"I think people are very excited," said Rachel Kipp. "Delaware is definitely a place that has a lot of state pride... I think it's because it's a small state and we all kind of feel like we know each other, and so when something great happens to one of our own, we all really want to celebrate."
Kipp, part of the wife-and husband writing team completed by Dan Shortridge, both now work in marketing and communications, and met while working at an area newspaper.
"We had a friend in common who introduced us at the time," Kipp said. "I was working as a reporter and he was working as a reporter also, but he was based downstate and I was based at the office in New Castle. We both worked in reporting for a long time and now, we both ended up working in communications and marketing."
Inspiration for their 13-stop "No Malarky Biden Tour of Delaware" was drawn from just watching the out-of-town visitors finding little things around Delaware associated with America's new President-Elect.
"We thought, with all the interest in Delaware coming as a result of Joe Biden being President-Elect, we could create just a quick, handy checklist guide for folks coming to the state," Shortridge said. "Rachel really had the idea when we were in New Castle County over the weekend and stopped at the Biden Welcome Center and saw people taking selfies out in front of the sign."
"It was really cool thing people taking their selfies at the rest stop," she said. "We just thought people are interested. I think people are going to be interested, especially if people coming from out-of-state are going to increasingly be interested. You know, 'I'm coming to Delaware, what kind of things can I do that have a connection to the president?' Just like they've been interested with previous presidents."
The couple, who together published a book titled "100 Things to Do in Delaware Before You Die," said their list, published for free so all can familiarize themselves with the life of President-Elect Biden before he reached the highest office in the country.
"We ended up with about 13 items all told that we assembled here," Shortridge said. "We have four things that were named after Joe Biden, either as Vice President or U.S. Senator; we have six places that we know that he likes to eat or shop; and then three locations about either education or about Dr. Jill Biden."
Their complete list is as follows:
- Biden has been a regular at the Wilmington Amtrak station for years, commuting between his home in the First State and Washington, D.C. In 2011, the station, which was designed by famous architects Frank Furness and Allen Evans and opened in 1908, was renamed for the then-Vice President.
100 S. French St., Wilmington, DE.
- The Biden Welcome Center along Interstate 95 in New Castle County celebrates not just Joe, but the entire Biden family and its service to Delaware. Over the weekend, travelers have been snapping selfies in front of the building sign. It was renamed in 2018 after a unanimous vote of the Delaware General Assembly.
Biden Welcome Center, 530 John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway, Newark, DE.
- The Biden Environmental Training Center at Cape Henlopen State Park: A former U.S. Navy facility, this complex was named after then-Senator Biden in 1998 in thanks for his work transferring Department of Defense property to Delaware. It’s a retreat and conference center inside the picturesque Cape Henlopen State Park - close to Biden’s second home at the beaches.
Biden Environmental Training Center, 15099 Cape Henlopen Drive, Lewes, DE
- The Joseph R. Biden, Jr. Aquatic Center: In 2017, the City of Wilmington honored Biden by naming after him the pool where he lifeguarded as a teenager. It also features a plaque on the back of one of the lifeguard stands.
Biden Aquatic Center/Prices Pool, 26th Street and Speakman Place, Wilmington, DE
- Capriotti’s: Biden famously visited the new Washington, D.C. outpost of this locally grown sandwich chain on opening day. Item number 16 in “100 Things to Do in Delaware Before You Die,” Capriotti’s has dozens of locations in Delaware, including the very first one that opened in Wilmington’s Little Italy neighborhood in 1976. Perhaps its most famous concoction is The Bobbie: homemade turkey, cranberry sauce, stuffing and mayo on a sub roll. Biden reportedly likes his Bobbie with hot peppers on the side.
Multiple locations, Little Italy location is at 510 N. Union St., Wilmington, DE 19805
- PureBread Deli: The entire Biden family are fans of this homegrown chain of sandwich shops; the Greenville location, one of about a half dozen in Delaware and southeastern Pennsylvania, is a short drive from the family’s home. All of the sandwiches on the menu are named after different breeds of dog, from the Chihuahua (chicken, pepper jack, avocado, lettuce, tomato, onion and chipotle mayo on cheddar bread) to the St. Bernard (ham, turkey, roast beef, provolone, lettuce, tomato, onion and honey dijon on sourdough). Come early so you can have your pick of their signature jumbo muffins -- the peach granola is great.
Six locations in Delaware and Southeastern Pennsylvania; Greenville location is at 4001 Kennett Pike, Wilmington, DE;
- Janssen’s: A photo of the President-elect hangs behind the customer service desk at this Greenville market, which is known for its extensive selection of gourmet and prepared foods. Janssen’s also has its own cafe, which serves breakfast and lunch and also does takeout, and is also offering heat-and-serve meals so you can enjoy their home cooking at your humble abode. Be sure to swing by the bakery for a peek at the confections in their dessert case.
3801 Kennett Pike, Wilmington, DE 19807
- Scream for Ice Cream: Joe’s passion for ice cream is well documented, and Delaware has a plethora of options. They include items 1 and 20 in “100 Things to Do in Delaware Before You Die” - enjoying fresh scoops from one of five local farm creameries or sampling one of the wacky flavors at the Ice Cream Store in downtown Rehoboth Beach.
- The Charcoal Pit: Joe’s love of the Pit’s burgers and shakes also helped draw another famous visitor back in 2014, when President Obama came to town. The sundaes at this classic burger joint all bear the names of local high schools for an authentic Delaware spin. It’s item 10 in “100 Things to Do in Delaware Before You Die.”
The Charcoal Pit, two locations, at 2600 Concord Pike, Wilmington, and at Kirkwood Highway and Greenbank Road, Prices Corner
- Browseabout Books: The new First Couple (and occasionally one of the future First Pets, Champ and Major) has often been spotted at this independently-owned Rehoboth Beach bookstore, which also sells toys, gifts and homegoods. (It's also entry No. 93 in the book.) The store offers online ordering and home delivery; you can also call ahead to order and pick up books in store.
133 Rehoboth Ave., Rehoboth Beach, DE 19971
- Archmere Academy: Biden ranks as the most famous alumnus of this private Catholic school. He served on the student council and played football and baseball for the Auks, and later saw sons Beau and Hunter also graduate.
Archmere Academy, 3600 Philadelphia Pike, Claymont, DE
- Brandywine High School: A university professor, Jill Biden will make history as the first First Lady with a full-time job. She gave her speech at the Democratic National Convention this summer from her former classroom, Brandywine High School Room 232, where she taught English.
1400 Foulk Rd., Wilmington, DE 19803
- Delaware Technical Community College: Jill Biden was a longtime English professor at DelTech before taking a position at a community college in Northern Virginia after her husband was elected Vice President in 2008.