Tag Archives: downtown Lititz

Lititz Fire and Ice Festival Round Up

After New Year’s resolutions have started to fade and weeks of bitter cold have set in, we enter a state of hibernation with a touch of cabin fever. What better way to break the habit of weekend Netflix binging than attending Lititz’s Fire and Ice Festival?

Back for its 13th year in a row, visitors and locals alike love this winter event. You can expect awesome ice carvings, taste bud-tickling chili, and loads of local love bustling about this quaint, walkable town. The event begins on Friday, February 16 and continues through Monday, February 19, 2018.

The Fire and Ice Festival is estimated to bring in 40,000 people to the little town of Lititz over the course of the weekend. Put on by Venture Lititz and the Lititz Lions Club, the event is a fundraiser for the community programming of both organizations.

Part 1 – The Ice:
Channel your inner Elsa for Friday night’s spectacular kick off of the Fire and Ice Festival in the Lititz Springs park and around town. With so much to do and see, the cold won’t bother. Fairy lights strung amongst the trees, live music drifting through the air, and ice sculptures transform the park into a winter wonderland.

You will feel as if you are transported into Narnia as you walk around the park and watch the live carving of over 50 ice sculptures. Seeing large blocks of ice transformed before your eyes into detailed works of art will freeze you in your tracks. This mesmerizing show of craftsmanship is what the night is all about.

Stroll through the park while you sip on something hot, and munch on snacks from the food trucks located around town. If you need to warm up there are fire pits near the outdoor amphitheater in the back of the park. Live music is performed throughout the evening and marshmallows are distributed for s’mores.

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Sculptures are also carved at various locations around town, all of the ice sculptures are placed around Broad Street and Main Street for the remainder of the weekend for visitors to admire before they melt away. For Friday night, the streets are closed to vehicular traffic turning the main square into a big, town block party. This part of the event runs from 5-9 PM.

Part 2- The Fire:

Save your appetite for Saturday. The chili cook-off showcases the skills of 20 chefs, each representing 20 different local non-profits.

The cook-off is held at the Warwick High School (301 W. Orange St.) from 11 AM to 3 PM. Upon paying admission you are free to sample as many types of chili as you wish. From hot and spicy, to vegetarian, to different meat and bean combinations the varieties and flavors are vast. Once you have eaten your fill, cast your votes.

Votes raise money for the various charity organizations- the yummier the chili, the more votes they get, and the more money goes to the chef’s charity of choice. Win- win- win!

Along with chili there is also a Kid’s Carnival. Young chili enthusiasts (10 and under) can play games, color or visit craft stations, and partake in a variety contests throughout the day. If you do not have any young ones in tow to take to the carnival, you can check out the vendor fair which features local’s vendors and businesses.

Locals tips to Lititz:
• For Friday, be sure to dress in warm layers and wear boots. The park is often snowy or muddy at this time of year, so it is best not to wear your favorite shoes.

• Sections of Main Street and Broad Street are closed to vehicle traffic on Friday night from 4- 9 PM for the event, so plan your travel route accordingly. Broad Street will be closed from Orange Street to Front Street and Main Street will be close from Broad Street to Cedar Street.

• Because this event is very popular, the restaurants are usually pretty busy. Plan to accommodate a wait time in your schedule if you are grabbing dinner in town… rather than waiting to choose a place to eat while you are on the verge of being hangry.

• Buy your admission to the chili cook-off in advance, because it can sell out. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for children 12 and under (if they plan on having chili). Buttons can be purchased in advance at Stauffers of Kissel Hill (Lititz Location), Bombergers, Dosie Dough, or Aaron’s Books.

• The event continues through Monday, February 19, so you can walk around downtown Lititz and enjoy the sculptures all weekend, as well as check out local shops and restaurants.

Tomato Pie Café

Have you ever wanted to be transported to Luke’s Diner in Stars Hollow, or the lunch counter of a Norman Rockwell painting? Try eating at the Tomato Pie Café in Lititz! This quaint eatery is a favorite watering hole among locals and visitors alike. No matter what time of day, it is always busy. Once inside amongst the delicious smells and cozy atmosphere you can’t help but feel a little cheerier; the perfect atmosphere for catching up with a friend.

Everything on the menu is delicious, but a slice of tomato pie is their specialty. Tomato pie, the namesake of the café, is an original family recipe consisting of seasoned red tomatoes baked in a flakey pie crust and covered with a cheesy topping. Slices are available for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and makes a savory meal for any time of day. The café also has a full expresso bar with a selection of coffees, lattes, smoothies, and teas. If you haven’t been tempted so far, just wait until you see the dessert counter- everything is baked in town at the Bakery at the Cupboard. In additional to the standard menu, specials change monthly so there is always something new to try.

Next time you are in Lititz be sure to stop by, but allow for extra time to be blocked out of your schedule- you will end up staying for a while.


Monday – Saturday: 7:00 am – 9:00 pm

Sunday: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm

A seasoning for everything

Growing up in my household, seasoning a meal involved salt, pepper, or ketchup. (Sorry mom and dad, I know you really didn’t have time to cook.) Now that I have a household of my own and am learning to cook for myself, I am exploring new flavors and seasonings in my dishes. Enter Olio Olive Oils & Balsamics, a shop I discovered in downtown Lititz.

The entrance of this store was totally deceiving. It looks small from the outside, but it’s spacious in the inside – it has to be in order to hold the 75 different flavors of olive oils and balsamics that they sell there. Yes, you read that correctly, 75! Now I realize at this point that some of you may be thinking that seems a little overwhelming and you wouldn’t know where to begin, but the owners of the store are extremely helpful and will answer any questions you have. They even have a pairing sheet to tell you which olive oils and balsamics pair well together if you are feeling a bit intimidated.

I wanted to find something unique and surprising, so I started tasting my way around the store. Some of my favorites were the Fig, Lavender, and Honey Ginger balsamics. I also really enjoyed the Basil/Lemongrass, Persian Lime, and Herbs de Provence Olive Oils. Curious to try some of the olive oil and balsamic pairings, I decided to make another sweep of the shop. My favorite combination was the Tuscan Herb EVOO with the Fig balsamic, so delicious! There are so many unique and wonderful flavors you can combine to make your perfect pairing. The most surprising one to me was Chipotle infused EVOO with Chocolate balsamic. A steak marinated in this delicious combination would make for a unique and different meal at a dinner party.

Olio sells their olive oils and balsamic in 3 different sizes and they do not add any sugars to their products. They also carry several unflavored oils and balsamics, specialty oils, salts, sugars, pasta sauces, flavored honey, and skin care products. Not only can you shop their retail store for products, but you can purchase online as well. They will ship anywhere in the U.S. and will also make and ship gift baskets.

I got some great suggestions for recipes while I was visiting the shop. Pete, the owner suggested trying the Chocolate balsamic on ice cream for a sugar-free topping option. What a great idea! He also recommended the Honey Ginger balsamic on fish, especially salmon. I decided to purchase that one as well as the Mandarin Orange white balsamic.

The next night, I made honey-ginger salmon for dinner. It was so easy – all I did was marinate the salmon in the balsamic for about 15 minutes, then cooked it in a pan on the stove. Add your sides, and you have a really simple and delicious meal! I saved the Mandarin Orange balsamic for cocktails during girls’ night. Who knew you could infuse your cocktails with balsamics?

Olio is a great place to shop for anyone from a home cook to a pro chef. With so many options and flavors, the recipe possibilities are endless.

You can visit Olio Olive Oils & Balsamics’ website (oliooliveoil.com) for their complete list of products as well as recipes, or follow them on Facebook (www.facebook.com/OlioOliveOil) for weekly recipe ideas and events.

Ingredients for Mandarin Orange Ginger cocktails:
– 1 oz. vodka
– 5 oz. club soda
– 1 tsp. Olio Mandarin Orange balsamic (start with this amount, you can always add more to taste)
– Splash of ginger beer
– Orange slices for garnish

Step 1: Add the balsamic and vodka and stir to combine. Pour into a glass and add ice.
Step 2: Add the club soda to the infused vodka and stir.
Step 3: Top with a splash of ginger beer.
Step 4: Garnish with an orange slice and enjoy!


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