Explore these local attractions to discover what makes Ephrata unique!
Ephrata visitors and residents love the small-town charm the borough has to offer! Nestled in the heart of Amish country, Ephrata offers unique attractions not found anywhere else, from uncommon shopping opportunities to historical museums filled with relics from the borough’s past. Below we will share some of the one-of-a-kind attractions in Ephrata and why you should add them to your must-visit list this year!
It may not be apparent now, but the entire borough of Ephrata blossomed from the austere seed of America’s first religious settlement, The Ephrata Cloister! In the late 1700s, the cloister was home to nearly 80 celibate brothers and sisters led by Conrad Beissel. The group lived a quiet sheltered life and sought a closer relationship with God. At the cloister, the group perfected the calligraphic art of Frakturschriften and created over 1,000 compositions of acapella music. Visitors can stroll the grounds and through the massive timber structures of the monastery, to get a peek at how the brothers and sisters lived in the late 18th century.
On Fridays, the Green Dragon Market comes alive with dozens of vendors, visitors, and live auctions! There is something for everyone at Green Dragon, from delicious local produce, baked goods, vintage collectibles, and more. There are new vendors every week, so there is always something new to discover along with the old standbys. Parking is free, so you don’t have to worry about feeding a meter while strolling through the seven buildings on site. The market is open every Friday between 8 am and 8 pm.
Have you ever seen hundreds of toy pedal cars all in one place? What started as a humble hobby by Ephrata locals Richard and Ethel Seiverling collecting classic and pedal cars in the 1990s, is now the Seiverling Antique Car and Pedal Car Museum! Richard Seiverling grew his collection to nearly 162 pedal cards from around the world, along with three classic cars. Richard and Ethel enjoy staging the pedal cars with adorable teddy bear drivers. Following Richard’s death in 2006, the Seiverling family decided to open his collection to the public and start the museum. Visitors can make a reservation online to browse the collection in person. Donations to support the museum of $5 to $10 per person are appreciated but not required.
Enjoy another unique collection of oddities at the Gameseum! This mega arcade and museum is home to classic arcade games ranging in age from the 1940s to the 1990s. Pioneered and owned by Steven Van Splinter Jr., the Gameseum features his personal classic arcade collection. Visitors don’t have to worry about tokens here! Admission is charged by the hour so you can sample as many games as you wish.
The Ephrata Fair is a truly unique Ephrata tradition, bringing together the community for five days of fun, food, and games for over 100 years! There are plenty of rides and activities, perfect for all ages. Ephrata locals can also enter their produce, baked goods, crafts, livestock, and more for competition, creating an impressive showcase of Ephrata agriculture! Mark your calendars for the 2022 Ephrata Fair starting on September 20 and lasting until the 24th.
To find even more uniquely Ephrata attractions, check out our Attractions Directory. There is always something fun to do in town, and we are here to help you find new ways to explore Ephrata!