I’ve lived in Beaver County my entire life. Sure, I venture out on a pretty regular basis but overall I really love it here.
The best thing about Beaver County, in my opinion, is the amount of hidden gems throughout the county. From little-known restaurants to craft beer spots to museums and interesting stores, there’s a wealth of pretty awesome stuff hiding just under the surface.
The problem is, how do you find all of these?
Even though I’ve been here going on 35 years now, there are still places that have been around for longer that I’m just now finding. Pair that with the influx of new businesses and you’ve got a laundry list of places you should go.
So how do you do it?
Being the technology nut that I am, I use my phone to get me around.
My iPhone (or Android if you’re on that team) is easily the most important tool I have for navigating Beaver County and finding the best things about it. From navigation to saving my seat before I get there, the apps on my phone make me a veritable directory all on my own.
Here are the top 5 apps that I use on pretty much a daily basis to find my way around Beaver County. Best of all, these will work in just about any town, all you have to do is use them and prepare to be adventurous.
I hate waiting in line. When I show up at a place like Waffles, INCaffeinated I don’t want to hang out for a half hour or longer, I want to walk in, get a table, and get to the wafflin’.
The NoWait app lets you sign in and get in line before you even leave your house. This way, you know how long of a wait is ahead of you, and can time your arrival perfectly.
There are quite a few restaurants using NoWait, so it’s pretty great for a variety of food. Some of the local restaurants that use NoWait include:
Just install the app on your phone and you’ll be all set and ready to sit when you get to the restaurant.
It’s no secret that I’m a pretty big fan of craft beer. I like drinking it, I like the community around it, and I really like finding new and interesting beers that I haven’t had yet.
The best way to do this is to use the Untappd app. Not only do you get to see what your friends are drinking and what they had before, but you can search for a beer you might not know and see what everyone else thinks about it, too.
So why is this great?
Well, if you’re at the bar and you think you might have had a beer before and can’t remember if you like it, just open the app and search. If it’s there, you know if you had it or not, and if anyone else you know had it, too.
Swarm & Foursquare
First, foursquare is a great way to find restaurants, bars, coffee shops, and just about anything else you’re looking for that’s near you. Tell it you’re looking for a cheap place to eat lunch and it’ll magically find it for you.
As for Swarm, with it you can check in places and see where your friends are and where they’ve been.
Foursquare uses this data to tailor suggestions for you and best of all, you can be the mayor of anywhere you check in the most. The combination of these two apps has taken me to more places I’ve never been before than I can count.
So after you’ve found all those killer new places to go, how do you get there? Well, you could ask for directions but unless you know where the old K-Mart that closed in the 80’s that’s now a gas station is, this probably isn’t the best idea.
Google Maps is an amazing app that does the basic act of giving you directions with the added benefit of traffic and even warnings if the place you’re going to is closed!
Just copy/paste an address into the app and you’re all set.
The Your Beaver County App
What kind of article would this be if I didn’t mention the app that got me looking into this idea in the first place? That’s right, YourBeaverCounty.com has it’s very own app.
Along with a feed of the most recent articles about Beaver County, there’s People of Beaver County, a list of recent obituaries, and even a directory of local businesses. We even have plans to add restaurant and events features!
As we get out and explore more of Beaver County the app will continue to grow, but even young and fresh, it’s still an amazing resource when you’re out and can’t find a place to eat.
On more than one occasion I couldn’t remember the name of a restaurant I read about and really wanted to try, and was saved by opening the app and looking at past articles.
Best of all, like the other apps here, the YBC app is totally free.
There are hundreds of thousands of apps out there vying for your attention, and while there are hundreds built around local exploration, these are my favorites.
Do you have a favorite app that helps you get around and take full advantage of Beaver County? Leave it in the comments below, we’re always looking for something new to install and play with.