The chance to sample a dozen secret brews at several Lebanon County coffee shops and cafes is scheduled to begin again in 2024.
The fifth annual Java Journey runs from Thursday, Jan. 11, 2024, through Saturday, March 9, 2024, according to Visit Lebanon Valley.
“The Java Journey is a trail of coffee shops across Lebanon County,” the VLV website explains. “There are 12 participating businesses in the county where you can join.”
To join, simply visit any of the participating businesses, purchase a special mug and passport, and get ready to sip some caffeinated concoctions.
Anyone willing to take the journey can buy their mug and passport for $10 at any of the participating coffee shops. Mug supplies are limited, so don’t delay.
“At each participating business, you will have access to a secret drink,” the website notes, adding that only people who have signed up for the experience will be able to buy that particular drink. A purchase gets journey participants a stamp on their passport.
Once the passport is filled, participants should leave it at their final destination on the list so they can be entered in a drawing to win “a huge gift basket full of goodies from each business as well as smaller runner-up prizes!” VLV says. “This years basket includes an overnight stay at the Annville Inn Bed & Breakfast!”
Participants must visit each location on the passport to have a chance of winning prizes. Winners will be announced on Visit Lebanon Valley’s Facebook page on Friday, March 15.
Visit Lebanon Valley encourages participants to take photos at each stop on their journey and post them on social media with the hashtag #LebanonValleyJavaJourney.
The tour includes 10 businesses totaling 12 locations throughout the county. They are: Ancestor Coffehouse & Creperie (Cornwall and Campbelltown), Baked Sweet Coffehouse & Bakery (Myerstown), Caffeination Station (Palmyra), City Watch Coffee (Lebanon), Mill 72 Bake Shop & Cafe (Lebanon), Swatara Coffee Company (Jonestown and Annville), Sydney Roasting Company (Lebanon), Timber Creek Coffee (Myerstown), Timeless Cafe (Lebanon), and Whirling Dervish Bakery & Coffeeshop (Annville).
While there may be two locations for Swatara and Ancestor, VLV explains in its FAQ, “each of these four locations is a separate stop with its own stamp.
“Each coffeeshop on the Journey has a unique secret drink and atmosphere, regardless of name and ownership,” the FAQ explains.
The FAQ also notes that participants don’t have to order the secret drink to get their stamp, but they must make a purchase.
Folks who simply don’t like coffee can order tea, hot chocolate or any other beverage or menu item.
The first Java Journey was held in 2020, right around the time that Starbucks opened its first franchise in Lebanon County.
“With the recent development of large chain coffee shops in Lebanon County, we decided it was time to show people that there are so many great local places to buy amazing coffee,” Visit Lebanon Valley marketing assistant Paige Gregorzek told LebTown in 2020, just prior to the launch of the first Java Journey. “We want to encourage visitors and residents alike to support local businesses and spotlight some locations all over the county where they can purchase great food and drinks.”
Holiday shoppers also can buy the Java Journey Holiday Gift Set, including a thermal tote and two Java Journey mugs and passports, for $30. The gift set is available only through Dec.23.
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