Experience and Enjoy the Holiday Season in Ephrata

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Experience and Enjoy the Holiday Season in Ephrata

Posted on November 17, 2021 by Lisa Willwerth

There’s no place like Ephrata, PA during the holidays! Check out these seasonal family-friendly events you'll want to mark on your calendar.

There’s no place like Ephrata during the holidays! Upholding traditions, gathering together, and supporting local businesses are important ways to grow as a connected Ephrata community. So don’t miss out on the holiday spirit and excitement with your family and friends this season! Here are five festive events to mark on your calendar this year.

1. Christmas in Ephrata: Santa’s Arrival & Tree Lighting Event

Be sure to bring your kiddos to this annual tradition to start the excitement of the holiday season. Santa is arriving in Ephrata on November 26! The event runs from 5:30-8pm, and Santa will stop by from 6:30-9:30pm. Children can visit him in the Santa House or drop a letter off in the North Pole Mail Express mailbox. The event is perfect for connecting with family and friends! A laser light show, welcoming the Belsnickel, live music from the Big Boy Brass band, and barrel train rides are all on the agenda for the evening.

Photo courtesy of Lancaster Newspaper.

2. Ephrata Holiday Makers Market

The holiday festivities continue on Small Business Saturday at the Makers Market! Stop by to support your friends, neighbors, and local businesses owners who will be selling hand-crafted goodies and gifts. A few vendors that will attend the holiday market include Weathered Vineyards Wine Tasting Room Ephrata, Sojourn Leather Co, Lorah’s Handmade Chocolates, and Aesthetically Made. To view the full list of participating vendors, visit the event page on our website. We will also have ice sculpting and other fun activities for children in Whistle Stop Plaza, so feel free to bring your kiddos along on November 27 from 10:00am-2:00pm!

3. Jingle Bell Tour

The Jingle Bell Tour is back and better than ever for the eighth season! This popular event consists of a guided outdoor tour of local homes and businesses decorated for the holiday season. December 10 is Family Night and will begin at Ephrata Church of the Brethren. Trolley tours will start at 5pm and depart every 30 minutes until 8:30pm. December 11 is Adult Night and will begin and end at Old Republic Distillery Tavern. The first tour will depart at 6pm, and attendees will each get one complimentary drink! Family Night tickets are $12 each, and Adult Night tickets are $15 each.

You can also take a self-guided tour from the comfort of your car! Start by downloading the Uniquely Ephrata Tours app to follow Santa through Ephrata Borough. Once you purchase your $5 ticket through the app, you can then pick up a passport at Javateas Cafe. The passport gives you access to the tour and includes coupons from local businesses!

4. Christmas at the Cloister

Experience the magic of Christmas at the Historic Ephrata Cloister! Visitors will enjoy singing holiday carols in the historic Meetinghouse and listening to featured performances by the Ephrata Cloister Chorus. The event will take place on Monday, December 13, and Tuesday, December 14, at 6:30pm and 8pm. Tickets are $7 per person and can are available for purchase through the Cloister website.

The Cloister will also be hosting a Candlelight Open House on Saturday, November 27 as well as Lantern Tours from December 27-30. More information about these holiday events can be found on the Christmas In Ephrata events page.

5. Journey to Bethlehem

Come to Woodcrest Retreat to celebrate the holidays with a unique live nativity! The Journey to Bethlehem allows you to walk around and interact with the Biblical characters. Experience the story of Christmas with dramatic actors and real animals. The tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children aged 4-16, and free for children under four. You can reserve your tentative time slots online.

The dates and times are as follows:

  • Friday, December 10, 2021 (6:00 – 8:30pm)
  • Saturday, December 11, 2021 (5:00 – 8:30pm)
  • Friday, December 17, 2021 (6:00 – 8:30pm)
  • Saturday, December 18, 2021 (5:00 – 8:30pm)
Photo courtesy of Woodcrest Retreat.

We are very excited about this year’s holiday season in Ephrata Borough! We hope to see you out and about in the community enjoying all there is to offer over the next several weeks.