In response to my recent post about Lehigh Valley residents who are from California, I received three comments from ladies, with specific complaints, questions and wistful longings. While I can't manufacture a Japantown in Easton, I have a few ideas that might make life in the Valley a smidgen more Californian for them.
Shari and Jill: Dim sum - what about Eastern Palace Chinese Restaurant on Linden St. in Bethlehem? Everyone I know swears it’s the best Chinese in the Valley, too. I haven’t been, so if you go, let me know how it is!
I can’t help you two with the weather or the ocean… what you see is what you get here. I love three of the four seasons, perhaps even more so because I despise winter so much. I always think that if there was a winter sport I loved, I might feel differently. Instead, I run on the towpath with my Michigander friend who doesn't feel the cold and my dog who will run in any weather. But we are close to some NJ beaches, including some in state parks that aren’t commercialized, to at least get a little “fix.”
Shari: there are outdoor movies all summer long in Bethlehem – the North by Northwest group puts on one series in parks all over the north side, and the Downtown Bethlehem Association screens films in the Sun Inn Courtyard. Sign up for their Facebook fan pages to get updates next year!
Thanks for your comment, and please accept my belated “welcome to the Valley!”
Food: I have found cheap and delicious “world” cuisine in on Seventh Street in Allentown. Central and South American cuisines, plus Caribbean (Winston’s), Turkish (Aci Halal) and Thai (Kow Thai) that rival my favorites in DC. All are casual, most are BYOB, and would be suitable for kids. Most do a brisk takeout business, too. For vegan/vegetarian stuff – do you follow Jaime K and all her vegan/vegetarian activities in the Lehigh Valley? Have you been to Horns, Blue Sky Cafe or The Mint? All are vegan and veggie friendly.
Kid stuff: ArtsQuest is awesome, but it is definitely not the only thing going on. Do you subscribe to The Morning Call or The Express Times? Do you follow LV Little Ones? Are you connected to a LV area MOMs Club?
Movie theaters: We’ve got an IMAX now – yes, here in the Valley! – at the Rave movie theater at the Promenade Shops. And I’m sure you’ve seen the Banko Cinema at the ArtsQuest Center. The Civic Theater in Allentown also screens indie films, and so does the South Side Film Festival.
Museums: The Allentown Art Museum of the Lehigh Valley is about to re-open! Stay tuned here for a sneak peek. The DaVinci Science Center is great, and the Sigal Museum in Easton is also open to the public. Visit Discover Lehigh Valley for more ideas.