The Rory Chandler mysteries are set in Media, PA., AKA “Everyone’s Home Town”.
Media is a small town, twenty miles west of Philadelphia, and easily accessible by train to Philadelphia and New York City (a train ride of fewer than two hours). This town of about five thousand, is rapidly growing in size and popularity. Several town homes and apartments are under construction.
Among other distinctions, Media is one of the last towns in the country that has a trolley running down the center of the main street. It is also the first “Free Trade town” in the country. In order to qualify as a free trade town, 60% of its businesses must employ third world artisans and pay them a fair wage. Ten Thousand Villages, which is a non-profit that benefits third world artisans, has a store in Media. It also has the distinction of being an “arbor town” because of the abundance of trees.
The restaurants, which comprise about two-thirds of Media’s businesses, feature extremely diverse offerings. Asian-fusion, Italian, French, Japanese, Chinese, and Mexican, are some of the different cuisines represented.
During the summer months of May-September, the main street is closed (to auto and trolley traffic) every Wednesday evening, when most restaurants serve at tables on the street, for “Dining Under the Stars”. Thousands of people typically attend this event. Most of the shops are open as well, so diners often stroll and peruse the shops after dinner. This, and many other events such as, sidewalk festivals, car shows, blues stroll, are courtesy of the Media Business Preservation Committee. This committee is largely responsible for the growing popularity of Media.
The Media Theater, a venue on the main street, offers musicals of exceptional quality year-round.
Settled in Victorian times, there remain many beautiful signature homes of that era. As the county seat, a huge, attractive court house, built in the mid-eighteen-hundreds, brings thousands of people to Media every day.