For anyone interested in history and industry, there's a great little borough five miles north of the Mason-Dixon line known as Hanover, Pennsylvania. Everything that makes an old colonial town great is present, including a downtown square built in the mid-1830s. Even recently built homes and townhouses have a colonial style to reflect the history of this productive agricultural borough. Quaint single- and split-level cottages dot the landscape, and having a big family is no problem since homes from two to six bedrooms are readily available.
There's a lot to do in the 3.7 square miles that make up Hanover. True to its title as the Snack Food Capital of the United States, there are various snack food companies and factories in and near Hanover, including Snyder's of Hanover, Wolfgang Candy, and Hershey Foods. Many of these factories give free tours. At the northern edge of the borough is The Golden Mile, a stretch of road a single mile long with many national chains for shopping and eating. Less than a mile north of that is The Markets at Hanover, a 50,000-square-foot Amish marketplace with over two dozen merchants and a variety of dining options. Pretzels are the thing in Hanover, so be sure to entice your friends and family to visit with a trip to Revonah Pretzel for either a crunchy or soft treat made by hand in the store.
Hanover was named after a German city, and more than 40% of the residents can claim German ancestry. This explains the yearly Dutch Festival and the Hanover Lion's Beer Garden (root beer available), but the yearly Duck Drop is still a bit of a mystery. Another influential international presence comes from the Irish Catholics who settled there in the late 1700s. The beautiful Sacred Heart Basilica, the oldest stone church of any denomination in the United States, has stood in Hanover since 1787. A few Irish pubs offer the borough shepherd’s pie and Irish potato soup, and nearby Gettysburg hosts the annual Adams County Irish Festival. Even with these deep roots, Hanover is charging into the digital age with the Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School, one of the largest online schools in the nation and open to students in kindergarten through 12th grade. Children are sure to enjoy the Timeline Arcade, Magic Elm Skateland, and Trail-Way Speedway, a track featuring spring car, stock car, and classic car racing. If you're in the market for a colonial-style home in a small town, Hanover's a great pick.