Destination Pennsylvania: The Reading Terminal

Destination PA

PHILADELPHIA (WBRE/WYOU) — In this week’s Destination Pennsylvania, we head to the city of Brotherly Love. If you hunger for something unique, the Reading Terminal is the place to visit.

At 127 years old it is one the oldest public markets in the nation. The Reading Terminal Market in Center City Philadelphia is home to both local and international cuisine.

“It’s a gourmet hodgepodge of wonderful food, healthy choices, pretzels, pizza, vegetarian — it’s just an array of all types. If you’re a foodie the reading terminal is the place to come,” Charita Powell said.

“Soft pretzels, someone’s cooking up a cheesesteak, making donuts, making sticky buns, you name it. You got people cutting up fresh produce, you got the butchers doing their special cuts, it’s really awesome,” Sam Riehl said.

At its busiest in the early 1900’s the market had 250 food vendors occupying its stalls. Over 100 years later, it’s not quite as big, but it is still the home of 74 vendors. Riehl, the owner of Halteman Family Country Foods inside the Reading Terminal, says there is nothing else like it.

“You walk through the door, get all the smells. All those good smells hit ya,” Riehl said.

If you visit you’ll find seafood, meats, produce, baked goods and plenty of ready-to-eat options.

“Basically a one stop shop — you can come to the market get all your items here some produce on the way out, a sandwich on the way out it’s perfect. It’s the perfect storm in here,” Riehl said.

But food isn’t all you will find…

“We are kind of the surprise,” Powell said.

Powell, the owner of Amazulu Collections, is one of a few merchants that sells things outside of the food realm. She specializes in handmade jewelry.

“This is a symbol from Ghana. It’s called the sanculfa bird and she is looking back at her ancestors as she is moving forward for knowledge. I like to use a lot of symbolism for my pieces,” Powell said.

Whatever you are in the mood for the Reading Terminal Market has it. General manager Connor Murphy says it’s a must-see and taste if you are visiting Philadelphia.

“Going across the lines of groceries, prepared foods and arts and crafts from different parts of the world,” Murphy said. “Diverse, exciting, traditional. Definitely delicious, we have no problem there.”

That is just one of the many stops featured this summer on Destination PA and PALive Destination NEPA.

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