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Looking for good restaurant near Harrisburg / Hempfield

Hi, Off to the Hempfield soccer tournament near Harrisburg next w/e (22nd / 23rd) and looking for recommendations for a reasonable place to eat friday night - preferabley kid friendly (but still good) and not too expensive, and also Saturday lunch (close to Hempfield), and Sunday lunch / brunch (close to Hempfield). Lunch / brunches - cheap and cheerful is OK...

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  1. Where, exactly, will you be staying?

    6 Replies
    1. re: centralpadiner

      Okay, so the tournament itself takes place in East Petersburg. That is just north of Lancaster, it would be very inconvenient for you to go to Harrisburg for food. All of your typical chains that kids like, including the sit-down ones are not too far away near the Park City Mall. I am assuming that you want something a little better....
      Haydn Zug's is in East Pete, but it is a fine dining establishment, and not appropriate for kids in soccer attire. Isaac's Deli is a regional chain. The closest one is south on Rt. 72, in a strip mall behind Chili's. I like it, my kids like it, and there are lots of choices. I would definitely consider lunch there. If you like Vietnamese, Saigon Cafe is in the same strip mall. It's not the best Vietnamese in Lancaster, but it's not bad. My kids like Mexican, and we often take them to El Rodeo for dinner on a Friday night. It would also be near by, just a little farther south on 72 from Isaacs.

      1. re: centralpadiner

        Centralpadiner - thanks for the great advice. We stay in a very large Holiday near Harrisburg - I will post the address when I get it. It is across from one of the amusement parks (Dutch wonderland or something like...), and is not particularly convenient for the tournament. (Our club mass book and we have our club banquet on the Saturday evening - food always horrible but the kids love).

        1. re: FriskLamb

          Here is the Hotel address...

          Holiday Inn Harrisburg-East located at 4751 Lindle Rd., Harrisburg, PA 17111

          1. re: FriskLamb

            The Holiday Inn out on Rt. 30 by Dutch Wonderland - again, you are in Lancaster. You are not going to Harrisburg, near Harrisburg you won't be any closer to Harrisburg than you will be to Philadelphia - it's all about Lancaster. You will be staying in the center of Lancaster's tourist district. There is a major lack of decent food in this area. However, there will be no lack of places to dine with a bunch of hungry rowdy soccer players. There are a TON of cheap, kid pleasing, chain restaurants very close to your hotel. Make the drive down to Isaac's for lunch one day for something that isn't a chain.
            Good luck, have fun, and know that this trip isn't about the food.

            1. re: centralpadiner

              Thanks again... Have been a few times and have not managed to find anywhere close to the hotel that is reasonable. Have tried Isaacs and was quite good. Will try the Vietnamese for lunch on Saturday. Cant beat good Pho on a cold wet day. No family italian restaurant that is reasonable for Friday evening? Good za is better that horrible chain food.

              1. re: FriskLamb

                For good casual family Italian nearby that isn't a chain, I'd recommend Firoentino's. http://www.fiorentinos.com/

                The Lancaster Airport Location is only about a 5 minute drive from East Petersburg:

                500 Airport Rd
                Lititz, PA 17543

                Also, I second the recommendation for Lunch at Saigon Cafe. I love that place. Their Beef Stew with French bread is also great on cool rainy days.


      2. If you are indeed staying near Harrisburg, there is a very good diner at exit 2 off of 283. I think it's called the Capitol Diner.

        We used to have to make the trek from Philly to State College for 6 years (2 kids went to Penn ST), and would stop there a lot

        1. If you want eat near your hotel, there are a couple of kid friendly choices right nearby. Gilligans Bar & Grill is big and loud and has all of the food you would expect. Also, the Lancaster Brewing Company has a restaurant right down the street from your hotel in Harrisburg. Just google their names and you can check out menus, directions, etc.

          Chanceys Bar & Grill (just a block north of the center of East Petersburg on Rt. 72) is fine for lunch or dinner and isn't a chain.

          1. Please note we will be staying at the Holiday Inn Harrisburg-East located at 4751 Lindle Rd., Harrisburg, PA 17111 and playing our games around East Petersfield

            3 Replies
            1. re: FriskLamb

              Sorry, your post about your location in Harrisburg wasn't up yet when I flamed the Lancaster Tourist zone. Since you will be in Harrisburg, you definitely have more options.

              You don't say how old your kids are, but if you are in the mood to venture into the city for an evening out, you may want to check out the Fire House. It is a fun loud place and the food is good. http://www.thefirehouserestaurant.com/

              If your kids tolerate Indian food (I wish mine did) I recommend Passage to India. http://www.passagetoindiapa.com/

              I forgot about Fiorentinos - we love it there, but if I remember, the airport location does not serve pizza - which can be an unfortunate surprise when you're with kids expecting that at an Italian place. I don't live in Lititz anymore, and only go to the Columbia Ave. location these days, so this may have changed. They didn't have a pizza oven there for a long time.

              1. re: centralpadiner

                Centralpa - thanks again...

                Last year we went to Al Mediterraneo which was very good. Is it still as good this year? and if not where else would you recommend... (We will probably not go - but parents with older kids might). I have a 15 yr old girl, 10 yr old boy and 8 yr old girl.

                1. re: centralpadiner

                  Fiorentinos does serve pizza now. I think they added it within the last year or so. I haven't tried it yet though, so I'm not sure how good it is.


              2. There is a great Mexican restaurant about 5 minutes from the Holiday Inn - Herby's El Mexicano. http://herbysmexican.com/. There's also a very good Mexican restaurant in downtown Harrisburg called El Sol.

                1. Try TJ Rockwells in Elizabethtown--not far from Lancaster. Kid friendly--even large rowdy groups. Feed them the rhino fries after they've played (not before! they won't be able to move). In warmer weather, their outside deck is just great fun.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: chocoannie

                    I'm sorry, but I live in Elizabethtown, and just do not understand everyone's fascination with Rockwell's. The food is no better than a TGIFridays as far as I can tell. We will take the time to drive up to Fire Alley instead of going to Rockwell's any time. Besides, I can't imagine that it would be convenient to go to from where they are in Harrisburg, or to run for lunch while in East Pete.

                    As to a previous post about Fiorentino's now serving pizza at the airport - that is great news. I would assume it is just as good as at the Columbia Ave. location, which is good to me.

                    Frisk - I haven't been to Al Mediterraneo, but have heard nice things. We don't eat out in Hummelstown often, I'll have to check it out. When we do go that way, my kids like the Soda Jerk. It is a 50's style diner. All the usual diner food, and all the good old fashioned soda fountain stuff too!

                    1. re: centralpadiner

                      Thanks again... can you let me have the address of Soda Jerk?

                      1. re: FriskLamb

                        403 E. Main St. Hummelstown, PA - I thought they had a web site, but I can't seem to get it in a search.

                  2. Looks like majority of our games are in Manheim - the Turf farm - appreciate any recommmendation local ... Thanks to all who have contributed.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: FriskLamb

                      Okay, I looked where that is, and although it has a Manheim address, you are still pretty close to East Petersburg. You are perhaps a bit closer to Landisville, but I don't know any of the restaurants there. I assume you are thinking about lunch, and I would still recommend a run down Rt. 72 to Isaac's Deli, or Saigon Cafe. Both located in the strip mall behind Chili's. Looks like it is going to be severely cold, so try to stay warm this weekend. I'd probably be dying for some pho on a day like that and it's not bad at Saigon, but Isaac's is a little more kid friendly, and has soups and hot sandwiches. Good luck to your teams, and have fun!

                    2. I live in lancaster and all I can say is good luck. This event is a real mob scene and traffic and all area restaurants are overrun with soccer player. The fast food places are packed. Thousands upon thousands of pizzas are sold.

                      Please do not expect a whole lot of pleasant dining in the area of the games. And give yourself lots of extra time on the road.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: lancastermike

                        Well I can tell we are approaching the tournament as the weather has tunred particularly cold... as it always does just before we leave. Thanks to all for their great suggestions.

                        1. re: FriskLamb

                          So..... it was frigid, fields covered in snow.... how did it go?

                          1. re: centralpadiner

                            Humble appologies for not posting sooner. That the tournament was re-named the Snow classic said it all. Our Saturday games were delayed an hour as they scraped the snow from the touchlines, We opted for the mall after our 9 a.m. game just to get the girls as warm as possible. Friday night was went to Cantones in Lancaster (I think - I was a passenger) - it was OK - and the kids enjoyed as they had a band playing Frankies greatest hits. Girls team won both games on Saturday so all in all was good. Banquet was normal very average food, Sunday game at 8 in the freezing cold which we lost and were out of the tournament. We had planned on going to the Virtnamese if we had won that game and got to the final. Still managed to run over and watch another daughter and son play - 7 matches watched in 36 hours from York through to Lnacaste rand Harrisburg, Quite an epic really.

                            Thanks again for your help.