Summer Heritage Passport Brings History to Life by nancy bishop
History might have been a boring subject for some in school, but it comes to life when visiting the historical locations included in Columbia & Montour Counties’ Summer Heritage Passport. In 2019, there were 14 choices of places to visit between May and mid-October. In mid-summer, I decided to hit the trail with my passport in hand in search of some unique places. I knew I’d learn a good deal about the rich history of the region along the way. If you’re a nostalgia buff, you won’t want to miss Bill’s Old Bike Barn on Route 11 between Berwick and Bloomsburg. Bill Morris began his Old Bike Barn in 1998 behind his motorcycle parts shop. Keep your eye out for the large dinosaur statues marking the entrance as you travel Route 11– indicators that this is an interesting stop! Inside the 55,000-square foot building, you’ll find Bill’s collection of antique motorcycles, including a 1913 Harley Silent Grey Fellow and a 1914 Triumph. But that’s not all!
bill's old bike barn
a 30-caliber machine gun and even palm trees with moss hanging from them. Plan to spend several hours and you’ll still feel like you haven’t had enough time to see everything. Another one of my stops on the Passport was the Carousel Museum at Knoebels Amusement Resort near Elysburg. If you only think “horses” when you hear about carousel rides, you’ll want to visit the Museum, which is in the same building with the Carousel Gift Shop. Among the more than 50 carved carousel figures, some dating back to the 1870s, are tigers, lions, zebras, an ostrich, a giraffe, a reindeer and even a dog, a camel and a rooster. Next, I took a short drive north to the village of Eagles Mere, where I visited three local museums. The Eagles Mere Museum, located right in town, did a great job of highlighting the town’s history. Just down the road, the Eagles Mere Air Museum features more than 30 vintage aircraft dating from 1917 to 1944. Many of the planes are the only remaining flying examples of their kind, and a number were owned by well-
knoebel's carousel museum
A collector of 1939 New York World’s Fair memorabilia, Morris built a little village – Billville – inside the building to house his collection. On Main Street in Billville you’ll find a mansion, a toy shop, a camera shop, a smoke shop, a music store and the 1939 New York World’s Fair Bar. To showcase a '45 NOS Military Bike, there’s an impressive military display in another room of the building that’s complete with a foxhole,
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