Only in York County

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Donna Kober, left, and Only in York County author Joan Concilio met up by complete chance recently at the York Galleria. Donna's family featured prominently in several columns over the past year after her mother-in-law found another family's photo at a yard sale and the two worked to reunite them with the picture.

Ask Joan: A mind-blowing chance encounter and some new questions

My fiance, Dan, and I were recently shopping at the York Galleria, and stopped to browse the clearance rack at a store we don’t go in very often. We found a really great deal, and figured we’d grab it and be on our way.

As I went to check out, I realized I didn’t have quite enough cash, so I handed the store associate my bank card. “You have the same name as the woman who writes for the paper!” she said. “That’s me!” I answered.

“I’m Donna Kober!” she exclaimed.

Just two weeks ago, I shared the story of how Donna and her mother-in-law met up with another family to reunite them with a yard-sale photo find. (If you missed that story, you can check it out at

In the store, Donna reached behind her and grabbed a copy of the paper, in which she’s pictured with her mother-in-law and Rosa Bergen and Rosa’s mother, Romaine. Donna’s boss had brought it in!

I couldn’t believe it, and neither could Donna. We chatted for quite a while and even got our photo taken together. It was really amazing, and I left feeling like a million bucks!

In sad news, though, Donna said that Mrs. Kober, who is in her 90s, is in poor health now. I know any good thoughts, prayers or well-wishes our readers can send their family’s way would be appreciated.

I was just happy to hear that the Kobers were able to enjoy seeing the photo of their good deed!

And with that, I have a few new questions to share. Who knows what might come of these?

An image shows the phrase Ask Joan in large letters above a line and the phrase What's to love about York County below it.

What’s inside

1. Seeking details on car lot
2. Help just slightly to the north
3. Was there a “Saloon” bar?

1. Seeking details on car lot

I just recently received a letter from Stephen K. McWilliams, who wrote, “Back in the late 1950s or early 1960s, there was a used car lot on Mount Rose Avenue in York, where a laundromat is. It was located in back of the laundromat. Do you have any information when the lot was there and when it changed hands? My classmate at the time was Scott Heisler and his father owned the car lot. Thanks for any information.”

I don’t have the answer to Stephen’s question, but I am sure someone reading will; please share what you know!

2. Help just slightly to the north

This was a fun note from Elizabeth Singley:

“For weeks now, I’ve been trying to remember the name of the drive-in on Front Street (or River Road) in Harrisburg. Right side of the street going north. Almost at the bridge. Friends and I would be daring and took a drive from York quite often. Thinking time was 1958 to 1962. Any ideas? Eat in and take out. Great burgers.”

I’m very curious to know more about this… even if it is just slightly outside the “Only in York County” border, I’m positive it’s a place many Yorkers will know. So please help Elizabeth if you can!

3. Was there a “Saloon” bar?

I recently heard from Harry Sutherland, a lifelong Yorker, who wrote, “I thought at one time there was a bar in the old North Mall or somewhere else here in York called The Saloon. I was talking with my wife about it but can’t remember if I’m correct or not. Thanks if you can help.”

We’ve talked a lot about stores in the former North Mall (now The Crossroads shopping center in Manchester Township, along Route 30), but I don’t recall ever hearing of a bar there. So any information would be welcomed!

Have questions or memories to share? Email me at or write to Ask Joan, York Daily Record/Sunday News, 1891 Loucks Road, York PA 17408. We cannot accept any phone calls with questions or information.

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