The Sheraton Motor Inn

The Sheraton Motor Inn was built in 1973, located at Woodland Ave and then Van Reed Road (now Paper Mill Road).

Pictured in 1975
Restaurant inside

In the year 2000, the Sheraton Inn received higher status and was able to refer to itself as a hotel instead of “Inn”.

In 2002 in underwent $7.5 million dollars in renovations. There was also an incident where the pool chemical system malfunctioned, sending 13 people to the hospital.

From the April 2, 2002 Reading Eagle

In 2009, the Sheraton Reading Hotel again underwent a 10 million dollar renovationas it rebranded itself as the Crowne Plaza.

Those renovations included a new facade; an upgrade of all computer systems, which is complete; room renovations, which will include new bedding, carpeting, wall coverings, televisions, art, and bathroom tiling; guest hallways, which also will feature new artwork, carpeting and wall coverings; renovation of the fifth-floor executive lounge and the ballroom; a new fitness center; and a complete facelift of the pool area. – Reading Eagle

It is still the Crowne Plaza today.

Sturgis Pretzel Co – Portland Ave – Then and Now

Pictured in 1975

Victor Brand Sturgis Pretzel Company – There were Sturgis Pretzel Bakeries located in Lititz, Wyomissing and West Wyomissing (the above pictured location) opened under the Sturgis Pretzel Co. name, but these were opened and ran by sons and grandsons of the original Tom Sturgis. Source

Tulpehocken Farms Dairy Store

Tulpehocken Farms Dairy Store was located at the intersection of State Hill Road and Van Reed Roads in Spring Township. The storefront was built onto the dairy barn in 1962. It’s location was roughly here.

Pictured in 1975

Tulpehocken Farms was a farm store where you could buy fresh dairy milk the way it used to be; thick, with a layer of cream on top when it sat undisturbed for a while.

1958 Aerial Photo

It closed down in the early 80s . The land was eventually sold to a developer in 1984 and the farm buildings were razed. State Hill Road was also widened. Some of the land was developed into homes, some was sold to Penn State Berks.

A 100 Year Review of Berks – Happy New Year 2020!

Happy New Year Berks County! Not only is it a new year but also the beginning of a new decade. As we leave behind the 2010s, let’s look back on the beginning of the last 10 decades, and some of the events that we experienced together as a community during them. The past is important and sometimes comforting, but it is also important to look forward. There is so much more nostalgia yet to be made!

1920

Notable Events from this Decade

1930

Notable Events from this Decade

1940

Notable Events from this Decade

1950

Notable Events from this Decade

1960

Notable Events from this Decade

1970

Notable Events from this Decade

1980

Notable Events from this Decade

1990

Notable Events from this Decade

2000

Notable Events from this Decade

2010

Notable Events from this Decade

The Hitching Post – 3337 Penn Ave – West Lawn

The Hitching Post was a very popular restaurant located in the Springmont section of West Lawn. Built in the 1930s, it was originally a Howard Johnson’s. It then became an establishment called the Imperial Club. Finally, it became the Hitching Post in the 1960s. Countless anniversaries, birthdays, organizational meetings and other celebrations were held here over the course of 4 decades.

The Hitching Post in 1975

When it opened as the Hitching Post it was owned by Charles Schwambach, who also owned the Queen of the Valley Diner, located east up Penn Avenue by the old Iron Bridge.

1958 Aerial of Howard Johnson’s
2017 Google Map Aerial

The Hitching Post in West Lawn closed its doors in mid-1997.

Redevelopment

In February 1999 Wawa finalized development plans for a Wawa Convenience store to be built on the site of the Hitching Post, and in July they purchased it.

Reading Eagle July 27th 1999

Wawa opened it’s West Lawn location shortly after New Year 2000. Not everyone was happy with Wawa’s rampant takeover of Berks.

January 2000 Reading Eagle

As much as I love Wawa, maybe Kyle has a point. We sacrifice history for convenience all the time. Many of these places that take us back to a different time are gone, but my goal with Berks Nostalgia is to make sure they are never forgotten.

A Revival

The Hitching Post returned in 2011, under a new generation of the Zeppos family, who owned it in West Lawn from 1979-1991. It is located in Bern Township along Route 183. It is still in business today and has great reviews.

January 2011 Reading Eagle