February 15, 2020
Handel’s Homemade Ice Cream, Northfield, Ohio
Being winter, I called Handel’s before going, and was surprised to actually hear a human voice – I did not even have to ‘press ‘0’ for operator!’ … And they were open
Handel’s was my kind of place for several reasons: they are an ice cream shop; they are open year round; they have ice cream samplers (sort of like a flight of beer, but much better); they have friendly, fast and efficient service; they make their own ice cream in a variety of creative and fun flavors.
I went with their sampler which let me try four flavors in one convenient container. I had Graham Central Station (interesting texture of graham cracker crumbs), Peanut Butter Brownie (our server’s favorite flavor – good, but not very much of a peanut butter flavor), Coffee Chocolate Chip (strong, awesome coffee flavor with lots of chocolate chips) and Cherry Magnolia (lots of cherries, great ice cream texture). I had no problem finishing it!
Ordering was at a walk up window, and there were benches outside to sit at – probably more used in the summer, when there is no snow on them. I totally enjoyed their ice cream, and even the cold, snow covered bench.
In the area: we were driving around Pennsylvania and Ohio and saw lots of amazing things! Our first goal was to learn what we could about the Pennsylvania Oil Rush – we learned a lot, but were sorry that there were no experts around for us to talk to.
Pennsylvania Oil Rush sites: Oil Creek State Park – we went to north western Pennsylvania to learn about the oil rush here in the mid 1800’s (1865 ish). We knew that PA was the first place on the United States to have commercial oil wells, and we were really curious to learn more. In Oil Creek State Park we saw numerous oil well remnants and placards showing where various saloons and houses were situated near the wells. According the signs, in 1865 they were pumping up to $25,000,000 a day out of the ground! The town buildings burned down several times and even the surface of Oil Creek was flammable!
Pithole State Park- Pithole was a community near Oil Creek. where many of the workers lived. We trudged through the snow to learn a out the city and the oil rush – it started in October 1865 and lasted about a year. Many of the Pithole residents lived in boarding houses and many owned horses which they used to transport oil barrels. Eventually a pipeline was made to transport the oil which eliminated the need for horses. When Pithole closed up, the buildings were moved elsewhere or burned down.
McClintock #1 Oil Well – in Oil City the oldest ‘continually’ operated oil well is available for the curious to explore. We are the curious. We learned a bit about how these things worked by signs placed on the grounds.
Pennsylvania and Ohio farms- thought our travels, we noticed that many farms had single oil wells with the signature two collection tanks. We are not sure if they are using or selling the oil, but if they are using it, how are they doing it without refining it? If they are selling it, why not run more than one well? I am so fascinated!
According to a site on-line, a town we were driving through, Franklin, Pennsylvania has Tiffany stained glass windows, not sure if it is true.
Heisey Glass Museum, Newark, Ohio – there is a brand of glass that was made in Newark, Ohio for about 100 years ending in the 1950’s. In the 1970’s people who collected this glass got together and created a museum with that glass. We actually visited here interested in the technology behind glass production. In the museum we learned about molding processes and etching processes for making glass. They even left out the molds with the glassware created by it for nerds like us to play with it. The museum was very interesting and friendly. We learned about etching techniques and glass coloring techniques including flamingo glass (my favorite!)
Licking County Historic Jail flashlight tour, Newark Ohio – if you are into ghost hunters and paranormal activity this is the tour for you. But we are not into this, so it was just a nice jail tour with a lot of stupid crap thrown in.
Blackhand Gorge State Park. – breathtaking scenery – worth a visit!
Cuyahoga National Park, Ohio – a river, a canal, a railroad, waterfalls, towpaths- this park has it all!