Seltzer’s Smokehouse Meats will open a new retail store and company museum in downtown Palmyra, expanding its footprint in the borough.
The historic Lebanon Bologna purveyor previously had retail outposts in Jubilee stores, and more recently at Black Swan Antiques, but the new location will be 100% Seltzer’s. It will carry all of the company’s packaged items.
Plus, it will be chock full of artifacts from Seltzer’s 120-year history.
Longtime Seltzer’s employee Denny Kettering is heading up the new outlet location, which will be sited in the former Roy’s Bicycle Shop at 209 N. Railroad St.
Kettering has been with the company for nearly 43 years, and has worked in a variety of capacities for the firm, including more than two decades as head smokemaster and a two-year stint as plant manager.
For pretty much that whole time, he’s been collecting items related to Seltzer’s history in the county. These items will be displayed in the museum portion of the new location — items such as barrels and signs from the 1940s, giveaways for kids Seltzer’s held in the 1960s and ’70s, old jackets Seltzer’s drivers used to wear, and different brands that were used to mark Seltzer’s wooden boxes.
Kettering said that his dad and son are both auction-goers and have helped him compile his collection of Seltzer’s memorabilia over the years.
The museum will also feature items from the Seltzer family, including the desk of founder Harvey Seltzer, a number of pictures, and items from Jack Seltzer’s time in the state House, where he served as speaker and represented Lebanon County via the 101st seat.
As for the retail offerings, all of Seltzer’s packaged items will be available, including their new beef jerky, hitting shelves this summer. The store will also stock a number of Pennsylvania Dutch-themed items, like birch beer and shoofly pie.
The new store will also serve as the company’s version of Chocolate World, offering replicas of Seltzer’s famous smokehouses (perfect for a quick photo) and videos of the production process, such as the 2009 Dirty Jobs episode featuring Seltzer’s and the more recent video by ABC’s Localish.
Kettering said the carpenters are getting close to completion, and while an exact opening date has not yet been identified, he is hoping to see the store opened mid-July. Tentatively the hours will be Tuesday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and Saturday, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
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