May 11, 2017 // 9:15 AM

Beginning Life at Garden Spot Village

Written by Art Petrosemolo

My wife Tina and I are “newbies” at Garden Spot Village. We were the first residents (December 28) of Sycamore Springs and affectionately named our home “The Outpost” as we were the only residents for some 10 weeks.

Tina jumped into the community with both feet and joined groups, took trips, and signed up to volunteer. A retired high school chemistry teacher, she embraced retirement in 2015 as well as our quick decision (Destinations April 2017) to move here.

I worked in Lancaster at Franklin and Marshall College early (1970’s) in my career and Lancaster County certainly has come a long way in those 40+ years. We adopted our son Keith here and loved our four-year stay. We continued to visit for short mid-week or weekend stays over the years and when it was time to retire, Lancaster County was the first choice. And after seeing Sycamore Springs, we signed out and stopped looking.

I am a retired PR administrator in both the corporate world and in higher education. I am a writer/photographer and was not ready to give that up. Shortly after arriving at Sycamore Springs, I reached out to the editor of the Ephrata Review and the Lititz Record and asked if they were interested in taking on a part-time feature writer. I shared my clips, we met and they gave me the go-ahead.

I met with Garden Spot Village’s Scott Miller, who knows Lititz well and he gave me some leads to get me started. The leads developed into two quick stories and it has grown from there. I have written - in three months - on everything from the Lititz Moravian Trombone Choir to Women’s Roller Derby and have a dozen stories on my list for the weeks ahead.

My editors Andy Fasnacht and Steve Seeber tell me that I am helping them rediscover Lancaster County with all the possible stories I pitch to them each week from my travels, my interests, my growing contact list and just plain curiosity. They are still shaking their heads!

As I am re-introducing my editors to the communities they grew up in and now kind of take for granted, I want to do the same for you. I’ll share my adventures as I find something to write about, research it, write it and photograph it…. I have been a professional photographer for years and really write so I can photograph…. Many times, for me, it is the image that really tells the story.

I look forward to sharing my adventures with you in the weeks ahead. If you have an idea for me to explore and pitch a story to the newspapers… let me know at [email protected]

Contributing Writer