Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Pennsylvania Part 2: Ephrata

Yay!  We finally made it to Ephrata.  My best friend, Ashley, and her family moved here last Spring.  Having had some time to adjust, they have decided that they love the area.  The schools, parks, shopping and the library are close to their house.

Ephrata Borough, Lancaster Co., PA

As you can see, it is a quaint town that make you feel like you have stepped back in time, and when you see the horses and buggies of the Amish you may think you have.  This was taken at the local Walmart.  

Horse and Buggy parking only!

This year was exceptionally hot with days of triple digit heat indexes.  Like many areas in the northern part of the country, very few homes have central air.  But winter is coming, and the boys are looking forward to the snow.  They have already located a good hill for sledding/snow boarding.

Main Street in Ephrata

There is a nice park just blocks away from Ashley's house with a large picnic shelter, playground, a walking path along the creek, and plenty of benches to sit and watch the kids play or just relax with nature.

A park within walking distance

When you have kids, knowing where all the parks and playgrounds are becomes important.  This park has a ball field, playground, and walking paths, one of which leads to this pretty lake.  It was late afternoon, and the sun was playing off the trees and their reflections in the water.

Just a few miles down the road from Ephrata is another small town called Lititz.  It was a nice day to stroll up and down Main Street and visit the Wilbur Chocolate Company.  From the moment you step inside your senses are assaulted with the fragrance of chocolate.  They sell a huge variety of chocolaty treats, which are made upstairs above the shop.

There is a natural spring in Lititz Springs Park.  It flows into a pool and then down a shallow "stream" with stacked rock walls on either side.  It is filled with ducks, coming and going.  It looks like a lazy river ride - ducks just walk over to the edge and plop in.

A lazy river for ducks!
Here is a short video of the ducks swimming up and/or downstream.

This is a natural spring and the water is quite cold, and very clear.  When I looked into the spring where the water was still, I actually couldn't tell there was water there.

This tells more about the history of the spring and the park.

Here is the lion guarding the spring.  I believe the original lion was carved into the rock below, but has worn away over time.

After walking through the park, and sampling chocolates at Wilbur's we enjoyed some great pizza at a Roma Pizza on Main Street.

On another day, we visited Ephrata's Green Dragon.  The Green Dragon is a farmer's market and flea market all rolled into one.  There are many vendors including the Amish.  You can find just about anything there from fresh baked goods, fresh fruits and vegetables, meats and cheeses to clothing, sunglasses, household goods and too much more to list.  People come from miles around to shop here, and it only operates on Fridays.

Image Source:  The Green Dragon website


  1. Linda,

    I enjoy these travel posts so much. I loved the video of the ducks and all your pictures of both Ephrata and Lititz.It would be strange to park near a horse and buggy.

    The ducks made me wonder if they go back up stream and start floating downstream again...kind of like a duck slip and slide:~)

    I'm happy you enjoyed your trip and I'm enjoying you sharing it with your readers. Thanks:~)

  2. Wow, Linda -- it really sounds like a d dreamy place and so great for kids. I'd like a town where I could snow sled too.

    We were talking about the Amish last night, Kelly having watched a tv ad with us for Amish furniture. We are amazed and admire how they craft it so beautifully with no power tools.

    Wilbur Chocolate -- bring it on, Baby! And soon, please. :)

    So glad you've had pleasant travels this summer. Always fun to visit new areas.


  3. That is a lovely little town. But wait, Amish people shop at Walmart?!

  4. Sara- I'm glad you've enjoyed my travels this summer. It was certainly different to see a horse and buggy parked at Walmart.
    The ducks were fun to watch. There was pool area at both ends of the narrow stream and there were ducks everywhere going in all directions.

    Jannie- It is a good place for kids. That's one of the things Ashley loves about it. The Amish sell a lot of stuff at the Green Dragon. Wilbur's does have good chocolates, and they give samples and tours of the factory upstairs.

    Nicky- I suppose the Amish have to shop for their necessities somewhere.

  5. Hi Linda .. loved this ride through town .. and the lion and Spring - and the park for the family .. sounds like it's a good rounded community for the family.

    I love the name Euphrata .. and Lititz .. interesting ones ..

    Oh no - snow and sledding .. gosh I hope we don't have it here again .. it was too much last year and completely unexpected! We just don't live with snow!!

    Glad you had a great holiday and break away .. thanks for sharing with us .. Hilary

  6. What a quaint and charming place. I guess living in close proximity to a major city, (San Francisco), we get used to the ultra modern. What we are missing is the charm of the simple. Nice post!


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