Can Lebanon bologna unseat a Primanti Brothers sandwich as the pinnacle of “cool” in Pennsylvania?

That’s for the voters to decide.

The Pennsylvania Chamber of Business & Industry has launched its second annual “The Coolest Thing Made in PA” competition, and Seltzer’s Lebanon Bologna is vying to take the top spot this year.

The contest, according to the PA Chamber release, is “a unique, engaging, bracket-style competition that pits made-in-PA brands against each other in match-ups determined by public voting.”

The first contest in 2023 ended with Primanti Brothers, a chain based in Pittsburgh, in the top spot. The Primanti sandwich – consisting of two slices of Italian bread, grilled meat, melted provolone, vinegar-based coleslaw, sliced tomatoes, and french fries – bested contenders including the Hershey Kiss, Yuengling lager, Zippo lighters, Martin guitars, Mrs. T’s pierogis and the Philly cheesesteak.

This year, the release noted, “after deliberation and soliciting suggestions from Pennsylvania brand lovers, we’re going bigger and better than before by doubling both the number of entrants and voters’ chances to participate!”

For 2024, the “Coolest Thing Made in PA” competition includes 64 made-in-PA products and encourages voting via the PA Chamber’s X and Instagram pages. The new bracket was unveiled on Monday, and voting began at noon on Tuesday.

Voting will continue each week through mid-April.

According to the Chamber’s schedule, voters can choose from the full list of 64 entrants until March 22, then the second round with 32 remaining contenders will run from March 26 to 29. The third round, with just 16 entrants left, will run April 2 and 3, and the fourth round, with eight remaining, will run April 4 and 5.

The semifinals will heat up the contest with the final four challengers on April 8 and 9. The championship between the big two will run April 10 and 11.

Other contenders this year include Tröegs Perpetual IPA from Hershey, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (also from Hershey), and Taylor Chip Cookies (based in Intercourse but with a stand at Hershey Fresh Market).

Also in the running are Crayola Crayons, Peeps, Wawa hoagies, Sheetz MTO, Pampers baby diapers, UTZ potato chips, Harley-Davidson motorcycles, Musselman’s applesauce, and Taylor Swift’s “Eras” tour stage by Rock Lititz.

More information on the competition can be found online.

Questions about this story? Suggestions for a future LebTown article? Reach our newsroom using this contact form and we’ll do our best to get back to you.

Support local journalism.

Cancel anytime.


🌟 Annual

Already a member? Login here

Free news isn’t cheap. If you value the journalism LebTown provides to the community, then help us make it sustainable by becoming a champion of local news. You can unlock additional coverage for the community by supporting our work with a one-time contribution, or joining as a monthly or annual member. You can cancel anytime.

Tom has been a professional journalist for nearly four decades. In his spare time, he plays fiddle with the Irish band Fire in the Glen, and he reviews music, books and movies for Rambles.NET. He lives with his wife, Michelle, and has four children: Vinnie, Molly, Annabelle and Wolf.


LebTown membership required to comment.

Already a member? Login here

Leave a comment

Your email address will be kept private.