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Travels take us west to San Francisco: LaVonne Ackerman

Posted 5/24/17

Howdy, folks! We are just cruising along towards June, and who isn't excited about that?

I want to wish you all a Happy Memorial Day, coming up on Monday, May 29. It is more than a picnic, more …

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Travels take us west to San Francisco: LaVonne Ackerman

Golden Gate at sunset
Golden Gate at sunset
Getty Images/Flickr RF

Howdy, folks! We are just cruising along towards June, and who isn't excited about that?

I want to wish you all a Happy Memorial Day, coming up on Monday, May 29. It is more than a picnic, more than a day off of work and school. It is a day to be grateful for all those who gave so much for our freedom. I appreciate the sacrifices that have been made. Thank you to all who have served and are still serving. You are appreciated!

Recently my husband and I got to travel to California and see the sights in San Francisco and surrounding areas. We went with friends Piper and Doug Sarver.

In the next several weeks I will be sharing some highlights in this column. I do this so you will, hopefully, send in some of your travel stories! Fortunately for me, Scott, Doug and Piper were on top of the plans, reservations and schedule. Yes, all I had to do was pack my suitcase.

We left Harrisburg International Airport on the morning of May 4. The weather in May hasn't been that fantastic, so it wasn't difficult to leave! We made our connection in Chicago and journeyed on to San Fran! Everything went smoothly and we landed at 3 p.m. We rented a car at the airport and found our way to the Cow Hollow area. Cow Hollow Inn and Suites, 2190 Lombard Street, was close to everything we needed. We promptly parked the rental and spent the next three days using public transportation. This is a great idea because parking is very expensive and difficult to find.

We went to dinner at a quaint Italian restaurant around the corner from the inn. The food was delicious and since we had energy to burn we did some exploring on foot. We experienced the mist off the bay (was like rain, only sideways) as we walked along the Marina District. We climbed the steep hills and investigated the Pacific Heights area.

Before we turned in for the night were fortunate to talk to a very friendly woman at the front desk of the inn. She told us about the hop-on, hop-off bus line, Big B Bus! She also warned us about getting reservations for Alcatraz Island. We did that with her help and planned to meet for breakfast at 8 a.m. at the Home Plate restaurant.

This is all for now! You have a great week and don't forget to let me know your news to share!


Happy 20th cake day to Alexus Reynolds of Middletown on Wednesday, May 24. I hope this birthday is just wonderful!

Best wishes to Alex Kennedy of Lower Swatara on Wednesday. This gal celebrates her beep-beep-honk day and turns Sweet 16 on May 24. Drive safely, Alex!

Big birthday smiles are sent to Don Hartman of Middletown on Wednesday, May 24. I hope it is everything you want it to be, Don. Enjoy!

Deb Carson of Lower Swatara will hear the birthday song on Thursday, May 25. I hope it is a beautiful sound to your ears, Deb!

Joshua Alcock of Lower Swatara celebrates his 20th birthday on Friday, May 26. I hope your birthday weekend is extra-special this year, Josh.

Happy confetti-flying day to John Rhodes of Hummelstown on Friday, May 26. I hope 46 super things happen to you over your holiday weekend!

Happy honk-honk-beep Sweet 16 birthday to Lynnsey Woodley of Middletown on Friday, May 26. Enjoy your big-deal birthday, Lynnsey!

Best wishes to Raymond Baer on his cake, Saturday, May 27. Happy birthday to you and Ryan as your celebrate your dad-and-son day!

A huge birthday hug is sent to Judy Stare of Lower Swatara on Sunday, May 28. Best wishes for a super-fine and beautiful me-holiday! You deserve a parade, Judy!

Ny’Zier Arango of Lower Swatara will turn 14 on Monday, May 28. Yay, no school on your birthday, Ny’Zier! Hope you have a happy one.

Happy Sweet 16 birthday to Anthony Paul of Lower Swatara. This guy's honk-beep-honk day is on Memorial Day, Monday, May 29. Enjoy the day off!

Happy landmark birthday to Carly Waters of Middletown on this special holiday, Monday, May 29. She turns 18 on Memorial Day.

Courtney Fisher of Middletown marks her 23rd cake-and-ice cream day on Monday, May 29. Hope your day is full of relaxation and fun, Courtney!

Hey, Joe Harkins of Lower Swatara! Happy birthday balloons are flying for him on Monday, May 29 as he turns 22. Enjoy your holiday, Joe.

Lots of birthdays on this special day … and one more! Happy birthday to Bailee Koncar of Lower Swatara. She is 20 on Monday, May 29. I hope this birthday is extra-special, Bailee!

Best wishes to Craig Mosher of Lower Swatara on Tuesday, May 30. Craig celebrates cake day 58! I hope the day is terrific for you and your family, Craig!


Happy 54th wedding anniversary to two beautiful people, Chris and Dot Reider of Lower Swatara. They were married on May 26, 1963. Have a happy Friday together!

Best wishes to Jim and Susan Hare of Lower Swatara as they observe their 38th wedded bliss holiday on Friday, May 26. I hope your day is fantastic!

Glad grad

Congratulations to Joe Harkins, Lower Swatara, who graduated summa cum laude from West Chester University with a dual major in music composition and oboe performance. Joe plans to attend the Cincinnati College, Conservatory of Music, to pursue a master’s degree in music composition. Keep up the diligent work, Joe.

Dean’s list

Congratulations to Nicole Whittle of Middletown on being named to University of Pittsburgh spring semester dean’s list. Nicole completed her freshman year. She is a business communication major with a minor in music. Her family is very proud of her. Keep up the great work, Nicole!

Congrats, grads

Congratulations to Jordan Davenport, who graduated with a bachelor of science degree in interactive media, and Christina Metz, who graduated with a bachelor of science degree in integrative sciences, at Harrisburg University of Science and Technology’s 10th commencement ceremony on May 11. Jordan and Christina are from Middletown.

Travel West

One day we decided to go,

Westward to San Francisco.

During sunny days and chilly nights,

The Big B Bus helped us see all the sights.

The weather treated us great,

As we crossed the bridge over “The Golden Gate.”

The cable cars and the crooked street, I must say,

And touring Alcatraz Island in the Bay.

Were all things you don't want to miss,

If you come to the land of bliss.


Life Hacks

1. How to get rid of smelly feet and shoes: Fill a spray bottle with rubbing alcohol and spray feet every morning and evening. Do not do this if you have open skin wounds! Also, spray the inside of shoes after every wear. The alcohol kills the bacteria that causes the smell.

2. Sore ears from earrings? If your earlobes are sensitive to certain metals in your earrings a neat trick: dip the posts in Vaseline! Another less messy idea: Paint the posts with clear nail polish.

3. Tooth ache? Chew on a clove of raw garlic.

Quote of the Week

“Build a better tomorrow on the mistakes and experiences of today.” — Anonymous

Reach LaVonne Ackerman at 717-649-7366 or by email at