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Submitted by:  Robert Stopper, Lyons

While motoring down Route 31 along the Erie Canal, Niels de Bruin and Annelies Van Manen from Heemstede, Netherlands, North Holland, decided to “Google” the area for possible evening accommodations. Little did they know that they would spend the next two evenings in a Peppermint Cottage, tour a historical Peppermint Building, and even find and purchase a Peppermint Pig!

Niels and Annelies merely planned to “check out” the place called “The Peppermint Cottage,” a Bed & Breakfast operated by Diane and Mark DeCracker of Lyons; however, after smelling Peppermint, seeing Peppermint, and listening to stories about Peppermint and the Erie Canal, they decided to “stay a spell” and learn about the local history.
Hotchkiss Docent, Dick Kelly with Holland Visitors,
Niels  de Bruin   & Annelies  Van Manen

Niels and Annelies spent several hours touring the Historical Hotchkiss Building. Their docent was Peppermint expert and master bottle collector, Mr. Peppermint himself, Dick Kelley. Mr. Peppermint explained the history of the Peppermint industry in Lyons, told a few “good inside stories” of the industry, and proudly displayed original bottles, shipping crates, and other memorabilia from the Peppermint Oil Era.

When Niels and Annelies signed the Hotchkiss Guest Book, Niels remarked, “I think the sea level here in Lyons is a bit lower than when we last signed a big guest book– that time we were at the top of Mount Kilimanjaro– we were having a bit of trouble breathing, and it was not from the smell of Peppermint!”

Holland Visitors with their Peppermint Pig
The guests from the Netherlands found the tour of the Hotchkiss “absolutely” fascinating, but the story of the Peppermint Pig really intrigued them. In fact, said Niels, “This is such a unique story, we can’t go home without a Peppermint Pig– in fact, I think we will purchase a few little Peppermint Piggies”- and they did!

After visiting the Hotchkiss Building, the tourists visited the mural in Dobbins park, the Trail of Hope, the canal bank, and Lock E 27. Niels was interested in the locking procedure and explained, “Back home, we live next to the Ring Canal bordering the famous Haarlem Lake polder. When a boat is ready to go through a lock, the lockmaster reaches out to the passengers with what looks like a fishing pole with a basket attached to it. The passengers place their toll fare in the basket. The lockmaster pulls in the money, and through the lock they go!”

According to Niels, “We are so delighted that the GPS directed us here. You have so much wonderful history– you could really be famous– just like tulips, chocolate, and canals are in Holland! We are very excited to tell our friends about our great find- Peppermint in Lyons. Wait till we tell them about Peppermint Pigs! And you hit them in a bag with a mallet– a story for sure!”


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1 Comment to "GPS Finds Peppermint Near Erie Canal"

  1. Gil Burgess Said,

    These visitors are demonstrating that making Wayne County more tourism friendly could really help us out economically.

    Posted on Thu Aug 16, 10:03:00 AM EDT


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