While there are no physical colleges within the borough of Ephrata, the following is intended to describe the area and why it would be a great place for virtual academics.
One of the first things you'll notice in Ephrata, PA. Most drivers stop at pedestrian crossings that don't even have traditional stop lights, great for shopping or just exploring on foot. There's a mix of small businesses and large businesses, but the uniqueness that there's stuff to do in the evening, besides just Walmart (which is one of the better ones around). The "What You Can Do" experience late in the day is certainly rare for Lancaster County, one of the biggest "Amish Country" parts of the United States.
The Public Library's open lounge'ish area, with seating permitting foods and drinks, and bike racks right outside, is a little bit modest in space, but full of resources. There's both a Wawa and Turkey Hill adjacent to the property. That's not quite a college snack bar, but it's pretty darn close.
In addition to the Public Library's Wifi, there's lots of spots around the borough, which is something to explore in-person. The majority of the shops, restaurants, and the arcade are on or very close to Ephrata Main Street. Many others are on North Reading Road, local route 272. The local bowling alley is a few miles away in Akron. The local bus service runs from Walmart through town, and down to Lancaster City, where you can hop off to a lot of local destinations. And yes, Shady Maple Smorgasbord is a few miles away as well.
There's a huge local market known as The Green Dragon, opened only on Fridays. The local community hospital is essentially in the middle of town.
Ephrata also holds the Ephrata Fair in fall, the largest street fair in Pennsylvania. There's parks scattered around the borough, and an old railroad line has been fully converted to bike, walk, or skate down to nearby Lititz, PA.
In addition, the historic Ephrata Cloister, dating back to 1732, is located just off Main street.
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