I’m a city kid, and it wasn’t until attending college at Penn State Beaver that I actually set foot in this great county.
Confession number two…even during my years of higher education here, my only real Beaver County adventures were to the Monaca Wal-Mart.
After getting married and moving out of state only to return a few years later, my husband and I began a house search that spread wide through Allegheny, Beaver, Butler and Washington counties. Our search kept coming back to Beaver County, so we decided to end the crazy house hunting and settle down.
Since then, Beaver County has become our permanent home – we’ve bought a house, started a family, and even ventured beyond the Monaca Wal-Mart.
Here are my top five favorite things about living in Beaver County:
5. The Giant Flag
I don’t know why I love this giant flag that flies high above Riverfront Park in Rochester, but I do.
In fact, I enjoy all three of the parks that sit at the confluence of the Beaver and Ohio rivers. The playground at the Monaca Waterworks is one of my kids favorite’s in the area. I’ve sat many times in the Bridgewater Park to watch the spectacular fireworks show that is the Beaver County BOOM.
And to drive across the Rochester-Beaver Bridge and see that amazing American Flag – flying day and night, 7 days a week, 365 days a year…well, it makes my heart warm and makes me proud to not only be an American, but a Beaver countian.
4. Our Main Streets
I love the main streets of Beaver County. I might reside in Beaver, but I love how easy it is to get to the other small towns in Beaver County and enjoy all their main streets have to offer as well.
Maybe the perfect day would be to start off with some waffles at Waffles, Inc., in Beaver; head to New Brighton to get some chocolate at Rosalind’s Candy Castle and coffee at Hallowed Grounds and probably make a quick stop at Brighton Music Center; then head to Beaver Falls for more shopping at Stray Cat Studios before grabbing dinner at the Mississippi Chicken Shack and a few drinks at Beaver Brewing Company.
I think it might be okay if the world ended after that day.
3. The Hot Dog Shoppe
Many moons ago, while students at Penn State Beaver, my first date with my husband was at the Vanport Hot Dog Shoppe. Since then, I’ve been to every location in Beaver County (this may or may not be my husband’s favorite restaurant).
There is just something special about eating a hot dog with chili, mustard, onion, alongside chili cheese fries and sipping a Pepsi out of one of those collectable plastic cups. We have since turned all our kids into Hot Dog Shoppe lovers. Hot dogs and milkshakes make for a special night out at my house.
2. Shopping Local
It’s certainly not difficult to participate in “Small Business Saturday” in Beaver County. While our mall is convenient, I do appreciate the number of small business throughout the area and the goods they sell.
There is something special about getting a gift for someone from Soap Alchemy or Two Rivers Olive Oil Company; decorating your house at Hutch & Home; and clothing your family from the great many local stores instead of the department stores.
1. The People
I know I said this list was in no particular order, but the people of Beaver County and our corner of Pennsylvania are by far the friendliest people in the world and the best thing about living here.
Complete strangers wave and smile as you walk or drive down the street. I even had a woman offer to help me in a public restroom with my three young kids. Let that sink in – a complete stranger offered to spend extra time in a dirty public restroom to help me with my three kids who are under the age of five! But those are the kinds of people you will find in Beaver County.
People that celebrate, fight for and take pride in their own. Strangers always willing to lend a helping hand, whether you’ve asked or not. Beaver County is a big space, but the people make me feel like we live in a small community; where everyone is family.
I’m proud to call Beaver County my home. There are so many more things I love about this place – the farmers markets, the parks, the schools, the festivals every weekend of the summer. I can’t wait to get out and explore and find even more great things to add to my list!