You're pretty much after my own heart here . . .
Steph and I are great friends.... at least to the point where each time I've stopped in (starting with the Berrigan's days 20++ years back when she ran the joint before the recent split/move, etc.) she always stops long enough to chat for a few minutes - and now I'm only in the store when I get home for the holidays (or, occasional short summer trip). But, when I am in Bloomsburg, I'm usually there a minimum of 75% of the days when they are open. One of my favorite foods in the entire world.
Oh - and I got one of the first "Steph's" T-shirts allowed into the hands of a non-employee. Unfortunately, it was size M, and being at least an XL, I gave it to my mother to wear.
Ain't clams the best? Especially with drawn butter? I've even been able to enjoy some on the half shell . . . but that is only when I'm at the shore where my aunt and uncle lives (just north of Barnegat), and have no qualms about their quality. [in the past few years, the local Giant grocery store chain has offered mussels from somewhere - I presume farmed; rather small, but simply wonderful steamed in foil on the grill as the starter to an evening of grilled hunks of meat]
Haven't done the fire hall . . . will have to look into that. Used to do meals at the VFW in Bloomsburg, but that was in the early '70s. Not sure they still do food. My dad talks of cheap dinners at the Elks where his father was a member, and since then my two uncles are members, but they sorta stopped that when there became much more competition (and the Bloomsburg chapter had to spend a fortune just to try to keep up with the mansion they were in - they recently moved across from the business that my uncle owns, and my father manages).
I don't recall ever having Seltzer's before. At least it isn't a name that sticks in my mind. Kunzler's often. And lots of bologna rings from makers over towards Bangor and Easton area (my mother's side of the family).
Yuengling Lager is a personal favorite (not that I drink much beer). Especially when my uncle buys a quarter keg for his Christmas Party which means free beer for a number of days . . . another fave is Genny Cream, which I haven't had in a few years (only so much time/money - especially when you bring back at least two cases of wine to share with family and friends).
Get to Luigi's Pizza in Bloomsburg? I heard they were near (if not in) the high water at their 'new' (new since I moved away 20 years ago) location even further down Main Street. Another favorite pizza was Romeo's (which has closed); luckily the two May's Drive Ins nearby (just outside Bloom towards Danville and Berwick) has the same offerings (a different branch of same family). Not true traditional pizza by any stretch, but a flavor you remember from childhood. Great soft ice cream and chili hot dogs too.
I always preferred the plain Middleswarth, but tolerated the bbq. My favorite local potato chip is Gibbles. Cooked in lard, and simply exquisite.
I think their Birch and Root beers are some of their (Catawissa Bottling's) best known offerings, but I'll have to remember to try the ginger. Sounds like the Blenheim ginger ale we get down here. I like a lot of their other flavors, and the fact that they still use real sugar in a some of their bottlings. A-treat from Allentown is another brand that has memories of visits to mom's family since I was only a few days old (although I doubt they let me drink any A-treat till I was a bit older ;-) ).
Used to be a farm upland from Orangeville that made their own preserves and jams (a lot from their own fruit sources; they also bought in) in small batches when the fruit was in season. My favorite was their blueberry preserves, and my father's was their seeded black raspberry. Boston Farms was the name. Shame they quit (or, sold out).
Some local made goodies now are true sauerkraut in the late Nov. thru Dec. time period, Koch's Turkey (they are nearer Amish country) and one personal favorite, 'Pasties' from the Mr. Pastie folks in Pen Argyl, PA (amongst the items already covered). It amazes me that so many childhood favorites remain available. It is good to see that with many more 'diverse' choices today that people continue to do business with 'their favorites.'
We occasionally get Grafton down here at one of our small stores. And, you are correct... the 4-year old is incredible. The other offerings are also good, but the 4-year version is yummy.
Hope no one you knew was affected by the flooding. Luckily, no one in my family was too affected. A little bit of water in the basement of my uncle's house (he's next to the Bloomsburg Park and High School down by the river, but on reasonably high ground); his business which was flooded during Agnes in '72 was about 2ft from peak water (my father manages the business); my aunt and uncle who board race horses at the fairgrounds had to move them (at first, not in a rush, but shortly thereafter it became urgent because of flooding with Fishing Creek) and they got some run-off rainwater in their basement/barn where they live (but not from floodwaters). My dad was without water for a number of days. He was happy he had held onto his elderly "sun shower" he had in the '70s... otherwise, my family was spared.
One horrible outcome of the flooding was the loss of West Paden bridge, one 'half' of one of two twin covered bridges in the United States. Built in 1884, and restored a few times over the years (heck, they just finished repairing East Paden bridge after Ivan flooding damage, and a tree that fell into it November 2003, and fixed up the area with more picnic areas and such - all to the tune of $400,000 in mostly local and state monies - the re-dedication was this May of 2006!) Lots of info on the twin bridges and other area covered bridges that suffered damage is located here
Thanks for running me through memory lane (both past and more current).
Oh - btw, the original Berrigans is still open just a few doors down (I stopped once 'in disguise' - still the same but they sorta seemed distracted although not terribly busy), but for most locals, Steph's is the one to support.