- A driver builds up his own trucking business
- Father and son share a love of life on the road, even if it makes visits rare
- This driver always makes time to mentor the next generation — whether at home or on the road
- This driver helps rookie truckers learn the ropes
- Home-schooling in a truck means the country is a classroom
- This driver sees the world through Google Glass
- A career trucker brings his tales of the road to people in hospice
- How driver Paul Sedlak finds motivation to reach his fitness goals
- I Love Trucking: More than a job, driving is a way of life
- Big Rig Books: Driver delivers books to underprivileged kids
TA Binghamton gets a makeover but keeps its small-town charm
Talk to a veteran driver about the early years, and the topic of truckstops will likely come up. If the driver is feeling nostalgic you’ll hear about small-town spots with big-hearted staff who remembered drivers’ names and how they took their coffee. If the driver is telling tales of how much harder things used to be, you’ll hear a list of modern conveniences now available at today’s travel centers that make life on the road much easier. If the driver has recently visited the TA Binghamton, you’ll hear about a spot that manages to combine that old-style charm with those up-to-date amenities.
One of the longest-standing locations in the TA network, the upstate New York location has recently undergone a massive upgrade, so it looks fresh and functions better in many ways.
“We started out as a little mom-and-pop stop in the 1950s and have seen some changes over the years, but this is a complete renovation,” says General Manager Nancy Polkowski. “There are beautiful hardwood floors in the main building. The new laundry equipment sends a text to drivers when their laundry is done. We added two more showers. But the biggest thing is our new diesel pumps. We now have pay-at-the-pump and DEF at the pump.”
Drivers who have been coming through TA Binghamton for years are thrilled with the makeover at a place they still consider quaint and cozy. And new visitors are pleasantly surprised at what they discover when they arrive.
As Tad Horowitz, truck service general manager, says: “We’re small but pack a big punch.”
Stop and go
The parking lot got its own makeover, including new LED lighting and space for more truck parking. The new layout allows for 132 spaces, plenty of room for all. Once you’ve settled in, you can grab a map for the scenic walking trail nearby. Discover more of the area’s charm as you step lively through a lovely neighborhood.
What’s a spiedie?
Take some chunks of chicken and let them marinate for a good long while in a delicious concoction of spices, oil and vinegar. Grill them up and serve on salad or Italian bread. This is a “spiedie,” a specialty of Binghamton that is served year round at the Country Pride. “The secret is the marinade,” says restaurant GM Cindy Minus. “It’s a hometown favorite, and our drivers love it.”
Entering the zone
Rod Serling, creator and host of the classic TV show, The Twilight Zone, grew up in Binghamton, and the town has a museum dedicated to him. The Country Pride also pays tribute to the hometown star. A section of the newly revamped restaurant has a number of photos of Serling in his heyday.
TA Binghamton, NY
Where: I-81, Exit 2W (N), Exit 3 (S)
Phone: (607) 775-3500
Fax: (607) 775-1528
Truck Parking Spaces: 132
Truck Service Bays: 2
Restaurants: Country Pride