Franklin County Countdown to Halloween

Franklin County Countdown to Halloween

Franklin County has legends, chilling stories, and strange sightings. Have a little Halloween fun and explore some local lore. Is it fact or fiction? Explore a little “haunted history” with the Franklin County Fright Sites Tour. Download Franklin County Fright Sites here to discover haunted happenings at ten sites in Franklin County. Keep alert and be ready to snap a scary photo. Post to or send photos—both scary and fun–to and be entered into Franklin County Visitors Bureau’s grand prize drawing. Share up to three photos at each site; each photo equals one entry.

Grand prize is breakfast and dinner for two at Franklin County dining location(s) of winner’s choice. The winner also receives Franklin County Ghosts by Athena Varounis—more startling stories to read again and again. The creepiest photo will get a special prize—dinner for two at winner’s choice of Franklin County restaurant and a copy of Franklin County Ghosts. Plus, two runner-up prizes will be awarded.

Franklin County has trunk or treats and trick or treating throughout the communities of Franklin County. plus, spooky family fun.

  • Visit Country Creek Produce Farm in Shippensburg and take a moonlit hayride, go flashlight picking in the pumpkin patch and enjoy the corn maze at night on October 30 & 31.
  • Chambersburg Community Theatre is going virtual for Halloween with Bram Stoker’s Dracula For Kids. It airs, beginning Friday, October 30 and can be viewed again and again over the next two weeks. Sign up by donation here.
  • Outdoor movies are magic, and especially Hocus Pocus, showing outdoors at Fort Loudon Community Center on Friday, October 30 at 7:30 PM.

For older kids or adults, it is a fright-filled Friday at Stoner’s Dairy Farm in Mercersburg on October 31, 7 PM-11 PM. Gather some courage, bring a flashlight, and get ready for ghouls, ghosts, and scary ones, lurking in the corn. Brussels Café and Relax in Chambersburg are holding costume parties. Details and more Halloween Countdown fun for all ages here.

Foodies Love Franklin Fresh Food & Dining Guide

Foodies Love Franklin Fresh Food & Dining Guide

Franklin County Visitors Bureau showcases fresh food and great dining in the Franklin Fresh Food & Dining Guide. The county has an abundance of freshness to share. It ranks second in vegetable production in the state, is home to the Chambersburg peach, and yields 850 million pounds of milk annually. With such a variety of fresh foods, foodies love Franklin County.

For 2020-21, the “Sweet Trail” is back with more stops—including delicious ice cream, chocolate and candy stops across the county. It even throws in a few favorite recipes and tips on growing fresh food. Franklin Fresh Food & Dining Guide also features all-American and international flavors of Franklin County; a spotlight on local breweries, wineries, and distilleries; listings of farm stands, farmers markets, and honey producers plus a guide to local restaurants. Franklin County’s agricultural past is showcased in Stitches in Time Barn Quilt Trail; trail map is included on the inside back cover.

The publication is a great way to plan a “foodie tour” of Franklin County and take home some of the fresh foods from farmers markets, cheese makers, and creameries to enjoy a little longer. It even throws in a few favorite recipes. Plan a visit today; check out the publication online here. Or, contact the Franklin County Visitors Bureau at 866.646.8060 to receive a printed publication.

Sharing Strength Breast Cancer Exhibit at the Franklin County Visitors Bureau

Sharing Strength Breast Cancer Exhibit at the Franklin County Visitors Bureau

Franklin County Visitors Bureau is hosting Sharing Strength, an exhibit of Franklin County breast cancer survivors. Since 1985, October is recognized as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Sharing Strength will be on display throughout October 2020 in the lobby of the Franklin County 11/30 Visitors Center on the square of Chambersburg.

Holly Baker Strayer, one of the survivors, shared her story of strength. “Your cancer journey is what you choose to do with it. You learn about yourself and what you’re capable of through times of adversity.” She goes on to say, “Take care of yourself…Slow down…Do things that make you happy…”

Any cancer survivor inspires others to find courage. Breast cancer is particularly pertinent to women because the most significant risk factors for breast cancer are sex (being a woman) and age (growing older). Be proactive. Do self-examinations, eat healthy, and be active. According to a 2020 national study by the American Cancer Society, breast cancer death rates declined 40% from 1989 to 2017 among women, but incidences of breast cancer are slightly higher by 3%. Potential factors for the small increase may correlate to obesity and less fertility.

The Franklin County 11/30 Visitors Center serves visitors and residents of Franklin County and is located at 15 South Main in downtown Chambersburg. Sharing Strength is just one of 11/30 Visitors Center’s exhibits and events throughout the year. For more information, visit regularly or contact the Franklin County Visitors Bureau at 866.646.8060 for information on 11/30 Visitors Center activities.

Classroom With No Walls

Classroom With No Walls

A recent sponsorship donation will underwrite a new series of Institute at Renfrew school programs, delivered by Institute faculty members to each elementary school campus in the Waynesboro Area School District (WASD).  

“To address pandemic concerns about bus transportation and to ease the way for families who may be suffering financial hardship, we are thrilled to announce that The Institute will provide customized 90-minute experiences for all K–5 grade students at Mowery, Fairview, Hooverville and Summitview elementary schools, delivered on site at each school,” said Tracy Holliday, The Institute’s executive director.  

“Thanks to a gift from Institute benefactress Alma Oyer, these programs will be offered free of charge to all students,” Holliday said. “Mrs. Oyer’s bighearted care for children motivated her gift, which has been transformative for The Institute’s ability to serve the young people in our community. We are deeply grateful for Mrs. Oyer’s care for our mission and activities with youth.” 

Education is the cornerstone of The Institute’s mission. The organization records 8,000–9,000 annual student visits during a typical year. 

The new programs, customized for each grade level and for each elementary campus, will including such offerings as …games that help illustrate natural concepts in a fun way, explorations of the school yard using observation and scientific inquiry, activities that focus on a feature of the property, like the stream at Hooverville and the Nature Trail Area at Mowrey. Each school has something unique to explore.

“We continue to value and honor our partnership with Waynesboro Area School District (WASD) and look forward to serving district students with programs that educate, inspire and delight,” Holliday said.

Dr. Rita Sterner-Hine, WASD assistant superintendent, commented, “WASD was committed to reopening this fall but fully understood the limitations of COVID-19.  Although field trips are a valuable part of our learners’ education, we were focused on making in school learning a success. 

“Our position was to hit ‘pause’ on field trips, but we are delighted that The Institute will bring the field trip experience to our schools. Our learners will truly benefit from this generous donation to bring Institute lessons for outdoor education to our elementary schools.”

All programs are delivered with full COVID-19 safety protocols in place. 

“Institute programs allow learning to take place outdoors, where the likelihood of transmission is reduced,” Holliday said. “Additionally, experiences in nature are proven to reduce stress, and to increase our physical and emotional wellbeing. We believe that children and families need such experiences, now more than ever during this challenging time.” 

Visit The Institute’s website at to learn more about program offerings for people of all ages.

Fall DuffieldFest at Hip Gypsy Emporium

Fall DuffieldFest at Hip Gypsy Emporium

Fall DuffieldFest is set for Saturday, September 26, 2020 from 10 AM to 5 PM. There will food, crafts, artisans, and upcyclers. The event is rain or shine.

Catch the high energy of JESTER, who will take the Hip Gypsy Stage from 1-4 PM, playing current and classic rock. Dancing is always welcome!

DuffieldFest and Hip Gypsy Emporium are in the former Duffield School, located amid the beautiful farmland along the base of South Mountain, 2168 Mont Alto Road.

The 1930s, brick school served tens of thousands of elementary students from the 1930s until 2008. Step back to another time—a classroom with a black board. Then, enjoy shopping the treasures of Hip Gypsy and visiting artists and crafters outdoors.

Hip Gypsy is still accepting.vendors. Download an application for more information.

DufieldFest 2020