When I wrote about the hotels where you should consider staying during WordCamp a few weeks ago, I suggested that you might consider coming to Lancaster on Friday instead of Saturday morning. Allow me to expand on that thought, because there are a lot of reasons you should visit Lancaster City and especially this Friday, March 3rd. Here are a few.
It’s First Friday
Lancaster celebrates its culture and commerce on the first Friday of each month. This means art galleries and shops stay open late, special events and plates are prepared, and the community and tourists alike explore the city.
Peep this list of First Friday Events. A number of these events, but by no means all, take place on Gallery Row.
Gallery Row is the first and second blocks of North Prince Street and the center of Lancaster’s art scene. In addition to some of the city’s galleries, these blocks are home to the Fulton Theater and The Ware Center.
Central Market until 4pm
Lancaster Central Market, our country’s oldest farmer’s market, is a required stop at the center of our city for any foodie touring the area. More than 60 vendors sell local and imported foodstuffs to 3,000 visitors each week. In 2013, Central Market was named one of the world’s 10 best fresh markets by CNN. The market opens at 6am on Friday and Saturday, and the closing times are early at 4pm on Friday and 2pm on Saturday.
Foods and Drinks
Lancaster County has a rich restaurant and craft beer scene. Recently, local restaurant Ma(i)son received high praise from Alton Brown, the host of the Food Network’s Good Eats. Last year, four Lancaster County breweries won medals at the World Beer Cup. One of those breweries, Lancaster Brewing Company, is just minutes down the street from our venue.
Local restaurants, like Federal Taphouse & Hunger N Thirst, are making their names on their craft beer collections. The former boasts 100 taps and the latter maintains a tap list and bottle shop full of rarities.
We even have a vegan restaurant with an impressive tap list in Root on Walnut Street. Last time I was there, they had a St. Boniface Oatmeal Stout on tap, which was the first time I had seen that beer available outside Ephrata, the town 15 miles to the north where it is brewed.
Rice and Noodles is a fantastic Vietnamese restaurant that was opened by a family that relocated to Lancaster after being forced to evacuate New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. After all of their restaurants were heavily damaged in the storm, they sought refuge with a relative who lived here. Their restaurant just north of the city limits has been so successful that they’ve opened a second location downtown on Gallery Row called Sprout.
Chicken wing connoisseurs need not venture too far from our venue to find Rumplebrewskin’s, perhaps the best wing joint even locals have never heard of. With 5o flavors of wings on the menu, the hottest variety I have tried was only their third hottest, Wicked Chili, and there is no way I could have finished a full order of them. I recently heard a rumor that the famous crab cake recipe belonging to the owner of Hall’s Cafe, the bar that previously occupied this space, was included in the sale but is only prepared on First Fridays.
There are gems to be found almost anywhere you look in this city, and it would be a shame if you didn’t experience some of our treasures during your trip to WordCamp. Try us! Join us this weekend to celebrate WordPress in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.