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May 12, 2008 02:11 PM

Touring Amusement Parks, want good chow in PA, VA, MD

I know, it sounds ironic and perhaps futile on the face of it - but I and my family love roller coasters, amusement parks, and food. Time was that parks mostly had great food - but that time is gone, and I need your help.

In celebration of my 40th birthday I will be riding more than 40 coasters I have never ridden before in less than 2 weeks. The schedule is largely dictated by the park - in some cases, we'll have no choice but to eat things we'd rather not in order to keep on schedule for the rides. When we can eat outside the park, though, we'd like to find places that are:

- Local
- Distictive
- Yummy
- Willing to admit 10 year olds and adults perhaps a bit grubby after a day in the park - maybe in shorts and t-shirt.

If all goes according to plan, we'll ride 58 new coasters and not eat in a single chain restaurant!

Here are the places where I know we can or must get a meal outside the park:

Knoebels, Elysburg PA, Monday (Memorial Day):
Dinner nearby or en route to Hershey PA (I-81)

(I know Knoebels reputation for excellent food - this is a backup in case we ride up until closing time and have to eat outside the park)

Dorney Park, Allentown PA, Tuesday
Dinner nearby or en route to Hershey PA (I-78)

Kings Dominion, Richmond, VA Thursday
Breakfast near Woodbridge VA or en route to Richmond (I-95)
Dinner near Richmond or en route to Corolla NC (I-95, I-64, US 168)

Six Flags America, Mitchellville MD, Monday
Dinner near Mitchellville or en route to Lancaster, PA (I-87, I-695, I-83, US 30)

Dutch Wonderland, Lancaster PA, Tuesday
Breakfast near Lancaster
Dinner near Lancaster or en route to Ligonier, PA (US 30, I-76 Turnpike, US 30)

Idlewild, Ligonier PA. Wednesday
Dinner near Ligonier or en route to West Mifflin, PA (US 30)

Tuscora Park, New Philadelphia OH (after stop at Village Candy, Sewickly PA), Friday
Lunch near Swickley, PA, near New Philadelphia OH, or en route between the two. (PA 60, US 22, OH 39)

Thanks for any information.

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  1. Past Richmond there is Pierce's BBQ which has excellent NC BBQ. It is right by the Great Wolf Lodge.

    Also in Richmond is Buzz and Ned's which is known for good BBQ I haven't been yet, but am dying to go. If you can go into Richmond for dinner you might have some nice choices like Comfort, Sticky Rice, etc you can search the South board for Richmond.

    I can't think of much near Mitchellville. But if you wait till Linthicum you could get crabcakes at G&M restaurant it is on the way up to PA.

    1. When you are near King's Dominion, I suggest

      Just about a mile off 95 in Ashland, VA.

      1. After Six Flags in Mitchellville you could stop at Negril (, a Jamaican place just down the road. I've heard good things - haven't tried it myself. It's a little place in a strip mall off 214, maybe 2 or 3 miles from Six Flags.

          1. re: bylinemjf

            Not this time! We've all ridden all of the rides there; this year's emphasis is on coasters new for me and the kids.

          2. Heading north from 6 Flags, you might want to stop at Rip's in Bowie.


            3 Replies
            1. re: shorty40cdm

              This may be too many good ideas! I'm torn between Smokey Pig and Pierce's for after Kings Dominion; I may have to post a separate topic in South and see who remains standing. I know how BBQ fights can get...

              After Six Flags, I think G&M has to win. I love crabcakes beyond all sense, and totally forgot that I would be in Maryland. I just can't miss that opportunity, though Rip's and Negril both sound good to me too.

              1. re: psantucc

                I'd go to Smokey Pig or Buz & Ned's over Pierce's. I've always found Pierce's to be overrated. With Buz and Ned's the service can be slow and be patient if you decide to go there. And definitely get the pork ribs and some mac and cheese as one of your sides. The sweet potato fries are fantastic as well.

                1. re: Janet from Richmond

                  Thanks! Pretty well settled on Smokey Pig, or Ipanema Cafe ( found in another thread) for that dinner. We have kind of a long drive ahead and dinner earlier makes sense.