Volkswagen Dealership – 1211 Lancaster Ave – 1960s

Pictures were taken by my Grandfather of the Grand Opening of the Volkswagen Dealership located at 1211 Lancaster Ave in the 1960s. It was diagonally across the street from the Red Barn Restaurant. Today, it is occupied by Glass & Son’s Collision Repair. Did you ever buy a car here?

What ever happened to Carrols?

According to Berks Nostalgia followers, there were quite a few Carrols in Berks County. They were located in Sinking Spring, on Penn Avenue where the current notary shop is; also in Muhlenberg on 5th Street, and on Lancaster Avenue.

Carrols Restaurant Group is an American franchisee company that was founded in 1960. The original Carrols chain ceased operations in the United States in the mid-1970s. The last unaffiliated Carrols Restaurants existed in Finland. The chain was eventually bought out by another Finnish fast-food chain, Hesburger. In 2012, Hesburger announced that the brand Carrols would be discontinued.

An offshoot of the Tastee-Freez company, it was named for the daughter of Tastee-Freez co-owner Leo Marantz, Carol.

Herb Slotnick bought the franchise rights for the New York area and started opening restaurants in the Syracuse, New York area in the early 1960s. They expanded over the years throughout New York State. During the 1960s, a yellow slug character served as Carrols’ first mascot, replaced in 1974 by a young blonde boy wearing a tweed suit and a Fedora hat.

Most Carrols restaurant locations were converted to Burger King franchises in 1975, with less profitable stores shuttered. –Source

Nichols Discount City

There used to be a few of these in Berks, one being located at  3001 St. Lawrence Ave, another in Shillington. They are credited with being one of the first major “Drug Stores” in the mid-Atlantic region, with having over 40 stores at one point in the region.

Nichols Discount City Nichols Discount City

Nichols Discount City

A former regional retail discount chain in the Northeast, founded in 1938 as a variety store chain in and around New York City. Nichols opened the first Nichols Discount City store in 1960 in Lancaster, Pa.. These stores ranged in size from 80,000 to 100,000 square feet and were usually located in secondary markets. In 1990, Nichols converted their stores to PharmHouse, a discount drug and housewares store. –Source

Berks County Christmas – Day 25- 1969 Christmas Day Snowstorm

Merry Christmas Berks County!!! In 1969 there was a “White Christmas” in Berks County! Do you remember?
We had over a foot of snow! All images courtesy of the Reading Eagle.

White Christmas 1969

Who Said There Was a Downtown Traffic Problem?
A traffic light continues to carry out its duties despite the lack of vehicles as one lone walker makes his way up Washington Street between the Berkshire Hotel and the Reading Post Office -Eagle Photo

‘Twas the Day After Christmas And Everthing Was White

Sleigh bells rang throughout downtown Reading Friday as George Ulrich of 117 Erie Ave., used the area’s snow cover for an outing with his sleigh in the top picture. The vehicle is being drawn by his 24-year-old horse, Willie, which he has owned for 21 years. The other passenger is Ulrich’s dog, Mitzie. Riding behind the sleigh are Irvin Evans, left, of 109 Erie Ave, on his horse, Buck, and Richard Braun of 1209 Luzerne St., on his horse, Pard. In the Left picture of the second row, an old model car makes its way up Court Street between 4th and 5th streets after the snowstorm. In the photo above, Nelson Martinez of 228 S. 6th St., finds shelter in a manger scene at Second United Church of Christ at 6th and Cherry streets. To the Left, a dog, appropriately called Doggie, has to leap through the snow as it accompanies Deborah Oakley, left, of 221 Rose St., and her sister Jenifer, west on Court street from 4th street. – Eagle Photos


He Wasn’t Going Anywhere Anyway
A car parked on 4th street between Court and Penn streets shows the effects of Friday morning’s snow sotmr that still remained Friday night. – Eagle Photo

Perhaps Pictures Can Lie
The picture makes it look like the cars could race around 5th and Penn Streets Friday night but after the snow fall that was not the case. Actually the blurred image resulted from the long exposure required to capture the night light. – Eagle Photo

Plows Zero In on Penn Street
This was the scene in the 1000 block of Penn Street this morning as crews and equipment began to clear the main municipal thoroughfare in the wake of a snowstorm that deposited well over 12 inches of flakey whiteness on the area. The digging out operation went into full swing in anticipation of a heavy turnout of shoppers today, since most downtown stores were closed Friday because of the storm. -Eagle Photo

Alone on One of the City’s Main Streets
A woman walks along an otherwise deserted N. 5th street north of Walnut after Friday’s snowstorm brought the city to almost a standstill. – Eagle Photo

Berks County Christmas – Day 20 – Christmas 1960

This is what Christmas looked like in the December 25th,  1960 Reading Eagle.

Christmas 1960

For the residents of Muhlenberg Park, jolly Santa Claus this year added a new twist to his visit. He arrived three days ahead of schedule and, instead of going about his duties in his usual secret way, he enlisted the help of Girl Scout Intermediate Troop 177. These girls, wearing little elf hats, helped St. Nick deliver over 400 candy-filled stockings to youngsters on the list. As a part of the borough’s fifth annual Christmas parade sponsored by the Muhlenberg Park Civic Club, Santa, in the person of Edward Wielkopolski, and his caravan traveled 10 miles, visiting almost every home in the community.

Wearing his shiny black boots and bright red velvet suit decorated with white fur, St. Nick made personal visits to shut-in children who were not able to greet him at the door to receive their stocking. In the accompanying picture, Santa takes time out from his rounds to read a Christmas story to 7-year-old Edward Thompson, son of Mr. and Mrs. George W. Thompson, 644 Linden St., Muhlenberg Park, who had come down with the chicken pox.

Christmas 1960 Christmas 1960

(Left) Three little girls who anxiously awaited the arrival of Santa Claus in the annual visitation by the Muhlenberg Park Civil Club greet him at the door of their home. Receiving candy-filled stockings from the jolly gentleman are these daughters daughters of Mr. and Mrs. William R. Eaken Jr., 3250 Harrison Ave., Muhlenberg Park, Left to right: Barbara, 3; Karen, 5; and Deborah, 6.

(Right) Santa’s helpers, complete with elf caps, stop by a gaily decorated lampost at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Harold R. Hain, 3254 Harrison Ave., Muhlenberg Park, to sing Christmas carols. Members of the Intermediate Girl Scout Trool 177, these girls helped Santa dekuver the candy-filled stockings. Left to right: Sandra Adams, Sandra Mertz, Fay Drehrer, Blair Wielkopolski, Patricia Peck and Susan Levan, all of Muhlenberg Park.

Christmas 1960 Christmas 1960 Christmas 1960