Author Archives: Katie

Katie

About Katie

Originally from Upstate New York, Katie is a Lancaster transplant. She moved to Lancaster in 2013 after becoming engaged to her husband. Katie is continually discovering all the unique things Lancaster has to offer. She loves being outside and enjoys running, hiking, biking, and skiing. Katie can often be found trying new restaurants downtown, or browsing Central Market after yoga on Saturdays. Katie is the Graphic Designer at Discover Lancaster and is eager to help showcase what makes Lancaster County so great!

Indoor Adventures in Lancaster

The holidays have passed, and the weather is frigid- what’s there to do to burn off some pent-up energy? Plenty! Not only does Lancaster have beautiful outdoor resources for hiking, biking, and exploring, we also have loads of indoor adventures as well. Come check out some of the locations below to start off the new year with active, healthy activities that will keep you busy all day long.

Escape. On Queen
escapeonqueen.com
Not all adventures are physical, some challenge your mind as well. See if you and your crew can solve all the clues and get out before your hour is up!

Go ‘N Bananas
gonbananas.com
You name it, and you can probably find it at Go ‘n Bananas. With their Ball-o-city, laser maze, mini-bowling, and indoor ropes course, spin zone, and laser tag, you can spend all day here with the kids.

Indian Echo Caverns & Echo Dell
indianechocaverns.com
So, this isn’t technically indoors, but at least it’s warmer. Down in the cave the temperature remains at 52 degrees Fahrenheit allowing you to engage your inner explorer. Allowing you to check out what’s under the earth for a change of scenery, tours generally last 45 minutes.

Lancaster Ice Rink
lancastericerink.org
What better winter activity is there than ice skating? Head over to Lancaster Ice Rink for public skating sessions, or sign up for one of their learn-to-skate or learn-to-play hockey clinics. Even though its chilly in there, we will bet you will still work up a sweat.

LANCO Fieldhouse
lancofieldhouse.com
If you thought LANCO Fieldhouse was just for indoor soccer practice, you stand corrected. LANCO Fieldhouse also offers bubble-ball, and if that is not challenging enough you can also try zombie ball, kickball, dodgeball, or king/queen of the ring. So, gather your group and head over.

Laserdome
laserdome.com
Laser tag at the Laserdome is like an adventure in another galaxy. You and your crew can battle it out in the giant alien space ship arena all afternoon. Each game session is 40-minutes long.

Rocky Springs Entertainment Center
rockysprings.net
Rocky Springs Entertainment Center has a number of indoor activity options including bowling and laser tag. Plus, there is no need to worry about lunch, stop in their Red Pin Bar & Grill for a delicious meal.

Sky Zone Trampoline Park
skyzone.com/lancaster
Ever wish you could dunk like Mike Jordan or flip like Simone Biles, you can at Sky Zone (or you can at least try)! This indoor trampoline park is fun for little ones and adults alike, you can literally bounce off the walls. Sky Zone offers a number of activity options such as open jump, dodgeball, or fitness classes.

Spooky Nook Sports
spookynooksports.com
You don’t need to be a gym member to check out all the awesome indoor adventures at Spooky Nook. Being the largest indoor sports in America, there is plenty to do. We suggest you take on their 15-foot rock-wall, or try the obstacle-loaded Clip ‘N Climb course.

Tiny Town
tinytownpa.com
Do you have little ones in tow? They need to burn-off energy too! Head over to Tiny Town for an adventure that they can create with their own imaginations. This indoor play-place for children is all hands-on created to inspire curiosity and creativity.

Cut-your-own Christmas Tree

It’s hard to believe that Christmas is right around the corner, time to break out the tinsel and start whistling Jingle Bells while you work. With so many things to do and places to be during the holiday season, it is nice to take a day to enjoy time with your family and slow down for a while.

We suggest a family outing to cut your own Christmas tree! It makes for a day of old-fashioned fun filled with fresh-air and lots of hot-cocoa to warm up. You don’t have to be a lumberjack to cut down your own tree, often tree farms are willing to help you with the cutting and tying down of your tree – all you have to do is seek out the perfect pine.

We have complied a list of several places around the county where you can cut your own trees. Take a look and plan a day to find the Fraser fir that fits your family’s home.

Abe’s Tree Farm
2305 Butter Rd., Lancaster, PA 17601
Friday: 12– 5 PM
Saturday: 8 AM – 5 PM
Sunday: 12 PM – 5 PM

Bowser’s Christmas Tree Farm
551 Stauffer Rd., Lititz, PA 17543
Monday-Saturday: 10 AM – 5 PM
Sunday: 1-5 PM

Country Barn Farm Market
211 Donerville Rd., Lancaster, PA 17603
Saturdays (Nov. 28- Dec. 19): 11 AM – 5 PM; Market open 9 AM – 6 PM

Elizabeth Farms
262 Homeland Rd., Lititz, PA 17543
Saturdays and Sundays: 9 AM- 5 PM
Tuesday – Friday: 1 PM – 5 PM
Closed on Monday

Heritage Tree Farm
142 Church Rd., Lititz, PA 17543
Fridays 12- 7 PM
Saturdays 9 AM – 4 PM
Horse-drawn wagon rides 9:30 AM – 2:30 PM on Saturdays

Hunt’s Christmas Trees
465 Stehman Church Rd., Milersville, PA 17551
Thanksgiving Day – December 23rd
Sunday- Friday: 12 – 5 PM
Saturday: 8 AM – 5 PM
Other hours by appointment

Log Cabin Trees & Trim
252 Hideaway Dr., Quarryville, PA 17566
717-786-4003
Monday – Saturday: 10 AM- Dusk
Sunday: 1 PM – Dusk

Stauffers of Kissel Hill
120 W. Airport Rd., Lititz, PA
Monday – Friday: 8 AM – 8 PM
Saturday: 8 AM – 6 PM
Sunday: 9 AM – 5 PM

Source: “Where to cut your own Christmas Tree in Lancaster County,” lancasteronline.com, Nov. 2015

Pass the Pumpkin, Please…

Did you know that Lancaster County is one of the top ten pumpkin-producing counties in the United States, with over 1,000 acres of pumpkins! This year’s crop has been particularly plentiful. Although the pumpkin growing season is over, you can enjoy pumpkin flavored treats all the way through November. (As most pumpkin lovers know, the season doesn’t end with Halloween).

Below is a list of some of our premier pumpkin goodies to try while you are out and about in Lancaster. Whether you prefer sweet, savory, or just a little sip we’ve got you covered.

A pumpkin whoopie pie (a Lancaster County classic) or a pumpkin crueler from Shady Maple Smorgasbord, are always a place to start.

Pumpkin scones or pumpkin cake with chocolate and nuts from Wendy Jo’s Homemade pair perfectly with your coffee as you stroll through market. If you prefer muffins to scones, the pumpkin muffins from Ric’s Bread are perfection.

The pumpkin mousse from Speckled Hen Café is simply delectable, plus the presentation doesn’t disappoint either.

Classic Pumpkin Pie from the Bird-in-Hand Bakeshop is a good stand-by, try it á la mode with a scoop of their pumpkin-pecan ice cream, yum!

Try the pumpkin and sweet potato bisque or the poached beet, pumpkin and pear salad at John J. Jeffries for a healthier (but still delicious) take on a pumpkin meal.

The pumpkin ravioli from Lancaster Brewing Company is stuffed with fall flavor, order a pint of Baked (their pumpkin ale) to complete the meal.

Winter squash & red lentil fritters with pumpkin seed and basil pesto from Ma(i)son are a culmination of autumnal goodness all in one dish.

Pumpkin Linguine at The Horse Inn with duck sausage, butternut & acorn squash and sage will satisfy any pumpkin (or pasta) lover.

Pumpkin spice tea from The Herb Shop- Central Market is pumpkin spice and everything nice all in one mug.

Pumpkin cold brew at Tomato Pie Café is perfect for when you need a mid-day pumpkin pick-me-up.

If you are craving an adult beverage try ordering the Nutty Irish Pumpkin Cocktail from Annie Baileys. It made with Slane Irish Whiskey, House Pumpkin Liqueur, Frangelico & Cranberry – yum!

Cocktails aren’t your thing? There are plenty of pumpkin beers and ciders on tap at the Federal Taphouse.

What to Wear, Where – Lancaster Fall Edition

Fall is a great time to visit Lancaster- with so many harvest festivals to attend, apples to pick, and leaves to peep by who wouldn’t have fun? One way to ensure you will have a successful weekend is to pack the proper attire. We all know how uncomfortable it can be to be too hot, or too cold while out for the day- it takes the fun out of the event, and leaves you wishing you could go home and change.

We have created a “what to wear, where” guide for fall activities in Lancaster. Our fall temperatures are usually moderate (ranging from approximately 65˚F to 40 ˚F in September – November), but it can get chilly in the evening. We suggest wearing items that you can layer on or off.

If you are wondering if you can rock a fedora, or don your fringe boots… we say don away! Don’t be afraid to flaunt your own personal style here. Many artists, makers, and cultures reside here–so needless to say, creativity is welcome. After all, Lancaster is home to the Amish, who are the original hipsters.

Below are two example outfits put together by Tanger Outlets in Lancaster. You can pack ahead, or stop by when you get here to pick up some new threads before the fall festivities begin.

This style is great for shopping and strolling through our various small towns, or for catching a show downtown at the Fulton.

-Black Dress Slacks, White Button-up Shirt, Camel Cardigan, Cheetah Flats, Gold Hoop Earrings, Black Down Vest, Blush Wool Wrap Coat; Women’s Outfit from Banana Republic Factory, Tanger Outlets, Lancaster

If you’re planning on going pumpkin picking or hiking around Chickies Rock, this outfit is perfect for adding and subtracting layers as the day changes temperature. Plus, bringing a backpack is always a good idea.

-Red Buffalo-Check Plaid Flannel, Gray Thermal Henley, Dark Wash Denim Jeans, Black Belt, Heather Gray Beanie, Black Down Vest, Roll-Top Backpack, Black Graydon Sneaker-Boot; Men’s Outfit from Timberland Factory Store, Tanger Outlets Lancaster

6 Reasons We are Obsessed with Fall in Lancaster

As Anne of Green Gables once said “I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” Here in Lancaster we are especially glad- actually more than glad, we are obsessed! Lancaster seems to glow in the autumn- bustling with harvest festivals and farm days or whipping up all sorts of pumpkin flavored goodies. We just can’t wait to put on our flannel and boots and go crunch some leaves. Read through our top six reasons we are obsessed with fall in Lancaster, and then get out there and enjoy the season!

1] Leaf-peeping
The foliage in Lancaster is a highlight of all fall-activities… you can’t seem to go anywhere without noticing the beautiful oranges, reds, and golden yellows painting the background of your day.

2] Perfect Weather
Not too hot, not too cold, it’s just right for an outdoor adventure. Unplug from your busy days and spend some time outside hiking or biking around the county.

3] Hayrides
Haunted or not, who doesn’t enjoy going on a hayride? This fall tradition is fun for all ages. If it’s a chilly night you can bundle up in sweaters and blankets, or warm up with some hot apple cider.

4] Pumpkin Everything
Pumpkins seem to pop up everywhere once the leaves start to turn and the air cools down. In farmer’s markets, on door steps, in foods and drinks, you name it and there seems to be a pumpkin variation of it.

5] Apple Picking
Apple picking is a great way to spend the day outdoors with family or friends. Once you are finished choosing your apples you can make all sorts of delicious treats – pies, crisps, caramel apples, dumplings, or cider donuts, whatever tickles your taste buds! Try heading over to Cherry Hill Orchards or Brecknock Orchard Farm Market.

6] Seasonal Brews
Pick your poison- coffee or beer– both have great seasonal varieties in the fall. Pumpkin spice latte, cinnamon chai, or Oktoberfest, we can’t decide which flavor is our favorite.

Lancaster Locals’ Favorite Coffee Spots & Cafes

Coffee, café, java, cup-of-joe – Lancaster is no stranger to coffee shops, in fact we have over 70 coffee shops and cafes around the county- including 9 that roast their own beans! We talked with some Lancaster locals to ask them for their tips on the best places. Read the list below for a new suggestion on where to grab your next cup, it may become your new favorite!

Ryan S. – Passenger
7 W. King St., Lancaster, PA 17602 | passengercoffee.com
“I mean, Passenger is definitely the best. I like it for its philosophy about roasting – nothing is too dark or burnt, they excel at bringing out unique flavor profiles in each roast. The options are on point, from cold brew to pour overs. The space itself is modern and beautiful, there’s really nothing like it in the city. It brings a little bit of the west coast vibe to our town.”

Jordan H. – Passenger
“I love Passenger, but those $1 refills from Mean Cup give them a run for their money.”

Ryan M. – Prince Street Café
15 N. Prince St., Lancaster, PA 17602 | princestreetcafe.com
“We have some great coffee and cafes in this little city, but I think for me my favorite is still Prince Street Café. It probably has a lot to do with the nostalgia of the place. It is where I use to have my first client meetings when I was starting up my business. The coffee is consistently great, the food is excellent, and the eclectic din of conversation provides for a great environment to meet with a friend, connect with a client or get some last-minute studying done before your next final. Prince Street Café feels authentic and well lived in… it feels like home.”

Amber S.Mean Cup or Buzz
398 Harrisburg Ave. #200, Lancaster, PA 17603 and at Lancaster Central Market| meancup.com
“I can’t decide between Buzz and Mean Cup. When it comes to coffee at Central Market, I am fiercely loyal to Mean Cup. But on non-Market days, my downtown go-to is Buzz.”

Annie W. Buzz
36 W. King St., Lancaster, PA 17603 | eatabuzz.com
“My vote is cast for Buzz. I’m always greeted with a cheery hello and there’s something fun about walking up to their window. The coffee is only one size but it just so happens it’s the right size for me – large. They’re there for me when I need them.”

Katie W. Café One Eight
18 W. Orange St., Lancaster, PA 17603 | cafe1eight.com
“I love the calming environment and all of the natural light in Café One Eight. I highly recommend trying their pesto breakfast egg-sandwich, or their avocado toast with your coffee  delicious!”

Dana D. Copper Cup
922 Columbia Ave, Lancaster, PA 17603 | coppercup.co
“I love Copper Cup Coffee in Lancaster.  It’s one of the few coffee shops that has the option of hanging out and enjoying their unique vibe inside or zipping through their drive through window if you’re in a hurry.”

Ally H. Courtyard Café on Main
349 Main St., Denver, PA 17517 | courtyardcafeonmain.com
“One of my new favorites is Courtyard Café on Main in Denver. It has a lot of charm – from their outside courtyard to the sense of community felt throughout the café. They put a lot of thought into their food menu, as they feature local, seasonal ingredients and house-made pastries.  Whether I’m in the mood for coffee or tea, they have a great selection of drinks to choose from.”

Sarah L. Speckled Hen
141 E. Main Street, Strasburg, PA 17579 | speckledhencoffee.com
“My vote is for Speckled Hen. I have always loved taking my kids to Strasburg, but mostly just for the train-themed attractions and the creamery. I feel like Strasburg is coming into its own with the new(er) businesses opening up. Speckled Hen is a place where you not only get served excellent food and fresh roasted coffee, you get to mingle with the locals – Amish included. If you’re not into coffee, don’t leave without having the London Fog – it’s one of the best.”

Luke W. Dosie Dough
45 S. Broad St., Lititz, PA 17543 | DosieDough.com
Dosie Dough is my favorite. I love the diversity in people that pass in and out – everybody from a mom running an errand on a Saturday morning, to a bike group stopping by, to the regulars, or just people passing through town. It has its own unique, quirky vibe and is always bustling with activity. I also love walking up the steps off of the beautiful section of Lititz Pike, through the outdoor seating. Everyone just seems so relaxed and content.”

Honorable Mentions:
Tomato Pie Café
Lancaster Coffee Roasters
Café Chocolate
Commonwealth on Queen
Chestnut Hill Café
Café di Vetro
Perkup & Co.
Folklore Coffee & Company
On Orange
Square One

Fall Foliage in Lancaster

People have all sorts of ways for predicting the weather and seasonal outcomes of the year, such as reading a Farmer’s Almanac, studying the way the moss grows on trees, achy bones, etc.

According to the interactive map on SmokeyMountains.com, it the predicts that the peak time for foliage peeping in Lancaster is at the beginning of October. Others may factor in that we have had quite a bit of rain this summer which usually makes for an early autumn. One thing we do know for certain is that Lancaster is beautiful in the fall and so is its foliage.

Below is a list of popular Lancaster County spots to take in the beauty of the season.

Parks and Preserves
Parks are a great place to admire Mother Nature dressed in her fall finery, and better yet they are free! Make a day out of it by taking a hike and packing a picnic lunch. Below are some of our favorite parks around Lancaster County.

– Breezyview Overlook at Chickies Rock County Park
– Lancaster County Central Park
– Lititz Springs Park
– Pinnacle Overlook, Susquehannock State Park
– Speedwell Forge County Park
– Money Rocks County Park
– Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles
Not a hiker? There are still plenty of ways for you to leaf-peep. Sit back, relax and take in the foliage from one of these various modes of transportation. You will also get great views of Lancaster County’s countryside.

-Take a Strasburg Rail Road train ride through the countryside.
-Try a helicopter tour with Smoketown Helicopters over the patchwork of farmland.
-Gaze at the tree tops in a U.S. Hot Air Balloon Ride as you gently float on you may even be able to reach out grab a leaf!
-Drive along Discover Lancaster’s Covered Bridge Tour (this way you can stop and take photos wherever you want to).

Sip while you sight-see
See the auras of autumn view while you are sipping. These vineyards not only serve local wine, but also provide great outdoor spaces to take in the view.

The Vineyard at Grandview
The Vineyard and Brewery at Hershey
Nissley Vineyards
Waltz Vineyards

Lancaster’s Labor Day Weekend Guide- 2017

For many folks, Labor Day Weekend is the unofficially end of the summer. However, there is still plenty to do in Lancaster before you pack your white pants away and dive into the school year… From Friday, September 1 through Monday September 4, look forward to everything from fine wine and original art to family bike rides and live music.

Special Events:

September 1–3
Long’s Park Art Festival
This year is the 39th Annual Long’s Park Art Festival in beautiful Long’s Park. Over 200 artists from 30 states will be exhibiting their art including photography, painting, jewelry, sculpture, digital, fiber, metal, and wood art, as well as furniture. A bistro area in the park will be serving up local food, wine and craft beer.

September 1
First Friday in Lancaster
There’s nothing like a First Friday in Lancaster! Join in Lancaster’s highly popular arts extravaganza from 5 to 9 pm. Discover innovative exhibitions, performances and perhaps a few surprises as you downtown Lancaster.

Local Labor Day Sales:

September 1-4
Tanger Outlets- Lancaster Grand Opening
The Tanger Outlets have added 25 new stores that will be opening Labor Day weekend. This event will feature not only great shopping, but also food trucks, face painting, giveaways, and more. 

August 31 – September 4
Labor Day Sidewalk/ Tent Sales at Rockvale Outlets Lancaster
Visit Rockvale Outlets for great deals from a variety of name-brand stores. The tent sale will close one hour before the center.

Family Fun:

September 1-4
Duke’s Lagoon
End the summer with a splash! Duke’s Lagoon at Dutch Wonderland closes for the season after Labor Day weekend, so don your swimsuit one last time and head on over while you can.

September 1, September 2
Music and Fireworks at the Lancaster Barnstormers
Friday night the Lancaster Barnstormers take on the Somerset Patriots at 6:30 PM in Clipper Stadium followed by a post-game concert by “Credence Clearwater.” On Saturday night both teams face-off again at 6:30 PM, followed by a spectacular fireworks display.

September 2
Lititz Bikeworks’ Taste of Lititz Bicycle Tour- Family Style
This bike ride combines salty and sweet with a bit of history, departing at 2 PM and running until 6 PM. It is kindly suggested that riders make reservations one week in advance. Tours are limited to 10 riders, ages 12 and up. Includes bike, helmet, water, pretzel/chocolate tastings.

September 3
Nikki’s Sunday Picnic Scooter Tour
Enjoy a leisurely 50cc scooter ride through the back roads of Amish country. Ride past Amish farms and schoolhouses, and possibly pass a few buggies along the way to a scenic location, featuring a historic covered bridge to enjoy a locally prepared picnic basket lunch. Ride departs at 11 AM.

Sip and Savor:

September 1
September Wine by the Vine
Visit the Vineyard at Grandview from 6-8:30 PM for wine, music by John Grisbacher, and food from JoBoy’s Brew Pub served on the deck.

September 2
Nissley Lawn Concert: The Flyboys
The Music in the Vineyards is an open-air lawn concert held at the Nissley Winery. Bring a picnic and some lawn chairs or a blanket, and enjoy an evening of local music and wine. Must be 21 to attend, bring photo I.D.

September 1-4
Get your grill on!

Everyone loves a good cook-out for Labor Day, try serving some of our locally produced meats and vegetables at your party. Fresh foods can be picked up at Central Market on Friday September 1 from 6 AM – 4 PM, and Saturday September 2 from 6 AM – 2 PM, or at many of the various farm stands around the county.

Back to School Lunches – Lancaster Style!

Hey Lancaster locals – with the kids going back to school at the end of the month, it’s time to gear up for another year of learning. Once you’ve collected your school supplies, stock up on great lunch ideas to keep your kids full and focused.

If your goal for this school year is to break away from the PB & J, try packing some of these local items in your child’s lunch for an authentic, nutritious, and most importantly, kid-friendly Lancaster County mid-day meal.

1] Rolling up turkey or ham is a great alternative to PB & J, and easy for little ones to eat.
(Stoltzfus Meats & Deli)

2] Cube cheese into bite-sized pieces for extra calcium and protein
(September Cheese Farm)

3] To add a crunch to their day, pack an individual size bag of Herr’s chips.
(Herr’s Snack Factory)

4] Not a chip fan? Pretzels are another salty alternative. After all, they are practically their own food group in Lancaster County with so many varieties to choose from.
(Julius Sturgis or Hammonds)

5] A piece of fresh, locally-grown fruit, or vegetables cut up and served with hummus make a healthy and colorful snack.
(Local farm stands)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For a special day like a birthday or just a TGIF treat, add in a mini whoopie pie from Shady Maple, some Wilbur Buds, or a treat from Miesse Candies.

Another easy way to brighten their day is to include one of our Lancaster County lunch box notes. Simply print them out at home and slip one in their lunch box.

 

 

National Farmer’s Market Week – August 6-12

Have you been to your local farmer’s market lately? If you are like us, the answer is probably yes, but just in case you need an excuse to go it is National Farmer’s Market Week! Farmer’s markets are stocked with fresh-from-the-fields produce, juicy fruits, local meats, cheeses and dairy products, and delicious baked goods. They allow us to truly “eat local,” and to know where our food is coming from. Through buying your groceries at a farmer’s market you are directly helping the community in which you live and the people that grow and produce the food you eat. Eating locally not only has health benefits, but it is also good for the environment. You can reduce your carbon footprint through eating food produced in your community, because the oil and emissions created by shipping foods are much less.

Not only does Lancaster have a large number of farmer’s markets, we are also home to the Nation’s oldest indoor farmer’s market, Lancaster Central Market. Central Market was recently named in CNN Travel’s top 10 fresh markets in the world. As they say they were “established in 1730 and still fresh.” Walking up and down the aisles you pass a variety of stands selling produce and prepared food from all different cultures. Ranging from traditional PA Dutch chow-chow to African Samosas and everything in between, there are a whole world of flavors under one roof waiting for you to taste and explore.

Different stands and markets have different schedules, but with the large number of farmer’s markets throughout the county you are guaranteed to find one that fits in with your schedule. Plus, Lancaster farmer’s markets open bright and early, so you can stop on your way to work. So why not go?

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