York Town Square

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York County, Pa., boroughs offer tasty slice of small-town life

York County’s boroughs contain many beautiful settings, sometimes hidden from the sight of motorists. Here, in this York, Pa., Daily Record/Sunday News file photo from 2004, the John Stevens Gallery on Main Street in Shrewsbury opens onto a back yard that has two ponds, flowers and antiques. (See related photograph below.) Also of interest: Catharine (or is it Catherine?) Meyer merits ‘Mother of Red Lion’ (or is it Red Line?) title and Jefferson borough’s Center Square in the middle of history and Washington Township, Jefferson Borough, Madison Avenue. How about an Obama Street in York County?

York County’s boroughs face a busy future.
That was my opinion in a recent speech to the 81st annual dinner of the York County Boroughs Association.
I base that opinion on the fact that most – possibly all – of York County’s 36 boroughs have maintained their small-town character… .

Dee Brua, left and Cheryl Broton, both of Southern York County’s New Freedom, walk through the backyard garden of Pat and Dave Haller’s Shrewsbury home during the home and garden tour in 2005.
You can still walk to the post office in many of them.
Or stroll to the coffee shop.
When you have to get in the car for some gas, it’s usually a short drive.
And the housing is still a bargain in many boroughs.
So, as money tightens, people looking to get into homes will find more attractive pricing than in large developments with their mini-McMansions.
And there’s character in those small towns:
Goldsboro and Jefferson have defined town squares. Motorists must drive around monuments or squares in the middle of town. In Jefferson, for example, pedestrians can sit on benches in the town square, which bears a monument and field piece commemorating World War I.
Felton and Glen Rock are nestled between high green hills providing a variety of landscapes and views.
– Most boroughs have maintained their sense of history, which provide a sense of the past and purpose for the future. Stewartstown, for example, was home to a World War II prisoner-of-war camp and is fighting to keep a short-line railroad that operated as a tourist attraction until relatively recently.
New Freedom, Railroad and other boroughs offer residents access to Heritage Rail Trail County Park, as will North York when the rail trail arrives from John H. Rudy Park in the months ahead.
So, throughout York County, what seems old might actually be the future.
Meanwhile, here are some stats about the borough’s association:
President of Executive Committee: Cheryl Bahn, secretary/treasurer, New Salem/Seven Valleys.
Past president: Mark Ryder, Dillsburg
2010 Service Award recipients: Peter W. Schnabel, 25 years, currently Shrewsbury mayor; Michael W. Ridgely, 20 years, Shrewsbury Council president.
Well-known past presidents: A. Carville Foster, Jr., Shrewsbury, later state representative; Shirley L. Glass, Spring Grove, later York County Commissioner.
Also of interest:
– For scores of posts on life in York County’s towns, visit this blog’s small-town life category.
All York Town Square posts from the start. (Key word search by using “find” on browser.)
– Of course, you can always search for York Town Square post on Google.