I never thought that a tiny mountain town in central Pennsylvania would change my life, but the town of Dubois did just that. Due to their conservative politics and laidback way of life, this urban liberal stuck out like a sore thumb — coincidentally hitchhikers and their literal sore thumbs weren’t uncommon here.
Looking at Dubois as an outsider, it doesn’t seem like anything special, but once you drive through the strip malls and trailer homes, treasure awaits you. The treasure that I’m referencing is Dubois’s own Treasure Lake, which my family visits twice a year. Treasure Lake is a semi-private, residential 8,000 acre community consisting of three lakes and beaches. The property has everything from a YMCA and community center to timeshares to private homes.
Even though my family only spends two weeks a year there, in a strange way I’ve grown up there and I know the town better than my own hometown, Pittsburgh. Some of my fondest memories took place in Treasure Lake, thus I know where to get the best ice cream (Dr. Doolittle’s Roadside Cafe & Creamery), the best beach (Bimini Beach), and the most relaxing activity (canoeing on Treasure Lake). So allow my expertise to guide the planning process of your trip to the haven that is Treasure Lake, PA.
The Treasure Lake region is jam-packed with diverse eateries, but my favorite is the Treasure Lake Ski Lodge. My family visits in both the summer and winter and the Ski Lodge satisfies whether you’re ordering wings in the warm weather or warming up to a piping bowl of chili in the cold. A little known fun fact about the Lodge is that their manager, Jeff Solensky, developed the ‘New York Reuben’ flavor for the Lays “Do Us a Flavor” potato chip contest which placed in the top four nationally!
After filling up at the Lodge, an easy way to sweeten the night is by stopping by Dr. Doolittle’s Roadside Cafe & Creamery. Stepping inside the shop is like time traveling; the walls are plastered with vintage kitschy memorabilia and their prices are unheard of in the 21st century (49 cents for a hot dog!). Their flavors range from toffee to teaberry, but their ice cream isn’t the only thing that captures kids’ attention — the laser tag and mini golf do, too! Overall, the Dr. Doolittle’s experience is a great way to kick back and enjoy dessert or engage in a familial laser tag war, whichever is more your speed.
A great way to burn off those calories, weather permitting, is by visiting Treasure’s Lake best beach, Bimini Beach! Bimini Beach is a beautiful public beach on the Treasure Lake property that’s often overlooked because New Providence Beach is more popular. While New Providence Beach is larger, it’s also much dirtier. Bimini, on the other hand, is cleaner and more secluded. Another great place to swim is at the Lakeview Lodge outdoor swimming pool, which is equipped with a slide.
If you’re looking for a change of pace, a tranquil activity is boating on Treasure Lake. The Lake provides a place to jet ski, canoe, kayak, or ride and dock a motorized boat. My favorite activity in all of Treasure Lake is canoeing with my family. It’s exhilarating yet unbelievably relaxing and therapeutic. The best time of day to boat is at sunset, when you can see the colorful sky reflect against the cool lake water.
With all this in mind, I hope you enjoy your adventure in Treasure Lake. Whether it’s an action filled or peaceful getaway, it’s sure to have the treasure you’re looking for.