When you drive into Mechanicsburg on Route 114 East from I-81, you will pass a sign that says, "Welcome to Mechanicsburg, A Good Place To Live". Having lived in the area since 1990, I couldn't agree more. There is so much to do and see here in Mechanicsburg and in all our neighboring communities throughout Central PA. On any given day (or night) you can find something to do or see within a few minutes walk, or just a short drive away.
For those who love nature and the outdoors, we have a number of state game lands and parks. If you enjoy hiking, the Appalachian Trail cuts through the heart of Central Pennsylvania. Of course if you are into fishing or water sports, there is the mighty Susquehanna River offering an opportunity for boating & fishing. If you prefer fly fishing, there is the Yellow Breeches or for the dedicated angler looking for those ever elusive brown trout you might try your luck in one of our nations premier trout streams, the world famous "Le Tort Springs Run" which courses its way around and through Carlisle.
Speaking of Carlisle, you may interested to know it is a hot bed of history with many historic houses and buildings still standing around town today. Carlisle was home to the legendary Jim Thorpe and it is the burial place of the famous revolutionary war heroine Molly Pitcher. George Washington assembled his troops in Carlisle during the Whisky Rebellion. The historic Cumberland County Court house standing on the Square at the intersection of Hanover and High Streets still bares scars of cannon fire suffered at the hands of the Confederate Army during the Civil War. Within two miles of the square is the US Army War College and the Carlisle Indian School. Carlisle is also home of the US Army Heritage Museum which is visible from Interstate-81.
In the middle of the Susquehanna River is Harrisburg's City Island home to the Harrisburg Senators Baseball team and the City Islanders Soccer team. City Island is also home port to a paddle wheel river boat known as The Pride of The Susquehanna. While you can drive to City Island from east or west shores, there is also the Walnut Street Bridge which is open to pedestrian and bicycle traffic between the island and Harrisburg. Ice flows damaged the western span of the bridge carrying away an entire section of the bridge between the island and Wormleysburg during winter ice flows & flooding in January of 1996. (This spectacular site that was caught on video, perhaps I will be able to put a link to that video here at a later date.)
Harrisburg offers so much it hard to know where to begin. There's a great fare of restaurants in the recently revitalized downtown area known to locals as Restaurant Row, this area now covers a number of blocks adjacent to the State Capitol Complex. Some of the unique eateries include the Firehouse Restaurant which as its name implies was once one of Harrisburg's original firehouses. There is Stocks On Second, and of course, Tom Sawyers a vintage metal diner that was recently relocated to The Row.
Harrisburg is also home to a number of attractions among those are the US Civil War Museum and the Pennsylvania Fire Museum. The Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex on Cameron Street houses a great number of annual events, some of the primary events are the Farm Show which occurs the second week of January, the Harrisburg Builders Show runs the last full weekend of February to the first weekend of March and the National Horse Show comes to town the second week of October.
Hershey Pennsylvania was the home of Milton Hershey, founder of Hershey's Chocolate and the Milton Hershey School. Mr. Hershey built his business and grew his dreams in Derry Township and the surrounding country side. As his legacy he built and founded the Milton Hershey School which has provided education and given the rise to many outstanding individual since its inception. He also opened Hershey Park, one of Americas oldest operating theme parks, it is a well known vacation destination to thousands of visitors from around the world annually. The Giant Center at Hershey Park is home to the Hershey Bears Hockey Team, both the Giant Center and Hershey Arena host numerous events and concerts annually. Hershey is also home to Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center.
Winter sports enthusiast will not be left wondering what to do or where to go. Just about 15 minutes down the road from Mechanicsburg is Lewisberry PA where you will find Ski Round Top. As the weather gets colder their snow making machinery will crank up to get things going before the natural stuff starts to fall. Within about an hour drive are two of Round Top's sister ski destinations, Ski Liberty and Whitetail. Of course, we haven't even talked about our neighbors to the north the Poconos or to the west in the Laurel Highlands. Snowmobilers and cross country skiers will take delight in knowing that many of the state gamelands provide opportunities for them to enjoy their sports as well. (Just be sure to check on what permits you need and when you are allowed.)