Part 3 of 4 sharing Chesco Mom Steph's adventures in Lancaster County with her family! Local Staycations are the way to go this summer: keeping it inexpensive, fun, and getting to know all the awesome local attractions the Philly region has to offer! Steph has already shared about her accommodations at the Doubletree Resort in Lancaster, as well as her fun afternoon riding the Strasburg Railroad. This week, she shares about her first time ever at The Amish Village (a giveaway is involved - so be sure to read through the post and fill out the form at the end!)
Until I planned this Staycation, I had never heard of The Amish Village. As I've shared before, I am no stranger to Lancaster, having visit several times a year, every year, since birth. I thought I had seen all the attractions, shopped all the shops. But boy was I mistaken!
Hubby, Chica and I arrived at the Amish Village in the late afternoon. The white farmhouse stood in front of us. I noticed it sat on a nice expanse of land hosting other various buildings and animals. I was intrigued, to say the least, and wasn't quite sure what The Amish Village had in store for us.
Well, let me tell you: PLENTY!
The next tour was starting in 10 minutes after we arrived, so Chica and I perused the gift shop where the tour would begin. There were so many fun toys, trinkets, and beautiful handmade items. I was quite taken with a quilted trivet that was stuffed with aromatics (cinnamon, cloves, etc) that would smell good when something hot was placed on it. It looked so homey, as do all quilted things. But I decided to hold off until after the tour.
A strapping young man arrived as our tour guide, and we were led into the next room, which would have been the main sitting/living area for the average Old Order Amish. We sat on benches as we were regaled with the history of the Old Order Amish, and the present status of their presence in Lancaster. I was surprised to find that there are Amish communities all around the country, but that Lancaster, PA held the second largest!
Next we were taken to the kitchen, followed by the upstairs bedroom quarters, ending with the Summer Kitchen below the house. It was fascinating to hear all the facts about how the Amish live, the ways they have progressed (such as using liquid propane as a means of energy and lighting), and the commitment to family. Once the tour was over, Hubby, Chica and I went to the stables to meet some of the animals (even the horse, Mr. Ed!). Here we met up with the current owner of The Amish Village, Shane Ackermann, who kindly walked us around and shared a bit more about how they got started.
The Amish Village has a real commitment to sharing the ways of Amish life, making a point to bridge the gap between The Old Order Amish and the rest of the community. I found the the small education I gained that weekend gave me a new perspective and respect for the Amish in Lancaster. The Amish Village employs several Amish workers to tend to various parts of the house and farm, and on Saturdays from 10am-4pm, there is an actual Amish school teacher who shares about teaching at the Amish school house on the back of the property. On the day we visited, our school teacher fielded many questions and gave a great overview on her role as a special education teacher in the Amish community. Very enlightening!
This is a fun, entertaining and educational attraction that I believe every Pennsylvanian owes themselves a visit to. If you have out-of-town guests this Summer, The Amish Village would be a unique place to visit. They also provide tours to schools as well! Make sure this goes on your Lancaster Staycation list!
Think you'd like to visit The Amish Village this Summer with your family? We're giving away a Family 4 pack of tickets! Just fill out the form below to enter. Giveaway will run until next Thursday, July 12, at noon.
We'd also love to hear about YOUR Amish Village experiences - so leave a comment sharing about your visit below!