Last year I made a Christmastime visit to a plain Mennonite bakery in Snyder County, Pennsylvania. Weaver’s Market and Bakery is run by Stauffer aka “Piker” Mennonites, essentially the plainest of horse-and-buggy Mennonites.
The group settled here from Lancaster County decades ago. They would be plainer and more traditional than some Amish.
I was excited to have a chance to return. Especially since last year I decided that it was my favorite bakery. As you can see by the signboard outside, Christmas favorites featured heavily in both the market and bakery.
Like last year, before going into the bakery we stopped at the adjacent market part of the business. They had rearranged the place a bit, but the contents were about the same.
Canned goods, quilts, books, stationery, produce, baskets and crafts, and so on.
One thing I found amusing last year was that this Mennonite bakery seemed to be doing some unabashed Amish-themed marketing. In last year’s post I included this shot of Amish postcards they had for sale:
Similarly, here is a sign promoting Amish-made handicraft. You can’t miss it. Now, most Amish businesses avoid this direct call to attention, choosing to let customers discern the pedigree of their products in other ways. However, third parties selling Amish products, such as online retailers, don’t restrain themselves that way. And looks like that also applies to their Mennonite cousins 😉
Leaving the market, signs warn you what to watch out for. Also note the swollen Susquehanna River.
The bakery happened to be much fuller this year. A lengthy but fast-moving line stretched through the narrow customer section. About ten or so Mennonite ladies were hard at work in the much larger production area of the bakery. This was just a few days before Christmas so people were loading up on holiday goodies.
I saw many of the same treats as in the previous year. I picked up some of the same things but also tried one or two new things, including mincemeat pie (I recently shared my experience with that treat here).
In the below photo, you can see: lemon sponge pie, raisin pie, banana bread, zucchini bread, pumpkin bread, ginger snaps, coconut macaroon cookies, monster cookies (among other treats).
Here are a few things I didn’t get, but maybe now wished I did: Lemon bars.
Sour cream cranberry bars & peanut butter fingers.
About half of this photo.
They also had some gift baskets.
The Amish do not have a monopoly on the whoopie pie (or shoofly, for that matter).
Checking out. I picked up a promotional calendar to go with my baked goods haul. This year I got granola bars & pecan pie squares (again), fruitcake (again), and the aforementioned mincemeat pie.
Leaving the market, we drove through the community, heading up to the central PA valleys.
Here you can see a local school. Behind it is a meetinghouse, with the long covered buggy parking areas partially visible.
Contributor Jerry had this to share about this community in a comment on last year’s post:
This settlement is often called the “Snyders”. (Mattie from Burkes’ Garden uses that term and I think she had a brother living here). They live in a triangle of Routes 11/15, 104 and 35. Three church districts of Stauffer Old Order Mennonites.
However there are four meeting houses in the area and I suspect one church district consists of Mifflinburg Mennonites. We call those the Reiff Mennonites. These orders publish their “census” every 10 years and I have the Stauffer 2020 version and the 2010 Reiff edition.
Did you get a chance to see any meeting houses or school buildings in either area? Did you also notice Route 11/15 is a four lane divided highway? The OOM run their horse and buggies only on the south bound side regardless of which direction they are going.
Weavers is known for their huge variety of whoopie pies. However you missed the real treasure in the area. It’s 1/2 mile from Weavers and called The Old Trail Supply. The locals also call it “the Amish Walmart”.
Alas, I missed it again this time. But this just gives me another reason to make a third visit.