Introduction to Ephrata, Pennsylvania
Ephrata, Pennsylvania, in Lancaster county, is 11 miles NE of Lancaster, Pennsylvania (center to center) and 56 miles W of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Part of the surrounding Lancaster metro area, the town is not an isolated town.
In the early 18th century, German mystic Johann Conrad Beissel founded the religious community of Cloisters in the region. The community declined in the early 1800s, and the village began to grow becoming the regional commercial center. It was named "Ephrata" after the biblical city. Soon, it had two resort hotels, and was also a stop for the Reading and Columbia Railroads. On August 22, 1891, Ephrata was officially incorporated as a borough.
Ephrata and Nearby Attractions
- Ephrata Cloister
- Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site
- North Museum of Natural History & Science
- Samuel S. Lewis State Park
- Dutch Wonderland Family Amusement Park
Things To Do In Ephrata
Ephrata was once the seat of the Mystic Order of the Solitary, a semimonastic order of Seventh-Day Dunkers that was established in 1732. The land on which the Ephrata Cloister stood is now a historic site that is owned by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Artifacts of historical and cultural importance are displayed in the North Museum of Natural History & Science, the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, the Heritage Center of Lancaster County, National Watch and Clock Museum, and the National Toy Train Museum. The Eicher Arts Center, housed in Conrad Beissel's historic Eicher House, now includes a Native American museum. Dutch Wonderland Family Amusement Park, and Samuel S. Lewis State Park are other two popular destinations in the area. The community of Ephrata also hosts the Ephrata Fair in September every year.
Harrisburg International Airport is the closest major airport.
Ephrata Higher Education
Colleges near Ephrata are Millersville University, Franklin & Marshall College, Pennsylvania College of Art & Design, Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology, and Alvernia College.