camelback Mountain

For some relatively local (to us) Pennsylvania skiing, we headed to Camelback Ski resort with kids this year. It’s funny to see the outdoor water park slides covered in snow, as this resort is also a summer destination.

Camelback is in the Poconos. Copyright Deborah Abrams Kaplan
Camelback is in the Poconos. Copyright Deborah Abrams Kaplan

Given all the crazy weather this season, we were happy to see a solid base. Plus, they make snow, and we got to experience that ourselves, with snow machines at the base and on some of the slopes. I never realized how loud they are. It’s like going past a jet engine. After one run where about 6 of them were blowing in a row, we had to go in and take a break, as our faces were so cold from the blowing snow.

As for mountain stats: Continue reading “Review: Camelback Ski Resort With Kids”