The first picnic was held in 1898 at Penryn Park, which was located in the mountains between Mt. Hope Station and Cornwall. This park could only be reached by train or by walking. The people parked their horses and buggies at Mt. Hope and carried picnic lunches. There were some small rides there, including a steam-operated merry-go-round. The railroad continued on to Cornwall but there was a turn table at Penryn Park for the engine to turn around and go back to Manheim and Lancaster.
About 1905, the picnic was moved to a woods on the farm of the Aaron Stoner family. This was along Shumaker Road in Rapho Township. A band was hired and there was free lunch for everyone.
In 1915, the picnic was moved to the church parking lot when Aaron Stoner wanted to timber off the trees on his property.