Road Trip

Last week at about this time I was walking out of Target, looking up at the sky, thinking this would be a good night to get some magic hour shots.

Earlier on, I had done some research and stumbled on to a sign shot someone had taken of Rosencrans’ Bakery on Broad Street in Montoursville. I had somehow skipped over Montoursville during my sign-finding tour I had made through the Williamsport area, and about all I knew about the place was that former Orioles and Yankees pitcher Mike Mussina was from there, but when I saw Rosencrans, it immediately found its way on to my “must” list. Their sign is straight out of 1956: a color turquoise I’m convinced they don’t make anymore, red puffy letters spelling out ‘Rosencrans’, and yellow diamonds spelling out ‘Bakery’.

Oh, yeah. Come to Papa.

Not only that, but just down Broad Street was another likely candidate: the Cellini Sub Shop. Probably just as old, with a sign that has a fun bulb-y arrow. Topping all that, both places get rave reviews for the food. I’ve been bad about eating at the places I get sign pictures. It was about time I gave back.

So back to Target. Standing there looking at the sky. 6:00. Montoursville is 30 miles away. I hesitated for about a second and a half, shrugged my shoulders and got in the car.


Unfortunately, it was closed. But they had me at Sticky Buns.


Oh, did I mention the plump cartoon baker? Yeah, that’s how awesome this sign is.

On to Cellini’s. Since I’m still in pursuit of the perfect Meatball Sub, I figured I would put them to the test. (So far, my winner and still champion is Pancho’s Pit in Johnson City, NY, in case you were wondering. Maybe it’s my hometown bias). I snap off a few shots and wander in with my K5 hanging around my neck.


I’ve come to grips with the fact that when you have a camera someplace you shouldn’t, you are immediately the center of attention. Just walk into a room of schoolkids with a big old Panasonic video camera and you’ll see what I mean. People are usually curious why I’m taking a picture of a sign. I walk in and order. The girl behind the counter doesn’t say a word about the camera. Didn’t even glance. Caught me off guard a little bit. Just toddled off and put in my order. So I’m standing alone in the place. So I snap off another few shots inside.


She comes back in with my meatball sub, which by the way, was one of the best I’ve ever had. But still, the camera and why I have it never gets mentioned.

This bugs me somehow.

4 thoughts on “Road Trip”

  1. Funny how we sometimes hate to stick out in the crowd b/c of our cameras, yet when we don’t we’re thrown off? I’ve actually learned to bring both my point and shoot and my larger camera with me when I’m out retro roadmapping, knowing that I’ll be able to take photos in places with the little cam, that the big one might create an issue.

    Great signs BTW – totally adding pins to my map to check these out!

    Mod Betty

  2. Hey, I recognize all this stuff. I grew up in South Side (Williamsport). Live in TN now but the family is still around the Wmspt area. Where do you live? Was trying to find bio info on your website. I take a lot of roadside photos too but ones in my hometown as so familiar that I don’t even notice them. lol
    Really good stuff down through the coal regions in PA and in NW PA near Erie.
    Now you made hungry for sticky buns and hoagies, neither of which are really available in TN.

    1. And not Whoopie Pies?

      Just had a friend from Tennessee comment on my Instagram version of the Rosencrans Bakery, and he was unaware of the existence of Whoopie Pies. Such a Pennsylvania-only tradition.

      We’ve discovered some other foods that seem to only exist in Pennsylvania. Fastnacht, for instance, which was a complete revelation.

      Where I’m from (Binghamton, NY), the spiedie is the local delicacy, and it seems to exist nowhere else, not even 50-60 miles away.

      You may not have hoagies and sticky buns, but you certainly have the barbecue in Tennessee! That, I miss.


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