Ephrata, A Place for a Quiet Adventure

In a couple weeks, you will be able to look forward to  blog completely dedicated to the adrenaline rushing adventurous experience at Refreshing Mountain, but for now I would love the opportunity to talk a little about the quiet adventures you can have in and around Ephrata! Quiet adventures, seems like a bit of an oxymoron in my eyes,  but sometimes a quiet adventure is all a couple needs to enjoy a weekend away. I've done the quiet adventure thing with my husband, more often than not it's a simple walk down the beach on a summer morning or a hike around the campgrounds that doesn't result in a full sweat, but what quiet adventures does our quaint little town of Ephrata have to offer? My first suggestion for a nice leisurely afternoon adventure would be to walk the Linear Park Trail, renamed in 2013 as the Major Richard D. Winters Memorial Trail. My first experience with this trail… Read More

Sight & Sound Theater

It’s a Thursday in April, there is not anything special about this particular Thursday, it was not exceptionally sunny nor did it snow. It wasn’t a blistering 90 degrees nor was it an unseasonably cold day, but despite its overall normalcy you would have thought by the droves of people heading into the Sight & Sound Theater that the Queen of England herself had arrived in Lancaster. It has been many years since I stepped foot in front of the Lion and Lamb statue that has become an iconic staple of the Lancaster area, but the feeling as I was pushed and prodded into the theater remained the same, that of complete excitement. Sight and Sound Theater, a production company that specializes in bringing the stories of the Bible to life, has been outfitted with a 2000 seat theater and 300-foot stage since I had last been to see a show (Noah circa 1996). The massive exterior looks like something… Read More

When You Discover Cool New Things

Over the past few months, I have had the great opportunity to discover quite a number of what I'm appropriately calling" Cool New Things".  While others may not think them so "cool" I feel it my obligation to at least share my latest finds with the few of you who like the new and old, the fascinating and the weird, and the thrill of creativity. Find #1 - Allegro Vineyard ( Brogue, PA) By now, if you've been following the blogs or know me, you have probably surmised that I am a bit of a wino. I don't pretend to be a great sommelier or even a wine enthusiast, I simply love to experience new wines of all regions, flavors, colors, and styles. Recently, I had the pleasure of helping to choose the new wines for Black Forest Brewery's summer wine selection. This terrible task I was assigned landed me in the heart of York county at Allegro Vineyards (the oldest commercial vineyard in Pennsylvania).… Read More

Ephrata- Main Street U.S.A.

In continuing with my theme of promoting the small quaint town in which the 1777 Americana Inn Bed and Breakfast resides, this piece is dedicated to the ever uniquely named, Main Street. Before we begin our stroll down the large sloped hill of Ephrata, might I just take a minute to give you a quick fact, as of 2010 there were approximately 10,466 streets called Main Street in the U.S.A. In fact, people have actually done studies on what classifies a main street to be named "Main Street." In reviewing these articles and studies, there are several points (of which you could already assume) the collectors of this information make: Number 1: The street is in fact the only street of the town, thus appropriately entitled Main Street. Number 2: The town may be of larger size, but the center of town where the shopping, entertainment, and political gatherings are the main hub of activity, again… Read More

The Green Dragon (No not the Lord of the Rings Tavern)

I know I have written all about my favorite food places in Lancaster, including the now famed "cheese tour" but I don't think I've quite devoted enough time to talking about the wonders that lie within the town of Ephrata itself. A passerby may think Ephrata has lost some of it’s charm, after the closing of the famed Donecker’s complex, but if you look closely you will find there is still plenty of magic in this suburban town. And what a better place to find magic than at a market named after a mythical beast- The Green Dragon. Located less than 2 miles away from the 1777 Americana Inn Bed and Breakfast, the Green Dragon Farmers Market & Auction has been a long standing staple to the Lancaster communities. Every time I pass by the market (which I for the longest time could have sworn was located  off of 422 in Amity- it is not) I am filled with nostalgia. My mom often speaks about… Read More

Cheese Tour

It’s a rare day that my husband and I get to spend the entire daylight hours together, so when it happens we try and make the most of it, thus our latest excursion through Lancaster County to find the best cheese! The idea popped into my head late last week once I knew we had the day together and the weather made it feel like summer outside, I thought what better way to spend the day than driving the beautiful Lancaster backgrounds in search of hidden dairy gems. Googling, I came up with a 4 stop route which included farms, creameries, and dairies that took us from Leola to Morgantown and lasted about 3.5 hours. We gathered some essentials at home (cold pack, beverages, mustard, crackers, etc...) and started on our way. We set out and drove in and out of some of the most primitive and stunning Amish county I’ve seen, there were fields of baby greens, silos, windmills, and with the… Read More

Year Two

As a young adult, I’ve spent the past couple years evaluating how and what I want to do with my life, but as adults in their second career, Denise and Bob Harter chose carefully and meticulously how they wanted their second go around to happen,  and I have to say I’m a bit jealous. My experience so far with the job market has been successful, I have been blessed with many great positions including zoo keeping, bartending, taking care of sick animals, and learning the art of sales, but nothing has ever truly lasted me more than 2 years, I can safely day Denise and Bob have passed that point. With not one, not two, but three successful careers, they are an inspiration to the young adults out there like myself. So, let’s talk a little bit about why year 2 was so awesome for the 1777 Americana Inn Bed & Breakfast and how they can safely say years 3, 4, 5, etc.. will be even better… Read More

Irish, We Are!

When you grow up in a family with the last name Kirkpatrick, the notion that St. Patrick’s Day is going to be a small affair is just a joke. So when Denise married the nice German boy from Wyomissing, the tradition continued and here we are 2016 and St. Patrick’s day is approaching quickly so what does the 1777 Americana Inn Bed& Breakfast and the Black Forest Brewery have up their sleeves, lots of shenanigans, that’s what. With the vast success of the 1st Anniversary Party in December, Denise and Bob immediately looked ahead to March and started brainstorming how to make their version of St. Patty’s memorable. Lots of ideas were thrown out including hosting a traditional Irish wake, Irish trivia, jig contests, kilt contest, bagpipers, green beer, traditional Irish food and music to last the celebrations into the night. SO. . they contacted me at Devine Destinations and, a plan… Read More

Gotta Get Away!

Worn out! Everyone has used that phrase at least once or twice (a week) most of their lives.  In childhood, it is playing with friends and learning right from wrong, in high school it's homework and sports; in college it's all-nighters and social life; in adulthood its bills, work, and relationships, the cycle never really ends of being plain and simply . . worn out. So, how does one combat this worn-out problem, the answer....VACATION. Thank goodness for the doctors and ministers in the mid-19th century that practiced and preached that vacation was good for your health. While initially intended to be a time to accept idleness by attending religious retreats and not be tempted by drunken and foolish behavior, vacations have vastly transformed over the years; but the fact still remains that vacation is good for you and this is why: 1) No more stress ( unless you go to Disney World with… Read More

Ephrata Alliance

Over the past couple months, I've blogged about all sorts of things to do in and around Lancaster County, but rarely have I talked about the charm our little town of Ephrata exudes. This week, I had the pleasure of attending the first official meeting of the Ephrata Alliance, previously the Ephrata Merchants Association, and I was astonished by the passion and drive that these small business owners possess. Once topics such as the restructuring and legality of the organization were discussed, the important themes of the days came forward. What does this organization want to do for Ephrata, how can it promote community over competition, how can it maximize Ephrata's charisma with local events, and how can the organization best impact the local merchants to ensure that Ephrata's business community will thrive. These are all pretty hefty questions and tasks left to one group, but hopefully with… Read More