Seniors tour historic builds in ‘Stepping into History’ Spring walking tour

Over the past month, 30 seniors toured the historical buildings of The Heritage Center as part of the Berks Encore Spring “Stepping into History” program. The tour included the Wertz’s Covered Bridge, Gruber Wagon Works, the Epler Schoolhouse and took a scenic walk along the Tulpehocken Creek.

Introduced as a new health and wellness program in the fall of last year, Stepping Into History offers seniors the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors, walk for wellness and learn the history of the popular landmarks in our backyard.

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Recent May walking tours also included the Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site and Conrad Weiser Homestead.

The Spring program ends with a fascinating tour of Reading Area Water Authority Filtration Plant and pumping station on May 24, 2022. Most of us take it for granted that when we turn on the tap, clear, clean, safe water will gush out. But how that water gets from Lake Ontelaunee to customers of Reading Area Water Company is a fascinating story!

In a Berks Encore exclusive, the Stepping into History group will be given a guided tour of RAWA’s Maiden Creek Filter Plant and Pumping Station. Some of the buildings date back to the late 19th and early 20th century and have survived hurricanes, floods and many changes in water safety technology.

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Because the grounds are restricted, the group will walk as a group through parts of the buildings which include steep staircases, wet floors and noisy machinery. The group will also walk about 1 mile along a paved road that follows Maiden Creek to learn how RAWA produces some of the best and safest water anywhere.

The group is limited to 12 participants for the tour, and guests must be able to do steps and keep up with the group. RAWA is located just off Route 61 north of Reading. For more information, visit

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